Microsoft Security Patches Are for Pirated OS Versions as Well
Article by George Norman
On 28 Apr 2009
Each and every second Tuesday of the month, Microsoft released updates for the Windows-based operating system addressing all sorts of security and other issues (take for example this month’s Patch Tuesday update that addressed a total of 8 security bulletins). There is a myth going on that Microsoft, who doesn’t look kindly at people pirating their software, is keeping users of pirated Windows versions away from much needed security updates.

Director of Windows 7 Client Enterprise Security, Paul Cooke, explains: “Not only do all security updates go to all users' systems, but non-genuine Windows systems are able to install service packs, update rollups, and important reliability and application compatibility updates. In addition, the users of non-genuine Windows systems can also upgrade a lot of the other software on their computer. For example Internet Explorer 8 has numerous security- oriented features and improvements, and it is available to all users.”


When it comes to security, updates and patches are made available to all Microsoft software users, regardless of the fact that they purchased genuine copies of said software or if they are using pirated software instead (we’re tricked into purchasing non-genuine software or are knowingly using pirated software). When it comes to additional updates, updates that are not security oriented, things change – and by that I mean Microsoft is not so willing about giving them away.

Peter Cooke again: “Other value-adding updates and software may or may not be blocked, at Microsoft's discretion. On Windows Vista, available updates can be accessed through the Windows Update control panel. On Windows XP, a non-genuine Windows system can access updates through Automatic Updates, but they cannot get to any of the optional updates which are only available through the Windows Update and Microsoft Update websites.”

The bottom line is that Microsoft does restrict access to some updates, but only when the user is running a non-genuine software version and when the update is not a security one. Security-wise, Microsoft updates and patches are available to all users, with the emphasis on all.

Tags: Microsoft, Windows, Security, Update, Patch Tuesday
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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