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Microsoft To Disable Autorun 429

Posted by timothy
from the mounting-is-fine-but-opening-is-obnoxious dept.
jchrisos writes "Microsoft is planning to disable autorun in the next Release Candidate of Windows 7 and future updates to Windows XP and Vista. In order to maintain a 'balance between security and usability,' non-writable media will maintain its current behavior however. In any case, if it means no more autorun on flash drives, removable hard drives and network shares, that is definitely a step in the right direction. Will be interesting to see what malware creators do to get around this ..."
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Microsoft To Disable Autorun

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  • by Sj0 (472011) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:29PM (#27764655) Homepage Journal

    Why wasn't this the default to begin with? There's no good reason to automatically run anything on media like hard disks or flash drives. It's an obvious virus vector.

    • by Moryath (553296) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:33PM (#27764719)

      Has to do with crap like this [tomshardware.com] - the theory goes that you may WANT to have an autorun from them for legit reasons (movie on a "read only" flash disk, or a "plug this hard drive in and automatically launch Program X" setup).

      Hell, without this, those "U3 Enabled" flash drives (yeah I know, gag puke awful crap software) are even harder to use too. They use a single partition with the U3 software, autoboot it, check for you entering your "password", and only they will it decrypt the OTHER partition on the drive for you.

      See where this is going?

      • by Sj0 (472011) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:36PM (#27764755) Homepage Journal

        The risk is too obvious and too stupid to take.

        A menu pops up with this stuff anyway: "Hey, want to open this folder?", so it's not like you're doing anything more than adding exactly one step.

        • by Feanturi (99866) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:06PM (#27765089)
          That's only if there isn't an autorun.inf pointing to an executable. If there is, it runs that instead of showing the "What do you want to do?" dialog. Only having autorun disabled will protect you from that. What would be good is if it was disabled by default, but could be turned on for select "trusted" flash drives. Or, just a thought, maybe people could learn a bit about how to use a computer and not have to have it do all the driving. Nothing wrong with learning to open an Explorer window, then navigating to a drive to access something on it. What a concept, actually knowing what's on your media. All this "ease of use" and accessibility crap is just making users dumber and dumber.
          • by EvanED (569694) <evaned@nOspAm.gmail.com> on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:13PM (#27765143)

            Or, just a thought, maybe people could learn a bit about how to use a computer and not have to have it do all the driving. Nothing wrong with learning to open an Explorer window, then navigating to a drive to access something on it. What a concept, actually knowing what's on your media. All this "ease of use" and accessibility crap is just making users dumber and dumber.

            As someone who likes autorun, my reaction to this is "yeah, because I like doing work myself that a computer is good at".

            I think Vista's "always autoplay, never autorun" (if I got those names right) scheme works really well.

            • by adisakp (705706) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @07:12PM (#27765749) Journal

              As someone who likes autorun, my reaction to this is "yeah, because I like doing work myself that a computer is good at".

              I think Vista's "always autoplay, never autorun" (if I got those names right) scheme works really well.

              Autorun does work really well... at installing rootkits on your machine from Sony/BMG CD's [wikipedia.org].

            • by Toonol (1057698) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @07:14PM (#27765765)
              As someone who likes autorun, my reaction to this is "yeah, because I like doing work myself that a computer is good at".

              Computers are HORRIBLE at deciding what is safe to run at what isn't. That's the central security problem, and it probably won't be solved until we have strong AI.
              • by nicolas.kassis (875270) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @07:28PM (#27765921)

                Humans are HORRIBLE at deciding what is safe to run at what isn't. That's the central security problem, and it probably won't be solved until we have intelligence.

                there fixed that for you

              • by Animaether (411575) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @07:28PM (#27765923) Journal

                except that he gave the example of Windows Vista as actually getting things fairly right.

                DVD video, CD audio -> autoplay OK
                USB/PhotoCD, CD/DVD with just images -> autoplay OK
                USB/CD/DVD with autorun specifying an executable -> DO NOT AUTORUN.

                Within 'do not autorun' you even get choices...
                A. Ask me what the flippant to do
                B. Do nothing whatsoever.

