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Microsoft Anti-Spyware to Be Free of Charge

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the just-the-right-price dept.

Microsoft 470

fubar1971 writes "During his keynote speech at the at the RSA Security Conference Bill Gates announced that the MS antispyware will be offered for free. From his speech: 'We've looked hard at the nature of this problem, and made a decision that this anti-spyware capability will become something that's available at no additional charge for Windows users -- both the blocking capability, and the scanning and removal capabilities.' Additional information at Government Computer News." Update: 02/16 16:57 GMT by Z : Microsoft was previously considering charging extra for this service.

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Watch for the Error.log file (5, Informative)

Cy Guy (56083) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689306)

I've been running this on one of my XP boxes since it came out. Here are a couple of caveats:
  • It creates (what I consider to be) an absurdly large error.log file, on mine it had reached nearly 1Gb in about a month. I have since created a read-only dummy version of the file so it can't write to it anymore and it hasn't seemed to affect the program.
  • When installed while Admin it's installed for every user, which I guess you would want the blocking for every user, but not necessarily the scanning and program update features, - which leads to ...
  • Running as Admin it doesn't find suspicious Registry Entries in other users' User Registries, which means you could be the admin on an infested machine and not know it - this is on an XP Home box, so perhaps it's different on XP Pro?
  • Though called a beta, I haven't been able to find a way to report these bugs/flaws/'features' to MS.

Hopefully MS are reading (5, Interesting)

dsginter (104154) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689367)

Great suggestions... it would be nice to see them in the finished product. One thing that I'd like to see:

IDIOT PROOFING

Right now, the software is far too intrusive in many modes. I just want something that will run when the screensaver comes on (or the PC is locked) and eliminates a predetermined "level" of crap. This would be a blessing for anyone who has to remove this crap all of the time.

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689368)

Where is the Error.log file in? What directory?

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689445)

>Start
>Search
>All files and folders
>*.log
Click Search

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (1)

hdparm (575302) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689585)

It may return slightly lower number of results if search criteria is "error.log".

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689568)

c:\program Files\Microsoft AntiSpyware\errors.log

Mine is only 9kb, running since it first came out as well.

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (5, Insightful)

aug24 (38229) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689391)

It's fairly normal for a test-phase application to do more logging than is even faintly reasonable for a release-phase application. Mine do.

For the next two points, I have never thought the MS multi-user model was worth its weight in rat shit. YMMV ;-) "Fast user switching" should be, well, fast. Like pressing ctrl-alt-f8 fast. Ho hum.

Last point? Well, I have always wondered if MS developers put their beta-ware out for testing, then sit back and go "hey, no bugs yet" for three months, then release it, all the while never even noticing that they forgot to build the feedback mechanism ;-)

Justin.

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (-1, Offtopic)

XMyth (266414) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689524)

Offtopic, but what's slow about fast user switching on XP? Win+L then click on name and enter password. If they're already logged on then it's very fast for me. What slowness are you referring to? (Or am I mis-understanding you?)

Just curious

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (0, Redundant)

mzwaterski (802371) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689397)

I've been running for about a month as well and I cannot find any error.log file on my system. Where did you find this file?

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (1, Interesting)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689462)

Hmm I installed it via Windows update and haven't even been able to find out what it does yet.

I suspect the one on WU is an earlier beta than you have... I have no error.log file.

It's true it doesn't find much... I've even tried deliberately infecting myself. Missed it completely... maybe I have to log in as administrator first :)

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (5, Informative)

mzwaterski (802371) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689474)

To report bugs/request features you could try the newsgroup that they have setup:

http://communities.microsoft.com/newsgroups/defaul t.asp?ICP=spywareus [microsoft.com]

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (0)

rolfc (842110) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689577)

spyware are us ??

you forgot the biggest one (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689496)

if you read the anti-spyware EULA, you'll find that the spyware removal tool is at least as bad as the spyware it purports to remove.

Re:Watch for the Error.log file (4, Insightful)

ePhil_One (634771) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689518)

Though called a beta, I haven't been able to find a way to report these bugs/flaws/'features' to MS.

MS has a newsgroup for this purpose. Yeah its lame, but its findable and web accessible.

