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18.104.22.1683b Beta (Apr 17, 2013)
This is superb software—if you've ever read my other posts you'll know that for me this is the rarest of accolades.
This is the search utility that Microsoft should have included with Windows. When set to start at start-up time it seamlessly integrates with Windows, works in the background and is remarkably fast and flexible. Everything is particularly useful when you have large drives going on a million files or so—finding something is just a breeze.
I've used Everything for some years and this version excels even more. Incidentally, the latest version is 22.214.171.1244b.
5.5.4 (Apr 5, 2013)
Very handy, always useful. This time it found and fixed five invalid CODEC references on my laptop.
(I wonder if any of us will live long enough to ever see the CODEC bedlam achieve some modicum of order.)
0.3.0.17 (Apr 5, 2013)
Earlier, I gave a one-star review to crappy 'MovieSaver 3' which simply crashed upon install but here nothing could be more different than with this early 0.3x version of Advanced Onion Router--it worked first go with a minimum of fuss and tweaking.
Within moments I had Google via Firefox responding in foreign languages through it (having been 'transported' to distant fields).
Even though still in point-version, Advanced Onion Router is shaping up to be very classy software, and the clean, no-nonsense UI I find particularly appealing. I like the old familiar Tor but I reckon I'll be running with AOR before long.
Reckon the nerdy cognoscenti will be very happy with this OR front end.
3 (Apr 5, 2013)
This software did NOT install. After three install/uninstall attempts I gave up!!
1. It crashed with error messages.
2. Its attempts to call home on both install and uninstall provided no extra info except info about flogging another product.
Frankly, I'm pissed off with crappy software like this, trouble is there's just too much second-rate crap about but you don't know until you've tried it and wasted time.
I'll continue to use the Video Downloadhelper plugin with Firefox, at least it works most of the time.
1.17.03 (Oct 30, 2012)
This is an excellent set of utilities targeted at those who know what they are doing. That Nir Sofer has packaged them into a launcher adds to their convenience. I've used them regularly for ages.
If you do not understand why antivirus software targets NirLauncher and other legit utilities that modify/target security settings etc. then it's unlikely these utilities would even be useful to you. You could also read the website which also explains the reason.
BTW, some AV software correctly identifies NirLauncher as a potentially dangerous hack tool--not a virus. Many utilities are potentially very dangerous but are not viruses, format, fdisk, partition editors for instance.
1.17.03 (Feb 4, 2010 - 2:24 PM)
See my explanation in the general post list, it was supposed to be a reply to you (sorry).
1.17.03 (Feb 4, 2010 - 2:09 PM)
Right, most would agree with what you say. The issue is that we've let this IE/Windows shambles/security mess drag on for far too long and that those who report on technology issues have let us down by kowtowing to Microsoft for year after year, effectively they've not given us the true facts. There's always been some excuse such as this or that patch will fix it or the next version of IE will do so. However, that's never eventuated and the we've seen the same old security issues just keep marching on and on.
Fact is, even if there was an excuse 15 years ago for bad code (but it's not a view I subscribe to), then it ought to have been fixed back then. Microsoft has always gotten away with as little as it possibly could and the fact that it was let off the hook so regularly and so often that has cost us users very dearly both in security and financial terms.
Shame we can't all collectively sue Microsoft and get it to pay for the collective damages (as is the case with products in other industries).
1.17.03 (Feb 4, 2010 - 1:47 PM)
Defined as the best of class. Check the Wiki definition, second item, 'noun':
Apologies for the slang.
1.17.03 (Feb 4, 2010 - 1:39 PM)
Most posts are written in a hurry--certainly mine are, and on occasions it would be nice to go back and make what's written more cogent, perhaps so here. However, I stand by the thrust of what I've written.
You make reference to point 4, which is that 'MS should force non-genuine Windows to IE7 or 8', this adds to rather than detracts from my point. Initially, I'd included two quotes from the article but I deleted the second along with other comments because the post was too long. That second quote was from point 4.
The fundamental point at issue in point 4 is essentially the same, which is that the article implies or suggest an ongoing authoritarian control by a manufacturer over a product already released to the marketplace.
Any such action would raise serious issues:
1. In Western liberal democracies, when a purchaser buys a product--except where its use is controlled and monitored according to law as with weapons, munitions, nuclear materials etc.--the purchaser has control over that product [by the very virtue of the sale], he is free to do with the product whatever he wants (so long as it's legal). If he wants to put the Windows disks into a shredder (and I've done that before today), or whether he wants to install it on a computer is NO concern of the seller--here Microsoft. In law, it's none of Microsoft's business, nor should it be.
2. That Microsoft has an ongoing interest in a product once it is sold is just that--an ongoing interest--no more no less. Microsoft has no rights to tell the user what he can or can't do with the product, nor can Microsoft exercise any other rights of control over it, for example it cannot force changes to the product such as altering or patching the code etc. That commentators, as here, are suggesting that Microsoft be endowed with such powers smacks of totalitarianism and such notions should not be considered in a democracy for one second.
