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Windows Much Safer After Microsoft Killed Autorun

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 68 comments

A safer, more idiot proof autorun.

Autorun is one way for malware to trick a user into installing some nefarious software from removable storage media. An executable could reside on a USB flash drive and, when inserted into a PC, would prompt the user to click the autorun file.

Back in February, Microsoft released an update that curbed autorun behavior for all supported Windows platforms stretching back to Windows XP SP3 to Windows Vista SP2 (Windows 7 already had a "fixed" autorun behavior and Windows XP SP2 was no longer supported through updates).

When comparing stats before and after the Microsoft update, we clearly see that blocking the autorun of removable storage had a significant effect on the infection rate. It may have been a tweak to stop a certain action on the users' part, but it was certainly effective.

Read more on Technet

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Top Comments
  • 25 Hide
    triculious , June 21, 2011 3:40 PM
    unfortunately there are still millions of morons -erm- users out there who keep opening every other mail they get and every link they see, sorry but MS can't be held responsible for people being dumb
  • 24 Hide
    Neverdyne , June 21, 2011 3:31 PM
    Quote:
    This "article" looks to me like no other but Microsoft propaganda.
    Now if Microsoft would do something to stop infections thru the internet that would be something huge. But locally on my own PC? I have no fear of infections ever, not even a cold.


    The biggest spread of infections I've seen in my College is through USB Flash Drives.

    Remember people, if you're going to share, use protection!
  • 22 Hide
    GenKhan2 , June 21, 2011 2:36 PM
    1. I'm impressed at how low the infection rates are period.

    2. That my friends is why Windows is the world's premier operating system; a culture of continuous improvement based on measurable metrics.
Other Comments
  • 12 Hide
    Thunderfox , June 21, 2011 2:05 PM
    The mystery is why it was enabled for removable devices in the first place. Seems like a rather obvious risk with no widespread practical purpose.
  • 14 Hide
    mister g , June 21, 2011 2:13 PM
    It was a convenience feature, much like how a window pops up every time you insert a CD or DVD.
  • 6 Hide
    huron , June 21, 2011 2:20 PM
    I completely realize the convenience factor, but the issue I had was how difficult it was to turn off in XP. In Win7, it's simple to disable...XP, not so much.
  • 6 Hide
    vaughn2k , June 21, 2011 2:26 PM
    "Windows Much Safer After Microsoft Killed Autorun"

    Damn right!
  • 2 Hide
    tommysch , June 21, 2011 2:27 PM
    I never had autorun enabled...
  • 22 Hide
    GenKhan2 , June 21, 2011 2:36 PM
    1. I'm impressed at how low the infection rates are period.

    2. That my friends is why Windows is the world's premier operating system; a culture of continuous improvement based on measurable metrics.
  • 2 Hide
    SR-71 Blackbird , June 21, 2011 2:39 PM
    Huge move by Microsoft !
  • -8 Hide
    Anonymous , June 21, 2011 3:15 PM
    It will be much safer when it doesn't "autorun" itself!
  • 19 Hide
    lamorpa , June 21, 2011 3:30 PM
    c0oim4nThe words "Windows" and "safe" in the same sentence? I thought it wasn't possible....?

    Why? Do you need some help or instruction on how to configure your systems?
  • 24 Hide
    Neverdyne , June 21, 2011 3:31 PM
    Quote:
    This "article" looks to me like no other but Microsoft propaganda.
    Now if Microsoft would do something to stop infections thru the internet that would be something huge. But locally on my own PC? I have no fear of infections ever, not even a cold.


    The biggest spread of infections I've seen in my College is through USB Flash Drives.

    Remember people, if you're going to share, use protection!
  • 0 Hide
    Yuka , June 21, 2011 3:38 PM
    At least the "give an icon" feature of the autorun still works, so it's all good for me, lol.

    Cheers!
  • 25 Hide
    triculious , June 21, 2011 3:40 PM
    unfortunately there are still millions of morons -erm- users out there who keep opening every other mail they get and every link they see, sorry but MS can't be held responsible for people being dumb
  • 22 Hide
    chick0n , June 21, 2011 3:52 PM
    Again, the biggest problem is the person who touched the keyboard.
  • 2 Hide
    leon2006 , June 21, 2011 3:54 PM
    I did not wait for microsoft to disabled that darn feature. Its annoying and unsafe
  • 8 Hide
    whobannedme , June 21, 2011 4:12 PM
    neverdyneThe biggest spread of infections I've seen in my College is through USB Flash Drives.Remember people, if you're going to share, use protection!


    Don't put your USB stick in someone's USB port if they don't have protection or if you don't know what disease you have!
  • 7 Hide
    vvhocare5 , June 21, 2011 4:15 PM
    One has to step back in time almost 15 years when MS brought out Autorun - it wasnt a horrible idea for that time.

    The feature has been subverted by the malware kids along with the blinding stupidity of people who click on anything. Today you would be an idiot to have Autorun on. Forget Autorun, my mom would still click on any file called grandmothers_cookbook.* even if she didnt ask for it.
    I swear bricks could be taught to be smarter about these files... :) 
  • 1 Hide
    WR2 , June 21, 2011 4:17 PM
    GenKhan21. I'm impressed at how low the infection rates are period.
    If you look at the qualifiers in that chart title such as a. reported by MSRT and b. Major Auto-Run Abusing Families (which might mean anything MS wants it to mean) there is probably a much, much higher infection rate.
  • 7 Hide
    modinn , June 21, 2011 4:38 PM
    Quote:
    The words "Windows" and "safe" in the same sentence? I thought it wasn't possible....?

    Trolling much?

    The problem isn't the computer or the OS. 99% of the time, it's the fault of the object sitting between the keyboard and the chair. Give MS a break and don't accuse them for something they have little control over.
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