Fun bug: Put your task bar on the side of the screen (I keep mine there hidden but wide, when it pops out, lots of tasks are very readable). Now write a batch script and try to run it. A popup is triggered asking if you really want to do that, problem is it "scrolls" into the screen, but since there's no task bar in the way it keeps scrolling right off the screen! So you can't run your script and you can't clear the popup, which remains in highest in your - list till you reboot :)

Mmmm, Microsoft goodness

It wasn't a big change... (5, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689309)

From the first Slashdot article blurb (emphasis mine):

rscrawford writes "CNN reports that Microsoft may charge extra for security software. So first they edge their competition out of the browser market, then they tie IE into the OS so tightly that a crash in IE can crash the computer, and then they make IE so vulnerable that just using it is hazardous to the typical computer's health, and now they want to CHARGE users to fix it?"

From today's Slashdot article blurb:

Quite a turnaround from charging extra to free.

Looks like they never said for sure that they were going to charge extra. As you can see above it said "may". Now, are we all going to whine that MSFT shouldn't be distributing software with their OS to combat spyware because it "may" edge out competition in the spyware removal market or are we just going to complain that they considered charging people to use it when they aren't now?

Because MSFT software (browser, OS, and extras like ActiveX) should have been programmed correctly in the first place I would expect MSFT to distribute this software for free. People should be able to clear their computers out of what shouldn't have been there from the get go.

Personally, I don't care. I will likely continue to use what I have been using all along (although I have been trying to use the Mac for most surfing) as recent testing has shown MSFT's solution to not be quite as good as third party offerings.

Re:It wasn't a big change... (4, Informative)

DarkMantle (784415) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689399)

MSFT's solution to not be quite as good as third party offerings.

Perhaps you forget, this used to be a third party offering. [giantcompany.com] And the reason MSFT bought them is they were the best at remeoving the spyware, and had the best detection methods.

I was using Giant Antispyware for a few months before MS bought them. And I've seen very few changes (maybe because the Giant Company developers are still working on it.)

Re:It wasn't a big change... (4, Interesting)

AviLazar (741826) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689421)

I like this anti-spyware program (was Giant's). I use it in place of adaware and spybot (which i used previously).

While active-x, IE, and windows has its security holes - your statement makes it sound like it MS's fault for all of these spyware/virus programs. In all reality, it is the fault of the spyware/virus writers - they just found exploits in MS. So lets pass the blame accordingly.

It is very nice of MS to offer this program "free" - considering they paid a big chunk of change for it. I don't actually consider it free, just an add-on to the OS that I already paid for.

Re:It wasn't a big change... (1)

Marthisdil (606679) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689435)

recent testing has shown MSFT's solution to not be quite as good as third party offerings.

Funny - so far it would seem most testing shows MS AntiSpyware finds much more than AdAware of Spybot Search & Destroy find. You have something that works better than either of those?

Re:It wasn't a big change... (3, Interesting)

pclminion (145572) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689483)

Now, are we all going to whine that MSFT shouldn't be distributing software with their OS to combat spyware because it "may" edge out competition in the spyware removal market or are we just going to complain that they considered charging people to use it when they aren't now?

Uhhh... I don't think anybody's complaining that it'll "edge out" the competition. I'm all for the complete elimination of this entire industry. Spyware should not exist, and solutions to Spyware shouldn't be necessary.

Here's why it's psychotic for them to have even considered charging for it: remember those Firestone tires that were blowing up left and right and killing people? What if Firestone had "considered" charging people to get those tires replaced? "On second thought, we figured it'd be nice to fix them for free." NO SHIT, Firestone/Microsoft.

To even entertain a glimmer of a notion of a possibility of a thought of charging for this would have been moronic.

Re:It wasn't a big change... (4, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689559)

Here's why it's psychotic for them to have even considered charging for it: remember those Firestone tires that were blowing up left and right and killing people? What if Firestone had "considered" charging people to get those tires replaced? "On second thought, we figured it'd be nice to fix them for free." NO SHIT, Firestone/Microsoft.

It's kind of sick that in your mind you can justify equating possible HUMAN DEATH to spyware infections.

Tires blowing out due to design flaws can end someone's life. Spyware infecting a computer due to design flaws can cause someone to format their hard-drive.

Two entirely different worlds that are not comparable.

Free? (1)

dj245 (732906) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689527)

Will it be available to people with 8in1 XP Pro official Bittorrent Edition versions of XP? Last I heard patches would not be available to known keys that were leaked. Would this be denied as well? Microsoft- Making the internet a dangerous place so that they can protect us from it.

