Microsoft covertly reissues botched patch KB 3097877 for Windows 7

Patch Tuesday
The day is yet young, but I’m seeing lots and lots of reports of crashes, hangs, and odd behavior attributed to KB 3097877. As of this moment, Microsoft hasn’t acknowledged any problems in KB 3097877, and the only surefire workarounds involve uninstalling the patches or rolling back to an earlier system restore point.

The new, fixed patch has the same KB number as the old, bad patch that crashed Outlook and busted network logon

As best I can tell, around 1:30 a.m. Redmond time on Thursday, Nov. 12, Microsoft re-released KB 3097877 — the horribly messed-up security patch I talked about yesterday that freezes Outlook, blocks network logons, crashes the Asus DX Xonar driver, and kills Win7 sidebar gadgets and SolidWorks, among others.

The patch is part of security bulletin MS15-115, a “critical update,” in Microsoft’s lexicon, designed to prevent remote code execution triggered by malicious fonts. Yes, fonts.
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The KB article was updated at 1:42 a.m. Redmond time to say:

This security update was rereleased on November 11, 2015 for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 to resolve an issue where crashes occurred in all supported versions of Microsoft Outlook when users were reading certain emails.

I’ve seen no other official description of the problem or its solution. The master list of Windows updates doesn’t list a re-release. Several TechNet threads mention a second version of KB 3097877, but I haven’t seen any official confirmation or description. It’s mushroom patch management time.

It looks like the patch was only re-released for Windows 7, not for any of the other Windows versions. I had anecdotal evidence on AskWoody.com that the patch had been pulled for Windows 7 on the night of Nov. 11, at least for a short time.

That means it took Microsoft 30 hours or more to pull the bad KB 3097877 and 36 hours to get a new version posted. That’s the kind of timescale we were accustomed to earlier this year. Considering that the failure seems to affect all versions of Windows 7 running all versions of Outlook, it’s hard to understand why the problem wasn’t caught in testing — and why it took so long to make it right.

It’s also not clear why Microsoft re-released the patch with the same KB number as the bad patch. That’s going to make life difficult for some admins. For those who hang their tails out in the breeze and turn on Windows Automatic Update, though, it means that a run through Windows Update will solve the old problems, and you’re not likely to notice that anything’s been updated.

If you can get to Windows Update.

If the new version really solves all the problems.

SOURCE: Infoworld

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  • thebloggersden

    Here is the fix for this update:

    1. Upon starting up your computer, enter Advanced Boot Options by hitting F8 repeatedly before you get the “Starting Windows” screen.

    2. Go to “Repair my computer”.

    3. Wait for it to ask you to enter your credentials, and do so.

    4. System Recovery Options list will come up. The last option should be to open Command Prompt – do this now.

    5. Type the following (where X: refers to the drive that your Windows updates should be installed to – this is usually C:, but mine is D:):

    X:

    dism /image:X:\ /remove-package /packagename:Package_for_KB3097877~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~6.1.1.1 /scratchdir:X:\temp

    6. It should now remove the update. Once it tells you that the removal has reached 100%, close the prompt and restart your computer.

    7. Wait for it to run through the usual boot-up routine – at the end, you should have no flashing screen anymore, and get the login prompt!

    After this has completed you’ll want to go into Control Panel>Windows Update and change your update settings to ‘Never check for updates’ to help prevent it from reinstalling update KB3097877, at least for the time being until Microsoft pushes a fix for this.

    Link to full walk through for this fix

  • Resolution for customers who are unable to log on to their Windows 7 computers:

    If you cannot log on to your Windows 7-based computer because of the known issue mentioned earlier, we recommend that you uninstall security update 3097877 and then install all the latest updates from Windows Update.

    The following section provides ways to uninstall the update:

    Option 1: Disconnect any digitizer devices

    If you have a digitizer device connected to your Windows 7 computer (such as a Wacom device), unplug that device and then continue with logon. After you are logged on, install all the latest updates from Windows Update.

    Option 2: Recover the last Restore Point by using System Restore

    1. Access the System Recovery Options. To do this, restart the computer and repeatedly tap the F8 key before the Windows logo appears. If the Windows logo appears, try again. Wait until the Windows logon prompt appears, and then shut down and then restart your computer. You must remove any floppy disks, CDs, and DVDs from your computer before you restart.
    2. Select Repair your Computer.repair your computer
    3. Select the language, and then log on to the computer.Select languageNote If you do not know the local password, you must start by using a Windows 7 DVD or USB bootable media. Then, access System Recovery Options. For more information about how to obtain Windows 7 DVD or USB bootable media, visit the following Microsoft webpage:
    4. Select System Restore from the menu:
       Select System Restore from the menu
    5. Restore the last restore point. This uninstalls security update 3097877.
    6. Restart the computer into normal mode.

    Option 3: Uninstall security update 3097877 at a command prompt

    1. Access the System Recovery Options. To do this, restart the computer and repeatedly tap the F8 key before the Windows logo appears. If the Windows logo appears, try again. Wait until the Windows logon prompt appears, and then shut down and then restart your computer. You must remove any floppy disks, CDs, and DVDs from your computer before you restart.
    2. Select Repair your Computer. System Recovery
    3. Select the language, and then log on to the computer.
      Note If you do not know the local password, you must start by using a Windows 7 DVD or USB bootable media. Then, access System Recovery Options. For more information about how to obtain Windows 7 DVD or USB bootable media, visit the following Microsoft webpage:

    4. Select Command Prompt from the menu:
       Select Command Prompt from the menu
    5. At the command prompt, run the following command:

      dism /image:C:\ /get-packages
    6. Search the results for security update 3097877.
      Note The package name in your computer might differ from above because it depends on your computer’s architecture. For example, instead of “x86”, you may see “amd64”.

      For more information about how to determine whether you are running a 32-bit or 64-bit edition of Windows, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

      827218
      How to determine whether a computer is running a 32-bit version or a 64-bit version of the Windows operating system
    7. Copy the package name, and paste it as shown:

      dism /image:C:\ /remove-package /PackageName:Package_for_KB3097877~31bf3856ad364e35~x86~~6.1.1.1
    8. You receive a message that states that the uninstallation was successful.
    9. Restart the computer into normal mode.