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May 2004

How to avoid Windows XP Service Pack 2 problems

Imagine walking into work tomorrow to find that none of your mission-critical applications is working. A new virus or worm, perhaps? Nope. Something much simpler: Windows XP Service Pack 2. Microsoft promises many security benefits with this service pack, scheduled for general release this summer. While these changes may keep the hackers and worms at bay, they also make me feel a little uneasy. Think interoperability--or lack thereof. Best practices call for regression and interoperability testing on your enterprise desktops and legacy applications before any program goes live. But, there's no need to wait until the last minute. Running a few preliminary tests with the SP2 beta will give you a heads up on many of the issues you'll encounter during deployment, and will give you some time to resolve or plan for them. Microsoft's changes will affect nearly every browser-based and custom application in your enterprise. Any app that uses unauthenticated or anonymous connections through RPC and DCOM is disallowed by default, which ...

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