Welcome to the Microsoft Security Bulletin overview for August 2014. It offers information about all security and non-security patches released by Microsoft since the last release.
A total of nine bulletins have been released this month which patch security issues in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Server Software, the .NET Framework and Microsoft Office.
Two bulletins have received the highest severity rating of critical while the remaining seven bulletins a rating of important.
In addition to regular updates, Windows 8.1's August Update has been released as well. It is a smaller update for the operating system that adds three new features or improvements to it. It is likely that it won't impact the majority of users in any way though.
Microsoft's new out-of-date ActiveX Controls blocking rolls out with this update as well but won't be active for the next 30 days to give customers more time to test it before it goes live.
Operating System Distribution
Vulnerabilities may impact operating systems in a different way or not at all. This month's distribution shows this clearly as Vista and RT are affected by one critical and three important bulletins while all remaining systems are affected by two critical bulletins and four important ones.
The least affected operating system on the server side is Windows Server 2003 followed by Server 2008. All other server products share the same vulnerability distribution of four important and one moderate bulletin.
Other Microsoft Product Distribution
Microsoft releases a deployment guide each month suggesting the order in which updates should be installed on affected systems.
Security related updates
Non-security related updates
How to download and install the August 2014 security updates
Most Windows users will receive the updates via the operating system's automatic update feature. It is recommended to check for updates manually as this is not done in real-time by the system.
To do so, tap on the Windows-key, type Windows Update, and select the right result. Here you need to select check for updates to run a manual check for new updates.
Patches are also made available on Microsoft's Download Center. While not as comfortable it provides users and system administrators with improved deployment options.
Microsoft releases a security ISO each month containing all updates and patches of that month. You find a link list of all security ISO images here.