3. That somehow Microsoft still exercises control over the product's use after its sold because of its copyright is nonsense. Copyright only confers on Microsoft a right to have its work protected against unauthorized reproduction. This is a separate issue and has nothing to do with the use of the product per se.
4. If Joe Wilcox is suggesting that the law be changed to make an exception for software then this too would be unacceptable. Not only would it fundamentally undermine the free enterprise system so axiomatic to the American way of life, but also it would mean that software deployment and use would have to be tracked by the manufacturer. No only would the logistics be monumental but the privacy and security implications would be both horrendous and unacceptable.
5. 'Automatic Updates' is only acceptable because the user agrees to them. Forcing them on the user as a condition of sale would also be unacceptable for (a) it presupposes every user has access to the Internet which is not the case, and (b) if at anytime things were to go wrong then Microsoft could easily be sued under common law and thus would not want to expose itself in this way.
6. Moreover, privacy issues would raise themselves here too, thus exactly what 'Automatic Updates' did would have to be in the public domain (its source code published) and there'd have to be other changes too or governments and those sensitive to security issues etc. simply wouldn't use the product.
7. Theoretically, if Microsoft could enforce an alteration to Windows after its sale then complex issues arise about the exact nature of the product beforehand and afterward. After patching, its modus operandi will have changed and some users will perceive the product as no longer doing what it did when they purchased it. Moreover, any such scheme would also have to include legit users who are not using 'Automatic' Updates' and I can assure you there are many of these, me included. There's little doubt the lawsuits would come thick and fast.
Press Commentators and Microsoft
This present Internet Explorer 6 crisis exemplifies a longstanding problem for the long-suffering software user. For years, commentators have been in awe of Microsoft. They remind be of cult worshipers kowtowing to some almighty deity. Irrespective of any criticism they make about Microsoft, ultimately, over many years they have skirted around or ignored the key issues which are that Microsoft was negligent in security matters, and that Windows and IE6 had manufacturing faults and security issues which raise fundamental questions about 'fitness for purpose' of these products. Faults of this magnitude in products within any other product class other than software would have had them withdrawn from the market just on marketability issues alone let alone the lack of 'safety factor'.
Software reviewers in their reviews continually omit the aspect of merchantability. So bad and irresponsible has this reporting about Microsoft been over the years, that both governments and their agencies are now belatedly and loudly saying what the technical press should have said a decade or more ago.
Clearly, this longstanding love affair the press has had with Microsoft has cost us users many billions of dollars. By their underreporting of the problem not only has our security been compromised but a complete security industry has been built up around Windows and Internet Explorer which we users have had to pay for not to mention the millions of hours of user's time that have also gone into combating the problem.
For example, both Internet Explorer and Windows Explorer are built into Windows and CANNOT BE REMOVED without crippling it. Microsoft blatantly and deliberately did this to avoid competition and gain market share for IE. That an 'Operating System', which in those days meant a 'Disk Operating System', was extended to an Internet Operating System and that it wasn't optional for users to fully decouple the Internet function was hardly criticized by the press at all, any criticism was just a by-line. In fact, at the time many of the press warmly welcomed the integration of IE into the O/S even though it was obvious to Blind Freddy that there were all sorts of difficulties and ramifications with this approach. And that Microsoft had an almost total monopoly further highlighted the press's unprofessional reporting of the problem.
That there was no vehement or relentless outcry from the press and that it was not vociferous enough in pursuing something that was obviously wrong with Windows is the reason we are in horrible predicament now. Reason went out the window as cult Microsoft had unusual influence over otherwise rational individuals. That the press--who ought to have known better--did not go for Microsoft's jugular also meant that neither did the public. Thus, there were few critics left to show up the problem, and ultimately, as the pressure from citizens was at best moderate; governments vacillated and effectively did nothing to protect the consumer.
Today, in this present crisis, we are still left with an Internet Explorer 6 that cannot be uninstalled or fully decoupled from Windows. Had the press exercised responsibility early on, campaigned for a better deal for users, and Microsoft forced to properly decouple Internet Explorer from Windows, then now it would be a simple matter of just uninstalling IE6 (and installing something more secure if you want Internet access).
Right! STILL THERE'S NO CALL from the press for Microsoft to bring out a patch that would allow users to completely uninstall IE6. Instead, we're told a lot of mealy-mouthed words that cloud the main issue. Responses such as the enforced patching of pirated copies of Windows are just woolly thinking. For starters:
(a) It presupposes those who are using pirated copies of Windows would use 'Automatic Updates' when up until now they've been banned from doing so. For example, if the policy were changed, how would they be contacted if 'Automatic Updates' remains turned off?
(b) Even if 'Automatic Updates' were available, many users would not avail themselves of it for fear of being exposed as possessing a pirated copy of Windows.
(c) Hypothetically, even if there were to be a forced upgrade of IE6 then how would it be accomplished? For example, would the forced upgrade allow users to use say Firefox or would it be IE7 or IE8 only? What happens if later security breaches were to be found in both these products too?
