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ASC may have damaged my system registry


badluckguy

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This is the first time I have posted to this forum (and only the second time I have ever posted to a forum), so if I have done anything wrong with my post, please let me know.

 

Today (June 23, 2009) at about 1:15 a.m. my time, I installed Advanced SystemCare Free 3.3.2 (ASC) to replace Advanced WindowsCare Personal (AWC) 2.7.2.850 installed on my computer. I created a system restore point before I did the install of ASC. The install went smoothly, including the uninstall of AWC. Immediately after the install, ASC prompted me to let it create a restore point, which I allowed it to do, after which the ASC scan was automatically launched. After ASC finished its scan, I saved a report, through ASC, of the registry entries to be fixed and clicked on the ASC Repair button.

 

Shortly after the repair process, which ran successfully, a script debugger window for program psi.exe (Secunia Personal Software Inspector software vulnerability scanner) popped up. I've never used and never needed to use a debugger on my computer and I don't know anything about scripts. I tried to get out of the debugger, but it wouldn't let me until I terminated the Secunia PSI, which runs out of my system tray. I started up the Secunia PSI again, but it was unable to load its interface, which is a real-time update, and the debugger window popped up again. I had to terminate the Secunia PSI again to be able to close the debugger. I have never had a problem with the Secunia PSI, and I know for sure that it was working minutes before I installed ASC. I can't recall, but it may have even visually acknowledged that I had just added new software (ASC) to my computer, which it would have done if it was still working at that time. What I do know for sure is that it stopped working shortly after I ran the ASC repair.

 

To try to resolve the problem with the Secunia PSI, I uninstalled and reinstalled it, but I got the same results. I then uninstalled ASC, but the problem with the Secunia PSI persisted. I then uninstalled and reinstalled the Secunia PSI again, and once again the results were the same, i.e., the Secunia PSI interface wouldn't load, the script debugger window popped up, and I had to terminate the Secunia PSI to get out of the debugger. I checked out the Secunia PSI support forum most of the day, and there were no reports of any problems with that software. Secunia has an online version of its software vulnerability scanner (for those who don't want to download and install the Secunia PSI) that I tried running on my computer, and it worked. I rely heavily on the Secunia PSI to monitor my critical software in real-time and inform me when it's not up to date, so I need to get it working again.

 

Later in the day, I was notified by RealPlayer, while I was using it, that an update was available. I ran the update, which completed successfully, and launched RealPlayer. I got the same script debugger window I got for the Secunia PSI. I get the script debugger window on all subsequent launches of RealPlayer. I tried restoring my computer to the restore point I created before installing ASC, but it didn't work because it told me that nothing had been changed on my computer since that restore point was created. I even tried reinstalling Java, but the Java web site informed me that I had the latest version of Java and that it is working normally as per the Java Verification Page test.

 

I should point out that something unexpected happened when the initial ASC scan was running. My Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocked the scan's access to dozens upon dozens of my computer files. If the scan was not able to access these files, is it possible that registry entries were falsely marked to be fixed? If this is the case, how damaged is my registry, and how do I repair it? Would the ASC Registry Scan Report I saved after the initial scan -- and before the repair was run -- be of any help in fixing my system registry if it was indeed damaged?

 

I am absolutely convinced that ASC, or at least its scan and repair process (I fear ASC "fixed" something in the registry that shouldn't have been fixed), is the cause (with possibly the help of Spyware Terminator) of the script debugger window popping up and preventing my Secunia PSI from working. I have since reinstalled ASC because hopefully it won't do any more damage to my computer as long as I don't allow it to fix my registry and as long as I disable my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield before each scan. I have never had a situation like this before, and I am very worried that I will have problems with future updates to my other installed software. Even worse, I'm worried that my system registry is damaged. My computer experience is average at best, so if I had to restore my computer from scratch, that would be disastrous for me.

 

About my computer:

 

I have a Dell XPS 400 computer with Intel Core 2 Duo processors (Intel Pentium D CPU 2.80GHz). I have 3GB of RAM and a 250GB hard drive. My operating system is Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition, Version 2002, Service Pack 2. My version of Windows is fully up to date except for Service Pack 3 and Internet Explorer 7.0 (I have 6.0). My default browser is Mozilla Firefox 3.0.11, and my e-mail client is Mozilla Thunderbird 2.0.0.22. My anti-virus software is AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition. I have a slew of other computer protection software.

 

Please let me know if you need any more information about my computer or information about other software I have installed on it.

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ASC may have damaged my system registry

 

ASC didn't prompt me to choose to back up my registry before "fixing" my registry problems, which I certainly would have done. It did prompt me to let it create a restore point before "fixing" the problems, which I did. I see no feature in ASC (the free version) that allows for the registry to be backed up. I have never backed up my registry, and I do not know how to back it up or restore it.

 

Why hasn't ASC's apparent conflict with Spyware Terminator been discovered before now, and how can I determine how much damage has been done to my registry? Why didn't I have this problem with ASC's predecessor, Advanced WindowsCare? Am I probably going to have to restore my computer from scratch, which I've never done before and which will probably cost me a sizable consultation fee to accomplish the restore?

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To siamesecougar:

 

Why doesn't your reply appear in this thread?

 

To Mongoose:

 

I used the system restore and it didn't work in that it gave me a message that the restore would not be done because nothing had changed on my system. I created a restore point before I installed ASC and I let ASC create one when it prompted me to do so before I ran the initial ASC scan and repair. When problems started occurring on my computer shortly after the repair, I tried to restore my system from the restore point I created before I installed ASC, but I got the message that nothing had changed on my system. I'm not exactly sure what a system restore does. Should the system restore I attempted to run have recognized changes to my system from the install of ASC and undid the damage done by ASC? Is it possible that ASC changed something in my registry that now prevents me from being able to restore my system from a restore point? If the restore point created by ASC can't undo the damage to my registry done by ASC, then what good is it? What was the point of ASC creating a restore point in the first place?

