But it's the XP Service Pack, a security update to Windows XP that's slated for release by the end of September, that has been the focus of customers waiting for relief from the seemingly endless parade of patches. Kaplan gave those in attendance at Thursday's presentation a glimpse of the software, showing how it will better protect Web browsers & more-effectively secure network resources and critical applications such as E-mail. On the browser side, Kaplan demonstrated the service pack's ability to block pop-up windows & the installation of ActiveX controls, which not only slow performance but often are used to download malicious software to a PC. "It puts the user back in control," he said. He also showed a new security-center icon in the system tray that will keep users informed on the status of firewall protection, system updates, & antivirus protection.
Being a regular troll of the Windows forums, I gotta say this looks really good to me. The ActiveX controls controller will be nice, especially to start thwarting some of the malware out there. Microsoft finally presents itself slightly intelligent in the sense that they are more often pointing out that these patches dont' do any good unless you install them (duh.) I have to wonder, how long until an OS comes out that has a deactivate until patch install command (after SP release date)... And why can't people, even admins, figure out they need to install these?!?!?!Oh.. and the final bit of curiosity will be if it does or doesn't install on pirated XP. I'm mixed emotions on this, and after the Kerry-like flip-flop, I get the impression so is MS.