Network protection

By Jason Brooks  |  Posted 2004-08-23 Print this article Print

Network protection

Microsoft has made numerous improvements under the covers in Windows XP, including default disabling of nonvital, often-abused services such as Windows Alerter and Messenger. The Windows Messenger service, in particular (which is different from the MSN Messenger IM client), has been a prime target of spammer abuse.

SP2 features tighter rules governing Windows DCOM (Distributed Component Object Model), in which new access controls ensure that COM applications abide by a minimum security level and do not pose a threat to the system.

SP2 also includes new restrictions on Windows RPC (Remote Procedure Call) service, such as eliminating remote anonymous access to RPC interfaces. Applications that depend on this anonymous access will have to be modified to use RPC security, or administrators must modify the Windows registry to revert to SP1s settings.

In addition, SP2 includes a change to the WebDAV (Web-based Distributed Authoring and Versioning) redirector—the facility that manages access to shares using the WebDAV protocol—that will disallow access if a WebDAV server is not configured to authenticate securely.

Next page: Memory protection.

As Editor in Chief of eWEEK Labs, Jason Brooks manages the Labs team and is responsible for eWEEK's print edition. Brooks joined eWEEK in 1999, and has covered wireless networking, office productivity suites, mobile devices, Windows, virtualization, and desktops and notebooks. JasonÔÇÖs coverage is currently focused on Linux and Unix operating systems, open-source software and licensing, cloud computing and Software as a Service. Follow Jason on Twitter at jasonbrooks, or reach him by email at

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