 

To everyone:

 

The damage that I've discovered for sure so far is to my Secunia PSI and RealPlayer software. I can't get the Secunia PSI to work at all, and some functions of RealPlayer that used to work no longer work. I uninstalled and reinstalled my Secunia PSI several times after I ran the initial ASC scan and repair, but it still didn't work. I even installed a new version of Secunia PSI, but it still doesn't work, so it looks like it depends on something in the registry that has been "fixed" by ASC. I'm going to post on the Secunia forum the full story of what happened to my Secunia PSI. Maybe they can tell me specifically what Secunia PSI requires in my registry that has been corrupted by ASC. I can live with the damage done to RealPlayer. I'm not currently aware of any other software I have that doesn't work properly or at all, including what safety software (e.g., my firewall, anti-virus, and spyware protection) on my computer may have been compromised, and I'm afraid I may never completely know.

 

As I stated in my original post, I still have the ASC Registry Scan Report prior to the ASC registry fix, if that would help me at all. Is there a way of restoring some or all of the registry entries listed on that report, e.g., can a file be created from the contents of that report that can be used to restore altered and deleted entries to the registry? Would it help if I attached that report to my next post? If it would help, I need to know how to attach the report, which is a .txt file. If the ASC Registry Scan Report serves no useful purpose, then what good is it?

 

CCleaner, which I have used every day for the last four years, has always had a prompt to back up registry entries before it deletes them, and I have always used that feature before allowing CCleaner to delete registry entries. I have never had a problem with using CCleaner to delete registry entries, including no conflict with Spyware Terminator. I don't remember there ever being a registry backup feature in Advanced WindowsCare Free, and it isn't in my version of ASC Free. Why doesn't ASC have an option to back up the registry before it fixes it along with the ability to apply the backup?

 

Is there a way to determine how much damage was done to my registry so that I can make an informed decision on how to go about repairing it? Is there a scan and repair function on the Windows XP install disc? Restoring my computer from scratch is a last resort because I have very little money and live on a small fixed income, so I can't afford the expense of paying someone to do or help me do the restore since it is something about which I am not knowledgeable. I don't want to make a bad situation even worse by taking extreme measures to do something I don't know how to do and that may not be necessary. I want to be able to determine exactly what damage was done to my registry by ASC so that I can make an informed decision on how to repair it, even if it is determined that I have to reformat my hard drive and reload my operating system and all of my software and data, which would be a daunting task considering how much software and data I have. But before I consider doing anything, I need to know just how much damage was done by ASC.

 

This is a horrible predicament for me to be in just for using what was once trusted software, but software that I now consider dangerous. Even so, I plan to use some of ASC's less impactful features, but I wish there was a way to disable the ASC registry fix feature because it's just too dangerous to remain active, and I don't want to always have to remember to disable my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield before running an ASC scan and repair, which I would be hesitant to do even if the registry fix feature was disabled. Even if I got rid of Spyware Terminator, I still wouldn't trust the ASC registry fix. I've been using Spyware Terminator for over two years without any major issues and it does as advertised, so I have no justifiable reason to remove it from my computer. I definitely won't be using any other IObit products that I might have otherwise wanted to try, such as SmartDefrag, because I no longer trust IObit.

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More ASC-related problems discovered

 

I found three more problems that are a a result of the damage done to my computer by ASC. Even though Internet Explorer is not my default browser, I do use it. I just logged on to it for the first time since I installed ASC and ran the ASC scan and repair. Right away I saw that only a fraction of my Dell start page is being displayed, and my Google Toolbar is completely missing. It's not even listed in View>Toolbars in the Menu Bar. When I tried to download an update for my Avant browser, which I haven't used for a while, the Internet Explorer engine, which Avant uses, wouldn't let me download the update no matter what changes I made to the Internet Explorer custom security settings.

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Still no resolutions

 

I have determined that ASC definitely corrupted the registry entries for my Internet Explorer 6.0 browser and my RealPlayer media player. Both have lost major functionality -- my Internet Explorer ignores changes I make to settings and prevents me from being able to download no matter what I try to do to get it to work. Hopefully I can correct the problems with RealPlayer by reinstalling it (I don't know if I can save the videos I downloaded), but I don't know how I should go about reinstalling Internet Explorer 6.0. I'd like to be able to retain my Internet Explorer settings, start page, bookmarks, toolbars, plugins, and anything else I can't think of right now. (I still haven't figured out how all traces of my Google Toolbar completely vanished from my Internet Explorer.) Can someone give me some suggestions on how I can do this since I'm not a computer geek? Can I reinstall Internet Explorer without uninstalling it (some software vendors have installers that detect this type of install as a repair-only install). Where do I need to reinstall Internet Explorer from, e.g., the original Microsoft Windows XP install disc (I believe I have it, but I would have to apply all of the Microsoft patches issued for it since the creation of the disc), the Microsoft web site, or some other source? If I want to install Internet Explorer 7.0, do I have to fix the problems with my Internet Explorer 6.0 first, or will installing Internet Explorer 7.0 fix the Internet Explorer registry issues I am having? I'm assuming that by reinstalling Internet Explorer and RealPlayer, I will be able to undo the damage done by ASC to my system registry for those two applications. If there is any other damage to my system registry caused by ASC, I haven't discovered it yet, but I wouldn't be surprised if there was more damage.

 

As I said in previous posts, I tried to restore my system from the restore point I created via Windows System Restore before I installed ASC, but I got a message that the restore could not be performed because nothing had changed on my system. Should I have been able to restore my system using that restore point and undo all the damage caused by ASC? If yes, then maybe ASC caused damage to my system registry that is preventing me from doing system restores. Is this possible? Does Microsoft have any scan and repair software that finds and fixes problems with the operating system?

 

In addition to all of the problems that I know are directly related to ASC, my computer has started crashing, garbage appears on my screen during the reboot process every time I reboot, my automatic weekly AVG Anti-Virus scan -- the first scan since I installed ASC and ran the initial ASC scan and repair -- failed before it was able to do anything because the scan log was damaged, and my Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail client is not functioning properly. Even though I cannot attribute these new problems directly to ACS, the coincidence is suspicious.