Change Caused by FireFox (4, Insightful)

reporter (666905) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689560)

The current situation is that Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) is more highly susceptible to malware (e.g. spyware) than FireFox. You can confirm this situation by (1) using IE for a month to browse porn sites that are chock full of luscious, blonde lesbians and (2) using FireFox for a month to do the same thing. With IE, your computer will be so contaminated with spyware that you will be forced to re-install Windows. With FireFox, your computer will remain intact.

So, in order to make IE competitive with FireFox, the management of Microsoft was forced by the economics of the market to give anti-spyware software away -- for free. Basically, FireFox and its startling growth in marketshare forced Microsoft to be generous.

Bill Gates once said that your computer screen is the most valuable piece of realestate in the world. The management at Microsoft intends to continue to be the owner of that realestate.

Oh. Yes. "Thank you, Mozilla and Firefox! A job, well done!"

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689313)

WOO HOO

M$ sux!

Next week's news (5, Funny)

gowen (141411) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689314)

... Doctor's who leave sponges and surgical instruments inside you body during an operation will now remove them at no extra cost to you!

Re:Next week's news MOD UP! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689375)

Hell, I was going to put something very similar!

I'm shocked Microsoft are trying to act like they're being the nice guy and making it "available at no additional charge for Windows users", when they caused the bloody problem in the first place! Its sick.

Wish I could mod you up but I haven't had points for years!

Dug

Re:Next week's news (5, Insightful)

Trolling4Columbine (679367) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689388)

Microsoft is doing the Right Thing (tm) here, and all you have for them is more snide remarks?

How effective this tool is remains to be seen, of course. But what's notable, IMHO, is that Microsoft is making a responsible gesture to their customers.

It's OK to show a little appreciation sometimes, even for Microsoft.

No. The "right" thing would be to fix IE. (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689459)

IE's default security settings are the problem.

IE needs to, by default, deny ANY apps, unless specifically added to a white list.

Re:No. The "right" thing would be to fix IE. (2, Insightful)

Trolling4Columbine (679367) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689506)

Spyware doesn't only infect computers via IE backdoor. I'd venture that most of it comes bundled with other "free" apps that people have to actively download and install.

And keep in mind that the beta of IE7 is due out this summer, so we may get just what you're suggesting.

Re:Next week's news (1)

walders (838968) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689395)

Maybe so, but the analogy isn't quite right, IMHO... Doctors who operate on you in dirty hospitals aren't necessarily held accountable when you get MRSA. The anti-Microsoft sentiment (and I agree with most of it) has at least produced some action from them recently; this being an example. They're on my evil-list for anti-competetive behaviour and cynical FUD campaigns. But for this effort I applaud them.

Re:Next week's news (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689439)

uh, as opposed to charging you a rental fee for each month those sponges and surgical instruments remained inside of you? After all they can't be used on other patients to generate revenue while they are implanted next to your pancreas.

Re:Next week's news (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689473)

I know you're trying to be funny by bashing MSFT, and that's obviously popular on /. and other places, but...

Your analogy doesn't hold water. Spyware/Adware is a malicious program maliciously written by someone to take advantage of a lack of total, perfect security. A more apt analogy would be holding a truck manufacturer responsible if someone slashes your tires because they manufactured an insecure truck insomuch as they didn't prevent the malicious person from maliciously slashing your tries.

I'll never understand this mentality that someone who puts out a product is responsible for not stopping people with malicious intent from screwing with it. This standard is only applied to software, and it's ridiculous.

Re:Next week's news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689579)

That truck manufacturor should include, for free, a .357 Magnum with every purchase of said truck!

Either that or boobytrap the whole truck. :)

Re:Next week's news (3, Insightful)

gowen (141411) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689582)

Well, yes, I was going for the cheap laugh (Hey! It's what I do, but...)

Security holes get left in software by accident, and by sloppiness on behalf of programmers. If that happens, bad things can happen (malware gets in).

Surgical instruments get left in bodies by accident, and by sloppiness on behalf of doctors and theatre staff. If that happens, bad things happen (bacteria gets in, the contents of your bowel seep into your stomach).

Now MSFT's programmers aren't to blame for the existence of scumbags like Malware writers, anymore than doctors are to blame for the existence of bacteria, or easily lacerated bowels. But if it's through their own laxness and/or incompetence that these bad things can get in ... then they've a certain moral imperative to clean up after themselves. For free.

