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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    Secunia's PSI tool

    Today's newsletter recommends, as has been the case numerous times, using Secunia's memory resident PSI tool to monitor a system for vulnerabilities. I disagree. I had used PSI successfully for a couple years after having used solely the online scanner for a long time but when I got a new system, Win7 Home Premium, 64 bit, 4GB Ram, everything began slowing down dramatically. I went to the pc manufacturer's site (HP) for advice and assistance, they remoted into my machine and discovered that PSI was creating numerous log files filled with error messages (bogus) and that the reason for the slow down in my system was PSI's constant monitoring of virtually everything. They recommended uninstalling it, which I did, and the slow down stopped completely. I still run the online scanner frequently and successfully, but no more 24/7 monitoring of my system by PSI. Secunia may have fixed whatever that issue was but I am still content to use the online scanner rather than the very intrusive memory resident PSI. Just my experience, yours may differ, . gene

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  3. #2
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    Gene,

    I have never had a problem with PSI, but I never run it in "real-time, always on" mode, only for "on demand" scanning. Used thusly, I find it quite useful. I hope others aren't scared away from trying it out in this manner.

    Zig
    Last edited by Zig; 2012-02-23 at 11:57.

  4. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I only use on demand mode only as well. The latest PSI like to load itself at Windows Boot. You have to go into the configuration, settings and uncheck this option. It is check by default. Funny the way that works. Seems like many apps think they HAVE to load at boot. Just ain't so!!!
    Last edited by Medico; 2012-02-23 at 19:11.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
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  5. #4
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    PSI works fine for me. I find it very useful to make sure all my apps are patched for security vulnerabilities.

  6. #5
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    I have to agree with Zig & Ted Myers, go into the program & turn off the start @ boot feature. I only let the PSI scan when I want it to. I've used Secunia since all they had was an online scanner-besides the database for PSI is way larger than that of OSI-you may not get all your programs scanned. YMMV

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by genej313 View Post
    Secunia may have fixed whatever that issue was but I am still content to use the online scanner rather than the very intrusive memory resident PSI. Just my experience, yours may differ.
    Gene,
    Hello...I have "Ditched" Secunia a few years ago , and started using a program "Update Checker" from FileHippo If your using Windows Updates and Patches...you already get notified ... this does just all the other stuff... Regards Fred

    PS: You can configure it to run at boot time ...and it then will sit in the "Tray" and show how many "Updates" are needed ...you click on it (Icon) and takes you to each download page
    Last edited by Just Plain Fred; 2012-02-24 at 14:41.
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

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  9. #7
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I actually use both, but use Update Checker more often and kind of trust it more to be honest. Can't really even explain why.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
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  10. #8
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    The purpose of Secunia PSI was (until recently) only to check for and notify users of software and OS vulnerabilities, the local locations of vulnerable elements, and advice on how and where to fix them. That changed with PSI 2.0, as monitoring and automatic updating started to encroach on what had until then been a simple and well focused program. PSI is NOT an Updates Checker, and should not be compared with one. It is better compared with the security checks in Belarc Advisor.

    PSI is going into a third edition, and this is a complete disaster. There is no interface or dashboard anymore, and you cannot prevent automatic updates from installing. Apparently, PSI 3.0 even overrides your MS Updates settings, if you choose (in your Windows Updates Settings) anything less than Automatic Updates installations. With third-party updates, the defaults are all selected, even the ones which install potentially unwanted piggybacking software and toolbars. I have posted a complaint at the Secunia PSI User Forums, and maybe some of the other Loungers can do so as well, before this once-useful service/product slides into the trash-heap of idiot-light system tray utilities. For my full post on PSI 3.0, go to the Secunia Forums. (You do not need to join to read the posts there.) I post as rc primak, and it is pretty obvious where the threads about PSI 3 Beta are.

    For a full listing of stable and beta software and plugin updates, I trust Software Informer ( site ) and I use (but do not trust very much) KC Softwares SUMo (Lite, without the RK spyware) ( download ). But I do find errors in both updaters. NEVER update any software associated with hardware devices from these updaters' recommendations! That's like updating drivers just because some driver updater says to do so. That having been said, I do check my drivers with DriverMax ( site ) from time to time. Mostly, I back up my Drivers (except Win 8 CP) with DriverMax. DM simplifies the process if the system ever needs a reinstall or a rollback (even a System Restore). Again, NEVER update drivers without first making a full system backup! Even with a DM Backup, you might mess up something so that you cannot see your screen, use your Mouse, or even boot your computer.

    So, to sum up, I no longer use PSI. I use Software Informer and SUMo, selectively. And MS Updates, manually. DriverMax, occasionally. And security scans (Full Scans) with Windows Defender/MSE and Super Antispyware (64-bit Win 7 installation) weekly. Backups with Acronis or Macrium Reflect (Reflect V works with Win 8, whereas Acronis is not there yet) twice monthly. That's my security and updating schedule.

