akm

Upgraded and all Domains list gone ?

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Upgraded to OA-5 and now all Domains list is gone.

Had quite a few special blocks for cookies etc.

Is there a previous version file that holds that list and can it be imported into the new version ?

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Hi akm

The following is a quote from the 5.0 release notes back when this change occurred (it was a long time ago now).

Content filtering in Web Shield removed

The content filtering aspects of the Web Shield were removed. They were introduced at a time when essentially all browsers lacked control over active content or your private information. Times have changed though and most modern browsers actually do a far superior job now than the Web Shield ever did. Therefore we decided to remove the content filtering from the Web Shield which will result in better compatibility and network performance.

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Thank you for the reply and info.

Just to verify that we are talking about the same thing, have attached a scrnshot of 'missing' Domains list.

Have also added a couple domain names (to the empty list) for the scrnshot, like the couple 200 or so on the original list, that blocked cookies like no browser could.

I can go ahead and try to manually replace the list, although if will take hours and of course cannot be sure that the next OA upgrade will not delete them all again, but thought there may be in a data file that has the original list in my backup/s that could replace the existing empty file.

In the meantime guess will be enjoying the 'ad/spam' cookies the come with every website, and spending additional time, with Ad-Aware and CCleaner, deleting them.

Looked at the 5.0 release notes but could not find anything that directly talked about this question... although there was a lot to look at, and may have missed it.

Hi akm

The following is a quote from the 5.0 release notes back when this change occurred (it was a long time ago now).

Fabian Wosar said:

Content filtering in Web Shield removed

The content filtering aspects of the Web Shield were removed. They were introduced at a time when essentially all browsers lacked control over active content or your private information. Times have changed though and most modern browsers actually do a far superior job now than the Web Shield ever did. Therefore we decided to remove the content filtering from the Web Shield which will result in better compatibility and network performance.

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Most likely, the version you upgraded from was just too many versions behind the latest version for the upgrade to have gone completely smoothly. Probably this is why the list was lost. If you have a backup file of your Domains list you can import it by right clicking in the Domains list and choosing "Import", however I would assume it's unlikely that you'd have one as OA Free didn't have that feature with the old version you were using.

The Domains list is still present in the latest version of OA, but the Web Shield works differently. There is no content filtering of ActiveX, applets etc and the cookie cutter was removed. I originally thought you were referring to the cookie cutter, but it seems you are blocking domains directly in order to block cookies that originate from them. This is indeed still possible in the current version :)

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Most likely, the version you upgraded from was just too many versions behind the latest version for the upgrade to have gone completely smoothly. Probably this is why the list was lost. If you have a backup file of your Domains list you can import it by right clicking in the Domains list and choosing "Import", however I would assume it's unlikely that you'd have one as OA Free didn't have that feature with the old version you were using.

The Domains list is still present in the latest version of OA, but the Web Shield works differently. There is no content filtering of ActiveX, applets etc and the cookie cutter was removed. I originally thought you were referring to the cookie cutter, but it seems you are blocking domains directly in order to block cookies that originate from them. This is indeed still possible in the current version :)

Thanks again for the followup.

Am sure the last version of OA was very close to the latest version (see attached screenshot of previous Progam list, not directly related to this question, although that list is also missing).

Am pretty good about updating when alerted by OA, and usually have any auto update alert set to notify.

But regardless, what is the file the holds the list, and can we just replace the current file with the previous version file, or, do we need to do a formal 'import', and if so, what should we import from to where ?

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There have been many releases since the build you are running which was only 4.0, both minor updates and major updates, to 4.5 and then 5.0, and now 5.1. To be honest, I'd strongly suggest you uninstall, reboot twice and reinstall the latest version, especially as you are reporting other lists missing. An upgrade from a build that old is unlikely to have gone without problems that may continue to plague you.

I'm not aware of any single file that holds the Domains list so copying a file may not even be an option. As I mentioned previously, you need to have previously saved the Domains list by exporting it using the context menu in Domains. As this export feature was not available in the old version you were running, you wouldn't have been able to do this, so unfortunately there is no exported backup available for you to import.

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Am surprised there was such a gap, but also surprised that an upgrade from 4.0 to 5.0 would lose so much previous setup/information without some kind of warning etc.

