Is "Install Shield Update Service" spyware?

Discussion in 'Spyware' started by default, Jan 17, 2004.

  1. default

    default Guest

    I recently downgraded from Windows 98 to Windows ME and am just
    learning the (crippled) system.

    I have this thing called "Install Shield Update" Service on the
    machine. When I use "Double Image" backup software the update service
    kicks in and tries to run (seems to just run - not phone home - but
    could be gathering information).

    Location:
    C:\Program Files\Common Files\InstallShield\UpdateService\agent.exe\

    Double Image has its preferences set for "do not check for updates."

    Is this thing spyware?

    Contains a total of four files - two loaded with an application and
    two other INI files that set the check interval. Interval set to zero
    in one INI and 28 in the other - presumably this is the checking
    interval in days.


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    default, Jan 17, 2004
    #1
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  2. default

    c_e Guest

    Can't answer your question, only pose another ;)
    I've noticed when installing a couple of programs (games I think) that use
    IS installer Zone Alarm will warn me that Install Shiled is trying to
    connect to the internet (or whatever the pop up warnings say). I always deny
    permission for it to do so and the programs still install ok. Anyone know
    why Install Shield tries to do this? Where it's connecting and what it does
    if allowed to connect?

    coma
     
    c_e, Jan 17, 2004
    #2
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  3. default

    default Guest

    Found this on the web (still looks like spyware to me . . .)

    Connect Directly with Your Users

    A direct, one-to-one conversation is the most effective means of
    customer communication. But traditional communications media fail to
    guarantee a true, direct link between you and the actual person using
    your software. Direct Mail communication often stops at a company
    address. You send Email to a name in a database who may just be a
    purchasing agent, a manager, or an outdated address.

    Only the Update Service guarantees that you’ll reach the person
    actually using your application. Further, you can decide when to reach
    them. When customers get an update right when they open the
    application, you’ll know that they’re thinking about your software,
    and that is the perfect time to promote, educate, or inform. No other
    media can ensure the top-of-mind response from your customers that is
    available with the InstallShield Update Service.

    http://www.pds-site.com/InstallShield/US/info/features/connect_direct.htm

    Like a lot of software, no matter the (stated) intent, it can be
    easily subverted for more nefarious purposes.


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    default, Jan 17, 2004
    #3
  4. default

    BoB Guest

    These are the only sub-folders in my Installshield folder:

    C:\Program Files\Common Files\InstallShield\
    Driver
    Engine
    Iscript

    BoB
     
    BoB, Jan 18, 2004
    #4
  5. default

    default Guest

    me too, now - seems the others are only there temporarily? Or perhaps
    just when the software is loaded for the first time and lost when the
    system is reset.

    I'll have to pay more attention to this -


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    default, Jan 18, 2004
    #5
  6. [snip]

    Pray tell, *WHY*?

    --

    Jay T. Blocksom
    --------------------------------
    Appropriate Technology, Inc.
    usenet01[at]appropriate-tech.net


    "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
    safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    -- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759.

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    Jay T. Blocksom, Jan 21, 2004
    #6
  7. default

    default Guest

    Kind of a long story. Defrag the drives one night and the C drive has
    a corrupted windows folder when finished (D drive and other folders
    OK).

    No way to recover. DOS commands not all working (copy and xcopy
    wouldn't work but the directories and files seemed to be OK except for
    Windows, and My documents.

    Try to reload windows 98 upgrade and it tells me there is no compliant
    software. Load ME and it tells me that there is no compliant software
    .. . . stuck with ME. Me wouldn't load over the bad windows
    installation because it said there already was an operating system and
    ME is an OEM installation. Don't have any Internet connection to sort
    it out so I formatted the drive and loaded ME.

    ME makes loading windows easier and the driver support is better - but
    the advantages stop there. It has something called PChealth that
    doesn't do anything except cause crashes (I think it is supposed to be
    able to restore the system like the "go back" programs - but that
    doesn't work). ME won't even allow me to make a clean (DOS) boot
    disk. Accesses the floppy drives whenever it starts or shuts down.
    Just generally one of the worst software products I've ever used.
    Lots of built in spyware, from the looks of my firewall.

    Internet Exploder and Windoze Media Player are too aggressive and
    trying to phone home at the drop of a hat. Everything defaults to
    minimum security.


