Win-XP Search Assistant silently downloads files

By lokem ยท 12 replies
Apr 12, 2002
  1. I always hated XP's search interface...

  2. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    You see, this is one of the few problems of these "always on" broadband internet connections like cable.... Who knows that its doing when you are not using it??? Sometimes I see that cable modem activity light going for no apparent reason and I have to wonder just what the hell is going on.

    You might think that your machine is your best friend, but unless you actually programmed the software on it yourself, its potentially one of your worst enemies. This is where the appeal of a lot of operating systems like Linux lies: it might be harder to install, but you have a lot more control about what goes on there. You can even look at the source code if you like.

    Imagine the public outcry if it was discovered that your hi-fi was secretly talking to a marketting company, telling it what music you liked to listen to. Or that your fridge was telling the local supermarket what food you liked. Or that your car was telling the local police station about everywhere that you went, how long you stayed, and who travelled with you.

    I am of the opinion that, much in the same sense that Microsoft's bundling of their browser into the OS was finally looked into at the very highest levels, so a lot of the underhanded tricks of adware, spyware and indeed a lot of the stuff written into Windows itself will eventually become the subject of scrutiny by higher powers.

    I feel like I am fighting a loosing battle where my own machine, which I built with my own hands, is being used against me. Its time that we all, as netizens, got together to do something about all this.
  3. SuperCheetah

    SuperCheetah TS Rookie Posts: 709

    That would be me and my cable modem. :( Things like this just don't surprise me anymore. Microsoft will do anything to spy on their own users by any means possible. It is a sad yet inevitable conclusion.
  4. lokem

    lokem TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 672

    Maybe, just MAYBE MS (and other companies that are using this method) are using the data they collect to perform market surveys? :D
  5. boeingfixer

    boeingfixer TS Rookie Posts: 1,006

    I have cable too and went one step further when I am not at my computer. Go into your "Network Connections" and view the one you use most on the 'net. Then make a check in the box that says "Display Icon for this", then make a shortcut on the Desktop, ( I actually keep mine in Quick launch). Then when you are done, disable the connection. It takes a few days to get use to but now I do it like I use to use dial up. Now when I am not here, my computer can't go off on its own....
  6. SuperCheetah

    SuperCheetah TS Rookie Posts: 709

    I'll admit that that it a possibility, but with Microsoft's past history I find it highly unlikely. This is just my two cents of course though. Monopolies like Microsoft are always corrupt in some way or the other it just hasn't been unvieled yet. Call me paranoid, but this is my idealogy.
  7. lokem

    lokem TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 672

    No doubt MS's tactics have been criticised and condemn since the beginning of time and I don't like what they're doing as well.

    Somehow this is the beginning of a whole new way of how MS will be profiting from selling the data obtained this way to research and marketing companies to obtain demographics in consumers behaviour.

    Hope nothing else is monitored.. Blech...
  8. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Aren't there any programs that could block these unwanted up/downloads? Some firewalls?
  9. T-Shirt

    T-Shirt TS Rookie Posts: 289

    Welcome to the twilight zone.

    This is just an extension of the .NET stratgy/mindset.
    Certainly, you don't mind, if they decide that you need more files. They KNOW what good for YOU! And you won't mind when next they resell your extra CPU cycles/ drive space, cause they KNOW what's good for you. (and they need the money!) And you really won't mind when the computer YOU payed for, using their software that YOU payed for, becomes unusable to YOU, due to them consuming all they resources,memory, drive space, CPU cycles for their needs.
    After all, They know what's good for you!
  10. lokem

    lokem TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 672

    There certainly are. Most personal firewalls in the market will actually deny access to all apps by default to net access. Question is, how many pple actually bother with such a program? :)
  11. lokem

    lokem TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 672

    That's more like treating computer users as dummies...
  12. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Geez, someone else noticed it, too. Operating systems designed for three-year-olds, programmed by three-year-olds.
  13. lokem

    lokem TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 672

    Heh... That's what MS wants us to feel with the "new and improved" XP UI {g}
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