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"Side By Side Assemblies" Bring DLL Hell 2.0 433

neutrino38 writes "This is an alert for all developers using Microsoft Visual Studio 2005. At the beginning of January, Microsoft issued a security fix for Visual Studio 2005 forcing the use of new dynamic libraries (DLLs) by all applications compiled with this IDE. Basically, applications compiled with Visual Studio 2005 will not work anymore on an ordinary (non-dev) PC unless the newer DLLs are installed. And we found out that this is true on fully updated PCs. I just posted some details and some suggested fixes." Read below for some more background on Microsoft's so-called "side by side assemblies."
Internet Explorer

Reports of IE Hijacking NXDOMAINs, Routing To Bing 230

Jaeden Stormes writes "We just started getting word of a new browser hijack from our sales force. 'Some site called Bing?' they said. Sure enough, since the patches last night, their IE6 and IE7 installations are now routing all NXDOMAINs to Bing. Try it out — put in something like www.DoNotHijackMe.com." We've had mixed results here confirming this: one report that up-to-date IE8 behaves as described. Others tried installing all offered updates to systems running IE6 and IE7 and got no hijacking.
Update: 08/11 23:24 GMT by KD : Readers are reporting that it's not Bing that comes up for a nonexistent domain, it's the user's default search engine (noting that at least one Microsoft update in the past changed the default to Bing). There may be nothing new here.

Windows 7 Licensing a "Disaster" For XP Shops 567

snydeq writes "Enterprise licensing for Windows 7 could cause major headaches and add more cost to the Windows 7 migration effort, InfoWorld reports. Under the proposed license, businesses that purchase PCs with Windows 7 pre-installed within six months of the Oct. 23 launch date will be able to downgrade those systems to XP, and later upgrade back to Windows 7 when ready to migrate users. PCs bought after April 22, 2010, however, can only be downgraded to Vista — no help for XP-based organizations, which would be wise to wait 12 to 18 months before adopting Windows 7, so that they can test hardware and software compatibility and ensure their vendors' Windows 7 support meets their needs. XP shops that chose not to install Vista will have to either rush their migration process or spend extra to enroll in Microsoft's Software Assurance program, which allows them to install any OS version — for about $90 per year per PC."

Microsoft Patents the Crippling of Operating Systems 394

theodp writes "On Tuesday, Microsoft was granted US Patent No. 7,536,726 (it was filed in 2005) for intentionally crippling the functionality of an operating system by 'making selected portions and functionality of the operating system unavailable to the user or by limiting the user's ability to add software applications or device drivers to the computer' until an 'agreed upon sum of money' is paid to 'unlock or otherwise make available the restricted functionality.' According to Microsoft, this solves a 'problem inherent in open architecture systems,' i.e., 'they are generally licensed with complete use rights and/or functionality that may be beyond the need or desire of the system purchaser.' An additional problem with open architecture systems, Microsoft explains, is that 'virtually anyone can write an application that can be executed on the system.' Nice to see the USPTO rewarding Microsoft's eight problem-solving inventors, including Linux killer (and antelope killer) Joachim Kempin, who's been credited with getting Microsoft hauled into federal court on antitrust charges." Sounds like the mechanism by which Microsoft sells one version of Vista to all users, and lets users upgrade to higher-tier flavors of the OS after cash changes hands.

Microsoft To Banish Memcpy() 486

kyriacos notes that Microsoft will be adding memcpy() to its list of function calls banned under its secure development lifecycle. This reader asks, "I was wondering how advanced C/C++ programmers view this move. Do you find this having a negative impact on the flexibility of the language, and do you think it will restrict the creativity of the programmer?"
Linux Business

Trademarks Considered Harmful To Open Source 226

An anonymous reader touts a blog posting up at PC World titled "Trademarks: The Hidden Menace." Keir Thomas asks why open source advocates are keen to suggest patent and copyright reform, yet completely ignore the issue of trademarks, which can be just as corrosive to the freedom that open source projects strive to embody. "Even within the Linux community, trademarking can be used as obstructively as copyright and patenting to further business ends. ... Is this how open source is supposed to work? Restricted redistribution? Tight control on who can compile software and still be able to call it by its proper name? ... Trademarking is almost totally incompatible with the essential freedom offered by open source. Trademarking is a way of severely limiting all activity on a particular product to that which you approve of. ... If an open source company embraces trademarks then it embraces this philosophy. On the one hand it advocates freedom, and [on] the other it takes it away."
Internet Explorer

IE8 Released As Critical Update For XP 409

Binestar was one of several readers writing in to note that Microsoft is listing IE8 as a critical update to Windows XP. CNet reported a couple of weeks back that Microsoft would be rolling our IE8 to users in a gradual fashion, and requiring an opt-in before installing it. Opinion has been split as to whether IE8 is worth installing or not. Binestar notes delicately, "For those not interested in upgrading to IE8 at this time, the MSDN released information back in January on how to keep IE8 off your machine."

Windows 7's Virtual XP Mode a Support Nightmare? 413

CWmike writes "Microsoft's decision to let Windows 7 users run Windows XP applications in a virtual machine may have been necessary to convince people to upgrade, but it could also create support nightmares, analysts said today. Gartner analyst Michael Silver outlines the downsides. 'You'll have to support two versions of Windows,' he said. 'Each needs to be secured, antivirused, firewalled and patched. If a company has 10,000 PCs, that's 20,000 instances of Windows.' The other big problem Silver foresees: Making sure the software they run is compatible with Windows 7. 'This is a great Band-Aid, but companies need to heal their applications,' Silver said. 'They'll be doing themselves a disservice if, because of XPM, they're not making sure that all their apps support Windows 7.'"

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