No need to update

Not if you’re in Player 10, that is.

Newspaper headlines this week urge “Update your Reader 8!” and “Update your Player 9!” Careful readers might notice something odd with this advice….

Why the news cycle? Adobe released new versions of old software this week, for people on locked intranets and others who cannot yet use the current versions. Once even people on locked systems have updates for old versions, at that point we can describe in general terms what was addressed. That new documentation is what’s driving the headlines.

(I tried leaving a comment at BetaNews, but after writing it, they told me my email address was already in use. ZDNet also uses a membership system for comments, as do many others. Even the Washington Post now has a membership wall… particularly sad because some pseudonymous commenters there are seeking info about version-detection implementations on some sites. Shouting through the wind is not my strong point, but these simple truths remain.)

If you’ve got to use old software, then yes, please do use this week’s downloads to protect against the later JavaScript intrusions.

But you’re already protected if you’re using current versions.

I wish the headlines were updated as easily.

3 Responses to No need to update

  1. Security Wonk says:

    You say yourself that there are many users who have not and cannot update, and this is a serious security flaw… so, isn’t it a good thing that users upgrade/patch instead of potentially getting owned via an exploit of the JScript vulnerability?
    You seem a bit like a jilted fanboy.
    [jd sez: Instant personality analysis declined, but thank you for proving so clearly that some don’t read beyond a headline.]

  2. John Dowdell says:

    At SC Magazine, Dan Kaplan has a more realistic headline:
    “Adobe patches older version of Flash for six flaws”
    But at ComputerWorld, Gregg Keizer has many paragraphs about “Flash flaws” before adding towards the bottom “Users running the newer Flash Player 10 do not need to update their software.” On the plus side, they do host open comments.
    Software companies adding a fix for current software is like newspaper editors correcting a current story. Software companies adding a fix for software a few years old is like, well, something newspapers don’t seem to do as much…. 😉

  3. John Dowdell says:

    Stephen Withers at ITWire puts the contextual info up at the top of the story:

    Adobe has issued updates for some of its older software to address critical security vulnerabilities. The updates are aimed at users of older systems that are unable to run the latest versions of Flash and Acrobat.
    Less than a month ago, Adobe updated Flash Player 10, the software widely used for delivering animation, video and interactivity in web pages, among other purposes.
    Updates for older versions of Adobe software arrived last week.
    Intended for users of older browsers and operating systems that can’t run the Flash Player 10, Flash Player 9 update addresses a number of critical security issues….

    Same story, but two different sets of perceptions for readers, depending on how the story is told.