Okay that's a start... (-1, Troll)

Sophrosyne (630428) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689318)

...but will they let the mac business unit produce IE7 for the mac, how about a real version of media-player?
What about producing any app for linux?
Until then they stay on my evil list.

Re:Okay that's a start... (4, Insightful)

badmonkey (29600) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689369)

why does the world need IE 7 on the mac? Safari is fine, and firefox is better. The mac can do without IE.

Re:Okay that's a start... (1)

codesurfer (786910) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689393)

What about producing any app for linux?

You've got some valid points, but I've got to say that as a linux user, I'd be a little leery of of anything they developed for linux, at least until I had a chance to dissect it.

Re:Okay that's a start... (1)

mrseigen (518390) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689420)

Not making a version of IE for the Mac is probably a good thing. The OSX version is pure trash.

Re:Okay that's a start... (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689471)

So, until they bow to your foolish whim, you think they are evil?

But... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689319)

Not the updates.

WOOT (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689320)

Whoohoo! However, to help recoup the expenses for offering the anti-spyware for free, Microsoft will be selling information about known vulnerabilities in the software to the spyware vendors.

IE vs M$ Spyware App (3, Funny)

codesurfer (786910) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689322)

Does this mean they'll cancel each other out, leaving the user with nothing?

Re:IE vs M$ Spyware App (1)

super-momo (691644) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689440)

Does this mean they'll cancel each other out, leaving the user with nothing?

No. They annihilate and you'll get Long Horn shortly.

Interesting (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689333)

Wow no anti-Microsoft comment at SlashDot yet.

I wonder how this will help Microsoft take over the world...

Read your own stories! (0)

atlasheavy (169115) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689336)

Zonk's being rude. The first story that he linked to very clearly uses the word "may" as in "Microsoft *may* charge for this product." It was never definite that they would. Then again, this is Slashdot. sigh.

What is up with the current Antispyware log file? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689344)

I removed Microsoft's antispyware program because it was creating a log file in the hundreds of megabytes (this was only after one week). I thought there might be a setting to turn off the log -- it really screwed up my disk defrag program because the file has a few thousand pieces scattered over the hard drive -- but I couldn't find anything.

Anybody know if this is a bug that was fixed, or how to stop it?

Re:What is up with the current Antispyware log fil (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689575)

Anybody know if this is a bug that was fixed, or how to stop it?

One person stopped it by creating a fake log file of the same name and making it read-only.

Other people claim their version doesn't create a log file.

Nice one (1)

Digital Warfare (746982) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689351)

I say well done MS.

At lest they are doing something I guess !?

*shrug*

Makes sense to me (2, Funny)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689352)

Gates went on to say, "Much like our Internet Explorer and Outlook Express products, we feel that it is best if we charge for these tools what they are worth."

Re:Makes sense to me (0)

cashman73 (855518) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689468)

Gates went on to say, "Much like our Internet Explorer and Outlook Express products, we feel that it is best if we charge for these tools what they are worth."

Finally, we get the true value of Internet Exploder, right from the horse's mouth himself! ZERO!

Long live Firefox!

Do you really believe that? (-1, Flamebait)

DownTownMT (649551) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689354)

A little while ago, Microsoft stated they would give windows updates to all Windows XP machines, regardless of wherther or not they were legit copies. A month later thay retracted that statement.

Will they do the same here? Possibly see how many people use it, then tack on a cost once they have a large enough market share?

not a 'turnaround' (2, Insightful)

dioscaido (541037) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689355)

Quite a turnaround from charging extra to free.

This is not a turnaround; the linked slashdot article simply cried wolf. MS hadn't ever released a statement committing to a pricing-model for MSAS. At most they had said they were investigating the options. Now they have finished their investigation, and the price is $0.

Re:not a 'turnaround' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689511)

This is not a turnaround; the linked slashdot article simply cried wolf.

Is it not disturbing that we have to make up reasons to have a good Microsoft bashing here?

Like this story [slashdot.org] yesterday. In no uncertain terms dismissed as total fiction by the prime minister himself. But it made for a good indignant group rage.

