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May 25, 2024

Microsoft Claims Latest Windows Security Fix Contains No Actual Security Updates

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Microsoft warns of Windows Server 2019 security update failure

Microsoft has warned users of the Windows Server 2019 operating system that the most recent Patch Tuesday security update may fail, exposing them to the vulnerabilities it was meant to mitigate. An out-of-band update has been issued to address the embarrassing and potentially dangerous security issue, but is the strangest of beasts: a security update without any security fixes.

Here’s what you need to know and do next.

In a support posting published on May 23, Microsoft confirmed what numerous Windows Server 2019 users already knew: the latest Patch Tuesday security update, KB5037765, released on May 14, failed to install properly under unknown circumstances. Those specific circumstances have now been revealed and involve the presence, or rather not, of the U.S. English language pack.

Microsoft has released an out-of-band update to respond to the recent alarm related to Windows Server. While this update does not include additional security updates, it’s essential to alleviate system administrator concerns about potential system vulnerabilities. The question many might be asking is why this would be considered a security update if no new security updates are included.

To answer that, you need to understand that the recent Patch Tuesday release included security updates for Windows Server 2019. Unfortunately, for an unspecified number of users, the security update, known as KB5037765, failed to install. This out-of-band, or emergency, update solves the problem that led to the installation failure, thus acting as a security update enabling a previous security update.

Microsoft has revealed that the Patch Tuesday security update is not installing for users of Windows Server 2019 who do not have the U.S. English language pack. The company said, “This update addresses a known issue pertaining to the English (United States) language pack. If your device doesn’t have this pack, the installation of KB5037765 may fail. The error code is 0x800f0982. Nevertheless, this problem might impact devices that do have the language pack installed, where the error code would be 0x80004005.”

According to Bleeping Computer on May 16, German and Spanish-speaking system administrators of Windows Server 2019 shared complaints on support forums about the original security update’s installation failure. At the time, Microsoft indicated the issue was “more likely to impact devices that do not have the English (United States) language pack,” however, Bleeping Computer reported Microsoft also confirmed that “it could also affect Windows servers when the English language pack is installed.”

System admins who have been affected by this strangest of Patch Tuesday bugs should update their Windows Server 2019 installations as soon as possible. This involves using their regular method for such updates, whether that’s the Windows Update or Windows Server Update Services will update automatically, or the Microsoft Update Catalog which requires the user to download the update manually.

In any case, Microsoft has issued a warning that after installing the out-of-band update, system admins need to restart their devices for the Patch Tuesday KB5037765 security update to install correctly.

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