JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

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stevecinhou
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JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby stevecinhou » Sun Apr 21, 2013 8:32 pm

A ward in our stake was having lots of problems with MLS: data not bein saved correctly, ultimately not being able to save data at all. The bishop and clerk contacted GSC, who apparently claimed the DB was "the case case they have seen". There were instructed through a process of erasing and restoring the system, and ended up losing some records because of corrupt DB. They say that GSC told them the root of the issue was that the MLS copy of JAVA (it uses its own version) become corrupted when "Windows JAVA updates are performed". And were instructed by SLC: "Do not perform any JAVA updates." I hadn't heard this. But they've started spreading this info around and have all of the wards concerned now that we need to insure that no one that touches the clerk computers allows any JAVA updates.

So... Is this true? Seems MLS having it's own copy is to prevent this exact situation. So doesn't make sense to me. I'd like to put this to rest and calm the histeria. Anyone else seeing corruption problems attibutable to JAVA updates. Any solid info from SLC on this? I plan to give them a call tomorrow.

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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby russellhltn » Sun Apr 21, 2013 9:14 pm

stevecinhou wrote:So... Is this true?


I doubt it. If someone somehow got into the MLS copy of Java and updated it, I could see problems. But not normally.

I think the worst case I saw probably came from someone who didn't understand that you had to let the computer turn itself off before hitting the power bar. Once I posted the proper shutdown steps, I no longer had a problem.
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jdlessley
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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby jdlessley » Sun Apr 21, 2013 9:27 pm

stevecinhou wrote:They say that GSC told them the root of the issue was that the MLS copy of JAVA (it uses its own version) become corrupted when "Windows JAVA updates are performed".

I won't say it is impossible, but it is highly unlikely updates to the the system installation of JAVA will have any impact on the entirely separate JRE for MLS. You can get an idea of how JAVA configurations are updated by reading the article Java Runtime Environment Configuration.
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johnshaw
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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby johnshaw » Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:29 am

First of all, Why was the STS not involved, or at least the Stake Clerk.. No messaging in a Stake about the computer systems should come from anywhere other than the STS. Secondly I wouldn't trust a Clerk/Bishop working with Local Unit Support on a case like this to distribute any accurate data. Third, how can we stop the unhealthy pronouncements from LUS about 'What the problem was' because, in my experience, it is the rare person on the other end of the phone that really knows... problem is when you haven't dealt with that group over a series of events or over a long period of time, it is easy to take them as being the experts, when many times they are working through a series of troubleshooting items that have helped in the past, but rarely is it targeted to a specific scenario.
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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby russellhltn » Mon Apr 22, 2013 11:13 am

For what it's worth:

Program Files\Java is where the "system" Java installs by default.
ProgramFiles\jre6 is where the MLS copy of Java is installed.

As long as no one goes messing with the jre6 copy and trying to update it, there shouldn't be any problems.

One issue that might arise is when it's not updated. Patch updates to MLS doesn't always update the java. Full installs will do it.

Unless LUS looked in the jre6 and found it to be a newer version, I'd take their pronouncement with a grain of salt. The fact this is being filtered though a 3rd party means I need a good sized salt shaker.
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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby aebrown » Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:27 pm

jdlessley wrote:I won't say it is impossible, but it is highly unlikely updates to the the system installation of JAVA will have any impact on the entirely separate JRE for MLS.

Actually, it's not at all unlikely that the process of installing Java 7 could lead to all Java 6 installations being removed. And Java 7 is the version offered if a system has Java auto-updates enabled.

First, Oracle says this on its Java 6 Auto-Update to Java 7 page: "During the automatic update from JRE 6 to JRE 7, if a user only has one version of Java 6 the auto-update process will replace that JRE 6 with the latest version of JRE 7 leaving only JRE 7 in the system." There are also reports such as this, that Java 6 might be removed during a regular installation of Java 7.

Second, when you install the current version of Java 7, the success page says (if you do have Java 6 anywhere on your computer that the Java 6 detection algorithm can find):

"Old and unsupported versions of Java have also been detected on your system.
Click here for instructions on how to remove them to maintain your system security."

That then takes you to a page that says: "Windows Users: Improve the security of your computer by checking for old versions of Java and removing them using the Java Uninstall Tool."

Someone who is not familiar with the way Java is installed on an MLS computer might run through this process and remove the jre6 that MLS uses. After all, you're advised that this will help "maintain your system security"; that sounds like a great thing to do.

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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby Mikerowaved » Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:47 pm

aebrown wrote:
jdlessley wrote:I won't say it is impossible, but it is highly unlikely updates to the the system installation of JAVA will have any impact on the entirely separate JRE for MLS.

Actually, it's not at all unlikely that the process of installing Java 7 could lead to all Java 6 installations being removed. And Java 7 is the version offered if a system has Java auto-updates enabled.

First, Oracle says this on its Java 6 Auto-Update to Java 7 page: "During the automatic update from JRE 6 to JRE 7, if a user only has one version of Java 6 the auto-update process will replace that JRE 6 with the latest version of JRE 7 leaving only JRE 7 in the system." There are also reports such as this, that Java 6 might be removed during a regular installation of Java 7.

This is true, but it does not apply to Java "private application runtime" installations, which includes the one installed with MLS.

aebrown wrote:Second, when you install the current version of Java 7, the success page says (if you do have Java 6 anywhere on your computer that the Java 6 detection algorithm can find):

"Old and unsupported versions of Java have also been detected on your system.
Click here for instructions on how to remove them to maintain your system security."

I just installed Java 7 on a test PC, that had MLS previously installed, but not Java. I received no warning regarding MLS's private version of JRE6 already existing on the PC.

aebrown wrote:That then takes you to a page that says: "Windows Users: Improve the security of your computer by checking for old versions of Java and removing them using the Java Uninstall Tool."

Just for fun, I ran that tool on this test PC and it told me, "There are no old versions of Java on your PC. You have the recommended version of Java installed (Version 7 Update 21)"

aebrown wrote:Someone who is not familiar with the way Java is installed on an MLS computer might run through this process and remove the jre6 that MLS uses. After all, you're advised that this will help "maintain your system security"; that sounds like a great thing to do.

Since MLS's JRE6 installation is considered "private" it doesn't show up in the list of installed programs (via Control Panel), nor can it be removed via the Control Panel without removing MLS. As a private installation, it does not advertise itself available for other applications to use, hence the security risk of it existing on a clerk PC is very minimal.

I have to agree with JD's original statement (above). MLS's version of JRE is completely under the church's control and is immune to being changed from the regular Windows (or Java) updating process.
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Re: JAVA updates corrupt MLS copy of JAVA?

Postby russellhltn » Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:57 pm

Mikerowaved wrote:I have to agree with JD's original statement (above). MLS's version of JRE is completely under the church's control and is immune to being changed from the regular Windows (or Java) updating process.


I wouldn't go so far as to say "immune" (too many years playing with computers makes me shy away from absolute statements) but I think it's safe to say that it doesn't normally happen. If it was, I think we'd would have heard about it before now.

Without knowing everything that happened to that machine, I think we're stuck with "that's strange".
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