Slashdot was wrong? (-1)

JPriest (547211) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689356)

You mean slashdot was wrong to make all the "conflict of interst" accusations when all they really did is buy a nonfree (beer) product and make it free?

you know the best spyware tool... (4, Insightful)

m2bord (781676) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689359)

common sense. it doesn't matter how many tools joe user has on his pc, if he/she doesn't exercise sound judgement in surfing, no amount of anti-spyware tools will help.

your sig [OT] (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689514)

Happy Time Off from Work Everyone!!! (is that politically correct enough?)

No. You should trim "Happy", so you don't upset the depressed people in the audience. May as well take off "Everyone" since then the nobodies are excluded. The "!!!" should go, too, since some folks are sensitive to the excitement.

Not entirely true... (0)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689360)

You'd have to sell your soul and give up any common sense.

Of course. (-1, Flamebait)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689361)


It's part of the operating system now... at least until all the AV companies are bankrupt.

At any rate, can we expect the usual chorus of "you get what you pay for" from the astroserfs?

Too Bad for Ad-Aware (4, Insightful)

blackmonday (607916) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689362)

I think Lavasoft may be in a hard position now. Ad-Aware is also free, but they depend on the paid version to keep them afloat. Now that MS is offering theirs for free, I wonder what Lavasoft will do to stay competitive.

I hope MS doesn't turn around and start charging once the competition is eliminated.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689447)

Lavasoft has a large non-US market. They should have no trouble.

And as long as non-US companies reject the desire of the FBI to be ignored by spyware applications, applications such as Ad-Aware will still have a place on my US-based computer.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (2, Insightful)

gregm (61553) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689463)

That's assumming Microsoft keeps up with the trends and maintains a decent solution to the problem. They won't and people will still have to use third-party solutions like Adaware. Just like people use Firefox/Thunderbird and some even pay for Opera.

G

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (5, Interesting)

JPriest (547211) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689469)

Lavasoft has found a new way to make money. Aparrently Ad-Aware no longer removes WhenU spyware. [dslreports.com] I wonder if the kickback from taking bribes will be enough to offset the sales losses created by MSFT's product?

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (1)

bender183 (447302) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689484)

you know they will, that is thier buisness model. Eliminate the comptetion by charging nothing, then turn around and charge you, assuming you will pay because there arent any viable competitors left. They used to give away windows back in the 80s....probally dont have to tell anyone how that ended up working out.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (1)

Matey-O (518004) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689485)

I hope MS doesn't turn around and start charging once the competition is eliminated.
Name a single instance in Microsoft's 'illustrious' career where they did this.

Outlook Express? Still free.
IE? free.
Messenger? Free.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689488)

I think Lavasoft may be in a hard position...

In other news, ocean is blue.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (3, Insightful)

Dausha (546002) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689505)

"I wonder what Lavasoft will do to stay competitive. "

Perhaps continue to provide a superior product?

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689520)

Unless Microsoft is able to overturn the widespread belief that they cannot produce secure, reliable applications and operating systems certainly Lavasoft and others can bank on the negative reputation of Microsoft to continue business.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (1)

CoderBob (858156) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689526)

I, for one, would rather pay for Ad-Aware than use the MS one. I just don't trust them to keep up the support as I would like. I trust Ad-Aware a great deal, while the MS one is new to me, and until I see a reason to switch, why bother? Spybot S&D will also stay installed on my PC, as well as HijackThis (helps with stray issues here and there, and has found a couple things Spybot and Ad-Aware left out- not spyware per se, but just system hogs that I could do without), and PeerGuardian will stay running in my system tray as well.

On a side note, I don't run the "background" process portion of Spybot, just weekly checks. PeerGuardian gets rid of a large amount of annoying Internet crap (it just quietly drops packets from IPs/domains that are "blacklisted", which includes most tracking advertisers and the wonderful RIAA), so if I'm doing any web browsing, actually speeds up the process of page loading.

Also, PG doesn't seem to slow the system down that much at all- World of Warcraft runs just fine, as does UT2k3, and even huge compiles from the Cygwin Bash shell.

Re:Too Bad for Ad-Aware (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689531)

I hope MS doesn't turn around and start charging once the competition is eliminated.

Well, if we use IE as an indicator, they won't start charging, they'll just halt development.

Kidding (mostly). The thing is, it's in Microsoft's best interest to provide security tools to consumers. It seems this may be different from many of their other products, in that it's a utility-- a support for the OS. When a large percentage of Windows users are so infected with spyware that their computers won't work anymore, other operating systems will start looking mighty good. So I'm pretty sure that (for the time being) Microsoft is genuinely interested in helping consumers protect themselves from spyware.

