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FastAgain PC Booster


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#1 cmptrgy

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 02:11 PM

Yesterday a friend called and told me the Windows Security Center reported that the Firewall and Automatic Updates were turned off. She has a Dell Dimension 3000 with XP SP3 & it has been running fine. I went to her house to see what had happened.

--- She subscribes to Newsmax newsletter and it turned out a link in their newsletter was the source of the problem.

 

Following is a snapshot of what happened

 

Her Newsmax newsletter included an ad that read “#1 Reason Your PC is Slow”

--- Clicking on the link that read “Click here to discover the free software” by Activeris

--- Which then brought up a FastAgain PC Booster website

--- The website includes Developed by Microsoft Partner Gold ISV on the right side which made her think Microsoft was letting her know it’s a good program

------ A little background here: Her & her husband think their computer runs slow compared to their neighbors computer

------ Well they are right but they are comparing their XP computer to a 2 year old Win7 64-bit computer

--- Anyway she clicked on the Download Now PC Cleaner and saw a recommendation to clean about 4,000 items or something like that. She clicked to download it but she quickly recognized whatever activity was going looked like trouble. Fortunately she was able to close out the download.

------ Personally I suspect she was lucky she could close out whatever activity was going on

--- After that the Windows Security Center then reported that the Firewall and Automatic Updates were turned off

 

So I went through the following actions

 

Ran Malwarebytes Free & it reported

--- Registry Data Items Detected: 3

--- HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Security Center|AntiVirusDisableNotify (PUM.Disabled.SecurityCenter) -> Bad: (1) Good: (0) -> Quarantined and repaired successfully

--- HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Security Center|FirewallDisableNotify (PUM.Disabled.SecurityCenter) -> Bad: (1) Good: (0) -> Quarantined and repaired successfully

--- HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Security Center|UpdatesDisableNotify (PUM.Disabled.SecurityCenter) -> Bad: (1) Good: (0) -> Quarantined and repaired successfully

 

Followup scan with Malwarebytes Free a 2nd time & Microsoft Security Essentials report 0 detections

--- Complete maintenance procedures were performed

--- I turned of System Restore and then re-enabled it as I believe that is good practice after a computer is cleaned out and running as it should

She tells me the computer ran fine the rest of yesterday and also today

 

My question is:

Is the Developed by Microsoft Partner Gold ISV misleading?

--- I don’t understand how a company can be a Microsoft Partner Gold ISV when in fact it can affect a computer that way

--- The FastAgain PC Booster website display is included at the end of this message so you can see what it looks like

 

I tried to paste the Print Screen picture of the FastAgain PC Booster website so you could see it but I couldn't figure out how to do so

--- I would appreciate it if someone can explain to me how to do that or lead me to the instructions on how to do so 



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#2 Broni

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 04:12 PM

I went to their site: fastagain_dot_activeris_dot_com/home/index.html and I don't see anything about Microsoft Partner Gold ISV

 

To create a screenshot...

 

With the window open that you want to take the Screenshot of, press the Print Screen/SysRq Key (next to F12 on the keyboard).
If you only want a screenshot of an active window within the main window press ALT+Print Screen/SysRq.

Now open Microsoft Paint by pressing Start > All Programs > Accessories > Paint.

This will open the Paint window.
On the menu bar at the top left, click on Edit and select Paste. This will put your screenshot in the Paint window.

Next, click File on the menu bar and click Save As.

In the drop-down box that appears, where it shows File name replace the highlighted Untitled with a suitable name.
In the Save as type box press the down arrow and select JPEG from the list of options.
In the Save in box at the top press the down arrow and navigate to Desktop and select it then press Save at the bottom.

Attach the file to your next reply.
 


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#3 noknojon

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 04:25 PM

I noted that I over-posted Broni, but complete these procedures also -

 

My question is:

Is the Developed by Microsoft Partner Gold ISV misleading? <<<< Yes, this careful but False Advertising -

Most of these "Speed Up My PC" companies always use similar False Advertising and need to be shut down.

 

Also have them download, Update and run a Full Scan with SUPERAntiSpyware Free to remove any Tracking Cookies they have left behind -

Please Copy /Paste the log back here -

 

Follow this with a scan by AdWare Cleaner and install it
Close all open programs and browsers as the program will reboot your computer
NOTE: You may need to disable any Antivirus while this runs. Information on A/V control (temp disable) HERE if needed
XP users Double click on the program to run it
Note: Vista and Windows users, Right click and select Run as Admin......
Select DELETE
Confirm each time with OK
Their computer will Reboot and a notepad text will show the results
You can find the logfile at C:\AdwCleaner[S1].txt as well.
Please post that back here -

 

Thank You -

Extra - In some areas of the forum, it is harder to post a Screen shot by default -


Edited by noknojon, 08 April 2013 - 04:31 PM.


