Microsoft resolves OS code access issues

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By  Published  October 31, 2006

Microsoft appears to have settled a dispute with security software vendors over access to the code to its new operating system, after weeks of debate.

The software giant said that it will give McAfee, Symantec and other security firms access to the kernel of the 64-bit version of Vista, which is due for release in January. Microsoft used to allow access to security firms, but security firms complained that they were initially denied access to Vista's kernel, making it harder for them to develop patches for vulnerabilities in the system.

The codes will allow security software from other vendors to suppress Microsoft's own security pop-ups.

Symantec had said earlier that any security measures would have to be reactive, rather than proactive, if Microsoft did not cooperate, and described the software giant's approach as "an old, outdated mode of security, geared for threats from three or four years ago". Patrick Hayati, regional director for the Middle East, McAfee, said at the time: "There are other methods to come up with the required security, but it would be a lot easier and a lot more straightforward if we all worked together to make it happen."

Microsoft said in a statement: "Partners are at the core of Microsoft's business model. We have worked closely with our security partners throughout the development of Windows Vista, and continue to do so."

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