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A hot fix refers to the repair or upgrade of a working computer or system component, such as a running program or code. Hot fixes address critical and non-critical issues but must be applied as soon as they are released to prevent machine performance denigration due to unaddressed bugs or holes. A regular hot fix update schedule shields against OS bugs, attacks and hackers.
Microsoft releases hot fixes with regular Windows XP updates or to address specific and unexpected OS bugs. Windows' hot fixes are available for download from Microsoft’s website or via the built-in Windows Update utility, which automatically downloads and installs hot fixes.
Users should back up data to safeguard against potential machine inoperability prior to installing hot fixes or updates.