Microsoft has officially re-released its MS13-036 security patch for an elevation-of-privilege attack, following the withdrawal of a faulty version that sent systems into a reboot cycle.
Released earlier this month as part of the company's regular 'Patch Tuesday' monthly update cycle, update MS13-036/2823324 was designed to fix a flaw in the Windows file system kernel-mode driver ntfs.sys that could give an attacker means to escalate his or her privilege level on a compromised system. Sadly, the cure proved worse than the disease: shortly after release, users began complaining of constant crashes
under Windows 7
, while those using certain brands of anti-virus software encountered even worse problems - up to and including a constant reboot cycle that would not allow the computer to start up correctly.
Microsoft withdrew the patch, but the automatic nature of Windows Updates meant the damage was largely done. It recommended that users who had installed the patch remove it from their systems
, even if it appeared to be working correctly, pending the release of a fixed version of the update.
That update has now been re-released, this time hopefully resolving the issue once and for all. As well as patching the original security hole, the revised patch reverses the effects of the original, flawed update, restoring normality to affected systems. Those who have been suffering from issues with the update should receive the revised edition automatically, while those that manually uninstalled the problem update should manually check for updates.
Full details on the flaw, along with others fixed by the same patch and Microsoft's response to the issues it caused with the faulty patch, can be found in the company's updated bulletin