Patch Tuesday won't bring a lot of heavy lifting on October 11, but IT security administrators will still have two critical patches to apply. One affects all supported versions of Internet Explorer (IE).

In October, Microsoft is planning to release eight patches that fix a total of some 23 bugs.

According to a post on the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) blog, this month's patches run the gamut from IE, .NET Framework and Silverlight, Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Forefront UAG (Unified Access Gateway), and Microsoft Host Integration Server.

At the top of the list in October are patches for IE which, for many versions of Microsoft's preeminent Web browser, are rated "critical" -- the highest-priority rating on the company's four-tier severity ranking scale.

Prior to actually releasing a patch, Microsoft does not disclose details about the bugs it fixes, so as not to give crackers any hints before a patch is available for download.

Although details of the IE patch have not been revealed yet, the notification does say that installing the patch will require a system restart.

Meanwhile, the second high-priority patch is rated critical for all versions of Windows, including Windows XP Service Pack 3 up through Windows 7. However, that patch only says it "may require" a restart after installation.

As far as the rest, those patches are mostly rated "important," Microsoft's second highest priority ranking. Most of those, too, will require a restart, however.

"For the patches in general, nearly all require a restart which will cause widespread disruptions across both Internet connected servers and user community desktops," Paul Henry, security and forensic analyst for researcher Lumension, said in an email to

Stuart J. Johnston is a contributing editor at, the news service of, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @stuartj1000.