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Thread: active X

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    Star Lounger
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    active X

    I am finding that more and more web sites require active x to view certain items. Is this safe to install/use? I vaguely recall it can be some sort of spyware??? Thank you!

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    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: active X

    (I'm probably going to get a lot of flak over this. Other Loungers may offer completely different advice.)

    ActiveX components can be used for entirely legitimate purposes and for fishy practices. If you trust a site, there is no objection to letting it install an ActiveX component, and if you're in doubt, you shouldn't. In Internet Explorer, select Tools | Internet Options..., activate the Security tab, click on Internet, then on Custom Level... Make sure that the options for downloading ActiveX controls are set to Prompt, not to Enable. This will give you the opportunity to decide whether you want to allow the download.
    If you use Windows XP, make sure that you have installed SP-2, it has numerous security enhancements compared to earlier versions.

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    Re: active X

    I agree with Hans. As with most computer technologies, ActiveX can be good or bad. You need to know and trust the site. If you are running XP you need SP-2. By default it will not install an ActiveX control without your permission.

    Joe
    Joe

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    Re: active X

    I agree with the above Hans and Joe as well BUT...

    you must also ensure that you have taken all other precautions as well - that is, have an "in-resident" anti-virus scanner running with the latest signature files, use a real firewall (ZoneAlarm, or Sygate PFW), perform regular scans with several malware scanners, and practice safe computing.
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
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    Re: active X

    ARRRRRRG! So nuthin's easy anymore in the WWW. I guess I will pass on active-x-required sites until I know more about what I'm doing. Thank you!

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    Re: active X

    I don't think that is necessary - just keep your other defenses in place and up to date, and you will be good to go - assuming you stay away from Porn and P2P sites - that's asking for trouble.
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
    Freedom is NOT Free!
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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: active X

    What Microsoft should do is make it easy to choose the ones you want to run (say, a Flash movie) and block the ones you want to block (say, a downloader that installs a new toolbar). Instead, you get the all-or-nothing dialog. Firefox is better in this regard: it doesn't run ActiveX, so Flash movies run in a Netscape-compatible plug-in and the installers don't run at all. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

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    Re: active X

    It might we worth reading up on SpywareBlaster, which prevents the downloading of known malware ActiveX controls, and gets updated fairly frequently (yesterday, for example!).

    John
    <font face="Script MT Bold"><font color=blue><big><big>John</big></big></font color=blue></font face=script>

    Ita, esto, quidcumque...

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    Re: active X

    By default IE with XP SP-2 will not install an ActiveX control without permission. IE also has an add-on manager that allows you to enable or disable individual controls. You can also force an update with the add-on manager.

    Joe
    Joe

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: active X

    Thanks for the update. Maybe I'll start using IE again. <img src=/S/wink.gif border=0 alt=wink width=15 height=15> Actually, I've used it quite a bit to preview my own web pages to make sure they work in both browsers, and for our intranet (otherwise I have to keep entering my network password), but for "general" web surfing, I don't think I'll be switching back.

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    Re: active X

    i've been using fireox for about 4 months and have not yet had too many problems.

    there are sites designed for ie that firefox cannot play with.

    one still has to use ie to download some software, e.g. from msft.

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: active X

    Sorry to see, however, that your Shift key seems to have become disabled. <img src=/S/wink.gif border=0 alt=wink width=15 height=15>

    It's funny contacting webmasters and explaining how they could make a small change to make their site work much better with Firefox. Some are very responsive, while others tell you that a big redesign is in the works, so they don't want to fix it now. When these sites are for the manufacturers of web site authoring tools, I find the latter kind of response extremely shortsighted. <img src=/S/laugh.gif border=0 alt=laugh width=15 height=15>

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    Re: active X

    I guess I I am shiftless.

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    Re: active X

    I've been using Firefox for a few days, now, and it appears to be all I need, so far. Thank you for all the suggestions, explanations and help.

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