Microsoft adds Meltdown-Spectre patch device check to Windows Analytics

Microsoft adds Meltdown-Spectre patch device check to Windows Analytics

There are now new Anti-Virus Status, Windows Operating System Security Update Status, and Firmware Status sections in Windows Analytics: Anti-virus Status will help indicate if a device's anti-virus software is compatible with the latest Windows Updates. With this in mine, Microsoft announced today that its free Windows Analytics tool for businesses will detect whether your PC is protected from Meltdown and Spectre, and it will work on Windows 7 SP1, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10.

Unless you manage several PCs deployed at your workplace, you might not be familiar with Windows Analytics, a free tool that Microsoft provides to businesses.

Windows Analytics is a subscription-based service originally designed for public cloud management tasks.

The new additions to those Windows Analytics dashboard-like tools include Meltdown and Spectre checks on the state of the firmware that's installed on devices.

Since this tool considers all points of weakness in terms of the Meltdown and Spectre bugs, including antivirus and firmware security updates, hopefully it could be used to patch thousands of machines in a commercial environment and reduce the risk of exposure.

The first is an antivirus status check that probes whether a machine's installed antivirus software will prevent it from receiving a Windows Meltdown/Spectre patch. This status insight indicates if the devices' anti-virus software is compatible with the latest Windows security update.

The second thing is a Windows security update scan. In some cases, IT Administrators may choose to install the security update, but disable the fix. This new service uses telemetry data specific to Windows Update configuration, installation, Windows Defender Antivirus and other information to provide such insights at no extra cost and without additional infrastructure requirements.

It's worth noting that these firmware updates could cause performance issues, which will have the greatest impact on systems that have Intel's fourth-generation "Haswell" chips or earlier.

This is one of the reasons Windows Analytics has been updated to check for these two recent high-profile vulnerabilities.

Related Articles