Does Absence Make You Fonder?

After quite a long absence, I have found some noteworthy software. I recently learned about, then downloaded the free Spyware Terminator. This free application (the developer earns from a separate Corporate version), is far more effective at detecting spyware than Microsoft AntiSpyware, or even Lavasoft’s Ad-Aware. But we are getting ahead.

Spyware Terminator scanning for spywareSpyware Terminator is a memory-resident set and forget application ideal for most computer users. During setup you can choose the interface level from Expert where you are notified about every change. To Basic where the software decided what to alert you about. Frankly why choose anything but Expert even if you aren’t a geek, nerd or anorak? If you are looking for an anti-malware solution then you need to find the time to help it decide what is and isn’t allowed free range across your computer. Because true computer security or “safe hex” requires you remain alert. Spyware Terminator also offers advanced system scanning where you define the scan coverage and depth. It tracks, detects and quarantines not only spyware programs but also tracking cookies.

Included with the application is ClamAV integration. But this isn’t as feature I tested because I personally never liked ClamAV. For antivirus I prefer a paid product like PC-Cillin 2007. I have used Trend Micro’s antivirus solutions for nigh on 6 years now. And my computer has never been taken down by a virus. It’s gone offline from hardware reasons like (recently) a blown motherboard or failed hard drive.

The Spyware Terminator Corporate Edition is also available on a limited 2-year free license to Non-Profit Organizations like “schools, government organizations, churches and charities”. It offers centrally managed installations with remote update and management for network clients. The latter can also been added to groups, presumably by the alert level type. And administrators can view reports from all clients in a centralized location. Along with alerts of client-specific threats. And status of a client’s last scan.

In addition to Spyware Terminator, I also use Spyware Blaster (to block dialer and other browser-specific threats), SpyBot Search & Destroy to protect my hosts file and monitor Internet Explorer (using S&D TeaTimer plug-in). And to monitor startup applications and BHO (IE-related Browser Helper Objects). This may be a case of over-kill because PC-Cillin 2007 includes file runtime checks, Trojan detection and spyware detectors. But mentally I’m less stressed 🙂

As of writing Spyware Terminator has hit 2 Million downloads. Why don’t you add to the count and download a copy.

Opera 9.01 has been released over the weekend. But possibly on account of the holiday, the Opera Homepage hasn’t been updated (as of this posting going to press). The sole download link is direct FTP. The final version offers a Fraud protection feature (disabled by default after early Beta testers, including this reviewer, suddenly found sites being blocked) . As well as several bug fixes including

  • Fixed problem where pages showed the incorrect favicon
  • Fixed problem where multimedia keyboard shortcuts would not work when Opera was focused
  • Fixed bug where one could not log in to Gmail with “Accept only cookies for the site I visit” enabled
  • Changed Mozilla ID string spoof to mimic Firefox
  • Fixed issue where stored passwords were lost after enabling/disabling the master password
  • Made IE ID string spoof as Windows on Linux/UNIX and Mac
  • “Save target as” and “Save to disk” now play well together
  • “Save directly to” now works
  • Fixed accidental deletion of a feed when unsubscribing
  • Fixed smooth scrolling on UNIX
  • Flash now works on FreeBSD
  • Improved error message when a dictionary isn’t installed for the spelling checker

I had commented that the Opera 9.01 Beta (Build 8679) release resolved a bad user interface regression in the Build 8678. But Build 8679 crashed my favorite online game, RasterWerks Phosphor FPS. So I rolled back to Build 8670. I will now download the final version and test to see if it is indeed stable.

YaNews DLExpert options menuFor some reason (know only to by cable ISP) Port 44 used for IMAP is blocked. It’s off because the vendor offers a 256 kbps unlimited connection and claims the port is being used! Yet the same vendor permits torrents. I found when attempting to download files using a download manager like WinGet or FlashGet, my connection would crawl to a stop. And only resuscitate itself if I physically restarted the computer! So after a lot of experimenting I found the ancient (in software years: 3+ years) DLExpert software didn’t seem to be affected. And despite its relatively unsophisticated interface. DLExpert download files without killing my connection.

That’s it for a while. Stay Safe!

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