                Option A is perfectly sane. The only problem is in the presentation. People exploit the fact that one of the usual options is the 'browse disc' thing. They use the same icon, give it the same name, it appears at the top and voila.. people think that's the regular ol' browse disc option but in reality they end up running nefarious software.

                Autorun/Autoplay are not the issue given the above - the design of that dialog asking you what to do *is*.

                The new method sucks monkeyballs. Thankfully there's third-party autorun utilities and I'll be installing one of those once I land on Windows Se7en.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Hatta (162192)

              As someone who likes autorun, my reaction to this is "yeah, because I like doing work myself that a computer is good at".

              Computers are good at deciding whether or not you can trust a piece of software? What algorithm would you use for that?

          • hat a concept, actually knowing what's on your media. All this "ease of use" and accessibility crap is just making users dumber and dumber.

            Why should those people who are using computers as tools (in the same way they would use a car, lawnmower, or vibrator) have to know anything at all about how it works, where content is stored, etc?

            The best system is one that just does what you want it to do, without distracting you from your task by making you think about it. That holds equally true for computers, windshield wipers, and toilet paper.

            • by Happler (895924) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:30PM (#27765351) Homepage
              I have met people who do not think about toilet paper and they stink. I am a firm believer that people should have at least a basic understanding of what tools they are using. Knowing the basics of windshield wipers means that you can purchase and change them yourself (and pay less in the long run). Knowing the basics of computers means that you will, at least, help minimize the amount of damage you do to your computer via virus, malware, stupid user tricks, etc. I have worked too much tech support to encourage systems that do everything for the user. It just creates more problems then it is worth.
              • by HTH NE1 (675604) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @08:04PM (#27766367)

                I have met people who do not think about toilet paper and they stink.

                Who needs toilet paper when you have three seashells?

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                Here, here, and this applies to cars very well, too. You absolutely must know how to maintain them. And that can be as little as recognizing your light is out, wipers are old (dried out), etc. Or at least get the freaking snow off your roof before you drive! (one of my peeves about dumb drivers in the winter: an icy, snowy roof is dangerous to drivers behind you).

                Ditto for knowing how to use a computer responsibly and not becoming a bothost and placing other people's computer's at risk.
            • by Cajun Hell (725246) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:34PM (#27765417) Homepage Journal

              The best system is one that just does what you want it to do

              Autorun isn't intended to do what users want it to do. Close, but not quite. Autorun is intended to do what ..
              .. .. somebody .. ..
              .. wants it to do. That person is never the user, unless the user wrote the autorun script. That person may have the user's interests at heart.

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by DragonWriter (970822)

                Autorun isn't intended to do what users want it to do. Close, but not quite. Autorun is intended to do what .. .. .. somebody .. .. .. wants it to do. That person is never the user, unless the user wrote the autorun script.

                Or, unless the user deliberately enabled autorun and deliberately put the media in the drive/slot/etc. What the user wants can be "whatever the creator of the autorun script on this drive programmed", after all.

              • by rnelsonee (98732) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @08:00PM (#27766317)

                If we're talking about CD's, then the user is already assuming the script writer has their best interests at heart - why else would they be sticking the CD in the drive? All disabling autorun does is make it harder for users, because *no* user is ever going to stick a CD in the drive, and then say "Well, that was fun" and then take the CD back out and throw it away. They're putting it in to install software! And if they're putting a CD in that doesn't have a setup.exe, then there's not going to be an autorun.

                I use autorun for my customers. I have multiple install scripts depending on the type of computer and dependencies. I'd rather change an autorun.inf than explain which setup to run to my customers. I'm getting paid to automate tasks (my software is basically an automated testing suite). If Windows forces my users to run setups themselves, its making everyone's life more difficult.

                If you think autorun is a security threat, you can already disable it. At least make it a choice.

            • by Tanktalus (794810) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:46PM (#27765529) Journal

              No other device stores nearly so much of a user's information as a computer. Except maybe a filing cabinet, and you damned well better know where to find your information there, because there's no "grep" tool for that!

              All I'm saying is that analogising a computer against a lawn mower may break down for some things. And this might just be one of them.