Did as you suggested, un-installed, rebooted couple times, reinstalled (checked startup folder box, used setup wizard, etc) and orig Programs (except programs set up with the install wizard) and Domains lists were still missing.

Seems like there should be a data file that would have the Domains list, Programs list, etc, which could be replaced with a backup file or text info.

Is there someone who we could contact (email etc) who could address that technical question ?

Btw, the way this latest version updating is working, it seems like any 'customization' (like 'adding' special domains etc) is not going to be possible without the risk of loosing it all with an update.

Is it possible to revert to the previous version (4.0...) which had all of our custom entries ?

have been many releases since the build you are running which was only 4.0, both minor updates and major updates, to 4.5 and then 5.0, and now 5.1. To be honest, I'd strongly suggest you uninstall, reboot twice and reinstall the latest version, especially as you are reporting other lists missing. An upgrade from a build that old is unlikely to have gone without problems that may continue to plague you.

I'm not aware of any single file that holds the Domains list so copying a file may not even be an option. As I mentioned previously, you need to have previously saved the Domains list by exporting it using the context menu in Domains. As this export feature was not available in the old version you were running, you wouldn't have been able to do this, so unfortunately there is no exported backup available for you to import.

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Did as you suggested, un-installed, rebooted couple times, reinstalled (checked startup folder box, used setup wizard, etc) and orig Programs (except programs set up with the install wizard) and Domains lists were still missing.

I'm not sure I understand what programs you are referring to exactly? Do you have "Hide Trusted" unticked in the Program's list? If so, you should be able to see a large list of programs and any that aren't present will be detected when you first run them.

With regards to the Domain's list, I'm not sure what behaviour you are expecting? If you did a clean install of OA, there would be no domain's present, and unless you add some yourself, it will remain that way as the content filtering that I mentioned earlier has been removed from Web Shield.

Seems like there should be a data file that would have the Domains list, Programs list, etc, which could be replaced with a backup file or text info.

A backup file of firewall rules and domains is possible by using the "Export" option that I mentioned earlier. The user has to create it manually though and save it to a safe location for later use. This file uses a .sav extension. There is no way to export the Program's list individually. In the paid versions of OA, you can make a complete backup of your settings though and then restore them from the Backup/Restore tab under Options, however this option isn't available in OA Free.

Btw, the way this latest version updating is working, it seems like any 'customization' (like 'adding' special domains etc) is not going to be possible without the risk of loosing it all with an update.

Is it possible to revert to the previous version (4.0...) which had all of our custom entries ?

If you add new domains now that you have done a clean install, it's very unlikely that you will lose them if you are updating regularly as new versions of OA come out. However, if you just right click and choose "Export" in the Domain's list when you've added them, you'll have a backup that you can always import later if anything untoward does occur.

I'm not sure I see how reverting to a previous version would be of any benefit to you? Assuming you have an installer for an older version, all of your custom domains are not going to be there when you install it and you have no backup .sav file to import them from.

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akm, on 03 January 2012 - 08:22 AM, said:

Did as you suggested, un-installed, rebooted couple times, reinstalled (checked startup folder box, used setup wizard, etc) and orig Programs (except programs set up with the install wizard) and Domains lists were still missing.

I'm not sure I understand what programs you are referring to exactly? Do you have "Hide Trusted" unticked in the Program's list? If so, you should be able to see a large list of programs and any that aren't present will be detected when you first run them.

Had a custom Program list, like the custom Domains list, ie programs added by this user (see previous Programs list scrnshot).

With regards to the Domain's list, I'm not sure what behaviour you are expecting? If you did a clean install of OA, there would be no domain's present, and unless you add some yourself, it will remain that way as the content filtering that I mentioned earlier has been removed from Web Shield.

Usually when upgrade a program, like we did originally with OA, it does not delete past data. That is the source of the original question here, not the reinstall etc.

Really just need to know what new/updated files hold the Program or Domains lists, so can replace it with the old file/s.

Seems like there should be a data file that would have the Domains list, Programs list, etc, which could be replaced with a backup file or text info.

A backup file of firewall rules and domains is possible by using the "Export" option that I mentioned earlier. The user has to create it manually though and save it to a safe location for later use. This file uses a .sav extension. There is no way to export the Program's list individually. In the paid versions of OA, you can make a complete backup of your settings though and then restore them from the Backup/Restore tab under Options, however this option isn't available in OA Free.

