After month-long delay, Microsoft releases Patch Tuesday update with security fixes

microsoft releases march 2017 patch tuesday security update windows10
Microsoft’s March 2017 Patch Tuesday release was notable primarily because it covers two full months of security updates. A show-stopper bug derailed the February release, and so the company was forced to take the unusual step of delaying it for a full month.

Now that the update has been released, we can see that there was plenty to be patched. There were a number of security bugs to be fixed up, as TrendMicro’s Security Intelligence Blog reports, and also at least one small change that portends the impending release of Windows 10 Creators Update.

The update’s changelog is extensive, listing out a slew of updates to fix a number of security holes. The zero-day bug causing issues with the Server Message Block (SMB) network protocol was fixed, and that’s particularly important because it’s actually not a zero-day vulnerability at this point — everyone knew about it over a month ago and it was one of the reasons why delaying Patch Tuesday was so problematic.

Other fixes were noted as well. Another SMB bug involving the SMBv1 server was fixed, along with a Windows Graphic Device Interface (GDI) issue that Google’s Project Zero disclosed, that could allow remote hackers to grab information from a system’s heap memory. In addition to those critical, well-known bugs, a number of other security issues were resolved, including a number of Internet Explorer bugs and a full 32 bugs in Microsoft’s newer Edge browser.

If you’re not a Windows Insider, then you may not be keeping up with the progress towards a public release of the upcoming Creators Update. Microsoft wants to make sure you know it’s coming soon, and so it added a brief notice in the Update Status section of the Settings app letting you know it’s on its way.

microsoft releases march 2017 patch tuesday security update windows 10 creators notice
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Note that If you click on that “Yes, show me how” link, then you’ll be directed to a page indicating that you’ll be “one of the first to experience the Windows 10 Creators Update.” If you don’t want to be one of the first, then presumably you don’t want to click on this link. If you really want to get the Creators Update early, then of course you can join the Windows Insider program on the Fast Ring and the latest Windows 10 preview build is probably pretty close to what’s going to be publicly released.

microsoft releases march 2017 patch tuesday security update windows 10 creators soon
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

You can check out the complete list of fixes in the March 2017 Patch Tuesday release at Microsoft’s Technet site. You can also download the update from Microsoft’s Update Catalog, and if you do then you’ll notice that the download utilizes the new “delta update” method that helps to keep updates smaller and more palatable for IT departments with thousands of machines to update.

It’s always a good idea to let Windows install its Patch Tuesday updates on time. This month, it’s even more important, because you’re getting sixty days of updates including some vulnerabilities that are known and in the wild.

Computing

Microsoft’s Windows 10 updates have been a disaster despite safeguards

After a string of Windows 10 update issues, including severe data loss for a number of users, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President of Windows, Michael Fortin, has spoken out about quality control surrounding Windows development at…
Computing

Windows Update not working after October 2018 patch? Here’s how to fix it

Windows update not working? It's a more common problem than you might think. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to troubleshoot it and in this guide we'll break them down for you step by step.
Computing

Here’s how to install Windows on a Chromebook

If you want to push the functionality of your new Chromebook to another level, and Linux isn't really your deal, you can try installing Windows on a Chromebook. Here's how to do so, just in case you're looking to nab some Windows-only…
Computing

Is your PC slow? Here's how to restore Windows 10 to factory settings

Computers rarely work as well after they accumulate files and misconfigure settings. Thankfully, with this guide, you'll be able to restore your PC to its original state by learning how to factory reset Windows.
Computing

No more wild goose chase: ‘Duck.com’ now leads to DuckDuckGo instead of Google

DuckDuckGo recently acquired a shorter domain name from fellow search engine competitor Google. As a result, longtime and new DuckDuckGo users can now access the privacy-focused search engine by going to duck.com.
Computing

Samsung Notebook 9 Pen is back with new design, internals and S Pen

Samsung's new Notebook 9 Pen looks to be an ideal Windows 2-in-1 for creators. New features include a modern design, an updated S Pen in the box, and the latest eighth-generation Intel Core i7 processor.
Computing

These are the worst passwords of 2018. Is yours on this list?

Do you use a bad password that makes your online accounts easy to break into? SplashData has compiled a list of the top 100 worst passwords for 2018 and there are quite a few listings that were carryovers from prior lists.
Mobile

Want to watch Netflix in bed or browse the web? We have a tablet for everyone

There’s so much choice when shopping for a new tablet that it can be hard to pick the right one. From iPads to Android, these are our picks for the best tablets you can buy right now whatever your budget.
Computing

Costco members can cut up to $200 off MacBook and iMac price tags

Costco is discounting MacBook Air and MacBook Pro laptops by as much as $200 as part of a members-only sale. It also has deals on select MacBooks and iMacs, with optional Apple Care in most instances.
Computing

Fix those internet dead zones by turning an old router into a Wi-Fi repeater

Is there a Wi-Fi dead zone in your home or office? A Wi-Fi repeater can help. Don't buy a new one, though. Here is how to extend Wi-Fi range with another router you have lying around.
Deals

Here are the best laptop deals for December 2018

Whether you need a new laptop for school or work or you're just doing some holiday shopping for a special someone, we've got you covered: These are the best laptop deals going right now, from discounted MacBooks to on-the-go gaming PCs.
Computing

Go hands-free in Windows 10 with speech-to-text support

Looking for the dictation, speech-to-text, and voice control options in Windows 10? Here's how to set up Speech Recognition in Windows 10 and use it to go hands-free in a variety of different tasks and applications within Windows.
Computing

Microsoft could split up search and Cortana in the next Windows 10 release

In the latest Insider preview build, Microsoft is exploring ways to split up Cortana and search on Windows 10. If Microsoft moves ahead with this change, we could see separate search and Cortana options in the Spring 2019 Update.
Computing

Mining cryptocurrency for Razer Silver isn’t worth your computing power

Gaming peripheral maker Razer launched a cryptocurrency mining scheme called SoftMiner. You use its software to mine and in return, you get Razer Silver which you can use to buy Razer gear.