              I don't expect a user to be able to write a program, or even a script, or even a batch file. But I do expect them to know where they store their stuff insofar as its similarities to a set of filing cabinets goes.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by k.a.f. (168896)

              Why should those people who are using computers as tools (in the same way they would use a car, lawnmower, or vibrator) have to know anything at all about how it works, where content is stored, etc?

              Because misusing your computer connected to a worldwide network can do harm to uncounted others, while misusing your lawnmower/vibrator will only screw up your own lawn/body. Misusing your car, on the other hand... guess which of your three examples we regulate the hell out of?

      • by supernova_hq (1014429) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:26PM (#27765301)

        Those U3 enabled flash drives will STILL autorun. The second partition is made to appear to be a cdrom to windows, which means that windows will still autorun the crap they put on there.

        Not only that, but this will give sandisk a semi-legit reason to partitions those bloody things. To this day, the ONLY way to get rid of that damn partition is using a windows utility, and that doesn't even work half the time!

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Microsoft wanted a computer to be an appliance. The person operating it didn't have to know much. When it got older, you bought a new one Want your new camera to work? Plug it in and insert cd. Want an external hard drive you just plug in and it backs up your stuff? You got it. Want to watch tv on your computer? Plug it in the usb slot, plop the cd in the drive and you're good to go. Good idea. However, the real world doesn't play with good ideas very well.

    • by Midnight Thunder (17205) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:44PM (#27764827) Homepage Journal

      Why wasn't this the default to begin with? There's no good reason to automatically run anything on media like hard disks or flash drives. It's an obvious virus vector.

      A compromise would have been to ask the user, but disabling is completely is probably better, since it will avoid stuff like the Sony Root kit, being installed by a clueless user. After all:

      Computer: "Do you want to do xyz? It may break you computer."
      User: clicky, clicky "Why yes of course"

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:44PM (#27764833)

      suddenoutbreakofswineflu
      WTF?

    • by Red Flayer (890720) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:47PM (#27764877) Journal

      Why wasn't this the default to begin with?

      In the beginning, there was a User.

      This User did not possess the special knowledge of the Priests of the Cult of Computers.

      This User was granted divine Manna from heaven in the form of a shining disc with an outer shell of a transparent horn-like material.

      "Lo!" said he, "I have found the Sacred Tablet of AOL!"

      And he put the Tablet in the Slot of Curious Whirrings, and nothing happened. And this was Good.

      But the User was unhappy, and complained to the Disciples of AOL, that the sacred disc of AOL was defective.

      And so the Disciples of AOL conferred with the Disciples of Borg.

      Now, the Disciples discipled for a while, and determined that the User could never be trusted grok the mysteries of "Drive D". The Disciples agreed, also it was bothersome and unholy, to be summoned each time a Tablet was delivered by divine provenance to another User. And so Autorun was created.

      Verily, the User could place the Sacred Tablet of AOL in the Slot of Curious Whirrings, and without any further discipling by the Disciples, could run AOL.

      And thus were the Demons of AOL unleashed upon the world together with the Lord of PC Plague and Pestilence, he-who-should-not-be-named-but-nevertheless-I-will, Autorun.

    • by steelfood (895457)

      In general, there's no good reason for computers to execute code you did not explicitly ask it to execute.

      Malware can still be distributed through sneakernet. And remember the Sony rootkit fiasco? That's no better or worse than something you might catch from popping a pirated CD or DVD (the ones you buy for $1 off the streets).

      Computer security is about control. It's about controlling what enters and leaves the computer, and what executes on the computer. Anything that causes execution on read automatically

      • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:24PM (#27765291)

        And remember the Sony rootkit fiasco? That's no better or worse than something you might catch from popping a pirated CD or DVD (the ones you buy for $1 off the streets).

        Except for the fact the Antivirus you paid $80 for will catch the malware that came off the CDs and DVDs but believes that the Sony Rootkit is "legitimate" and leaves it alone.

    • by Twillerror (536681) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:48PM (#27764895) Homepage Journal

      Not entirely true. When I plug in my camera and a little popup comes up I really like that. Why...because it's not exactly what program I'd like to launch. Most of the time I just want to get at the file system and copy and paste over the files.