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I will need to restore my system from scratch because my system registry is corrupted

 

After spending over three hours on the phone today with Dell Technical Support, we determined that I am going to have to reformat my hard drive and reload my operating system and all my third party software and data to fix my system registry, which was badly corrupted by the ASC 3.3.2 scan and repair feature. I've never done this before, so this should be interesting. I will be doing this with the help of Dell Customer Support in a couple of days from now. The system registry is so badly corrupted that Windows System Restore, Add/Remove Programs, and Internet Explorer don't work, not even in Safe Mode. There is probably much more that doesn't work, but those three things not working are bad enough. Also, my computer has started crashing every day, which it never did before. I am not a happy camper, to say the least.

 

The bottom line is that Spyware Terminator and ASC do not play nicely with each other. The Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocks ASC from accessing what Spyware Terminator considers protected files, thus causing ASC to mark the registry entries for those files to be deleted. Either that, or ASC is truly dangerous and would have marked those critical registry entries to be deleted without the interference of Spyware Terminator. I am inclined to believe the former case because if the latter were true, the problems I am having would be happening to everybody who uses ASC. So when I rebuild my system, do I install Spyware Terminator or ASC? It's too dangerous to have both installed at the same time, and disabling Spyware Terminator's Real-Time Shield renders Spyware Terminator useless. I trust Spyware Terminator. I don't trust ASC, especially since it flags system registry entries for deletion when it is not allowed access to system files and it doesn't have the capability of backing up the registry entries it marks for deletion and restoring them, both of which I consider huge shortcomings and dangerous. The question is, can I ever trust ASC again, and can it ever be changed to not mark system registry entries for deletion if it is not allowed access to the files for those entries?

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Bye bye, ASC.....It wasn't nice knowin' ya

 

Well, I'm in the process of restoring my hard drive from scratch after ASC destroyed my system registry. As you can see, I've gotten far enough along that I can now get on the Internet with a browser. One of my first orders of business after reloading my operating system and applying a gazillion Microsoft updates was to download and install firewall and anti-virus protection. Before ASC wrecked my system, ZoneAlarm Free was my firewall and AVG Free was my anti-virus. After doing some research, I decided to go with Comodo as my firewall and Avira AntiVir as my anti-virus. After installing Comodo, it ran a one-time only virus scan. The results of that scan indicated that the ASC installer, which I had downloaded from my backup along with other stuff before I installed Comodo, is malware. Of all the software I downloaded, only ASC was flagged as malware. I was going to reinstall ASC, but after what it did to my system registry combined with it being flagged as malware by Comodo, I can't see any reason whatsoever to trust it again. Even if I decided to go ahead and use it, the only way I could ever know if it has any conflict with Comodo or Avira or any other anti-malware protection I decide to install, like it did with Spyware Terminator, would be when my system registry gets destroyed again. It's going to take me another 2 to 3 weeks of pain to get my system close to being the way it was before ASC destroyed it, so I don't see any valid reason for taking the chance to use ASC again. It really seemed like a nice app. What a shame.

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Hi badluckguy

Sorry for all your trouble.

Curious that it should happen after having read the manual.

Do you have any idea as to why?

Comodo - was that with a fully updated database definition?

Comodo had a false positive a while ago.

Did you submit the report to VirusTotal?

The heuristic scanning can often generate false positives

Hope you get everything up and running!

Good luck

Cheers

solbjerg

 

Well, I'm in the process of restoring my hard drive from scratch after ASC destroyed my system registry. As you can see, I've gotten far enough along that I can now get on the Internet with a browser. One of my first orders of business after reloading my operating system and applying a gazillion Microsoft updates was to download and install firewall and anti-virus protection. Before ASC wrecked my system, ZoneAlarm Free was my firewall and AVG Free was my anti-virus. After doing some research, I decided to go with Comodo as my firewall and Avira AntiVir as my anti-virus. After installing Comodo, it ran a one-time only anti-virus scan. The results of that scan indicated that the ASC installer, which I had downloaded from my backup along with other stuff before I installed Comodo, is malware. Of all the software I downloaded, only ASC was flagged as malware. I was going to reinstall ASC, but after what it did to my system registry combined with it being flagged as malware by Comodo, I can't see any reason whatsoever to trust it again. Even if I decided to go ahead and use it, the only way I could ever know if it has any conflict with Comodo or Avira or any other anti-malware protection I decide to install, like it did with Spyware Terminator, would be when my system registry gets destroyed again. It's going to take me another 2 to 3 weeks of pain to get my system close to being the way it was before ASC destroyed it, so I don't see any valid reason for taking the chance to use ASC again. It really seemed like a nice app. What a shame.
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Hi solbjerg,

 

I'm not exactly sure what you're referring to when you say, "Curious that it should happen after having read the manual. Do you have any idea as to why?" If you're referring to why the conflict between Advanced SystemCare (ASC) and Spyware Terminator caused ASC to delete critical system registry entries on my computer, I can only guess as to why that happened. I documented that guess in a previous post in this thread, but I'll restate it here. Simply stated, I believe that my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocked my initial ASC scan's access to many of my computer files, some of which were probably operating system files, and that if the scan was not able to access those files, then my system registry entries for those files were falsely marked to be "fixed" by ASC and were deleted by the ASC repair process.

 

As for Comodo, it appeared that it downloaded a fully updated virus database definition file before it ran the one-time only virus scan immediately before it installed the firewall. I did not submit a report to VirusTotal because I am not familiar with it.

 

 

Hi badluckguy

Sorry for all your trouble.

Curious that it should happen after having read the manual.

Do you have any idea as to why?

Comodo - was that with a fully updated database definition?

Comodo had a false positive a while ago.

Did you submit the report to VirusTotal?

The heuristic scanning can often generate false positives

Hope you get everything up and running!

