Blanket Pulled Over IE
SP3 also includes a new option to "hide" Internet Explorer, Outlook Express and Windows Media Player. This feature (prompted by the antitrust case) is installed only on Windows 2000 Professional and is astonishingly minimalist.
Administrators, do not expect this option to actually disable or remove these packages. When we unchecked the "Show this program" options in the new Set Program Access and Defaults panel, the tool did nothing more than delete the Internet Explorer, Outlook Express and Windows Media Player icons from the Start menu and Windows task bar. The programs were otherwise left fully installed and functional, and—even worse—related file associations were left in place.
When we launched an HTTP link through the Start, Run command or opened an HTML file from Windows Explorer, Internet Explorer started. When we opened an MP3 file from Windows Explorer, Windows Media Player ran just as before.
This is totally inadequate for IT staff wanting to remove these packages because of their histories of serious security problems.
eWeek Labs West Coast Technical Director Timothy Dyck can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.