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Everything posted by JackHughs

  1. Thanks Nick. I tried that approach on another machine. This one is a 2005 vintage, off-lease IBM 2.4 GHz P4 XP Pro SP3 machine that has had Avast! installed for approximately two years but developed startup problems as soon as I first installed OA last month. The upgrade went fine and the machine booted successfully three times; twice with OA in Learning Mode and once in Standard Mode. JackHughs
  2. Hi Oxa. I just upgraded Avast! to build 889. This is on the new XP Pro SP3 machine only. The procedure was: Make sure that OA is set to not start on boot Turn off OA Upgrade through the Avast! UI Allow Avast! to retart the computer Check all the Avast! seetings and Exclusions to assure that OA is still excluded Start OA manually Check to see that Outlook Express and Internet Explrer work properly Set OA to start on boot Reboot So far, so good. Hopefully, the dificulties were caused by Avast! build 864 and are now behind us. The lesson I learned from this unpleasent experience is to no longer take Avast! upgrades for granted. From now on, I'm checking the Avast! Forum prior to upgrading. JackHughs
  3. Hi. I didn't do the full test because other activities are imposing on my time. The HP laptop has Avast! version 5.0.667 and OA version 431 installed. I excluded the entire Avast! folder in OA, excluded the entire OA folder in Avast!'s File System Shield's setting tab, and turned off OA's webshield. The Behavior Shield in Avast! 5.0.667 does not appear to provide for trusted processes. The major startup problems appear to be resolved. It does take more time to start both Avast! and OA but that's to be expected and the delay is reasonable. If Avast! is going to make a new stable release in the next day or so, I'll wait for that and do this test on the equally old IBM desktop. Things are looking good right now and I'll post the results of the next test when it's done. JackHughs
  4. Hi - and thanks to all who have offered suggestions. I'm going to get out the old HP laptop that I used in earlier tests. It's a low power XP Home SP3 machine and it developed some startup problems when OA 4.5 was installed. I'll update Avast! to 874, exclude the entire Avast! folder from OA, exclude the entire OA folder from the Avast! File System Shield settings, and "trust" the OA executables in the Avast! Behavior Shield. And then...and then, see how well OA and Avast! coexist and see if the slow startup problem has been solved - or at least mitigated. JackHughs
  5. This is related to my earlier post regarding OA / Avast! conflicts. I currently have OA and Avast! 5.1.864 installed on a new XP SP3 computer. When I first updated to Avast! 864, the system crashed - hard. There are known issues with Avast! build 864 and Avast! has made available a pre-release 874 build that supposedly cures many of the issues arising under build 864. I'm not going to update to Avast 874 until it is in general release. However, I've been able to make OA 431 and Avast! 864 play nice once again by turning off all of OA's HIPS features and running the firewall only. So, I'm thinkin' "Ya know, OA is feature rich and Avast! is also feature rich. Could it be that some of these features are bumping into each other - becoming irritated, and taking it out on my OS?" Has anyone thought about about an optimal OA / Avast! configuation set? Immediately obvious is the fact that OA has a web shield and Avast! has a web shield. I'm pretty sure that only web shield is necessary or desireable. Less obvious is that some of Avast!'s "File System Shield's" functionality appears similar to OA's "Program Guard" features. I'm not a security expert. In fact, I'm not particularly competent in any of this stuff. I'd just like to have a stable system that doesn't require constant tinkering. Thanks. JackHughs
  6. I've read the comments on the Avast! forum. This pre-release build sounds promising but I think I'll wait on the next release until updating again. JackHughs
  7. That's interesting info on the Avast! build. Build 864 was the version installed last night. JackHughs
  8. This question arises from the use of OA Free and Avast! Free on a new XP SP3 build. For several days, OA and Avast! were happily humming along, doing their respective jobs and not bothering each other. Then, yesterday evening, Avast! popped up a message stating that a new version of Avast! was available for download. I downloaded and installed the Avast! update with no problem. Avast! then asked that I shut down the computer to complete the install. That's when things went horribly wrong. On reboot, neither Avast! nor OA actually started. After a few minutes of waiting, I decided to reboot and try again. XP was exceptionally slow in shutting down. I had to wait about 10 minutes while XP did "end unresponsive program" on OA and two other startup processes. I went through this reboot process twice, with the same result each time. I then started XP in Safe Mode and used System Restore to roll back XP to a good configuration. I then made sure that OA would not start on the next boot and redid the Avast! update. This time everything went fine. OA is currently turned off pending some better understanding of what happened. Thank you. JackHughs
  9. Thanks. I realized what a bad idea this was about the time my finger lifted from the "send" button. Nonetheless, I'm glad I went through with this question. Otherwise, I might have actually tried it and most likely been in a worrrrrld of hurt by now. JackHughs