Good luck

Cheers

solbjerg

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This will probably be my last post to this thread, which I started, because there was no question that Advanced SystemCare (ASC) destroyed my system registry and that there was nothing I could do about it other than reformat my hard drive, reload my operating system, and restore all my data and third party software. If ASC is going to delete system registry entries that prevent Windows System Restore from working, even in Safe Mode, then what good is it? The scary thing about ASC is that you don't know what damage and how much damage it has done to your system registry until functions and applications on your computer start failing. My conclusion about ASC is that it does not play nice with other software, that no one seems to know what software other than Spyware Terminator causes ASC to delete critical system registry entries, and that there are no guarantees or assurances that ASC won't do the same thing again, even if Spyware Terminator is not installed.

 

I did notice that my computer started behaving strangely when I was using ASC's predecessor, Advanced WindowsCare (AWC). One strange thing that happened once after doing an AWC scan and repair was that my Open Office Document icon in Start>All Programs changed, and clicking on that icon would fail to open the Open Office Document window. I didn't make the connection at the time that AWC had anything to do with that problem, but in retrospect I remember the problem occurred shortly after doing an AWC scan and repair. AWC also disabled my InstallShield Update Manager, which also failed to execute when I would click on its icon. It had been working every week up until I started using AWC, but once again I didn't make the connection at the time. These problems were resolved after I restored my hard drive.

 

I do know for sure it was ASC that so badly damaged my system registry that it effectively disabled Windows System Restore, Add/Remove Programs, and Internet Explorer on my computer and also some of my third party software like Secunia PSI and RealPlayer. I also know for sure that ASC conflicts with Spyware Terminator, but does anyone know for sure that it doesn't conflict with firewall products such as COMODO and ZoneAlarm; anti-virus products such as Avira AntiVir Personal and AVG Anti-Virus; anti-spyware products such as Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware, SUPERAntiSpyware, and Spybot - Search & Destroy; or any other firewall, anti-virus, and anti-spyware products? What such software products, if any, has ASC been thoroughly tested against?

 

This is serious stuff, so anyone having problems similar to mine should look to ASC as the culprit. For all the good that ASC may do, it has the potential and capability of doing disproportionately more harm. It's just a matter of time before more people experience the downside of ASC like I experienced.

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Creating Your Own Bad Luck

 

Wow-I feel bad for all of your trouble.But I do know this-I ran ASC and Spyware Terminater together for over two months with absolutely no problems what so ever.The conditions you describe lead me to believe that you were infected with some nasties that ST and any other security you were using did not detect.Every condition that you so painstaking described points to infection.I find the claim that ASC corrupted or destroyed your registry both baseless and absurd.Especially after you mentioned that your PC "started acting a little weird" while using AWC(this is where you first became infected).I think it's time you stop blaming ASC and look into another security utility(like Avira) after you reinstall your OS-something you could have easily accomplished in less time than it took you categorically lay blame to ASC for your troubles.Sorry,but that's exactly the way I see it,and I've dealt with enough problems like yours to know what I'm talking about.

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Go to Start>Run, and then type regedit and wait until the registry editor pops up.

 

Click Edit>Find and then search the name of the debugger. Then search, and delete the registry entries with the name of the program (right click delete). Press F3 and delete some m0ar entries until it doesn't find it anymore. Kthxbai.

 

P.S Also, try going to Run and type "msconfig". Go to startup and try to find the debugger, and if it's there, uncheck the box and click apply, naow restart.

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Not convinced it was an infection

 

Because my PC was so crippled immediately after I installed ASC 3.3.2 on Jun 23 and ran the initial scan and repair, I had no choice but to reformat my hard drive and reinstall my OS, which I did on July 1 with the help of Dell Tech Support. Before I installed ASC, Windows System Restore, Add/Remove Programs, Internet Explorer, Secunia PSI, and RealPlayer were all working perfectly. That was not the case after I ran the ASC scan and repair. I've never had PC problems remotely like this until I ran the ASC scan and repair. I do not believe it's a coincidence that my problems started immediately after I ran the ASC scan and repair.

 

I also do not believe it was an infection that caused my problems. I use Firefox as my browser almost exclusively, and I use Firefox extensions WOT, Adblock Plus, and NoScript to protect my browsing. I only surf web sites I know to be safe. I rarely receive e-mails from unknown sources, and I never open them when I receive them. I've always used a firewall -- ZoneAlarm before July 1, Comodo since July 1 -- and an anti-virus product -- AVG before July 1, Avira AntiVir since July 1. I run virus scans regularly. I use Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware, SUPERAntiSpyware, Spyware Terminator, Spybot - Search & Destroy, SpywareBlaster, SpywareGuard, Windows Defender, ThreatFire, F-Secure BlackLight Rootkit Eliminator, Trend Micro RootkitBuster, Trend Micro CWShredder, Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer, and Belarc Advisor. I keep all my software up to date. I haven't had a PC infection in years. I've always been very paranoid about my PC's safety, so I highly doubt I had an infection.

 

As I stated in my original post to start this thread, my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocked the initial ASC scan's access to dozens upon dozens of my computer files. I then asked in the post if the scan was not able to access those files, is it possible that registry entries were falsely marked by ASC to be fixed? I never received an answer to that question.

 

I believe the coincidences, including Spyware Terminator blocking ASC's access to system files, and all of my PC safeguards points to ASC, not infection, as the culprit. So, why can't it possibly be ASC that corrupted my system registry? I'm not a computer geek, but why is it baseless and absurd that ASC caused my problems?

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Hi badluckguy

Do you really have 10-15 anti-spyware running at the same time? Perhaps even automatically?

How many anti-virus programs do you have running at the same time?

Hopefully you go with one firewall at a time? :-)

Did you just use the button Care when you ran the first scan in ASC?

Without having read the manual or Online Help for IObit Software ?

 

Did you check all your "problems" during the scan before clicking repair?

Did you submit the results of Security Analyzer to a HijackThis forum? before clicking repair?

