XP Update Blocks Net Access for Some

Because an update designed to improve the operation of VPNs running on Windows XP machines blocks some users from accessing the Internet, Microsoft has yanked it off its download site.

Microsoft Corp. on Tuesday yanked an update for Windows XP off its download site after it became clear that the software was blocking some users from accessing the Internet.

The update, which is not a security patch, was designed to improve the operation of VPNs running on Windows XP machines. It made some changes to the way the machines use IPSec encryption and the Layer Two Tunneling Protocol when theyre behind devices such as firewalls that perform network address translation.

The changes were designed to bring the way that XP handled IPSec and the tunneling protocol into compliance with the Internet standard.

The company posted the software to its Windows Update site Friday and said that more than half a million users had downloaded it before it was pulled. The update causes problems on some PCs that have personal firewalls installed and can prevent those machines from connecting to the Internet.

The Windows Update site is a Microsoft service that enables users to automatically download security patches and other software updates.

The faulty update is 818043.

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