Patches created to fix Meltdown exploit left Windows 7 PCs more vulnerable than before
Launched in a hurry after the appearance of Meltdown / Specter exploits in the public domain, the patches that were supposed to prevent vulnerable PCs from turning into cyber attacks have ended up creating more problems than they have solved. However, PC spontaneous reboot, reported on both Intel and AMD processors, only partly justified Microsoft's decision to distribute a new set of patches that cancels old ones. At least in the case of Windows 7, patches launched during the January-February period have squeezed an even more serious security issue, including Windows Server 2008 R2-based servers
Apparently, the first patches left a portion of the protected kernel memory domain accessible to applications without special access privileges. Specifically, malware malware cracked in vulnerable PCs could overwrite the protected operating system memory to gain administrator access rights, intercept passwords and other information stored in RAM
Ironically, the patches created just to block such cyber attacks have opened up an alternative pathway to reach the same result. Fortunately, this time the source of the inconvenience is a software problem, the team of programmers who worked on the Meltdown exploit patch incorrectly setting the kernel memory access rights
The remedy came only on March 13, with a new set of patches distributed through the Windows Update service. The problem is that the new patches have introduced another problem, causing the loss of previously configured static IP addresses without which some server and workstations can not connect to the network. And this time, the remedy will come with a new patch, for the time being at the promise stage.