Free capabilities (1)

skinfitz (564041) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689365)

both the blocking capability, and the scanning and removal capabilities. (will be free)

What about the updating capability?

Enterprise WILL be Charged (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689366)

The Consumer version will be FREE. Enterprise/Corporate version is NOT. They only let out one side of the story, for PR effect, it worked. You missed the flipside, for Enterprises they will charge.

Re:Enterprise WILL be Charged (1)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689458)

Wouldn't the big organisation be better off donating to things like spybot? (of course you have to rely on the integrity of the maintainers)

I kind of think that Microsoft would allow affiliates to be added to an invisible white list within their final version.

Microsoft should be obligated to provide this to everyone free. (which really just means in my opinion they should)

isnt antispyware an oxymoron.. (1, Interesting)

MasterOfUniverse (812371) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689370)

I always hated anti-virus and anti-software programs. This is more of a philosophical question.. Antispyware/AV runs all the time to detect any spywares/Virus. The main problem with spywares /virus(among many others ) is that it uses up your cpu time. However, to beat that we run antispyware/virus, which also usesup the cpu time (if running in real-time mode)!

Re:isnt antispyware an oxymoron.. (1, Insightful)

freeshoes (826204) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689446)

True, but does antivirus spy on you and record your keystrokes, maybe while your logging in your CC number, then use your CC number on a dodgy porn site, then the police arrive at your door and your reputation is ruined as well as your life because you get 10 years in the slammer?

Re:isnt antispyware an oxymoron.. (-1, Offtopic)

Carlbunn (817714) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689535)

Jesus, how much thinfoil do you use in a month?

Re:isnt antispyware an oxymoron.. (2, Insightful)

FluffyPanda (821763) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689551)

There are many problems associated with viruses and spyware, and the tiny bit of cpu time used by a real-time scanner can help to protect against them.

Also a bit of common sense while browsing / collecting email on a non-secure OS (read: any OS) doesn't hurt either.

Also, if I want to get really picky (which I quite clearly do), antispyware is NOT an oxymoron since merely using a few cpu cycles does not make a program spyware. QED.

Duh! (4, Interesting)

Sylver Dragon (445237) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689373)

We've looked hard at the nature of this problem, and made a decision that this anti-spyware capability will become something that's available at no additional charge for Windows users
--Bill Gates


Yes, its called AdAware [lavasoftusa.com] and SpyBot S&D [safer-networking.org] . Free spyware killing tools on Windows has little to do with MS putting one out for free.

Ad-Aware is not free... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689507)

...for commercial applications. SpyBot S&D, on the other hand, is. So maybe corporations will turn to Microsoft in this respect.

my bet is in... (1)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689385)

Here's my bet: use is free, but then they'll start charging for updates.

Re:my bet is in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689475)

So what if they do? This is not something that uses a file format you become dependent on. moving to another competing product would not be an issue.

dont be a fucking moron.

MS releases new video game (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689396)

It's called "Hack the world".

Want a cookie? (4, Interesting)

rindeee (530084) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689407)

Great. Why is MS making a big toodoo about it. Wait, I'll answer my own question. It's because they had planned to charge for this previously. Still, making a big hoohah over giving away a tool to clean up spyware that infests one of your other products due to very poorly designed security is hardly wise. "Hey...look at me. My product sucks, but I'm giving away duct tape and bailing wire so you can fix'er right up." Brilliant.

WRONG! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689522)

It was sites like this that made a big hoohah shouting about if MS charges it will be a conflict of interest, anit-competetive, and every other anit-MS jargon they could spew out. MS is simply responding to it saying no, we are not charging for it.

Disagree (1)

rindeee (530084) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689550)

Whatever. I agree with you in part, that sites like /. contribute to the hoohahing. I do not however agree that Mr. Gates used a keynote speach to rebut the likes of /.

A call for objectivity (4, Insightful)

beef curtains (792692) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689410)

Let's be honest - this is a Good Thing. Hopefully they'll start pushing it as hard & in as widespread a manner as they do MSN Search, etc..

Actually, how cool would it be if this was rolled out as an automatic update?

