Forum Thread: Patch not available until complete rescan?

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lvdaston Patch not available until complete rescan?
Member 10th Nov, 2010 20:50
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I’m a little bit confused about PSI2beta’s behavior and I’m pretty certain someone here can help me out.

Short version: PSI didn’t update my Flash player from to until I manually did a complete scan of my PC. My guess is because PSI just didn’t know there was a new version out. Is this behavior intentional? Do I have to manually rescan or wait for the weekly automatic scan to happen?

Long version: Adobe released the Flash version on Monday 8th, today while reading some news I noticed this and out of curiosity went to the PSI2beta to check if Flash had already been updated, the new version is out for two days already. I was surprised to find that PSI had not auto-updated Flash. There my confusion begins. Shouldn’t PSI be aware that a new Flash version is out, well, the moment you Secunia guys update your database?

I made a manual rescan of the program; in the “Scan Results” section double click on the program and “Re-Scan Program”. No new version detected, but of course the new version is out there. I could just go to the Adobe website and download it manually, like I used to do. At that point I was questioning the usefulness of PSI2beta, because from my perspective, it didn’t do its job very good. Automatic update implies for me, that I don’t have to worry checking and installing patches. While PSI2beta does a good job at automatically patching Flash, it apparently does a poor job in checking for available patches.

I manually initiated a complete scan in the “Scan” section and sure enough, after it completed Flash is “Insecure” and PSI2beta immediately starts to download and successfully install the new version. All fine, except for the part where I had to manually initiate a scan.

Thinking about this confused me. In a worse case scenario, taking Flash as an example, the automatic complete scan would execute, a day after that a patch is released, but PSI would apply this patch six days later when the next complete scan is automatically executed. If Flash had a 0-day exploit or just an actively exploited vulnerability that this patch would fix, I find that 6 days too long. The patch should be applied the moment it is available or more realistic, the moment it is in the Secunia database. I mean, isn’t this the whole idea of PSI2, maximizing security with automatic patching with no user interaction? For me this does not include “delayed” patching.

That is my situation and thoughts about it. However I could be totally wrong and missing something stupidly obvious, so I ask you forum guys: Is this delayed/manual patching behavior intentional? Do I have to wait for a complete rescan to automatically happen every week or initiate one myself to start the auto-update process?

Anyway, thanks for making PSI and making it free.
Keep up the good work.

Anthony Wells RE: Patch not available until complete rescan?
Expert Contributor 10th Nov, 2010 21:38
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Last edited on 10th Nov, 2010 21:42
Hi ,

In Dashboard->Configuration->settings do you have enabled

"Start ....on Boot"

"Enable Program Monitoring"

"Enable Automatic Program Updates" with or without Prompt enabled .

See section 4.5 of the "Secunia PSI Manual (PDF)" under Dashboard->learn More .

With the above settings enabled the PSI advised me within 24 hours of the Flash update . The system may/does not work for all programmes ; to date M$ updates need a full scan/patch/reboot/full scan (possibly repeated to be detected and then register in the PSI) .

People have complained about the rigour of only a one week reset for the scanner and many (the most paranoid ?! :)) do run daily scans . Secunia are looking into a scan scheduler . EDIT : a programme scan is often ineffective a full scan is usually required ; the situation is improved in the Beta with updates displaying/appearing without any scan .

In your community profile on the top lhs of this page , when logged in , you can select "Software Inspector Reminder" to get an email telling you of updates to the major programmes covered by the OSI .

Hope that helps somewhat .



It always seems impossible until its done.
Nelson Mandela
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