Adobe today released software updates to plug at least 13 security holes in its Flash Player software. Separately, Microsoft pushed out fixes for at least three dozen flaws in Windows and associated software.
The bulk of the flaws Microsoft addressed today (23 of them) reside in the Internet Explorer Web browser. Microsoft also issued fixes for serious problems in Office, the Windows OS itself and Windows Media Player, among other components. A link to an index of the individual Microsoft updates released today is here.
As it normally does on Patch Tuesday, Adobe issued fixes for its Flash and AIR software, plugging a slew of dangerous flaws in both products. Flash continues to be one of the more complex programs to manage and update on a computer, mainly because its auto-update function tends to lag the actual patches by several days at least (your mileage may vary), and it’s difficult to know which version is the latest.
If you’re unsure whether your browser has Flash installed or what version it may be running, browse to this link. Users of the Adobe Flash Player Desktop Runtime for Windows and Macintosh should update to Adobe Flash Player 188.8.131.52. Adobe Flash Player installed with Google Chrome, as well as Internet Explorer onWindows 8.x, should automatically update to version 184.108.40.206, although Chrome users on Mac systems will find 220.127.116.11 is actually the latest version, according to Adobe. To force the installation of an available update, click the triple bar icon to the right of the address bar, select “About Google” Chrome, click the apply update button and restart the browser.
The most recent versions of Flash should be available from the Flash home page, but beware potentially unwanted add-ons, like McAfee Security Scan. To avoid this, uncheck the pre-checked box before downloading, or grab your OS-specific Flash download from here. Windows users who browse the Web with anything other than Internet Explorer may need to apply this patch twice, once with IE and again using the alternative browser (Firefox, Opera, e.g.). See this graphic for the full Adobe version release.
Most applications bundled with Adobe AIR should check for updates on startup. If prompted, please download and install the AIR update. If you need to update manually, grab the latest version here.
As usual, please sound off in the comments section if you experience any issues applying any of these patches.