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Microsoft urges all users install update 'immediately' to fix vulnerability

The bug, called 'PrintNightmare,' affects all versions of Windows, and the company urges users to install updates 'immediately.'

WASHINGTON — Microsoft recommends installing an update "immediately" after it completed an investigation into a vulnerability in its operating system.  

The company on Tuesday said a remote execution vulnerability exists when the Windows Print Spooler service improperly performs privileged file operations. This vulnerability could allow hackers to "install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights."

The bug, called "PrintNightmare," affects all versions of Windows. Microsoft said it is offering security updates for all systems. However, security updates for Windows Server 2016, Windows 10, version 1607, and Windows Server 2012 are delayed, but fixes are "expected soon."

"We recommend that you urgently install the July 2021 Out-of-band updates on all supported Windows client and server operating systems, starting with devices that currently host the print spooler service," Microsoft said.

The fix to the bug comes a few weeks after the company announced a new generation of Windows software for the first time in six years. Windows 11 is slated to become Microsoft's flagship operating system, replacing Windows 10, which was first introduced in 2015.

In a challenge to rival Apple, the company also announced that it won't force app developers to pay fees to Microsoft for using its app store; and that Google's popular Android apps will run on its new system.

Windows 11 is expected to become available later this year on new computers and other devices and as a free update for those with Windows 10. It includes a host of cosmetic upgrades, such as a new Start button, a revamped task bar and sounds, and under-the-hood features designed to boost speed and efficiency.

Credit: AP
FILE - This July 3, 2014, file photo, shows the Microsoft Corp. logo outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash. (AP Photo Ted S. Warren, File)