Finally, may I suggest this problem is not going away anytime soon, as XP will be supported until 2014 and the product will still be around for quite some years after that. I can assure you of this as I've customers who are already asking about how long they can use XP after this deadline and they will do so. I know this well, as I've now customers who continue to use Windows 98 and nothing seems capable of budging them, even the threat of viruses only invokes responses such as 'we'll get an improved anti-virus product'.
Once, technical reporting was an objective and trusted profession whereby reporters--who were usually technically qualified engineers--would actually do detailed testing of a product then publish and defend the results without fear or favor. Today, most reporting on technology products such as Window, Internet Explorer etc. has reached rock bottom. Reviews are rarely little more than the reporter's subjective view, they can't even kerb their delight with the product let alone describe its technical aspects accurately and with objectivity. Moreover, as for objective testing--well that's a thing of the past, except where the feature holds interest for the reporter, the speed comparisons between say an old and new version of Windows is but a good example but there'll be no extensive vulnerability testing as that is just a yawn.
Why the press has been so negligent for so long on the issue of Windows and Internet Explorer security remains a mystery to many of us. Clearly, it has to do with those issues that I've already identified but is also about the 'sacred cow' nature of these products in that people's love of them makes them blind to the issues. Over the years, the press's irrational infatuation with Windows and Internet Explorer technology has continually thwarted attempts to cut to the core of the problem, expose it and have the very real dangers posed by Microsoft's shoddy workmanship and manufacture fixed once and for all.
How we get back rigorous and honest reporting of technology products remains a problem without an obvious immediate solution. It is clear though that overcoming the very real problem of technology addiction and the 'wow' factor in those who report on technology and the fact that it colors their reports is now a serious issue for all of us. (Moreover, it's interesting that recently sociologists have started to investigate the matter of technology addiction--although in a more general sense and not specifically targeted at technology reporters--although one can see that soon looming on the horizon).
This is a now serious issue for us users as our lives have come to depend more and more on this technology and we are simply not getting the real warts-and-all facts about much of the junk that's being peddled out there in the name of software or the latest hi-tech gadget.
1.17.03 (Feb 3, 2010 - 5:46 PM)
I've reread this article again and perhaps I was half asleep the first time, but I can't believe my eyes, but I think I read this.
"I contend that Microsoft should disable non-genuine Windows copies without warning."
Are you wearing brown or black jackboots? The damn hide of you. Clearly, you don't work with half-broken legit copies of Windows where crashes have screwed certificates etc. etc. It happens all the time with legit copies of Windows. When stuffed, they can look like an illegal copy. I've seen automatic updates/MGA say legit software was illegal many times. Right, actually on legit software. Got it?? (Clearly you're only an operator, not a techie or you'd know this can be a common problem.)
If Microsoft started that tactic, it'd be inviting law suits by the dozen. And deservedly so.
If IE6/Windows was Rolls Royce software with no security faults, then this Gestapo-type tactic would still be unacceptable enough, but when we're really talking about third-rate junk software that has hundreds and hundreds--if not many thousands of security patches--then its unforgivable.
Do you realize what this slovenly-manufactured junk has cost the world over the last 15 or so years--because it was build so badly that it can NEVER be made secure? So bad in fact that governments are now calling for it not to be used, soon the call is likely to be an outright ban. Well, it's billions upon billions of dollars outlaid by users across the world in maintaining this junk, and all you worry about is whether the software is pirated or not.
Well, sell your M$ shares so you can be more objective.
Why the hell are you such an apologist for Microsoft? After all, it's their insecure, broken, crappy software which is at fault and the cause of all this trouble--NOT THE USER! Moreover, Microsoft has had a decade and a half to fix Internet Explorer and Windows and they're still fooling around the edges of the problem with little hope of it being ever resolved.
Patches are piecemeal and never-ending, the security patching never stops. Shame we don't have the source code for IE6, as you'd find it was an unholy unsystematic mess. In any other profession, manufacturing etc. this product would have been withdrawn long ago or been the subject of widespread damages under lemon laws.
However, because it's software, and its writers have convinced the gullible that the merchantability of software is 'somehow' different to everything else on the planet--and because its faults are hidden and locked up by compiled code--somehow this crap escapes the scrutiny of the regulators.
Yet, year in and year out, your editorial staff find some way of blaming the poor user instead of the source of the problem. It really is unbelievable. Moreover, its not only BetaNews, rather much of the popular tech press is guilty of it. Somehow, you've got it into your head that selling faulty goods is actually acceptable--talk about the laws of business being reversed.
With the apologist, woe-with-Microsoft attitude in editorials in recent times being so prevalent, all I can say is that the number of free complimentary copies of Windows etc. out in publication-land must be enormous.
It simply is beggars belief that you can write an article like that and not call for the company to undergo capital punishment.
Clearly, you have a very different value system to most of your readers.