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Safe Mode With Internet- Good For On-line Scans....?


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#1 1Bart

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 10:10 AM

I'm a big fan of doing any and all security related scans in safe mode.

Can you, should you, is it of any advantage to perform the various on-line scans in "Safe mode with internet access"? Perhaps sounds like a silly question but the idea just hit me and it does sound logical. Wondering if there were any pitfalls/negative aspects of doing such.




P. S. Are there any "new" on-line scans out or are they all considered new as they are updated on a regular basis?

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#2 Rocco5955

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 10:39 AM

When your Windohs PC is started in "safe" mode, it is started with a limited set of drivers, and should be used mainly to troubleshoot problems that may occur.
If you want REAL security, use a firewall and anti-virus software to protect your self. You might also consider an alternative browser to Internet Explorer.

Personally, I use Firefox, which is a memory hog, but more secure than IE. As far as firewall, I have a NAT firewall built in to my router, and use Comodo firewall software. For antivirus, I use AVG Free edition. The biggest thing that protects me is the NAT firewall built into my router, because my PC is not "seen" on the internet, and thereby not subject to attack. I use the software firewall to prevent programs from 'phoning home,' as the NAT firewall prevents traffic coming in, but not out. My router is a Linksys BEFSR41. This router has been a workhorse, and given me no problems in six years of continued use.

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#3 1Bart

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 10:46 AM

Indeed....All that you memtioned is right on the money.....And agreed with....Particularily the protection afforded to use of the router. Very much a great "tool" to have in our box of protections.

....But, I am soley questioning the use of safe mode with internet options while doing on-line "scans". Which is above and beyond your core/active security protections.

#4 Rocco5955

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 04:22 PM

I am not sure what kind of 'scans' you mean, but Windohs "safe mode" is a diagnostic mode: Here's the skinny on it from howitworks.com:

Safe Mode is a special way for Windows to load when there is a system-critical problem that interferes with the normal operation of Windows. The purpose of Safe Mode is to allow you to troubleshoot Windows and try to determine what is causing it to not function correctly. Once you have corrected the problem, then you can reboot and Windows will load normally.

There are several things that happen when Windows boots in Safe Mode that differ from a standard boot:


* Safe Mode does not run the autoexec.bat or config.sys files.
* Most device drivers are not loaded. A device driver is the software that Windows uses to interact with a piece of hardware, such as a printer or scanner.
* Instead of the normal graphics device driver, Safe Mode uses standard VGA graphics mode. This mode is supported by all Windows-compatible video cards.
* Himem.sys, which is normally loaded as part of the config.sys script, is loaded with the /testmem:on switch. This switch tells the computer to test the extended memory before continuing.
* Safe Mode checks the msdos.sys file for information on where to find the rest of the Windows files. If it finds the files, it proceeds to load Windows in Safe Mode with the command win /d:m. If it does not find the Windows files, it will run command.com to bring up a C: prompt.
* Windows boots using a batch file called system.cb instead of the standard system.ini file. This file loads the Virtual Device Drivers (VxDs) that Windows uses to communicate with the standard parts of the computer.
* Windows now loads the regular system.ini file plus win.ini and Registry settings. It skips the [Boot] (except for the shell and device lines) and [386Enh] sections of system.ini and does not load or run any programs listed in win.ini.
* The Windows desktop loads up in 16 colors and at a resolution of 640 x 480 with the words "Safe Mode" in each corner.

Safe Mode starts up automatically if Windows does not boot on the previous attempt. You can also invoke Safe Mode by pressing F5 or by pressing F8 and selecting it from the boot menu.

So what should you do if your computer boots to Safe Mode? First, try to determine what has changed on your system that could have caused Windows to fail to boot properly. If you have added any kind of hardware, go to the Control Panel and remove it and uninstall the software driver for that device. Then attempt a reboot. If Windows boots properly, you can be reasonably certain that there was some type of conflict with the device and try to resolve it.

Use this same method if you have loaded a new game or application sometime recently. Go to the Control Panel, click on Add/Remove Programs and remove the software. Try a reboot and hopefully you will get a normal Windows boot.

If the problem is definitely not new hardware or software, then you most likely have a corrupted Registry. In this case, you will quite likely have to perform a new installation of Windows to set things right.

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#5 boopme

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 07:01 PM

Hello 1Bart
Yes, you would receive the same benefit of running your Online Scan as running a regular scan from just safe mode.
Perhaps most viruses and spyware are living in memory. This is so it may have the capability to disable or prevent any virus and spyware protection from running.
You may find one or two that won't run but I know HouseCall,Panda Active scan, Eset and Bitdefender will run in Safe Mode with Networking.
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#6 IcedOut3

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 07:41 PM

:thumbsup: I don't even get the internet while on safe mode, it says "Disconnected"

#7 boopme

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 11:03 PM

Icedout please start your own thread in the future to ask a separate question answering 2 peoples issues in the same thread gets confusing.

Thank You
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#8 1Bart

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 04:34 AM

Rocco5955...Thanks a ton of ALL the great info. It gave many reasons why safe mode behaves as it does for which I had no knowledge of. It all really makes sence though...right. Really good to know though. TY

boopme....Ah-ha....So one DOES derive "benefit" from doing on-line scans in "safe w/networking" mode.....Very Good!!! You would have thought so though. Thanks for the confirmation.
Now I'll just have to see which scans will/won't function. Giga-Thanks!!!

#9 IcedOut3

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 04:55 AM

ohh no i wasn't asking any questions boompe LOL =D just stating my experience :thumbsup:

#10 boopme

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Posted 11 January 2008 - 10:18 AM

Sorry Icedout ,,I misunderstood,no harm done.

You're welcome 1Bart,glad to have helped.
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