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  1. #1
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    Question Understanding .NET patches

    OK, I've always followed Susan Bradley's advice and steered away from .NET patches on my XP system.
    Yesterday I installed a great new PC Mag utility that required .NET 4 and I grudgingly allowed it to install.
    Now I have 6 KB patches sitting in my update que and after reading all the horror stories about broken installs I'm having second thoughts.
    I decided I would forgo the neat new utility and uninstall .NET 4
    BUT - add/remove tells me I not only have .NET 4 but also 2, 3 and 3.5 already installed, along with Silverlight 4.1
    I don't remember installing them....

    Here's my question - should I just uninstall the whole .NET family along with Silverlight?
    What will stop working if I do?
    Can I recover if I break something?

    I also found MSXML 4.0 and 6.0 Parser. Who are they?

    I guess I need to pay more attention to my installation logs...

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2
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    What operating system are you running?

    I don't agree at all with removing previous versions of .Net. Why would you?!

  3. #3
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    I'm running XP, fully patched.
    I guess my concern is with the experience others have had trying to install the multiple security patches and running into partial installs and other problems requiring special tools to uninstall the Framework, modify the registry and a multitude of other problems.

  4. #4
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    I can only speak by my own experience, which was never anything like that. I think the number of cases was not that meaningful (although people who have problems are always more vocal about it).

    Until you have problems, which you may never actually have, I would do nothing, that is, other than what I would do anyway - keep a regular image backup of my working system, image before installing any updates and then use that in case of problems.

    Windows XP is installed in hundreds of millions of computers with different specs and different software configurations. IMHO, the .net update issue is grossly overrated. Of course, when an issue occurs with your machine, it's always a "serious" issue, so the solution is not, IMO, to run a skeleton machine, software wise, in order to minimize problems, the solution is to be ready to face them and recover fast, if they happen. An image backup can be the solution, for this problem, if it ever occurs, and for many other problems.
    Last edited by ruirib; 2012-04-26 at 13:28. Reason: spelling

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  6. #5
    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    I am getting problems with a couple of new updates to the .NET Framework 1.1 SP1 on XP, and I have tried all the fixes/uninstalls/reinstalls that I can find.
    I shall just leave it to fail the updates each time that Windows Update tries to install them.
    Or just uninstall .NET 1.1 again, and see if anything objects!

    It would be awfully nice to know which pieces of software required which version of the .NET Framework (if any version at all!).

    I uninstalled the Java Runtime Environment years ago, and have since found only one program other than Libre Office/Open Office which needs it.

    Why do we have to put up with all this apparently rarely-used Stuff that gets updated every few weeks?
    BATcher

    Time prevents everything happening all at once...

  7. #6
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    Well, I hear the reasonableness here and admit it makes sense.
    I have the system images I need to protect against failed patches.
    I suppose I could just try the installs one at a time and see how it goes.
    Let me think about it...
    And thanks for the advice.

  8. #7
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    I'm sure everyone has read Susan's latest article:
    http://windowssecrets.com/patch-watc...e-cant-ignore/
    That was what started me down this bunny trail.
    I suppose an alternative is to take BATcher's approach and uninstall them all and wait to see who objects.
    Sigh...

  9. #8
    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    No, not "uninstall them all" - just the one(s) you have problems with!
    BATcher

    Time prevents everything happening all at once...

  10. #9
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    Different versions can exist without previous ones. If the .net patches are security ones, it may make sense to remove the corresponding version if the patches can't be installed, but even that may not be needed. My choice is to act on concrete situations, not the possibility of future issues...

  11. #10
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    I really need to do some homework here.
    Why are there so many different versions of .NET?
    Are they unique for different types or languages of development programs?
    Is Silverlight strictly for the development of IE add-on's?
    If I uninstall it will my IE lose any functionality?

    I know that I intentionally installed .NET 4, but have no idea how the other versions got installed, as well as Silverlight.
    Did MS do it with an update or patch I didn't inspect fully?

    Sorry about that, but this is an area I just don't have a good handle on - can you tell?

  12. #11
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    The different .net versions represent an evolution of the .net framework throughout time. 4.5 is currently in beta and maybe will be integrated in Windows 8. It will surely be made available as a download to other Windows versions.

    .Net is a very interesting framework to develop programs both for Windows and for web development. Through ports such as Mono, it can also be used to develop for Linux, Android and even iOS.

  13. #12
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    Ok, so can I uninstall all previous versions to 4 wihout crippling software that was developed with, say, .NET 2.0?

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    No, you cannot do that. Programs that were developed for 2.0, need 2.0. Actually 3.0 and 3.5 require 2.0 present, as they are extensions to 2.0.
    Last edited by ruirib; 2012-04-21 at 19:42.

  15. #14
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    Got it. Thanks.
    OK, so I'm going to follow your advice, update my system image, install the patches one at a time and see how it goes.
    My OS has been quite stable for years and I don't expect any surprises.
    But, as you say, the secret is to be prepared to deal with them when they come...
    Thanks.

  16. #15
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    Good luck .

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