Windows XP SP2: Hack Allows ‘Shortcut Patch’ To Be Installed

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PC users who are still using Windows XP SP2, even after the service pack was retired on July 13 can still receive security updates thanks to a trick found by editing the registry.

Service Pack 3 is now the only supported service pack after SP2 fell by the wayside last month, therefore it will no longer receive support from Microsoft, therefore being more vulnerable to security hacks and attacks.

Sean Sullivan, a security adviser with F-Secure found the flaw and said that if you edit the ‘HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Windows,’ key and edit the DWORD value ‘CSDVersion‘ from 200, and change it to 300 before rebooting, you can then tweak and trick the operating system to thinking that SP3 is then installed.

After changing the registry, we were able to download and update an “out-of-band” security update issued last week by Microsoft after the final blanket was put on SP2.

Just beware to backup your registry first before trying this, as the process is rather risky if you don’t know what you are doing.

It is HIGHLY recommended that you install Service Pack 3 instead of this edit, as doing so can cripple your computer. Windows 7 is also a very viable option.

The ‘shortcut patch‘ can be downloaded from the Microsoft Download Center.

Source: Computer World

Also See: Windows XP support extended in UK, not for all