      Then there is my wife who would be completely lost without the auto run that cameras present users with.

      When USB drives plugin sometimes they auto run management software which could include faster drivers or encryption utilities. I'd don't want the option for this lost.

      The problem to me is not that it auto runs, but that it doesn't require any sort of user involvement. I like auto run cds...except when I don't want it. I know I can hold down shift to get around it, but if I forget or my arms are to short to do both at the same time I'm boned.

      If there is a use case (even if you don't see the need) for this then we need to try to continue to support it. My guess is someone though of a GOOD user for it. I don't want my entire computer expierence to be dictated by virus writers and boring programers. It's like saying we can't fly on jets because someone could fly them into buildings...figure out how to stop people from flying into buildings...not stop flying.

      • by PitaBred (632671)
        There should be a minimum level of expertise required to operate certain equipment. You don't get cars that automatically put their turn indicators on, because that would just cause more problems than it solves, and it would enable people to be even stupider. Same thing with Autorun. Autorun should NEVER be there. Let the machine say "What do you want to do with this?" like you're suggesting, but it shouldn't ever just choose something by default.
      • by Bert64 (520050)

        A very small number of people are qualified to operate jet planes.
        Being a passenger on a plane is a massive difference from flying it yourself...

    • Why wasn't this the default to begin with? There's no good reason to automatically run anything on media like hard disks or flash drives. It's an obvious virus vector.

      Man, I'm WAY too busy to double click on my flash drive, I gotta have those pictures of the kegger last weekend NOW! Thanks a lot, micro$oft, selling out to the "anti-kegger pictures immediately" lobby!

  • by ejdmoo (193585)

    Yay!

    But now how will people figure out how to play Video Professor or install AOL?

    Oh well...

  • by sqlrob (173498) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:32PM (#27764703)

    Since non-writable media such as CD-ROMs generally aren't avenues for malicious software propagation

    Because no that's infected ever burns a CD, nope, never.

    • by icebike (68054)

      Since non-writable media such as CD-ROMs generally aren't avenues for malicious software propagation

      Because no that's infected ever burns a CD, nope, never.

      Its been my general observation that most people capable of burning an auto-run CD are capable of installing a virus scanner.

      Admittedly, that STILL leaves those with malicious intent such as Sony [wikipedia.org] and the purveyors of hoards of CDs full of crapware found in so many Asian street markets.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by 77Punker (673758)

        What about someone who intentionally creates a malicious autorun and distributes a CD-R? How about a virus that adds its own autorun to every disc burned by its host system?

        It's still a huge problem and the fact that they removed it from other media demonstrates that they don't understand all of the attack vectors.

        One more thing: virus scanners are a joke.

    • Greetings, you fail 4th grade reading comprehension. Let's take a look at that quote again:

      Since non-writable media such as CD-ROMs generally aren't avenues for malicious software propagation

      The generally bit is the important part, and the quote is 100% accurate, particularly in the age of Bittorrent when burned CDs are used far less frequently for transporting questionable software. If you disagree with that, then I'm sure you will be the first person to stand up and scream at the top of your lungs wh

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by petermgreen (876956)

        But flash sticks are a good vector for spreading malware and an annoying proportion of the flash sticks I see are sandisk U3 devices. How long will it be until malware manages to insert itself into the "CD emulation" section of a U3 device?

    • Sony CD (Score:5, Insightful)

      by cant_get_a_good_nick (172131) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:49PM (#27764901)

      Didn't Sony install rootkits as part of CD insertion/autoRun? CD-ROMs are a vector for malware.

      Also, I remember some website getting sued because they mentioned how to disable autorun, effectively disabling their anti-copy rubbish. So will Microsoft be sued for removing this?

    • by EvilIdler (21087)

      Yes, the writable status of the source of an infection does not fucking matter! It's the rest of the system which gets it, anyway.

  • get around this? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by BigBuckHunter (722855) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:33PM (#27764707)
    @ Will be interesting to see what malware creators do to get around this ..."

    Attrib -w? Flip the Writeprotect dword in StorageDevicePolicies?

