Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Zone Alarm /MSFT Security Update Farkle

In my spare time, I provide pro bono tech support to a charitable organization. Yesterday, the subject of Microsoft's new security patch came up. It turns out that installing the patch on a machine running Zone Alarm (free or paid-for editions) kills internet connectivity. As of this moment, there are two fairly simple work-arounds: 1) don't install, or uninstall the security update or 2) set Zone Alarm firewall security to medium.

That's straightforward enough. One would expect Zone Alarm to fix their problem and get the program running again. Yet, Zone Alarm's recommended patch is to uninstall the update. and I have actually read comments on the net saying that "Microsoft has broken Zone Alarm". This makes me say "You're kidding me, right?"

Let's review: a vendor builds a product designed to support an operating system. The operating system is improved to eliminate a vulnerability. The people (and to some extent the vendor) blame the operating system? Nope.

Frankly, on my last remaining XP machine, I switched to Comodo anyway. It's much more elegant and requires a lot less thinking anyway.

Don't call me a Microsoft apologist...I'm not...but when you're a parasitic part of a food chain, one should not bite your host. Zone Alarm, fix the program and say "Oops".

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