Hi everyone, Stephen Toulouse here.  There’s been some commentary the past couple of days regarding a potential Windows Vista virus and we wanted to weigh in with some details.  First of all, in examining the details of the reports, there is no Windows Vista virus described in them. Instead, the reports are regarding potential proof of concept viruses in the form of malicious scripts that are developed to affect a new interactive shell codenamed "Monad", which is currently in early phase of beta testing.

Now to be clear, these reports pose no risk for Microsoft customers. The viruses do not attempt to exploit a software vulnerability and do not encompass a new method of attack.  Furthermore, “Monad” is not widely available for general use. It’s a beta, and we do not recommend or support the use of beta software in a production environment. Microsoft continues to analyze the feedback from testers as Monad continues to be developed.

But most important, “Monad” is not included in the beta release of Windows Vista or in Windows Server 2003 R2.

Monad will not be included in the final version of Windows Vista and there is no relation between Monad and Windows Vista Beta 1. Monad is being considered for the Windows Operating System platform for the next three to five years.  So these potential viruses do not affect Windows Vista or any other version of Windows if “Monad” has not been installed on the system.

It’s hard to predict what type of malicious software criminals might develop to attack future versions of operating systems.  But rest assured we’re on the case!  The MSRC will be here to investigate and provide the guidance to help protect customers no matter what attacks may impact customers.

S.

*This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.*