Patch fixes antivirus glitch in XP

Microsoft issued a hot fix for Windows XP Service Pack 3 that it
says "could resolve" a Windows registry corruption problem
associated with third-party security software. The problem was
first discovered just over a month ago, and it notably affected users of
Symantec's Norton Antivirus suite of products.

Some users who installed XP SP3 reported seeing garbled system
entries that cluttered the Windows registry. The corruption in the
registry led to problems such as lost Internet and wireless
connections, along with uninitiated restarts caused by sporadic
registry subkeys.

Microsoft provided an explanation for the problem in a Knowledgebase posting on Friday. The issue "occurs
when the Fixccs.exe process is called during the Windows XP SP3
installation," the KB article explains. "This process creates some
intermediate registry subkeys, and it later deletes these subkeys.
In some cases, some antivirus applications may not let the
Fixccs.exe process delete these intermediate registry

When the problem occurs, "certain applications" within Windows,
such as "Device Manager and Network Connections" may be unable to
function, Redmond added.

Symantec had responded with its own solution before Microsoft's
hotfix. On June 5, the security application and consultancy issued
a patch via its LiveUpdate service that prevents the registry
corruption from occurring.

Symantec users wanting to upgrade to Windows XP SP3 or Vista SP1
must first run LiveUpdate from within their security software, and
then reboot the PC before attempting the upgrade.


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