 

It is very unlikely that ASC is responsible for your trouble, after all around 30 million people use it without experiencing the trouble you report.

 

I think you run too many security applications, especially if they all run automatically.

 

Cheers

solbjerg

 

Because my PC was so crippled immediately after I installed ASC 3.3.2 on Jun 23 and ran the initial scan and repair, I had no choice but to reformat my hard drive and reinstall my OS, which I did on July 1 with the help of Dell Tech Support. Before I installed ASC, Windows System Restore, Add/Remove Programs, Internet Explorer, Secunia PSI, and RealPlayer were all working perfectly. That was not the case after I ran the ASC scan and repair. I've never had PC problems remotely like this until I ran the ASC scan and repair. I do not believe it's a coincidence that my problems started immediately after I ran the ASC scan and repair.

 

I also do not believe it was an infection that caused my problems. I use Firefox as my browser almost exclusively, and I use Firefox extensions WOT, Adblock Plus, and NoScript to protect my browsing. I only surf web sites I know to be safe. I rarely receive e-mails from unknown sources, and I never open them when I receive them. I've always used a firewall -- ZoneAlarm before July 1, Comodo since July 1 -- and an anti-virus product -- AVG before July 1, Avira AntiVir since July 1. I run virus scans regularly. I use Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware, SUPERAntiSpyware, Spyware Terminator, Spybot - Search & Destroy, SpywareBlaster, SpywareGuard, Windows Defender, ThreatFire, F-Secure BlackLight Rootkit Eliminator, Trend Micro RootkitBuster, Trend Micro CWShredder, Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer, and Belarc Advisor. I keep all my software up to date. I haven't had a PC infection in years. I've always been very paranoid about my PC's safety, so I highly doubt I had an infection.

 

As I stated in my original post to start this thread, my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocked the initial ASC scan's access to dozens upon dozens of my computer files. I then asked in the post if the scan was not able to access those files, is it possible that registry entries were falsely marked by ASC to be fixed? I never received an answer to that question.

 

I believe the coincidences, including Spyware Terminator blocking ASC's access to system files, and all of my PC safeguards points to ASC, not infection, as the culprit. So, why can't it possibly be ASC that corrupted my system registry? I'm not a computer geek, but why is it baseless and absurd that ASC caused my problems?

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Hi solbjerg,

 

The anti-spyware software I listed in my previous post was what was installed on my PC at the time of my problem. All were on-demand except for Spyware Terminator, Spybot - Search & Destroy, SpywareGuard, ThreatFire, and Trend Micro RUBotted (which I had forgot to list). Since restoring my hard drive, I no longer use SpywareGuard and ThreatFire, and I've made Spyware Terminator and Spybot - Search & Destroy on-demand only, which means that all of my currently installed anti-spyware is on-demand except for Trend Micro RUBotted. I was running only one firewall product (ZoneAlarm Free Edition) and one anti-virus product (AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition) at the time of my problem. I am now using Comodo instead of ZoneAlarm as my firewall and Avira AntiVir instead of AVG as my anti-virus since restoring my hard drive.

 

Since I didn't reinstall ASC after I restored my hard drive and I don't intend on installing it ever again, I don't remember anything about a Care button when I ran the first ASC scan. What I do remember is that immediately after installing ASC, it prompted me to let it create a restore point, which I allowed it to do, after which the first ASC scan was automatically launched. After ASC finished its scan, I saved a report, through ASC, of the system registry entries to be fixed. I still have that report. Before I clicked on the ASC Repair button, I checked all my "problems" as best I could. I reviewed the files to be deleted and the registry entries to be fixed. I am not a PC expert, so I could not relate to anything the registry entries to be fixed, but I trusted ASC, so I clicked on the ASC Repair button.

 

Almost immediately after clicking on the ASC Repair button, the first problem occurred, which was the script debugger window popping up for my Secunia PSI. As I said in prior posts in this thread, after discovering more problems I eventually tried doing a System Restore, first with the restore point I created before I installed ASC and then with a much older restore point. I even tried doing a System Restore with those restore points in Safe Mode. All attempts to restore my PC resulted in System Restore issuing a message informing me that it could not do the restore because nothing had changed on my system

 

I didn't read the ASC manual because I didn't know there was one. I had had previous experience using AWC, so when I installed ASC, it didn't look that much different.

 

I didn't use Online Help for IObit Software; I went right to IObit.Com Forums > Advanced SystemCare > General Discussion because I knew I had a major problem.

 

I don't know what the Security Analyzer is, but if its results have to be submitted to a HijackThis forum every time an ASC scan is run but before the ASC repair is run, then that becomes a nuisance. Is that really what has to be done before any ASC repair is run? Is that how ASC is supposed to be used, even by novice PC users?

 

If expert knowledge of PCs, especially of having advanced understanding of the system registry, is a prerequisite to using ASC, then I must have missed seeing that prerequisite.

 

One more thing. Can someone please answer the following question regarding the Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocking my initial ASC scan's access to dozens upon dozens of my computer files: If the scan was not able to access those files, is it possible that system registry entries were falsely marked by ASC to be fixed? I have already asked this question twice in this thread without receiving an answer, let alone any type of response.

 

Hi badluckguy

Do you really have 10-15 anti-spyware running at the same time? Perhaps even automatically?

How many anti-virus programs do you have running at the same time?

Hopefully you go with one firewall at a time? :-)

Did you just use the button Care when you ran the first scan in ASC?

Without having read the manual or Online Help for IObit Software ?

 

Did you check all your "problems" during the scan before clicking repair?

Did you submit the results of Security Analyzer to a HijackThis forum? before clicking repair?

 

It is very unlikely that ASC is responsible for your trouble, after all around 30 million people use it without experiencing the trouble you report.

 

I think you run too many security applications, especially if they all run automatically.

 

Cheers

solbjerg

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Hi badluckguy

In the welcoming window right after the install it is recommended that security applications are closed down during a cleaning operation by ASC.

But I suppose you didn't notice this.

