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  1. #1
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    Secunia PSI v.3.0

    WS introduced me to Secunia PSI 2.0, which proved to be a favorite free download for my WinXP-sp3. After recently installing their newest version 3.0, I stared in wonderment and tried to understand why the upgrade. After much staring/bewilderment, visited their User's forum and learned I was not alone. Not by a long shot.

    Just wondering if WS (my WinPC tech guru) has viewed same and has any comments/advice?

  2. #2
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    There is a thread on this issue, already: http://windowssecrets.com/forums/sho...eases-PSI-v3.0

  3. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I stopped using Secunia when the app started automatic updates. I want to choose what does or does not get updated. I have also used FileHippo.com Update Checker for quite some time with very good results. See the download link in the upper right corner.
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  4. #4
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    You are not forced to accept Secunia's automatic updates, Ted. I never let it do that.

  5. #5
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    The only criticism of version 3 that I can really understand is the lack of links to relevant security advisories, which are apparently coming in an update at the end of this month.

    Everything else seems to amount to "it doesn't look like what I was used to".

    Bruce

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    Quote Originally Posted by BruceR View Post
    The only criticism of version 3 that I can really understand is the lack of links to relevant security advisories, which are apparently coming in an update at the end of this month.

    Everything else seems to amount to "it doesn't look like what I was used to".

    Bruce
    What's relevant to an user, may not be relevant to another and vice versa .

    Actually, Bruce, I disagree. They went from a version where useful information was provided with minimum interaction, to a version where there is no information, even if you want to access it.
    Not only the security advisories are missing, but also the current version and the most up to date version information is missing (yes, I know the former can be obtained by choosing Show Details). There is also other information missing, as in the case of old chrome versions that google kindly leaves behind when a new one is installed.

    The latest version is bad for one reason, IMO - it admits it knows better than you, by choosing not to provide with any information, other than supposedly an app being out of date. Instead of being a tool that empowers you as an informed user, it presumes that you are not wise enough to decide on your own. That enough is reason for me to dislike it. It has an horrid interface, as the previous one was, although for totally different reasons.
    Last edited by ruirib; 2012-07-02 at 13:27.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruirib View Post
    What's relevant to an user, may not be relevant to another and vice versa .

    Actually, Bruce, I disagree. They went from a version where useful information was provided with minimum interaction, to a version where there is no information, even if you want to access it.
    Not only the security advisories are missing, but also the current version and the most up to date version information is missing (yes, I know the former can be obtained by choosing Show Details). There is also other information missing, as in the case of old chrome versions that google kindly leaves behind when a new one is installed.

    The latest version is bad for one reason, IMO - it admits it knows better than you, by choosing not to provide with any information, other than supposedly an app being out of date. Instead of being a tool that empowers you as an informed user, it presumes that you are not wise enough to decide on your own. That enough is reason for me to dislike it. It has an horrid interface, as the previous one was, although for totally different reasons.
    It's not true to say that it doesn't provide you with ANY information. The only extra piece you've identified is the number of the most up to date version; is this crucial information if you're being told that the version you have is insecure and a patch is available? The history will show which version you updated from and to.

    I still don't see what's missing from 3.0 that was so useful in 2.0 (apart from the promised security advisory links for clarification on rare occasions).

    Surely we don't miss all the meaningless statistics?

    Bruce

    P.S. Are you sure it doesn't identify end-of-life programs separately? I can't tell yet, but I got the impression that it does.
    Last edited by BruceR; 2012-07-02 at 14:32.

  8. #8
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    It's really the whole rationale for this interface - hey, get an icon per program just saying it's not up to date and you can simply choose to update it. You don't need to know anything else. We take all the decisions for you, trust us, we know better.

    I actually like the 2.0 version better, information wise. For each problem app, you'd know your current version, the newest version available and the type of problem affecting you (yes - it doesn't tell you it's an end of life). Users should have this information, or at least the option to have it displayed.

    Secunia has no way to know if something is an actual security risk or not. I have, in the case of my PCs. I could give you specific examples, like the fact that I have php installed and I just use it locally for development purposes and it can't be accessed from the internet or anywhere else I specifically allow, so it doesn't matter to me whether it's safe or end of life or whatever, but if there is a problem, to be useful, PSI should tell me. So, IMO, this version is worse, because of the missing info.