  10. Is it OK to install the latest version of OA free on a computer that has OA free version 4.0 installed? I intend to set both versions to manual start and only run one at a time for test purposes. Thanks JackHughs
  11. I have the latest version of OA Free installed on two different XP SP3 computers. MalwareBytes is also installed on each of these machines. So far, MalwareBytes has opened, updated, and scanned with no problem. I have no experience with the camera wizard. JackHughs
  12. I promised the longer, more boring version, and here it is. But first, thanks to everyone who offered helpful suggestions as to best resolve the problem. This is a nice forum. I hope to spend more time here. I downloaded and installed CCleaner and Auslogics Free Registry Cleaner to both the HP laptop and the IBM desktop and attempted to familiarize myself with each. As these things are, the Auslogics user interface was substantially easier for me to follow. This may not be true for everyone; we all look at life differently and CCleaner may be just right for others. Auslogics also has a very easy to use Recovery Console, which turned out to be a very good thing since I did manage to "clean" the laptop registry such that Windows would not start in normal mode. It did boot in safe mode and, with a few clicks, Auslogics rolled-back the changes and we were once again good to go. I found only a few references to Norton or Symantec in the registries of these machines. I guess Symantec's special uninstaller did a decent job of cleaning out the loose odds and ends. Each computer now has a nice clean registry. As I previously mentioned, the HP laptop was woking OK and the registry cleaning didn't change anything so I focused on the IBM desktop. After cleaning the registry, I defragged the HD and uninstalled OA. Auslogics was then put back to work to make sure that all of OA was removed. I then disabled Avast!, reinstalled OA, and used Mike Lin's "Start-up Control Panel" to assure that no unnecessary programs or processes were allowed to start on boot. As far as prep goes, this is the best I can do. Unfortunately, OA still takes several minutes to start. It doesn't matter if I have OA set to start at boot or whether I disable that function and start it manually. And then, when I start IE8, it takes several minutes to load and display the homepage. The same slow startup time holds true for any application; not just IE8. But wait - there's more. After the first application startup, everything works reasonably well. Subsequent starts of IE8 are quick and most webpages load without undue delay. So, once OA is started and once the first application is started, OA seems to work just fine. The problem lies in a very slow startup for OA and a very slow startup for the first application thereafter. I hope all this information is in some way helpful to others who visit this forum. Good night. JackHughs
  13. Hello. This is a quick update as to my progress with the OA startup issues. I hope to find time to post a more detailed account of my Christmas day adventures with OA but, for right now, here's the bottom line as I see it. Both my machines are running XP SP3 but are of 2003-2004 vintage. They are, of couse, substantially less powerful and much slower than what's available now. On startup. OA uses 100% of CPU capacity on either machine. While OA is working, such as when opening a content-rich website, OA uses as much as 70% of CPU capacity - leaving very little CPU capacity available to actually load the website. With OA turned off and the XP firewall enabled, both machines startup and run rather well for their age. So, I believe that these older machines may simply not have the horsepower to properly run the current version of OA. JackHughs
  14. Good morning. I downloaded CCleaner onto the HP machine this morning. It's a bit daunting to the novice but I'll work on it a bit. I'm about to download Auslogics Free Registry Cleaner to the IBM machine. All of that notwithstanding, I really wanted to share something straight out of the "and now for something completely different" category. While rooting around in the Auslogics website, I came across this statement: "Good examples of reliable free registry cleaners are Auslogics Registry Cleaner and CCleaner. Both come from reputable developers, are very easy to use, and offer you to backup the registry, so that you can undo any changes if there are any problems." Interesting, eh? JackHughs
  15. Thanks for the pointer Nick. The IBM machine (the difficult one), does not have Net Framework 4 installed and is not likely to have it installed in the near future. In the "wonders' never cease category", the older HP XP SP#3 Home laptop seems to have warmed up to OA after 20+ restarts over the past several days. It's quite astounding really that this machine nows starts without hesitataion and runs with no problems at all. OA and Avast! happily coexist with each other and with all installed applications. This is the behavior I had hoped for. The IBM machine continues to struggle so I might be forced to grit my teeth and try Jose's recommended Auslogics Registry Cleaner. Jose,if you're reading this, I asssume you recommend the free stand-alone resistry cleaner rather than the full Auslogics tool kit, yes? JackHughs
  16. This issue is resolved. I don't know how, but it's fixed on both computers. On the first, the box remained unchecked after I had manually started OA rather than have it start automatically on boot. The box has remained unchecked ever since. On the second, I had to uninstall and reinstall OA for another reason. The box remains unchecked now. I'd like to report a brilliant solution to an obscure bug, but - no deal, it just fixed itself. JackHughs