    If Windows Secrets, InfoWorld or AskWoody.com point out more urgent threats, I take their advice immediately.
    Last edited by bobprimak; 2012-03-09 at 06:09.
    -- Bob Primak --

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  12. #9
    3 Star Lounger midnight's Avatar
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    I went to Secunia on line and find that you must have Java installed to run the on line scanner. I no longer have Java on my desktop or laptop, but probably do on my husband's laptop.

    IF, and that is a big IF, I wanted to reinstall Java what is the best way to do so? I have found it to be 'cranky' to deal with.

    And I'm going to check out File Hippo as I see that recommended here often.

  13. #10
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    If you want to reinstall Java, go here:
    http://www.java.com/en/

    J
    erry

  14. #11
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    CNET TechTracker, Secunia 2.0.0.4003 installs configured not automatic

    I have downloaded a number of programs from CNET's download page, http://download.cnet.com/windows. CNET has a tracker program, TechTracker, that provides a listing of which programs are out of date.

    Unfortunately there has been a change - what you download from CNET is another downloader. So now I use the CNET TechTracker list for information and go directly to the original site, such as the publishers site to determine if I actually want to preform the download. (Some CNET download pages also have a tiny type direct download.)

    As far as Secunia goes, I have 2.0.0.4003, and although Secunia does offer to install some programs, it is not automatic (I probably made come configuration changes)

  15. #12
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lelandhamilton View Post
    I have downloaded a number of programs from CNET's download page, http://download.cnet.com/windows. CNET has a tracker program, TechTracker, that provides a listing of which programs are out of date.

    Unfortunately there has been a change - what you download from CNET is another downloader. So now I use the CNET TechTracker list for information and go directly to the original site, such as the publishers site to determine if I actually want to preform the download. (Some CNET download pages also have a tiny type direct download.)

    As far as Secunia goes, I have 2.0.0.4003, and although Secunia does offer to install some programs, it is not automatic (I probably made come configuration changes)
    Softpedia, MajorGeeks, and many other sites compete well with CNet's Download.com. And these other freeware download sites do not play games with Download Helpers or Installation Managers. Spyware and adware abound in free software installers, and there is no need to add yet another layer of PUPs (malicious programs) and PUMs (malicious modifications to the Registry) to the already filthy mix. These practices stink, but even free software must have its price. Someone has to pay to host the downloads and update the software.

    Keep in mind, folks, that I have no problem with Secunia PSI 2.x. The issue is with PSI 3.0, currently in Beta testing.
    Last edited by bobprimak; 2012-03-09 at 06:17.
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  16. #13
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I use and enjoy and trust FileHippo.com Update Checker for supplying updates to installed apps. The link is in the upper right corner of the web page.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


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  18. #14
    2 Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Myers View Post
    I use and enjoy and trust FileHippo.com Update Checker for supplying updates to installed apps. The link is in the upper right corner of the web page.
    I tried that, liked it. It did find a couple things Secunia's Online Scanner didn't. But it also tried to offer me 8 Beta versions of various things - not into Beta anything, lol. But I do like it, thanks, Ted.

    This is from the log I kept of my conversation with the tech I talked to about why my new 64bit Win7 machine was so freaking slow and glitching with typing all the time, keep in mind I never had trouble with PSI before this and had run it on a couple machines for almost as long as it had been offered.

    "So you have a program that constantly monitors and logs everything that happens on the computer the entire time the computer is running. It's also caused hundreds of Windows Update errors. As a professional, the only recommendation I can give is that we remove it. It doesn't serve any discernible purpose other than slowing down the computer and causing Windows Update errors."

    I did look at the log files it was producing and he was right, literally hundreds of update errors. Secunia used to, and still says it does, send an email notice when anything was updated, but it doesn't actually do that anymore. And FileHippo found updates Secunia did not. And just as a point of general annoyance, it would sure be nice if Flash learned to clean up after itself - it seems to have now with FF, and IE, but not Chrome, you still need to go into the directory and manually delete the old .dll. At least they were smart enough to develop "uninstall flash" which I run before updating any version, if I don't I end up in the Windows system folder deleting the .ocx file there before the new version of Flash will install. Maybe in a few years they'll have that process fully automated at Adobe, lol. :^)

  19. #15
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    That's true, that's why we have free choice. I do not install those beta's either. I do sometimes install beta apps, but generally only OS or browsers. In fact I have Win 8 CP and Chrome 18 installed right now. It's nice to have the options though. Glad you liked it.

    For those thinking of looking at FileHippo it is very obvious which offered updates are betas:

    FileHippo.jpg

    The released apps would appear in the top where the giraffe is presently located.
    Last edited by Medico; 2012-03-09 at 18:58.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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