#4 cmptrgy

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 08:07 AM

Unfortunately I am unable to attach the screenshot I took

--- I have both a JPEG & Word files but I can't attach either one

--- I cannot find the button for the default uploader (What button am I supposed to press?) 

--- I cannot find "enable the flash uploader" in my settings

--- My settings do show I have 0 attachments but that makes sense so far

--- I tried to use the Paste from Word icon but now I don't have access to it anymore

------ Since I hadn't pasted anything into my clipboard yet, I got some kind of message that said I'm blocked out now or something like that

------ I'd like to learn how to use the paste from word function, how do I get it back and learn how to use it?

An idea just came to my mind; I'll put my email address into my settings and if either of you or anyone else would like to see the FastAgain PC Booster snapshot I can send it to you if your email address is available

 

noknojon thank you for your advice. Unfortunately my friend doesn't want to bother which doesn't surprise me. They say their computer is running good and they don't want to touch anything



#5 Broni

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 05:14 PM

Upload the file(s) here: http://uploadmb.com/
Copy the link inside the Direct Link box and post it in your next reply.


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#6 cmptrgy

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 05:51 PM

Here is the FastAgain PC Booster.jpg file using the uploadmb

http://www.uploadmb.com/dw.php?id=1365546743

 

Although my friends computer runs fine now,  my concern is that the website includes Developed by Microsoft Partner Gold ISV on the right side which made her think Microsoft was letting her know it’s a good program and I'm trying to understand whether or not that is misleading advertisement 

 

Since the Windows Security Center reported that the Firewall and Automatic Updates were turned off and Malwarebytes reported some disabled registry settings for  Windows Security Center those are problems



#7 noknojon

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 07:43 PM

Quotes taken from Microsoft Partner Network Cost: How Much To Join the MPN -


The short answer? It depends. For most U.S. solution providers, the MPN (Microsoft Partner Network) costs between $0 and $5,260.
Gold ISV's do not have to have any MCP's (Microsoft Certified Professional) on staff, nor pass any sales tests.
Just have to pass Windows 7 / Windows Server 2008 R2 tests and make sure you have enough points to qualify.
Customer Satisfaction surveys are also required for Gold Partners.
Gold Competency can be purchased from M/soft for a yearly fee of about  $5,260 --
This usually depends on the company involved.
 

From a basic search, this means if you show one good result, or one reason to have a program, and Pay a yearly fee, you can claim that you are almost anything -

Many of these programs accept advertising on their sites that is never checked, and can be the cause of almost any "drive by" download - This includes minor infections and redirects to other sites -

 

You will also find this applies to many sites that claim to be certified by some Antivirus company.

They have their site checked once, then pay a yearly fee back to the "certified company" -



#8 Broni

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 09:14 PM

It definitely looks like false advertising...

 

p22003182.jpg


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#9 cmptrgy

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 06:22 AM

Thank you for your answers. I'm not in the computer business  but I like computers and I use my limited computer knowledge to volunteer at a non-profit organization and with family & friends when I can. Why am I bringing that up? Because this exercise has helped me to continue to mention to any one of them not to accept any recommendation advertised on the internet or email messages; even Microsoft without asking someone who is familiar with computers or their own computer guru. When someone doesn't want to listen to that message, they'll find out the hard way they should have listened. In my friends case, they were still insisting that it wasn't Microsoft's fault for their problem and all they wanted to do is speed up their computer.

But then I mentioned: the Windows Security Center is part of Microsofts system, why would they disable their own Windows Security Center if that ad was valid? Enough said. BTW I think BC is a fantastic resource for computer help

--- Finally their computer does run just fine now and I was proud to hear them say it's running much better than it has in a long time



#10 quietman7

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 06:50 AM


Let me add that FastAgain PC Booster is an optimizing tool with registry cleaning capability.

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

:step1: Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications that can damage the registry by using aggressive cleaning routines and cause your computer to become unbootable.

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.

:step2: 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. Further, some vendors who offer registry cleaners use deceptive advertisements and claims which are borderline scams. They may alert you to finding thousands of registry errors which can only be fixed to improve performance if you use or buy their product.

:step3: 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.

:step4: 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.

:step5: 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 specific 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.
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#11 cmptrgy

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 03:45 PM

I second "Bleeping Computer doesn't recommend the use of registry cleaners/optimizers"






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