  17. Thank you Jose. Several persons, both on and off this forum, have suggested that the registry may still be contaminated with leftover Norton/Symantec stuff even though I've used the Norton Uninstall tools. This may be true, but I'm not real comfortable messing with the registry; either with regedit or with commercial registry cleaners. So I might have to live with this for awhile unless someone offers a different perspective on this problem. However, it may be possible to better define the actual problem. Right now, I have two issues. The first is random failures of OA to start at boot. That may well be a Norton legacy problem. The second is the time it takes for OA to load once it does start. That may not be a problem at all. To find out if my OA startup time is normal, I would like to ask the contributers here running XP to help with a brief experiment. Would someone please go to Options > General and uncheck the box that says "Launch Online Armour at next startup." Re-boot and measure how much time it takes to fully start XP. Then, manually start OA and measure how much time it takes to fully start OA. Then re-check the "Launch Online Armor at next startup", re-boot and measure how much time it takes to fully start XP. With this information, I can determine if my OA launch times are excessive or just normal for this application. Thanks again. JackHughs
  18. Hi. This is an older off-lease IBM machine on which I did a complete XP re-install. As the re-install was from a hidden partiition, it did install Norton Anti Virus 2004. I then used the Symantec uninstaller to completely remove the Norton product. Since then, I've used only the XP Firewall; first with Eset NOD32 - which was subsequently uninstalled using Revo. The machine is currently protected with the latest version of Avast!. The version of OA giving me the problem is: I first installed OA on the IBM machine yesterday. I also have this version of OA on a 2002 era HP laptop running XP Home SP3. I replaced the HD on this machine a few months ago and did a full XP install from the HP recovery disks. Those disks also loaded an older version of Norton AV which I uninstalled with the Symantec utility. This machine was then loaded with Avast!. I've never had any other AV or firewall product on this machine. OA also loads slowly on this computer and uses 100% of CPU capacity while it loads. OA does not exhibit any start-up problems on this computer. Thanks JackHughs
  19. Hi. I have OA Free installed on an older 2.4 GHz P4 machine with one gig of ram running XP Pro SP3. Regardless of whether or not I have OA set to start at boot or set to require manual startup after boot, it takes several minutes to load. During this time, the CPU is running at 100%. What's worse, sometimes OA will not start on the first try. If this happens when OA is set to start at boot, it freezes the machine and requires a power-down shutdown. On one occassion, I had to uninstall OA in Safe Mode to get the computer running again. I'm now on my second OA install on this machine. Just to tilt the odds my way, I turned off both the Windows Firewall and Avast! during the OA install. It still has these start-up problems which are deal-killers for continued use of OA. I really like the look and feel of OA compared to other firewall applications and I hope to be able work through issues such as this. Are there any known fixes to start-up problems like this? JackHughs
  20. Same here. I'm using OA Free version on both Win XP Home SP3 and Win XP Pro SP3. If OA is shut down, the Windows Firewall is enabled. When OA is restarted, the Windows Firewall is disabled and the Windows Security Center reports that the OA Firewall is operative. This is a very nice feature. JackHughs
  21. Hi. I'm running the free version. In Programs > Options, I uncheck "Notify when OA auto trusts a program." When I reboot the computer the box is checked again. What do need to do to assure that the box remains unchecked. Thanks JackHughs
  22. Hi, Thanks to you and Gerard for the helpful responses. I believe that you've told me that OA does exactly what I want. That is, if I Block a given Program AND do not create a Firewall rule for that Program, OA will prompt me every time that Program wants to access the internet. Repeated prompting is what I want and, for all practical purposes, works just the same as having a seperate "ASK" function available. Gerald's "Current Session" option raises some additional questions that I'm going to think about for awhile. JackHughs
  23. Hi. I have a small home wired LAN with a combination of XP computers, IP camera, and Surveillance DVR. One of the XP machines has been running various versions of NIS for many years and is about to be replaced. The other computers all use the built-in Windows firewall. I've been looking for a firewall that I can use on all the XP machines and it appears that OA may be just what i want. I installed OA on a test machine yesterday evening and I was very impressed with how easy it was to install and set-up. However, being completely new to OA, I have a few really basic questions that I would like some help with. The first has to do with permissions. In the Programs tab, OA has "Allow", "Ask", and "Block" options. In the Firewall > Program Access tab, OA only has "Allow" and "Block" options. Is the lack of an "Ask" option in the Program Access tab really meaningful? That is, If I just choose "Block", will OA alert me when a Blocked program tries to access the Internet and give me the option to allow access on a one-time basis? Thanks JackHughs