Windows Update, updated

We wrote an article in December 2019 year called “Windows Blog – Don’t hate on Update!” and this proved to be quite popular with our regular readers. However… this “update to the update” article may contain something of a rebuttal!   Read on for more information.

Come on in, KB4559309, your time is up

If you, dear reader, have been attentive and diligent in maintaining your systems properly by running critical updates (and Windows Updates).  This is the right thing to do… generally.  However, even the most well-intentioned plans can run afoul of (in this case) decidedly dodgy coding.  Microsoft have recently pulled the above “fix” as well as doing what it set out to (replacing Old Microsoft Edge with New Microsoft Chromium Edge), it also delivered slow-downs for many users both during boot-up and worse, during normal use as well.

KB4576754 – A New Beginning

Microsoft have now pulled KB4559309 and replaced it with KB4576754.  This latter fix does only what ‘309 should have done, namely replace the (frankly horrible) Microsoft Edge with the new Microsoft Chromium Edge.  The new browser is better than Edge in every way because, well, it’s not Edge; it’s based on the Google Chrome framework and as such is a light, fast browser – at last at the outset.  We say this because history tells us that browsers often start out as being lightweight and then over time the vendors, charged with the task of keeping up with the Internet Joneses, adding more and more features which whilst often great, also reduce the core attractiveness of the product: speed.

Conclusion: Even updates need updating, sometimes!

The above might sound like a tale of woe but really, it shouldn’t.  It’s STILL a good idea to update Windows; for our part, we’d take a relatively rare slowdown over an unpatched security hole any day of the week.

It’s worth noting too, that all the above changes were automatic; the installation of the original, flawed fix, and the subsequent correction.  Apart from having to tolerate the symptom for a while, users didn’t have to take any remedial action.

We believe, then, that our original advice stands – “Don’t Hate on Update!”.  When you introduce new things / functions / code / fixes to an operating system it stands to reason that, through human error, you will sometimes have unintended side effects.  That said, it stands to MORE reason that if you leave your Operating Systems totally without updates and security fixes, eventually one of those exploitable areas will be exploited and your pain could be far worse than simply “Windows feels a bit sluggish today”.