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Is scareware needed?


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6 replies to this topic

#1 MickinPlymouthUK

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Posted 31 March 2011 - 11:02 PM

Hi,I'm Win XP Home and i keep seeing adverts around the net along the lines of- "Buy our Utility to get rid of the junk that accumulates and clogs up your computer".
Do we HAVE to have stuff like that?
For example if I run my free Adaware every week, surely that'll get rid of any junk won't it, or am I missing something?

Edit: Moved topic from XP to the more appropriate forum. ~ Animal

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#2 dc3

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Posted 31 March 2011 - 11:34 PM

Unfortunately, there are companies that will tactics like this to try to sell their product. Most of these are registry cleaners which the staff here at BC does not endorse the use of, in fact the following is the usuall warning that is posted in topics where members refer to the use of these programs.

Registry Cleaners

Bleeping Computer DOES NOT recommend the use of registry cleaners/optimizers for several reasons:

• Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications that can damage the registry by using aggressive cleaning routines and cause your computer to become unbootable.

• Not all registry cleaners are created equal. There are a number of them available but they do not all work entirely the same way. Each vendor uses different criteria as to what constitutes a "bad entry". One cleaner may find entries on your system that will not cause problems when removed, another may not find the same entries, and still another may want to remove entries required for a program to work.

• Not all registry cleaners create a backup of the registry before making changes. If the changes prevent the system from booting up, then there is no backup available to restore it in order to regain functionality. A backup of the registry is essential BEFORE making any changes to the registry.

• Improperly removing registry entries can hamper malware disinfection and make the removal process more difficult if your computer becomes infected. For example, removing malware related registry entries before the infection is properly identified can contribute to system instability and even make the malware undetectable to removal tools.

• The usefulness of cleaning the registry is highly overrated and can be dangerous. In most cases, using a cleaner to remove obsolete, invalid, and erroneous entries does not affect system performance but it can result in unpredictable results.

Unless you have a particular problem that requires a registry edit to correct it, I would suggest you leave the registry alone. Using registry cleaning tools unnecessarily or incorrectly could lead to disastrous effects on your operating system such as preventing it from ever starting again. For routine use, the benefits to your computer are negligible while the potential risks are great.

* Ed Bott's Webog: Why I don’t use registry cleaners
* Do I need a Registry Cleaner?


The Windows registry is a central repository (database) for storing configuration data, user settings and machine-dependent settings, and options for the operating system. It contains information and settings for all hardware, software, users, and preferences. Whenever a user makes changes to settings, file associations, system policies, or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in this repository. The registry is a crucial component because it is where Windows "remembers" all this information, how it works together, how Windows boots the system and what files it uses when it does. The registry is also a vulnerable subsystem, in that relatively small changes done incorrectly can render the system inoperable. For a more detailed explanation, read Understanding The Registry.

The usual periodic disk defragmenting and disk cleanup, deleting temporary files, scans with a good malware and antispyware will usually do what you need.

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#3 hamluis

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Posted 01 April 2011 - 06:15 AM

<<For example if I run my free Adaware every week, surely that'll get rid of any junk won't it, or am I missing something?>>

Ad-Aware has not been considered an effective protection program...for some time now, IMO.

There is NO one program...that provides the protection a system needs. The basic defense starts with a firewall and reliable AV program that is properly updated and used...and is supplemented by at least one program that effectively deals with some of the malware possibly missed/ignored by AV programs (spyware, adware).

SUPERAntiSpyware is a known reliable program of this type...but it sounds to me as if you really need to visit BC AV, Firewall, Privacy, Protection Forum.

Louis

#4 Eyesee

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Posted 01 April 2011 - 11:57 AM

If you click on the SPyware Removal tab at the top of this page you will see that there is a new bug almost every single day.

I quit using Ad Aware many years ago in favor of more effective tools like SuperAntiSpyware that Louis mentioned and MalwareBytes AntiMalware which many of us consider the best.
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#5 MickinPlymouthUK

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Posted 01 April 2011 - 09:39 PM

How does CCleaner fit into the grand scheme of things?
i've got it but there are dozens of option boxes to tick and I don't know where to begin so I haven't used it yet.

#6 quietman7

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Posted 01 April 2011 - 11:07 PM

While CCleaner is safe and useful for removing temporary and junk files, I do not recommend using the built-in registry cleaner unless you have a good understanding of the registry. In fact, I don't recommend using registry cleaners/optimizers for the reasons already cited by dc3.
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#7 frankp316

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Posted 02 April 2011 - 05:28 AM

How does CCleaner fit into the grand scheme of things?
i've got it but there are dozens of option boxes to tick and I don't know where to begin so I haven't used it yet.




The only thing I use CCleaner for is to automatically clear out junk files and the recycle bin each time I boot up. I learned to do this by checking out the tutorial at the Piriform website. You can do that too.




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