    BBH
  • Finally (Score:2, Insightful)

    It is about bloody time too.
    It only took Microsoft 14 years to fix this massive security hole.
  • by gringofrijolero (1489395) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:39PM (#27764771) Journal

    I don't think so. Just tell the user to double click the setup.exe icon if it doesn't run automatically. Gotta turn off autorun in the user's brain.

    • "all I see is the drive, where is the setup.exe icon?"

      "but I have two CD Drives"

      (you obviously have a much higher view of users than me)

  • by Benanov (583592) <<gro.fsf.rebmem> <ta> <pmek.nairb>> on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:45PM (#27764845) Journal

    Not sure exactly what's doing it, but in my Ubuntu and gNewSense installs:

    If I insert a CD with autorun files on it or it has an autorun folder, I am prompted that this disc has software on it designed to run automatically, and I am asked what I would like to do about it.

    Seemed to be pretty sensible really. I mean *I* inserted the CD, so I expect something to happen.

    • by EvanED (569694) <evaned@nOspAm.gmail.com> on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:50PM (#27764915)

      If I insert a CD with autorun files on it or it has an autorun folder, I am prompted that this disc has software on it designed to run automatically, and I am asked what I would like to do about it.

      That's what Vista does too... I actually really like that behavior. It's almost as convenient as autoplay is, but without the security risk. (Well, for good users.)

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Tetsujin (103070)

      Not sure exactly what's doing it, but in my Ubuntu and gNewSense installs:

      If I insert a CD with autorun files on it or it has an autorun folder, I am prompted that this disc has software on it designed to run automatically, and I am asked what I would like to do about it.

      Seemed to be pretty sensible really. I mean *I* inserted the CD, so I expect something to happen.

      This kind of thing always drove me crazy, and still does. Like sometimes I'll take a CD out of the drive to put another one in - and then when I'm done with the second one I'll put the first one back in 'cause I don't know where the case is. The fact that I put that first CD back in the drive doesn't mean I want to run it...

    • by microbee (682094)

      And you don't read TFA to put a proper comment.

      Windows does this too, but it is deem

  • by MachineShedFred (621896) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:46PM (#27764853) Journal

    Sony Music has announced a lawsuit against Microsoft using the DMCA, claiming that the new software patch circumvents horribly inadequate copyright protection.

  • FTFA: (Score:5, Funny)

    by V!NCENT (1105021) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @05:47PM (#27764881)

    In any case, if it means no more autorun on flash drives, removable hard drives and network shares, that is definitely a step in the right direction.

    Whoa...! Wait... they had autorun there too?!?! Dear god...

  • Uhhhh (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Idiomatick (976696)
    I don't see the problem so many people are having. In XP+ when you put in a CD/flash/w/e you get a windows menu popup saying do you want to open in the browser or play in your media player or w/e. This seems perfectly reasonable. No code is being executed off the disk so no security hole. If you want the CD to run a splash or w/e it is one click. If you want to browse it one click. And it can be set to remember your answer for different devices. I completely fail to see the problem with that.

    If this does m
    • And they're not removing the feature. They're just making sure the default is "off". It's the sensible thing to do.

      If you're secure enough about what's on the disks/pendrives/cameras/network shares you mount to use it then by all means turn it back on. But that ought not be the default because not everybody is at that level.

      I'm not one to praise Microsoft usually, but this is a move in the right direction.

  • Malware authors will just enable it again. If the functionality is still there for non-writable media, then it's probably just a hidden setting away from being there for writable media too.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by blueg3 (192743)

      In which case the malware is already running on the machine. Considering the point of adding your malware to autorun was to get it running on the machine, I'm not sure this is a significant security risk.

  • All I can say is WTF, they are just now realizing it's a security risk and instead of disabling it in existing OS's, they're doing it in a beta of the next OS?

    Sounds like they're not too sure about it being a risk or not. It's like having 3 sons ages 18, 16, and 14 and realizing condoms might be valuable but then only giving them to the 14 year old.

    Security is probably job #10 at Microsoft as marketing rules the day on One Microsoft Way.

