How I survived MSBlast

Friday, 22 August 2003, 3:09 PM EST

The other day, after I'd been online for a few minutes, my Windows 2000 PC started behaving oddly. Nothing serious -- it wouldn't let me disconnect my dial-up connection, and the cut-and-paste function stopped working -- but there had been enough front-page headlines about the MSBlast worm lately that I figured I'd better play it safe and protect myself.

That was the beginning of what turned out to be a mind-numbingly tedious and frustrating day, an experience which I fear has become all too common for Windows users as viruses become an increasing nuisance. One thing that came through loud and clear: the patching process is far too cumbersome for dial-up users -- who still account for most of the Internet population, after all -- and it's really no wonder there are so many insecure PCs out there.

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