    It suits your needs? Fine. I won't be upgrading it in the computers where I haven't done it yet. Actually being so dumb, may make me ditch it altogether. This is no evolution for the better, UI wise.

    An app such is this is a tool, for me. In the current state, PSI 3.0 is a very basic, crude tool. For the first time since I started using it, I am actually considering dumping it, as I get more annoyed with it each time I run it.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruirib View Post
    There is also other information missing, as in the case of old chrome versions that google kindly leaves behind when a new one is installed.
    I think Secunia have correctly eliminated a preceding version of the Google Chrome folder from being identified as a security risk when it's no longer being used after an update.

    Bruce
    Last edited by BruceR; 2012-07-02 at 15:31.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruirib View Post
    Secunia has no way to know if something is an actual security risk or not. I have, in the case of my PCs. I could give you specific examples, like the fact that I have php installed and I just use it locally for development purposes and it can't be accessed from the internet or anywhere else I specifically allow, so it doesn't matter to me whether it's safe or end of life or whatever, but if there is a problem, to be useful, PSI should tell me. So, IMO, this version is worse, because of the missing info.
    So you set it to be ignored and it gets listed at the bottom. Why is it useful to know it has a problem if you don't care? If your practices change you can unignore it.

    Bruce

  11. #11
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    The Chrome info was quite useful. Allowed me to clean up after google did not.

    I really do not understand why the info that was provided before was removed. It could very well be provided in the window you open when you want to see the details. The evolution of the UI is to empower the user by providing more info with the least effort. Metro is also about that - accessing relevant without effort or with the least possible effort. That''s why tiles are so much better than the outdated grids of icons.

    Why is it useful to know? Because I want to make decisions based on actual information. The decisions should be made based on actual info. If Secunia tells me there is a security risk with an app, I would appreciate the info to evaluate by myself if it is indeed a risk for me or not. It's me who should decide, not Secunia. Just telling me there is a problem actually helps me very little, as it may not even be a problem for me.

    Well, congrats to Secunia, they went back in time, with these childish looking icons and no info provided to users who were used to have it.
    Last edited by ruirib; 2012-07-02 at 17:47.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruirib View Post
    Well, congrats to Secunia, they went back in time, with these childish looking icons and no info provided to users who were used to have it.
    All the info you need is there, but you seem determined not to like it. The icons are no more childish than those you have pinned to your taskbar, desktop or start menu.

  13. #13
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    Bruce,

    I thank you for letting me know what I need. I rest my case.

  14. #14
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    Like Rui, I rather like having enough information to make a reasoned judgement, dumbing anything down is a backward, restrictive step - in my opinion, of course.

  15. #15
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    Got this from Secunia's support forum, posted by a member said to be a Secunia official:

    You are absolutely right; we developed the PSI 3.0 with the "average PC user" in mind, so yes, the primary target group is not exactly the technical experts.

    Let me give you a little background info: When we set out to develop the PSI 3.0, the objective was (and still is) to SIGNIFICANTLY improve the state of security worldwide. Had we wanted to "merely" double the number of PSI users, we could probably have added a few new features and have achieved the goal. But if we should 10x or 20x double the number of PSI users worldwide, we believe it takes something completely different, namely a simpler user interface, focus on the core functionality (software updating), multiple languages and a lot more automation. So with the PSI 3.0 we are trying to reach far beyond the technical confident users to also offer a solution to the people that simply just want it to work. Exactly as you describe.

    But we are continously evaluating how to improve the solution, and we for instance have a maintenance release scheduled for end of July with a few additional features and bug fixes, so the product is very much evolving.

    I am happy though that you like the PSI 2.0, and as mentioned elsewhere, we have no plans of dicontinuing this. Further, we are very must aware that there is a lot of users out there that also like to "mess around with the engine", and I promise you that we have something in the making for all of you guys as well. So stay tuned for more news later this year.

    So they are aware of the consequences of their choices and hopefully will fix it in future versions. I am in the process of going back to version 2.0. I really hate this dumbed down interface.

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