    LoB

  • by evangellydonut (203778) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:00PM (#27765031)

    take any USB controller, have it emulate a Human Interface Device (aka keyboard), use it for the keystrokes of "windows, up, up, up, enter, virus-website, enter" and it's game over. you can do the same on Mac, just a tad more difficult.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by blueg3 (192743)

      In your scenario, you are plugging a physical device of your own design into the target machine, either personally or by distributing it to unsuspecting users.

      The real attack scenario of interest is malware that propagates by adding itself (and autorun settings to launch itself) to USB storage devices provided by the unsuspecting user. You don't get to choose the physical device, only write to its filesystem.

  • Play button (Score:4, Interesting)

    by fishizzle (901375) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:16PM (#27765187)
    CD-ROMs could have kept the common "Play button" interface from the beginning. Everyone knew this procedure. You insert a VHS into a VCR, you press play. You insert a cassette tape into a Walkman, you press play. CD into a CD player, press play. When the CD-ROM came out, wouldn't it logically follow to insert the CD-ROM, then press the "Play button" to execute any "autorun" functionality? That way it's a user-initiated event, but one that your entire target audience is already going to be familiar with. And the users who weren't intended on "playing" the CD-ROM don't press they play button and can go about, uninterrupted, copying it or navigating the file system as they intended. It's not a huge deal, but I just find it odd that Microsoft's implementation of "Autorun" was the solution to this "problem" back in the day.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by noidentity (188756)

      CD-ROMs could have kept the common "Play button" interface from the beginning. Everyone knew this procedure. You insert a VHS into a VCR, you press play.

      Actually, VHS players automatically start playing read-only cassettes (and once they reach the end, rewind and then eject them). Pre-recorded tapes have the write-enable tab broken off.

  • Granted the typical user won't even know this can be done, but the first thing I do when installing Windows is disable/uninstall autorun, MSN, IE, system restore, drive indexing, and pretty much any other M$ shyte I can. After that, XP is suite stable and very useable.
  • startup (Score:3, Insightful)

    by robvangelder (472838) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @06:42PM (#27765487)

    another good idea is reduce the number of "run on startup" lists to one. theres a billion options for running your stuff on startup. should be just one place.

    while im ranting, i hate that i've got two processes in task manager called rundll32.exe that i havent a clue what they do

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Blakey Rat (99501)

      another good idea is reduce the number of "run on startup" lists to one. theres a billion options for running your stuff on startup. should be just one place.

      To be fair, there should be two. One for services (which don't necessarily need a logged-in user), one for desktop applications (which do).

      But yah, I agree generally.

  • by Ralph Spoilsport (673134) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @07:13PM (#27765761) Journal
    tookthemlongenough
  • by foodnugget (663749) <eric-slashdot.ericfeldman@com> on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @08:31PM (#27766663)
    Here's a link to disable autorun on 2k and XP for real. You won't get a prompt for what to do, the system won't try to do anything with a USB key or CD rom or removable drive. I recommend it to anyone who has to put other peoples' USB drives in their systems. http://windowssecrets.com/2007/11/08/02-One-quick-trick-prevents-Autorun-attacks [windowssecrets.com]
  • by MrLint (519792) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @09:13PM (#27767039) Journal

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\policies\Explorer]
    "NoDriveTypeAutoRun"=dword:000000ff

    Save that to a reg file. Disables autoplay system wide for all devices.

    Please see http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd349797.aspx [microsoft.com]

    Vulnerability

    An attacker with physical access to the computer could insert an Autorun-enabled DVD or CD into the computer that automatically runs a malicious program.
    Countermeasure

    Configure the NoDriveTypeAutoRun entry to a value of 255, disable Autorun for all drives.

  • by MobyDisk (75490) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 @11:02PM (#27767775) Homepage

    I was arguing with a coworker why autorun is so dangerous. He said he never had a problem with it. So while he was away from his desk, I modified his USB key with an autorun that changes his desktop background to Unicorns and Rainbows. :-)

  • wrong tree? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tom (822) on Thursday April 30, 2009 @03:36AM (#27769389) Homepage Journal

    Wake me when they disable "autorun" for E-Mails.

    Seriously, when's the last time you heard about 100,000 PCs getting infected by malware on a USB stick?

    It's certainly a good step, but the problem it solves pales compared to pretty much everything else that windos has burdened itself with over the past decade or so.

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