Got your scorecard out? You're going to need one if you want to figure out these updates. And there's a nasty surprise for Windows 10 customers.
On Aug. 9, Microsoft released Security Bulletin MS16-098, the latest in a long line of fixes for Windows kernel-mode drivers. It replaced the kernel-mode driver security update from July, which in turn replaced the kernel-mode driver security update from June, which ... you get the pattern.
The latest version of the kernel-mode driver fix came in four KB-identified security patches: KB 3177725, which fixed kernel-mode drivers in Vista, Win7, Win8.1, and WinRT; and a set of three security patches for Win10, which were rolled into the respective Aug. 9 cumulative updates, to wit, KB 3176492 (for the original Win10, "version 1507"), KB 3176493 (for version 1511, the Fall Update), and KB 3176495 (for 1607, the Anniversary Update).
It took a few days, but we ultimately discovered a problematic bug in all the patches. Microsoft changed its security bulletin to state:
After you apply this security update and you print multiple documents in succession, the first two documents may print successfully. However, the third and subsequent documents may not print.
Got that? Good. Get ready to play a rousing round of three-card monte.
It took three days for Microsoft to confirm the bug. Yesterday, Aug. 24 -- 15 days after releasing the buggy security patch -- Microsoft rolled out a fix to the bug and assigned a different KB number, KB 3187022: Print functionality is broken after any of the MS16-098 security updates are installed.
If you're running Windows 7, Win8.1, or WinRT, that patch should've appeared last night in your Windows Update queue.
But here's the rub. Microsoft didn't release the fix for Windows 10 in any version. Instead, Win10 users are stuck with the bug, and it isn't clear how long we'll have to wait for a new cumulative update.
The companies that make software that ran into the bug now have to explain to their customers that Win7/8.1 machines work fine, but Win10 computers won't until Microsoft gets its act together and issues the patch for Win10.
(Vista users, it seems, aren't in the picture.)
It's a classic example of the Achilles' heel in Windows 10 cumulative updates, which I first discussed in February 2015. Microsoft has had a couple of years to figure out how it's going to handle bad patches. So far, the results haven't been reassuring. Click-to-Run in Office 365 has a spotty record as well.
Think of it as a congenital Windows 10 penalty.