The security analysis that is recommended being checked by a hiJackThis forum will not come up again if you accept the items listed there are ok, at least until a new item is added/hiJacked, this will have to be checked too and either cleaned or accepted according to the hijackthis report.

But this generally doesn't happen very often after the initial scan and accept of the items listed.

The system analyze is working mostly to achieve the safest settings and to save resources and you have to exclude those from cleaning that you do not want changed. This was also the case in AWC.

Almost all of this is described in the manual and in Online Help for IObit software - which is the post called Usage of IObit Product located in the Lounge section of the forum.

Finally some of the problems could have come from not doing a clean install, which I would have recommended because you were going from AWC to ASC as I hear you.

Well I hope you do not run into too many problems between the rest of your security applications.

Cheers

splbjerg

 

 

Hi solbjerg,

 

The anti-spyware software I listed in my previous post was what was installed on my PC at the time of my problem. All were on-demand except for Spyware Terminator, Spybot - Search & Destroy, SpywareGuard, ThreatFire, and Trend Micro RUBotted (which I had forgot to list). Since restoring my hard drive, I no longer use SpywareGuard and ThreatFire, and I've made Spyware Terminator and Spybot - Search & Destroy on-demand only, which means that all of my currently installed anti-spyware is on-demand except for Trend Micro RUBotted. I was running only one firewall product (ZoneAlarm Free Edition) and one anti-virus product (AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition) at the time of my problem. I am now using Comodo instead of ZoneAlarm as my firewall and Avira AntiVir instead of AVG as my anti-virus since restoring my hard drive.

 

Since I didn't reinstall ASC after I restored my hard drive and I don't intend on installing it ever again, I don't remember anything about a Care button when I ran the first ASC scan. What I do remember is that immediately after installing ASC, it prompted me to let it create a restore point, which I allowed it to do, after which the first ASC scan was automatically launched. After ASC finished its scan, I saved a report, through ASC, of the system registry entries to be fixed. I still have that report. Before I clicked on the ASC Repair button, I checked all my "problems" as best I could. I reviewed the files to be deleted and the registry entries to be fixed. I am not a PC expert, so I could not relate to anything the registry entries to be fixed, but I trusted ASC, so I clicked on the ASC Repair button.

 

Almost immediately after clicking on the ASC Repair button, the first problem occurred, which was the script debugger window popping up for my Secunia PSI. As I said in prior posts in this thread, after discovering more problems I eventually tried doing a System Restore, first with the restore point I created before I installed ASC and then with a much older restore point. I even tried doing a System Restore with those restore points in Safe Mode. All attempts to restore my PC resulted in System Restore issuing a message informing me that it could not do the restore because nothing had changed on my system

 

I didn't read the ASC manual because I didn't know there was one. I had had previous experience using AWC, so when I installed ASC, it didn't look that much different.

 

I didn't use Online Help for IObit Software; I went right to IObit.Com Forums > Advanced SystemCare > General Discussion because I knew I had a major problem.

 

I don't know what the Security Analyzer is, but if its results have to be submitted to a HijackThis forum every time an ASC scan is run but before the ASC repair is run, then that becomes a nuisance. Is that really what has to be done before any ASC repair is run? Is that how ASC is supposed to be used, even by novice PC users?

 

If expert knowledge of PCs, especially of having advanced understanding of the system registry, is a prerequisite to using ASC, then I must have missed seeing that prerequisite.

 

One more thing. Can someone please answer the following question regarding the Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield blocking my initial ASC scan's access to dozens upon dozens of my computer files: If the scan was not able to access those files, is it possible that system registry entries were falsely marked by ASC to be fixed? I have already asked this question twice in this thread without receiving an answer, let alone any type of response.

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Hi solbjerg,

 

I am always careful about reading and following all recommendations displayed by installers before and after installing any software. If there was a welcoming window right after I installed ASC recommending that security applications be closed down during a cleaning operation by ASC, I didn't see it. If there really is such a recommendation, it's not a good idea to shut down firewall and anti-virus security even for short periods of time. This alone makes ASC unattractive software.

 

I also don't remember seeing a recommendation that a HijackThis security analysis be done via the HijackThis forum before doing an ASC cleaning operation. I guess this means that an ASC user always has to know what system registry entries are safe to clean. If that's the case, that seems to me like an unnecessary pain in the butt and leaves open too big of a possibility that critical registry entries will get deleted by mistake. It also means putting complete trust in the HijackThis forum.

 

I saw no recommendation for doing a clean uninstall of AWC when I installed ASC. My install of ASC went smoothly, including being notified by the ASC installer that it would uninstall AWC before installing ASC and that the uninstall of AWC was successful.

 

It sounds to me that an ASC user has to do a lot of studying and preparation to use ASC, especially the cleaning operation, and even then there is no guarantee or assurance that something critical won't get deleted because, in the end, ASC leaves it up to the user to determine what gets deleted and what doesn't. This is not software a PC novice should be using.

 

You say there are around 30 million people using ASC without experiencing the trouble with it I have reported. I can't verify that number, but I'll take your word for it. Maybe the vast majority of those people are novices. Maybe they are having the same problems I have reported but have not been able to readily attribute those problems to ASC and/or have not reported them to ASC. Maybe they are having similar or different problems but don't recognize or accept them as problems. Maybe they just don't know how to report problems or don't want to be bothered reporting problems. There are many reasons why problems may not have been reported. Not reporting problems does not mean they don't exist.

 

Not that it matters much to me anymore, but I still haven't received an answer to the question that if my initial ASC scan was not able to access dozens and dozens of files blocked by my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield, is it possible that system registry entries on my PC were falsely marked by ASC to be fixed?

 

Hi badluckguy

In the welcoming window right after the install it is recommended that security applications are closed down during a cleaning operation by ASC.

But I suppose you didn't notice this.

The security analysis that is recommended being checked by a hiJackThis forum will not come up again if you accept the items listed there are ok, at least until a new item is added/hiJacked, this will have to be checked too and either cleaned or accepted according to the hijackthis report.

