How to Avoid Blaster Infection

By Lance Ulanoff  |  Posted 2003-08-13 Print this article Print

Use these tips, links and tools to stop Blaster and its variants in their tracks. (PC Magazine)

Whats more important than figuring out how to get uninfected? Avoiding infection in the first place. Here are some simple steps you can take to safeguard your systems.
  • Download patch updates from
  • Windows NT 4.0 Server
  • Windows NT 4.0 Terminal Server Edition
  • Windows 2000
  • Windows XP 32 bit Edition
  • Windows XP 64 bit Edition
  • Windows Server 2003 32 bit Edition
  • Windows Server 2003 64 bit Edition
    Windows ME, 98 and 95 are not affected.
  • Install firewall software. ZoneAlarm Pro, for example, or the free version, ZoneAlarm, will block the worm. Both are available for download from the Zone Labs Web site. Other firewalls will work as well.
  • Update your antivirus signature file. Most major antivirus manufacturers have posted alerts and updates to capture and clean the virus. If you do not have antivirus software, get it now.
      Personal Antivirus Software
      Enterprise Antivirus Software
  • Always allow critical system updates. You can run Windows XPs Automatic Update Wizard. Yes, Microsoft releases updates every Wednesday, but it does so for a reason. Its trying to stay ahead of the hackers and virus authors. Whats more, Microsoft and others are constantly finding small (and large) system bugs that these patches are designed to fix.
  • Manage your enterprise level patches. Critical updates must be installed. We know theyre not easy to do, but ignoring them could mean millions in lost business. Try to do the updates during non-peak office hours. Here are some more tips on patch management. Read the rest of this story on
    Lance Ulanoff is Editor in Chief and VP of Content for PC Magazine Network, and brings with him over 20 years journalism experience, the last 16 of which he has spent in the computer technology publishing industry.

    He began his career as a weekly newspaper reporter before joining a national trade publication, traveling the country covering product distribution and data processing issues. In 1991 he joined PC Magazine where he spent five years writing and managing feature stories and reviews, covering a wide range of topics, including books and diverse technologies such as graphics hardware and software, office applications, operating systems and, tech news. He left as a senior associate editor in 1996 to enter the online arena as online editor at HomePC magazine, a popular consumer computing publication. While there, Ulanoff launched, and and wrote about Web sites and Web-site building.

    In 1998 he joined Windows Magazine as the senior editor for online, spearheading the popular magazine's Web site, which drew some 6 million page views per month. He also wrote numerous product reviews and features covering all aspects of the computing world. During his tenure, won the Computer Press Association's prestigious runner-up prize for Best Overall Website.

    In August 1999, Ulanoff briefly left publishing to join as producer for the Computing and Consumer Electronics channels and then was promoted to the site's senior director for content. He returned to PC Magazine in November 2000 and relaunched in July 2001. The new was named runner-up for Best Web Sites at the American Business Media's Annual Neal Awards in March 2002 and won a Best Web Site Award from the ASBPE in 2004. Under his direction, regularly generated more than 25 million page views a month and reached nearly 5 million monthly unique visitors in 2005.

    For the last year and a half, Ulanoff has served as Editor, Reviews, PC Magazine. In that role he has overseen all product and review coverage for PC Magazine and, as well as managed PC Labs. He also writes a popular weekly technology column for and his column also appears in PC Magazine.

    Recognized as an expert in the technology arena, Lance makes frequent appearances on local, national and international news programs including New York's Eyewitness News, NewsChannel 4, CNN, CNN HN, CNBC, MSNBC, Good Morning America Weekend Edition, and BBC, as well as being a regular guest on FoxNews' Studio B with Shepard Smith. He has also offered commentary on National Public Radio and been interviewed by radio stations around the country. Lance has been an invited guest speaker at numerous technology conferences including Digital Life, RoboBusiness, RoboNexus, Business Foresight and Digital Media Wire's Games and Mobile Forum.

    Lance also serves as co-host of PC Magazine's weekly podcast, PCMag Radio.


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