Your computer will restart tonight.

It’s Patch Tuesday, the second Tuesday of the month, when Microsoft releases security updates that will be automatically installed overnight. All of you have upgraded to Microsoft Update so you get patches for Office programs and you have Automatic Updates turned on, right? (If you have Windows Live OneCare, you’re covered.)

Leave your computer running tonight but close all your programs – the computer will need to be restarted to finish the installation.

There are roughly eight patches, all of them important. There’s a different mix for Windows XP and Vista but there are patches for all flavors of Windows, including Vista Service Pack 1. A couple of the flaws addressed by the patches are potentially able to be exploited by bad guys without too much difficulty. Here’s an article with details about today’s critical updates.

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