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Patches and Service Packs

Always install the latest service packs and patches of the operating system as well as of applications. Most software vendors have mailing lists or news letters that alert you about patches and updates. Be sure to subscribe to these.

Microsoft frequently releases security updates in-between service packs. Don't wait for the next service pack to become available. It may never come.

In a small network, you can use the Windows Update software to automate software updates from Microsoft. There is a bit of controversy about Microsoft installing software to your computers without your knowledge, but you can configure Windows Update to prompt you before doing anything.

Whatever you do, get those security patches. Typically, you only have a couple of days to get your systems patched up before there is an exploit out there on the 'net. Sometimes you only have hours from the time the exploit is made public.


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