But this generally doesn't happen very often after the initial scan and accept of the items listed.

The system analyze is working mostly to achieve the safest settings and to save resources and you have to exclude those from cleaning that you do not want changed. This was also the case in AWC.

Almost all of this is described in the manual and in Online Help for IObit software - which is the post called Usage of IObit Product located in the Lounge section of the forum.

Finally some of the problems could have come from not doing a clean install, which I would have recommended because you were going from AWC to ASC as I hear you.

Well I hope you do not run into too many problems between the rest of your security applications.

Cheers

splbjerg

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Hi badluckguy

You may not have seen it - but it's there.

Also the program comes with a manual usually easiest path Start/programs/Advanced Systems care/manual

Firewall doesn't have to be shut down it isn't even recommended

Usually you do not have to shut down anti-virus either, but with all those other security programs running automatically it is like taking a chance.

All those files trying to access the same files on the computer at some point or another, - my guess is that it could easily lead to some mix-up.

The reason that it is up to the users to configure the program is that users have different preferences. (some want to use as few resources as possible - others don't, some would like to have as strict security and internet settings as possible - others don't, and so on)

Maybe you are right that the vast majority are novices (I'm not so sure about that though), but at least the vast majority of them has read the manual then - if we go by reported problems. If just 1% of the users takes the trouble to report their problems to the forum it would mean 300000 posts from users with problems.

We do not se that, - perhaps a hundred-part of 1% (1 - Alt+8241) and the vast majority of those are not severe problems.

 

It is more probable the the files blocked by your Spyware Terminator is the culprit. ASC does not delete necessary system files.

(If it did the percentage of reported problem would be close to 100% of the users I'll wager)

Cheers

solbjerg

 

edit: I just saw that Tim Zue said that there were over 10 Mill. users of ASC, so my number must have come from the users of All IObit's products, sorry!

Doesn't change the essence of the argument though :-)

 

 

Hi solbjerg,

 

I am always careful about reading and following all recommendations displayed by installers before and after installing any software. If there was a welcoming window right after I installed ASC recommending that security applications be closed down during a cleaning operation by ASC, I didn't see it. If there really is such a recommendation, it's not a good idea to shut down firewall and anti-virus security even for short periods of time. This alone makes ASC unattractive software.

 

I also don't remember seeing a recommendation that a HijackThis security analysis be done via the HijackThis forum before doing an ASC cleaning operation. I guess this means that an ASC user always has to know what system registry entries are safe to clean. If that's the case, that seems to me like an unnecessary pain in the butt and leaves open too big of a possibility that critical registry entries will get deleted by mistake. It also means putting complete trust in the HijackThis forum.

 

I saw no recommendation for doing a clean uninstall of AWC when I installed ASC. My install of ASC went smoothly, including being notified by the ASC installer that it would uninstall AWC before installing ASC and that the uninstall of AWC was successful.

 

It sounds to me that an ASC user has to do a lot of studying and preparation to use ASC, especially the cleaning operation, and even then there is no guarantee or assurance that something critical won't get deleted because, in the end, ASC leaves it up to the user to determine what gets deleted and what doesn't. This is not software a PC novice should be using.

 

You say there are around 30 million people using ASC without experiencing the trouble with it I have reported. I can't verify that number, but I'll take your word for it. Maybe the vast majority of those people are novices. Maybe they are having the same problems I have reported but have not been able to readily attribute those problems to ASC and/or have not reported them to ASC. Maybe they are having similar or different problems but don't recognize or accept them as problems. Maybe they just don't know how to report problems or don't want to be bothered reporting problems. There are many reasons why problems may not have been reported. Not reporting problems does not mean they don't exist.

 

Not that it matters much to me anymore, but I still haven't received an answer to the question that if my initial ASC scan was not able to access dozens and dozens of files blocked by my Spyware Terminator Real-Time Shield, is it possible that system registry entries on my PC were falsely marked by ASC to be fixed?

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Hi solbjerg,

 

Based on your argument, one or both of the following is true:

 

1) The vast majority of the 10 million users of ASC are able to determine exactly what registry entries should and should not be deleted.

 

2) ASC never deletes critical registry entries.

 

Part of IObit's description of Advanced SystemCare Free on download.cnet.com is as follows:

 

"Advanced SystemCare Free is a comprehensive PC care utility that takes a one-click approach to help protect, repair, and optimize your computer. It provides an all-in-one and super convenient solution for PC maintenance and protection. All work will be done with 1 click and 1 minute."

 

There's no mention that ASC is not for novices or that advanced PC skills or extensive knowledge of the system registry is required to use ASC, only the ability to point and click. Sounds to me like no thinking is necessary to use ASC. I doubt that's really true.

 

Even the beginning of the download.cnet.com editor's review of ASC makes it sound like a utility for novices, or at least that no expertise is needed to use it:

 

"This utility offers a one-stop-shop for cleaning and maintaining your computer for better overall system performance. The interface is very simple, featuring only a few buttons, which makes it easy to get down to cleaning immediately (in fact, it automatically runs on start-up) and doesn't confuse you with multiple steps."

 

Further on in the review, the download.cnet.com editor implies that ASC can be trusted, but some user reviews of ASC aren't so kind. One user review of ASC on the download.cnet.com download page for ASC states that he had to perform a System Restore on his XP system from a restore point he created before running ASC because his IE 8 web pages didn't appear properly after running ASC. He said the System Restore fixed the problem. A second user wrote in his review that ASC made his system crash. A third user wrote that it destroyed his media player's ability to play .asx files and that novices should stay clear of this dangerous software. I'm willing to bet that these three users didn't post their problems in the IObit forum. I'm also willing to bet that at least some of the positive reviews are from users who at the time of their reviews hadn't yet experienced problems caused by ASC or are unable or unwilling to recognize or accept that ASC caused problems on their PCs. There are other negative user reviews of ASC on download.cnet.com, but I just wanted to mention a few.

