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  1. #1
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    Working with the Windows shell and extensions


    Field Notes

    Working with the Windows shell and extensions


    By Tracey Capen

    A recent failure of Windows 10's power menus is eventually traced to an incompatible shell extension.

    Also: AV-Comparatives posts its latest report on 19 popular anti-malware applications but not Malwarebytes.

    The full text of this column is posted at windowssecrets.com/top-story/working-with-the-windows-shell-and-extensions/ (opens in a new window/tab).

    Columnists typically cannot reply to comments here, but do incorporate the best tips into future columns.

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    Apparently your screen shot of CCleaner >> Tools/Startup is from an older version. There are two relevant windows now. The basic window just shows Windows. To see the window with browsers such as Firefox, you need to click Tools/Browser Plugins

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    Malwarebytes is excellent - I use the PRO version.
    Could it be that these testing firms don't categorize Malwarebytes as a "full" AV program? It is often considered a "supplementary" program that can run besides the "full" programs. (But often it finds things the "full" programs don't!).

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    I've contacted Malawarebytes as a result of comments in this newsletter that it can be used as an antivirus app. The company said it can't be used that way; a regular antivirus app is needed along with it. Maybe that's why it wasn't tested.

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    "how tested products fair" should be "how tested products fare"

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    5 Star Lounger Lugh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracey Capen
    Next was the somewhat tedious process of enabling extensions, one at a time, and testing
    I see this approach mentioned a lot, even by Fred Langa iirc. There's a much faster way for anything like this.

    Say you have 32 different suspects to test, eg browser extensions. If you do like Tracey, 'one at a time', it'll take an average of 16 tests to find the culprit, and as many as 31 if you're unlucky. The faster way:

    Test the top 16--ie disable the bottom 16. This tells you which half of your suspects contains the culprit. Now test half of those, ie 8 suspects--now you've narrowed it down to one or other group of 8 suspects. Test 4 of these 8, then 2 of the resulting 4 suspects, and finally the final 2 suspects.

    5 tests required.
    Last edited by Lugh; 2016-09-15 at 23:17. Reason: typo
    Lugh.
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    Quote Originally Posted by heritage972 View Post
    Apparently your screen shot of CCleaner >> Tools/Startup is from an older version. There are two relevant windows now. The basic window just shows Windows. To see the window with browsers such as Firefox, you need to click Tools/Browser Plugins
    Good point. The version in the newsletter screen shot is 30 months and 31 versions out-of-date. Lousy example.
    Last edited by BruceR; 2016-08-25 at 22:01.

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    On the AV ratings, I find it interesting that Norton wasn't included either.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Coleman View Post
    On the AV ratings, I find it interesting that Norton wasn't included either.
    Symatic Norton is covered as a single product item here:
    http://www.av-comparatives.org/singl...reviews-tests/

    Jerry

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    Every couple of years, Neil Rubenking at pcmag.com tests Malwarebytes Anti-Malware. Here's the last tests from 2014:

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2455505,00.asp

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2455577,00.asp

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    Quote Originally Posted by cloudsandskye View Post
    Every couple of years, Neil Rubenking at pcmag.com tests Malwarebytes Anti-Malware. Here's the last tests from 2014:

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2455505,00.asp

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2455577,00.asp
    I can't see much value in tests that are 2.5 years old.

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    I had the same problem as you on the laptop I'm typing on now. I cleaned up my context menu items, and followed every single suggestion out there short of nuking Windows. I finally dealt with it by installing Classic Start Menu. Perhaps after eventually doing the anniversary update I'll revisit the situation. However, I had not realized that CCleaner had that tool; it is a lot simpler then Nirsoft's. Also, I've never been loaded up with malware the way I often do when installing Nirsoft products.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pbug56
    Also, I've never been loaded up with malware the way I often do when installing Nirsoft products.
    I've been using Nirsoft utilities for nearly 10 years and not once have I ever had any malware attached.

    Just make sure you get his products directly from the Nirsoft website, not from one of the numerous dodgy websites that re-package his products with cr*p.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pbug56 View Post
    Also, I've never been loaded up with malware the way I often do when installing Nirsoft products.
    I don't know what actually happened to you. Are you sure you actually got malware? Though it's never happened to me, I've read that some anti-malware/anti-virus tools flag Nirsoft tools as (possible) malware simply because the tools are are making somewhat low level changes to the OS. Sort of a Catch 22 as that's usually what the tools are intended to do and why they are wanted.

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    The problem is that clicking on a link on their website takes you to another site for the download. And whatever that site is bundles it with cr-pware that doesn't even offer a prompt for whether the add-ons should be installed, so afterwards you have to try and find and try and remove all the garbage that came with it. At least in my experience.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lugh View Post
    I see this approach mentioned a lot, even by Fred Langa iirc. There's a much faster way for anything like this.

    Say you have 32 different suspects to test, eg browser extensions. If you do like Tracey, 'one at a time', it'll take an average of 16 tests to find the culprit, and as many as 31 if you're unlucky. The faster way:

    Test the top 16--ie disable the bottom 16. This tells you which half of your suspects contains the culprit. Now test half of those, ie 8 suspects--now you've narrowed it down to one or other group of 8 suspects. Test 4 of these 8, then 2 of the resulting 4 suspects, and finally the final 2 suspects.

    5 tests required.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Corbett View Post
    I've been using Nirsoft utilities for nearly 10 years and not once have I ever had any malware attached.

    Just make sure you get his products directly from the Nirsoft website, not from one of the numerous dodgy websites that re-package his products with cr*p.

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