Late Thursday McAfee posted a response online about the recent update that caused Windows XP system running SP3 to go a little haywire.

Anyone running McAfee Anti-Virus software who received the updated 5958 virus definitions DAT file was impacted. 

This update identified a critical Windows system service file as an infected file and stuck it in quarantine.  Of course without that file Windows just likes to reboot itself trying to sort things out.

Here is what McAfee had to say:

McAfee is aware that a number of customers have incurred a false positive error due to the release of the 5958 virus definition file at 2:00 p.m. GMT+1 (6 a.m. PDT) on Wednesday, April 21.

Our initial investigation indicates that the error can result in moderate to significant issues on systems running Windows XP Service Pack 3. If you are one of those impacted, we understand that this is a significant event for you and we’re very sorry.

McAfee is taking every measure to prevent this from reoccurring.

McAfee employees are working with the highest priority to support impacted customers. We have released updated virus definition files that do not contain the problem (DAT 5959 and higher) and are providing customers with detailed guidance on how to repair impacted systems.

If you visit the entire posting – McAfee Response On Current False Positive Issue – they also list some resources to help you out.

Here is my observation – is there room in the world for mistakes when it comes to these types of programs? I mean we trust anti-virus, anti-malware and many other programs to help protect us yet you can have an update come out that cripples your system. Even 1% of errors is still a lot of errors.

Plus, we won’t even get into the discussion of getting off an unsecure system like Windows XP and moving up to a modern day OS.