Microsoft Fixes Windows 95/98 Bug

Microsoft has released a patch that eliminates a vulnerability in Windows 95 and Windows 98 that could allow a malicious Web site or e-mail message to cause the Windows machine to crash or to run arbitrary code.

There is a buffer overflow in the Windows 95 and Windows 98 networking software that processes file name strings. If the networking software were provided with a very long random string as input, it could crash the machine. If provided with a specially malformed argument, it could be used to run arbitrary code on the machine via a classic buffer overrun attack.

The vulnerability could be exploited remotely in cases where a file:// URL or a Universal Naming Convention (UNC) string on a remote Web site included a long file name or where a long file name was included in an e-mail message.

All versions of Windows 95 and Windows 98 are known to be affected. The patch for Windows 95 is available at and for Windows 98 at

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.