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Spybot's 'TeaTimer'. Necessary?


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9 replies to this topic

#1 Maieth (Rich)

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 11:15 AM

Hey folks.
Firstly, I hope this in the right place, apologies if I'm in the wrong ;)


SO, I had lots of fun and games with my computer last night after my AVG updated to the current version and instantly let me know about a whole cluster of viruses it had found.
I HOPE that problem's now been solved between running AVG's scan, a full scan on Spybot, and locking up a whole pile of nasties in their virus vaults.

However... My copy of spybot was also heavily outdated :thumbsup: SO I duly updated it and its definitions first, meaning a fresh installation of the software and the attached goodies. One such attached goody is the program 'TeaTimer', which now monitors everything i do, apparently. However, TeaTimer seems to be a bit of a resource hog and is now causing more problems though its memory usage than the virus were.

My question is... Do i need it? Does TeaTimer perform a unique function, or will my current AVG package (AVG anti-virus plus firewall, version 8.5.287) do the same jobs?
Concerned that I may have a conflict of software between these programs.

Thanks in advance for any help.

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#2 Papakid

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 11:37 AM

I'm sure you will get other opinions, but my short answer is no, it is not needed at all.

Why is a longer answer. It does not protect you in the same way that your antivirus does, but your antivirus should still protect you better so that TeaTimer's method is not needed.

TeaTimer monitors changes to your registry. It doesn't tell you if it is a normal and wanted registry modification or not. Therefore you have to have some knowledge of the registry in order to make informed decisions. In the past this has led to countless bad decisions and needless worry by those who aren't very technically inclined.

Besides that, changes to the registry won't be made by malware anyway unless it has entered the system enough to want to install itself. Your anti-virus and firewall protection should have prevented this in the first place. So the only way TeaTimer is useful is if your surfing habits are so bad that you are getting infected with brand new malware that your antivirus doesn't have definitions for yet.

In my opinion, Spybot itself is not needed either. SuperAntispyware and MBAM, among some others, along with a good antivirus, are much better tools for today's malware.

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#3 quietman7

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 12:49 PM

I fully agree with Papakid.

mvps.org is no longer recommending Spybot S&D or Ad-Aware due to poor testing results. See here - (scroll down and read under Freeware Antispyware Products).
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#4 tos226

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 01:41 PM

I agree as well. Teatimer - Not needed.
There is an additional issue - that of conflicts of TeaTimer with few firewalls that include HIPS or any registry watch, because they'll be fighting one another and slowing down Windows or making Windows unuseable.

If you really still want to use Spybot, do shut off TeaTimer, as I suspect your AV might be performing the same thing. I don't know AVG, so it's just a guess.

#5 Synetech

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 09:36 PM

I donít run TeaTimer normally. Instead, I run it now and then when I want to do an audit (usually when I suspect there may be something up). That way it does not give a performance hit, and I can still see if a change has been made that I donít like (or one that I do and update it to know). I also run it in the background if I intend to do something that has a good chance of causing trouble, eg testing a program that may be infectedóalthough I usually just do that stuff in a sandboxed VM instead.
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#6 Stang777

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 01:21 AM

While I do like Spybot for many of its tools and features, such as, immunizing the system, IE features, host file locking and startup entry control, I do not like its TeaTimer feature and will not use that. I also no longer use it for scanning for malware as I believe that other programs such as Malwarebytes and SuperAntiSpyware are much better for that.

Edited by Stang777, 24 April 2009 - 01:22 AM.


#7 Romeo29

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 07:15 AM

I agree Spybot SnD is not what it used to be few years ago. Use malwarebytes antimalware instead.

#8 Maieth (Rich)

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 08:54 AM

Thanks guys. I'll work on removing spybot and installing malwarebytes soon. going to need an external harddrive first, i filled up C :s
cheers

#9 tg1911

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 01:46 PM

Make sure to disable TeaTimer before trying to uninstall Spybot, or Spybot will not fully uninstall.
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#10 Synetech

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 03:07 PM

Better yet, donít uninstall SpyBot. It is not harmful, it is just less effective. Simply disable TeaTimer (Run SpyBot->Tools->Resident->Uncheck TeaTimer). You can use MalwareBytes or whatever else, and use SpyBot as well when needed. Thereís no problem with having numerous security apps if they are not all running concurrently (eg in the background). That is, you can keep lots and lots of apps and run their on-demand scanning when needed, especially since no one app is the be-all-end-all of security, but rather they all contribute functions that compliment each other.

Of course if you need the space, then thatís another thing. In fact, be careful about running out of space on your system drive because you would be surprised the random assortment of bizarre errors and crashes that can occur from simply being out of space. Worse is that the errors are miles away from indicating that as the problem (you can actually get BSODs that seem to indicate bad hardware when in fact itís just out of space). :thumbsup: Thatís why I often start by suggesting to check for disk space whereas many people start by suggesting to run a memory tester. (Hehe, this good debugging book I just finished reading would have helped me to learn to do that if I hadnít already. :flowers: )
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