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- Policy Changes for 2014 – We’ve made some changes to our pricing and policies and have posted a summary on our website here. If you have any questions or would like more information about MyIT or the Priority Blocks, don’t hesitate to give us a call (770.396.8900) or email us.
- Support Ending for Windows XP (and others) – For some, I know that this is getting a little tedious but we still have a LOT of folks who are simply ignoring the fact that Microsoft is ending support for a number of older products including Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and Exchange Server 2003, still the flagship in many small business networks. We are currently scheduling upgrades but as 8 April gets closer and closer, scheduling for us (and, I suspect, pretty much every tech support business around) is going to get very tight. If you still have any of these products installed, now is the time to get the plan in place to upgrade or replace them if you haven’t already.
Microsoft – According to the Advanced Notification, there are only 5 bulletins this month, with 2 listed as critical and 3 listed as important. Affected products include Windows, [Windows] Server, Microsoft Security Products and .NET.
Microsoft releases regular updates the second Tuesday of each month, often referred to as ‘Patch Tuesday’. These updates are categorized as Low, Moderate, Important or Critical. Details on the categories is available here. The updates can include any *supported* Microsoft product from Windows (Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows 8, Windows Server, etc.) to Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, OneNote, and even MS Office for Mac) to Internet Explorer to server products like Exchange, SQL Server and more. If you have one of these products installed, especially if the update is listed as Important or Critical, it’s important that the update be installed.
Adobe – Adobe announced an emergency update on 4 February and is currently the last update available. I suspect that we may see something else on Tuesday as more of a general update.
Like Microsoft, Adobe now releases updates to their products on the second Tuesday of each month. Adobe will also release ‘out of band’ updates if necessary to address critical vulnerabilities in their products. Adobe products include Adobe Reader (for viewing PDF files), Adobe Flash Player (often used to watch videos like YouTube and in interactive web content like games) and Adobe Shockwave.
These updates have already been staged for install for MyIT Clients. If you have a MyIT plan in place, please be certain to reboot your computer(s) by close of business on 14 January 2014 to ensure that the updates are properly applied. If you do not have a MyIT plan in place and would like additional information, please contact us.
Java – I said last month that things were quiet in the Java camp and, apparently, as soon as I clicked ‘send’ on the email, Java 7 update 51 was released. As of the time of this email, Java 7 update 51 is still the latest, but we’ll see what happens as soon as I click send this month.
Java is a tool that’s widely used by Banks, online service providers and even security companies for VPN connections. Java’s ‘official’ release cycle is approximately quarterly but Java updates have been ‘fast and furious’ for the past several months. It’s worth noting again that, if you don’t absolutely need Java on your computer, it’s worth removing it altogether (this can be done from Add / Remove programs).
* We are in the process of deploying the Network Ninja’s to all of our MyIT clients now and expect to have everyone up and going by late February. The response to the MyIT Silver plan caught us by surprise but supply is finally catching up.
* If you are not currently taking advantage of our MyIT service and would like more information or to sign up, additional information is available here.
If you aren’t already taking advantage of one of our MyIT plans, there’s no time like the present to get started. Visit our website for more details or to get started today.