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Patch Tuesday July 2021: Update, Highlights, and Known Issues

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Alexandru Poloboc

by Alexandru Poloboc

News Editor

With an overpowering desire to always get to the bottom of things and uncover the truth, Alex spent most of his time working as a news reporter, anchor, as well as TV and radio… Read more

july 2021 patch tuesday

As expected, Microsoft started rolling out the July 2021 Patch Tuesday updates today. Using this batch of updates, the Redmond giant focuses on improving the overall functionality of the OS, while also fixing existing bugs.

Microsoft rolls out different Patch Tuesday updates for all the Windows 10 versions currently supported. For more information on the latest updates, check out our Windows 10 Patch Tuesday update history page.

Since each cumulative update is different for each version of Windows 10, it would be wrong to talk about a singular changelog, and that is why this article exists.

Not only will we be providing you with a detailed changelog of all the modifications brought to each major version of Windows 10, but we will also be providing you with direct download links from the Windows Update catalog.

What are the main changes in the July Patch Tuesday updates?

Microsoft’s July security updates feature approximately 40 security updates for Windows-specific issues.

July’s Patch Tuesday also includes several fixes for CVE-2021-34527, which address the Windows Print Spooler Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerability, a print service bug that has been exploited for the past two months.

The fix for the infamous CVE-2021-34527 is, without a doubt, the highlight of July’s Patch Tuesday.

After it was first discovered, then rediscovered, patched, but not fully, the print spooler bug had users on the edge, especially after the POC’s publication.

Now, this vulnerability appears to be fixed on Microsoft’s Security Update guide, complete with additional workarounds for users who have yet to apply the latest essential patches.

You can download each individual cumulative update by using the direct links we have provided for you.

Patch Tuesday list of CVEs

CVE-2021-34473 – This Remote Code Execution for Microsoft Exchange is rated as a 9.1, requires no user interaction, has a low complexity, and does not need user interaction. That seems to cover just about all of the worst case scenarios for an exploit. That is before we mention that this is one that is already publicly disclosed. If you run exchange on-prem this should have you running to get it patched ASAP.

CVE-2021-34448 – This exploit is already being used out in the wild, and per the MSRC site it can cause a total of integrity and confidentiality. Meaning they can get all information or modify all files from the impacted component. The only ray of sunshine here is that it does require user interaction, but that can be as simple as getting them to visit a corrupted site or click on a bad link. Thank goodness your end-user training has been thorough and has been adopted by everyone!

CVE-2021-34494 – Anytime there is a threat to DNS it is worth highlighting. On the bright side you don’t need to patch every machine with this one, only machines that are DNS servers. On the dark side, it requires minimal permissions and no user interaction to exploit. This is not one that is already publicly known or exploited, so at least patching should get you ahead of it.

These are the critical vulnerabilities fixed in the July 2021 Patch Tuesday

What are the best practices for Patch Tuesday?

There are a few things that you can do in order to make sure that your computer installs the latest Patch Tuesday updates without any issues. We all know that Windows updates often trigger errors.

In extreme cases, they may even render your PC completely unusable. Follow these tips to make sure the update install process goes as smoothly as possible.Ad

How to download the latest PT updates

While the Patch Tuesday updates are true of greater significance compared to other patches that Microsoft regularly releases, installing them is done in pretty much the same way.

This means that you can perform the actions by following these steps:

  1. Make sure that no other apps are running in the background.

  2. Go to one of these sources to get the updates:

    • The Windows Update menu

    • The Windows Update Catalog (This allows for individual updates to be downloaded one by one manually)

    • The Windows Server Update Service (WSUS)

    • Group Policy created by a network administrator

  3. After downloading the updates, make sure nothing interrupts the update process until it is finished.

  4. Reboot your PC once the updates are complete to finalize the installation.

Exploit Wednesday & Uninstall Thursday

Right after Patch Tuesday, hackers try to exploit the vulnerabilities left unpatched by Microsoft. This leads to an increase in the number of cyber-attacks.

On the other hand, many users often decide to uninstall the Patch Tuesday updates a few hours after install due to the large number of issues they triggered — hence the name Uninstall Thursday.

Check out this guide to learn more about how to stay safe after Patch Tuesday and make sure the updates don’t brick your computer.

Patch Tuesday: All your Questions Answered

  • When is Patch Tuesday released? 

Microsoft rolls out new Patch Tuesday updates on the second Tuesday of each month. The next Patch Tuesday Update is expected to arrive on June 8, 2021.

  • How does Patch Tuesday work?

We already answered this question in this quick guide. Do check it out to learn more about the mechanisms behind Patch Tuesday.

  • What is the bandwidth impact of Patch Tuesday?

When actively downloading updates, you may experience slow connection issues on your Windows 10 computer. This happens especially when updating multiple PCs at the same time.

The solution is to distribute the updates locally via WSUS. This means downloading the updates from Microsoft Servers.

Then, your Windows 10 computers can share the updates in a peer-to-peer manner over the local network resulting in a faster update process.

Patch Tuesday Troubleshooting

Oftentimes, Patch Tuesday updates trigger various errors on Windows computers. These may range from minor glitches to technical issues that may render your computer unusable.

We covered extensively Patch Tuesday issues we compiled hundreds of troubleshooting guides to help you solve these problems quickly.

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