 

I'd like to reinstall ASC to see if there really is a welcoming window right after the install recommending that security applications be shut down during a cleaning operation by ASC, to see if and where ASC recommends that a HijackThis security analysis be done via the HijackThis forum before doing the initial ASC cleaning operation (I assume this includes system registry entries), to see if there is any way to determine if HijackThis and the HijackThis forum is needed before cleaning operations after subsequent ASC scans, to see what the ASC configuration preferences are and if they matter to the safety and trustworthiness of cleaning operations, to look for and read the ASC manual, to read the Online Help for IObit software post for ASC, to see if there is any mention in the manual or the online help post that an uninstall of AWC should be done before doing a clean install of ASC and what problems could occur if this is not done (the ASC installer definitely didn't mention anything about this), to see if there is any recommendation anywhere by ASC to read the manual first before performing any ASC operation (even though ASC automatically launches the initial scan), and to see what happens with an ASC clean operation without the interference of Spyware Terminator, but I can't think of one good reason why I should take the chance.

 

Hi badluckguy

You may not have seen it - but it's there.

Also the program comes with a manual usually easiest path Start/programs/Advanced Systems care/manual

Firewall doesn't have to be shut down it isn't even recommended

Usually you do not have to shut down anti-virus either, but with all those other security programs running automatically it is like taking a chance.

All those files trying to access the same files on the computer at some point or another, - my guess is that it could easily lead to some mix-up.

The reason that it is up to the users to configure the program is that users have different preferences. (some want to use as few resources as possible - others don't, some would like to have as strict security and internet settings as possible - others don't, and so on)

Maybe you are right that the vast majority are novices (I'm not so sure about that though), but at least the vast majority of them has read the manual then - if we go by reported problems. If just 1% of the users takes the trouble to report their problems to the forum it would mean 300000 posts from users with problems.

We do not se that, - perhaps a hundred-part of 1% (1 - Alt+8241) and the vast majority of those are not severe problems.

 

It is more probable the the files blocked by your Spyware Terminator is the culprit. ASC does not delete necessary system files.

(If it did the percentage of reported problem would be close to 100% of the users I'll wager)

Cheers

solbjerg

 

edit: I just saw that Tim Zue said that there were over 10 Mill. users of ASC, so my number must have come from the users of All IObit's products, sorry!

Doesn't change the essence of the argument though :-)

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Hi badluckguy

Ok, good luck, guy! :-)

Please read

Online Help for IObit Software

and the Manual !!

Take a look at this too

http://forums.iobit.com/showpost.php?p=4352&postcount=1 :-)

 

Are you arguing that the majority of users have problems with ASC??

That is ludicrous!

In my opinion there are far more pro's than con's in IObit products.

It is true that the advertising text isn't quite true, (but that's advertising) after the first run or two, where you configure the program and the settings and place possible "problems" in the Ignore List, you can use the Care button - and then it practically is a one-click-solution.

 

Cheers

solbjerg

p.s. Are you a lawyer or studying to become one? :-)

 

 

 

Hi solbjerg,

 

Based on your argument, one or both of the following is true:

 

1) The vast majority of the 10 million users of ASC are able to determine exactly what registry entries should and should not be deleted.

 

2) ASC never deletes critical registry entries.

 

Part of IObit's description of Advanced SystemCare Free on download.cnet.com is as follows:

 

"Advanced SystemCare Free is a comprehensive PC care utility that takes a one-click approach to help protect, repair, and optimize your computer. It provides an all-in-one and super convenient solution for PC maintenance and protection. All work will be done with 1 click and 1 minute."

 

There's no mention that ASC is not for novices or that advanced PC skills or extensive knowledge of the system registry is required to use ASC, only the ability to point and click. Sounds to me like no thinking is necessary to use ASC. I doubt that's really true.

 

Even the beginning of the download.cnet.com editor's review of ASC makes it sound like a utility for novices, or at least that no expertise is needed to use it:

 

"This utility offers a one-stop-shop for cleaning and maintaining your computer for better overall system performance. The interface is very simple, featuring only a few buttons, which makes it easy to get down to cleaning immediately (in fact, it automatically runs on start-up) and doesn't confuse you with multiple steps."

 

Further on in the review, the download.cnet.com editor implies that ASC can be trusted, but some user reviews of ASC aren't so kind. One user review of ASC on the download.cnet.com download page for ASC states that he had to perform a System Restore on his XP system from a restore point he created before running ASC because his IE 8 web pages didn't appear properly after running ASC. He said the System Restore fixed the problem. A second user wrote in his review that ASC made his system crash. A third user wrote that it destroyed his media player's ability to play .asx files and that novices should stay clear of this dangerous software. I'm willing to bet that these three users didn't post their problems in the IObit forum. I'm also willing to bet that at least some of the positive reviews are from users who at the time of their reviews hadn't yet experienced problems caused by ASC or are unable or unwilling to recognize or accept that ASC caused problems on their PCs. There are other negative user reviews of ASC on download.cnet.com, but I just wanted to mention a few.

 

I'd like to reinstall ASC to see if there really is a welcoming window right after the install recommending that security applications be shut down during a cleaning operation by ASC, to see if and where ASC recommends that a HijackThis security analysis be done via the HijackThis forum before doing the initial ASC cleaning operation (I assume this includes system registry entries), to see if there is any way to determine if HijackThis and the HijackThis forum is needed before cleaning operations after subsequent ASC scans, to see what the ASC configuration preferences are and if they matter to the safety and trustworthiness of cleaning operations, to look for and read the ASC manual, to read the Online Help for IObit software post for ASC, to see if there is any mention in the manual or the online help post that an uninstall of AWC should be done before doing a clean install of ASC and what problems could occur if this is not done (the ASC installer definitely didn't mention anything about this), to see if there is any recommendation anywhere by ASC to read the manual first before performing any ASC operation (even though ASC automatically launches the initial scan), and to see what happens with an ASC clean operation without the interference of Spyware Terminator, but I can't think of one good reason why I should take the chance.

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