According to the Microsoft Security Response Center, Microsoft will issue 17 Security Bulletins addressing 40 vulnerabilities on Tuesday, December 14. It will also host a webcast to address customer questions the following day.
Two of the vulnerabilities are rated "Critical," 14 are marked "Important," and the last one is classified as "Moderate." All of the Critical vulnerabilities earned their rating through a remote code execution impact, meaning a hacker could potentially gain control of an infected machine. At least eight of the 17 patches will require a restart.
The list of affected operating systems includes Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows 7, and Windows Server 2008 R2. Microsoft Office XP, Office 2003, Office 2007, and Office 2010 are also being patched, but no Mac versions are.
Compared to last month's record Patch Tuesday
, this one is massive. In fact, this is the highest number of bulletins Microsoft has ever released in one month. Still, it's lower than the record number of vulnerabilities that are being patched. The last record was set two months ago
: 16 bulletins and 49 vulnerabilities fixed.