Only one month to go before Microsoft will stop releasing public security updates for the Windows XP operating system.
On this month's patch day, we have five bulletins addressing vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, and Microsoft Silverlight.
Two of the bulletins have received an aggregate severity rating of critical, which means that at least one Microsoft product is affected this way. Other products may be affected in the same way, not as critical, or not at all.
The remaining three bulletins have received a severity rating of important, the second highest rating for vulnerabilities.
Below you find information needed to resolve these vulnerabilities on affected systems.
We highlight the operating system distribution, link to all bulletins and additional updates that Microsoft has released this month, provide you with a deployment guideline, and describe how you can download and install those updates on affected systems.
Operating System Distribution
Here we look at each version of the Windows operating system and how it is affected by this month's vulnerabilities.
On the client side, we have Windows XP and Windows Vista which are affected more than all other client systems. Both are affected by two critical and two important bulletins. Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 are affected by two critical and one important bulletin, while Windows RT and Windows RT 8.1 only by one critical and one important bulletin.
On the server side, all server versions are affected in the same way.
Microsoft Developer Tools and Software
Microsoft publishes a deployment guide for system administrators, IT professionals, and interested end users each month.
The priority of deployment is a suggestion by the company that it bases on information such as severity of the vulnerability, exploitability, impact, and whether it is already in the wild or not.
Changes to existing security content / new security content
Non-security related updates
How to download and install the March 2014 security updates
Most Windows users will receive the updates via the automatic update feature of the Windows operating system. If you have not changed any update related settings, this is how you will get it as well.
Please note that you may need to check manually for updates to receive them as fast as possible, as Windows does not support real-time update checking.
If you have set your system to manual update, you need to either run the update check manually as well, or download the patches from Microsoft using the company's Download Center, or a third-party software that can do so for you.
Microsoft will release an ISO image in the coming hours that contains all security updates of the month. This too can be downloaded from the company's Download Center.
Consult our Windows Update guide to find out more about those options.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.