I'm all for any solution that might stem the tide of adware/spyware-filled systems, and the bot-driven-spam & "my computer's broke" complaints that they bring.

This probably isn't said very often on /., but kudos to Microsoft for not trying to turn consumers upsidedown and shake the change out of their pockets (more so than they currently do, that is).

Re:A call for objectivity (1)

Lxy (80823) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689574)

Good for consumers, maybe, but not good for other Anti-spyware packages. Bundling a free anti-spyware tool could be considered anti-competitive.

Of course, anti-competitive is probably better than the extortion scheme they were planning originally. It's that PoS browser that started the problem in the first place. Why would I want to pay the company that created the problem to remove it? I do agree with you that despite the anti-competitive nature of giving away the product, this is a good move by MS.

Asking for money == extortion
Giving it away free == anti-competitive

Of course we all know that when the product ships it will be a classic MS PoS, so there's nothing to worry about :-)

So it sucks? (2, Insightful)

gelfling (6534) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689423)

I guess the jury is in. It really doesn't work very well but we can probably leverage it to force people to pay for something else down the road, so let's give it away.

He later went on.... (1)

Vash_066 (816757) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689429)

Mr. Gates later went on to say....
"We at Microsoft fell this is the best way for us to get our spyware...errrr..."monitoring services" on systems with out to much fuss from the end user. Now let me boot up this xp machine back here and let me show you how it works...." *bluescreen pops up*

New Feature Request (1)

sinfree (859988) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689438)

Does the anti-spyware tool remove IE? If not, someone needs to support the security hole.

Removing MS own spyware (2, Interesting)

tmonkey (531274) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689441)

so does this mean it will remove its own phone home in Windows XP (windows acivation, error reports....

I think Everyone should use (1)

KingBahamut (615285) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689472)

Elinks. Just eliminate the issue entirely. =)

No Linux equivalent!!! (-1, Flamebait)

RootsLINUX (854452) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689492)

Damn, I don't think there's an equivalent of this type of program on Linux! How am I going to get rid of all my..., oh. Wait a minute... >_>

I'll pass (4, Insightful)

hsmith (818216) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689493)

I have been spyware free for the past 6 months since i switched to firefox, which will always be free.

It may be a good product, but it is no longer necessary for me!

I already full proof spyware blocking (-1, Flamebait)

SQLz (564901) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689498)

Its called LINUX.

Almost as good a Linux (-1, Flamebait)

julie-h (530222) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689502)

With this feature Windows will almost be as good as Linux.

NOW FREE! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689508)

With any purchase of Windows XP or Longhorn! Act now! Supplies are unlimited!

M$ controlled Spam White List (2, Interesting)

supergwiz (641155) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689509)

On the spam front, Gates said that Microsoft is working with all of the major ISPs on an initiative to positively identify the senders of e-mail. The system will rely on data from the DNS infrastructure to ferret out the true IP address of e-mail senders in an attempt to defeat the address-spoofing that is de rigeur for spammers. Gates said the system may be up and running by this summer.

Sounds like they plan to have their own White List of ISPs that play nice with M$. I wonder M$ will leverage this new free spyware tool to lock out smaller competing email systems that will be marked as "unsafe" by default.

They can't charge for it anyway (1)

SunFan (845761) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689534)

Seriously, what would people say if Microsoft tried to charge money for their baseline security software? They don't charge money for security patches, nor do other companies I know of. Given the magnitude of the problem of spyware and viruses on Windows, I'd say that they are right up there with basic security holes in needed a fix for free. I'd even bet that lawyers would agree.

Wonderful smokescreen... (1)

Caspian (99221) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689543)

Great. So now Microsoft gets some good "Free PR" (as if Joe Average or Jim Pointyhair actually needs any more reasons to respect or admire Microsoft...), thereby further distracting the average Windows user from the fact that MS software is a spyware magnet to begin with.

How long? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689548)

Before Microsoft starts selling banner ads to supplement their income on the windows toolbar? Or on certain program splash screens?

Between the Lines . . . (1)

Dausha (546002) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689555)

Being a fine, upstanding company, Microsoft will never change its mind. So, you can be certain that they will never "decide" that their once-free product needs to come at a price.

I mean, I turned down their "update" for their product because I didn't want to have to pay for it when they decided to.

Besides, MS security products seem to have a pinchant for being thwarted. I like a 3d party tool to keep MS honest and my computer safe.
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