Do you now "System Administrator from Hell"?? (See here for example) I have to add the Universal Explanation: Microsoft is patching the whole planet at once and that's why the stars stop moving until all machine have rebooted.
if you ever have problems with your software blame it on Microsoft...
(Latest example http://heartbeat.skype.com/2007/08/what_happened_on_august_16.html)
Oh, come on...
As far as I know from network admins the protocol used is not very friendly regarding the underlying network (they use a mechanism to gain bandwidth for themselves by crowding others out). Now they have been overwhelmed by too much clients rebooting at once?? So the client programmed to swamp out others killed its own home base?? Funny. Beside the fact that there are examples of infrastructures surviving this much traffic (like update.microsoft.com ).
Sorry, I am certainly oversimplifying the real chain of things that happened... but the Patch-Tuesday (as it is called in the press) is nothing new and the amount of patches is (besides the fact that every patch is one too much, no question asked) well bellow other systems. So this situation should be well known. But don't take my oppinion to seriosly ... I am biased.
PS: And if you want to become famous claim to be a russian hacker who took it down (see http://it.slashdot.org/it/07/08/18/2233219.shtml)