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    default, Jan 25, 2004
    #7
  8. default

    Al Bundy Guest

    software.

    So doesn't it ask you for the diskette/CD for the previous version to
    verify you have a legit upgrade?
     
    Al Bundy, Jan 26, 2004
    #8
  9. default

    default Guest

    Of course - but in my case it is the long dead copy of windows 3.11
    (floppies don't survive high humidity and this is the second set I
    bought from M$) I'm lucky to have a single startup floppy let alone
    the three or fours disks the upgrade asks for. ( guess I could (not)
    backup the six/eight windows disks twice a month to new floppies.

    I found a warez version of 3.11 and should be able to burn that to a
    CDR as a work around. If I can convince the upgrade to notice the CD
    drive.


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    default, Jan 27, 2004
    #9
  10. [snip]

    This is one of the bigger reasons to ALWAYS set up a (smallish) dedicated
    swap/temp partition when using Windows. Then, when it barfs (usually
    involving the swap file), it probably won't take the rest of the system with
    it.
    [snip]

    So let me guess... In the course of setting up that system, after getting the
    OS installed, configured, patched, etc., you did not take a "snapshot" backup
    to removable media (CD, tape, etc.), and put that on the "archive" shelf, so
    you could painlessly restore the system to that state when (near-certainly not
    "if") the HDD died/barfed?

    How about your regular system backups? Where were those?
    [snip]

    There are work-arounds for that, but it is outside the scope of this
    discussion (or rather, this newsgroup).
    [snip]

    This is the part I don't understand. You were apparently in the same boat
    vis-a-vis the "update" issue with both Win98 and WinME; so I still don't get
    why you chose WinME over Win98.
    [snip]

    OK, now you're implying something different. Did you perhaps have two
    (different) copies of WinME lying around?
    [snip]

    Not really -- especially if you take <http://www.litepc.com/98lite.html> into
    account. My guess is that you're confusing the "retail update vs. OEM" issue
    with a fundamental difference in the two Windows versions themselves.
    [snip]

    Questionable, but I won't argue the point.
    [snip]

    You're too kind. <~>

    --

    Jay T. Blocksom
    --------------------------------
    Appropriate Technology, Inc.
    usenet01[at]appropriate-tech.net


    "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
    safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    -- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759.

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    Unsolicited advertising sent to this E-Mail address is expressly prohibited
    under USC Title 47, Section 227. Violators are subject to charge of up to
    $1,500 per incident or treble actual costs, whichever is greater.
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
     
    Jay T. Blocksom, Jan 28, 2004
    #10
  11. default

    default Guest

    Some major pruning throughout the thread . . .
    OK Where is a place to start for finding swap file info? Does this
    increase stability? Do you suppose defragging the drive (the action
    that seems to have precipitated the crash) would have been avoided
    with a swap file tweak?
    I don't really have an idea of how to take a snapshot of the OS, my
    backup technique is to regularly copy the files I can't afford to lose
    to a second or third hard drive (in removable racks), with some stuff
    further duplicated on CDR.
    There are indeed work arounds. I found and copied several and may
    have found a pirate copy of the full install on the web (hoping it is
    in english)
    The Windows 98 was an upgrade for Windows 3.1. The ME I bought as a
    backup for the next time system crashed - I didn't realize just what a
    piece of feces it is. The ME was bought with a barebones system and
    not used, it is an oem type full install.
    Two OS: 98 upgrade, ME oem.
    With the 98 upgrade the installation stops every so often and requires
    that one press a key that says OK. Big waste of time . . .
    Now that LitePC looks very intriguing - thanks for the link. Do you
    use it? I really want to ditch some of the so-called "features" in
    Windows.
    Well, I didn't have to load the sound, modem, printer or video drivers
    but did lose my improved IDE driver - can't use UDMA and the 98 IDE
    driver crashes the ME system. All the other drivers work well -
    remarkable in the case of the monitor - in 98 I need a driver for the
    adapter and another for the display, before the damn thing stops
    flickering.
    The IDE driver alone is enough reason to go back to 98.
    Not really . . . When writing about Windows software it is hard to
    find euphemisms - I could, for instance say Windows ME is worse than
    pond scum, but that would be insulting to pond scum.




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    default, Jan 29, 2004
    #11
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