So, it sounds like any 'import/export' option is not possible, given the number of upgrades and all the 'trial and error' we have tried so far. Another reason for info on what data files can be replace with old data files.

Btw, the way this latest version updating is working, it seems like any 'customization' (like 'adding' special domains etc) is not going to be possible without the risk of loosing it all with an update.

Is it possible to revert to the previous version (4.0...) which had all of our custom entries ?

If you add new domains now that you have done a clean install, it's very unlikely that you will lose them if you are updating regularly as new versions of OA come out. However, if you just right click and choose "Export" in the Domain's list when you've added them, you'll have a backup that you can always import later if anything untoward does occur.

I'm not sure I see how reverting to a previous version would be of any benefit to you? Assuming you have an installer for an older version, all of your custom domains are not going to be there when you install it and you have no backup .sav file to import them from.

Am assuming if reverting, would revert with full backup of all OA program files with should contain old data ?

Again... is it not possible to determine what are the names of the data files in question, Programs and Domains ?

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Again... is it not possible to determine what are the names of the data files in question, Programs and Domains ?

Copying and pasting a .dat file isn't recommended and may not work properly or could cause other problems. I don't know the specific file for these things anyway though as I don't think it's ever been raised before. A long time ago (this was when Tall Emu owned OA), before exporting firewall rules was possible in OA Free, some people used to copy the .dat files for them so those are the only .dat files I know the exact purpose of. It wasn't recommended then and if user's wanted to try it they were pretty much on their own with experimenting as it's not a supported method. I don't imagine this would be any different now.

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Copying and pasting a .dat file isn't recommended and may not work properly or could cause other problems. I don't know the specific file for these things anyway though as I don't think it's ever been raised before. A long time ago (this was when Tall Emu owned OA), before exporting firewall rules was possible in OA Free, some people used to copy the .dat files for them so those are the only .dat files I know the exact purpose of. It wasn't recommended then and if user's wanted to try it they were pretty much on their own with experimenting as it's not a supported method. I don't imagine this would be any different now.

Thank you for the background and info.

Would like to 'experiment'... seems like cant lose much more than already have, and last resort is just un-install and re-install ?

Are there any posts or current staff/folks who have any of that (file names etc) info, who could pass it along to an 'experimenter'.

Hard to imagine that type of knowledge is not available from the current developers ?

Thanks again for your help.

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Well, since it wasn't something that they wanted users to be doing, I think it may be unlikely you'd be given such details (if it's even possible). I can not recall back that far, but if the version of OA Free you were running had the Websites section, it should have had the import/export option available to you at the time and the full backup option is a paid feature. I'll leave it up to Emsisoft to respond further if they choose to do so.

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Well, since it wasn't something that they wanted users to be doing, I think it may be unlikely you'd be given such details (if it's even possible). I can not recall back that far, but if the version of OA Free you were running had the Websites section, it should have had the import/export option available to you at the time and the full backup option is a paid feature. I'll leave it up to Emsisoft to respond further if they choose to do so.

Thank you for the reply and the candor.

At least I still have 4.0.0.15 (does have Websites section) on another PC and can take a look at un-installing 5 and re-installing 4, etc.

Guess thats (less info, flex, etc) what comes with 'free' and 'new/updated' technology... and everything else these days :)

Hopefully we still have a few old work-around folks left.

Thanks again.

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akm - I am also reluctant to upgrade to v5 due to the loss of the web filtering functions. Unless your situation is a freak occurance, I can only assume that when they stripped away most of the "Web Sites" section, they may also have changed the format of the Domains list, therefore deleting your "incorrectly formatted" list during the "upgrade". Either way, I agree that software updates should not destroy vast swathes of data that may have taken years to accumulate and fine tune.

Getting to your database file question - I have just opened OA on this machine and deleted a number of domains from the list. The only file to change within the Online Armor directory, is the "server.dat" file (and the corresponding "server.dat.bak"), which reduced in size.

Whether or not this file also contains other information (the copy on this machine is over 2MB), I have no idea. Also, whether it is simply a case of closing OA, pasting the preferred version of the file and then restarting the computer, or whether, as catprincess suggested, it is more complicated than that, I can only guess. However, if you have an old image (or the other machine) to copy from, it would appear that this is the most likely candidate.

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