“Your software must crash”: Microsoft

Software can only be “certified for Windows Vista” by Microsoft if it will crash according to anti-spyware manufacturer Spybot.

The company advised customers it could not get accreditation from Microsoft for its software because it refused to make the Spybot software crash under prescribed conditions as required by Microsoft.

“The background of this [requirement] is actually useful in a standard situation” wrote Spybot’s developers. “Software that has bugs should actually crash instead of just trying to hide them so that Windows Error Reporting can log the problem and forward it to the developer.

“However in the context of a security application this is hazardous: if malware writers can use a perfectly documented way to crash a security application the overall security is greatly harmed.

“To avoid this we suggested some alternatives to Microsoft that would not compromise the goal of submitting bug reports on errors that are the fault of the developer of the software. In the end though some people at Microsoft seem to be too certain that Vista is absolutely safe upon which we do not intend to comment since key Microsofts employees have already done so for example Jim Allchin or Mark Russinovich.