Security updates and patches just keep coming from Microsoft and sometimes it’s hard to keep track of which ones apply to your particular system and what problem is involved for a given patch. In theory, the Windows Update feature provides a record of Microsoft security bulletins but there is a new online service that makes it much easier to keep track of what security bulletins have been issued for your software, the nature of the problem addressed, and where to find more details about the problem.
The new service is called myBulletins and is described by Microsoft as “an online tool that provides you with a personalized list of the Microsoft security bulletins that matter most to you.“ It is reached at this page on the Microsoft Technet site. You will need a Microsoft account to create your personalized version of myBulletins. If you have previously used a Microsoft service such as email or the Windows Store, you will already have an account.
You create your own group of Microsoft products for which you want security bulletins. The products chosen are entirely up to you and the myBulletins tool does not access your computer. It does not detect which updates you have applied or might need. The available list of products includes Windows XP and other older software, even Internet Explorer 6. The tool creates a dashboard listing the security bulletins for your chosen products with information such as the date posted, bulletin ID, product name, type of vulnerability, and whether the update requires a reboot. A partial example of a dashboard can be seen by clicking the thumbnail. Each bulletin ID has a link to the detailed description provided in the complete security bulletin issued by Microsoft for that particular update. You can select a date range for the bulletins. The calendar goes back to 2008 but I tested it just back to the beginning of 2013. There is a search function that allows you to look for a particular ID.
The information in the list can also be downloaded to a spreadsheet. The spreadsheet has additional information such as references to Microsoft Knowledge Base articles and which earlier updates may have been superseded by a patch.
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This tips section is maintained by Vic Laurie. Vic runs several websites with Windows how-to's, guides, and tutorials, including a site for learning about Windows and the Internet and another with Windows 7 tips.
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