Over the past few weeks I’ve had friends tell me they’ve noticed some strange things happening with their computers. So I asked what do you mean?
Some of the answers were the same – laptop slowing down, Windows Live Messenger and Internet Explorer not working and several strange windows error codes.
So I asked them what have you downloaded recently? Well 9/10 replied wallpapers and emoticons and best of all through Windows Live Messenger! One of my friends asked me if I wouldn’t mind taking a look at her computer. I duly did. What I found was SweetIM… may not sound much but this little gem will really bugger up your computer by slowing it down and crashing Internet Explorer.
Best of all trying to remove it with the ZoneAlarm firewall showed that it would not uninstall unless it connected to the internet. Why? What data was it sending, where and who to? This is very intrusive and should worry users.
In fact an application called Websearch was another thing my AVAST boot scanner found which was the primary reason for the Windows Live Messenger and Internet Explorer not loading. Do a quick search in Google and you will find the link to Websearch at the top of page 1 – however (this is the best bit!) the link takes you through to a blank page!
One of the major disadvantages of Windows Live Messenger is the availability of ‘dodgy ads’. If someone is paying for the ads then why would Microsoft worry? Who cares? Well I do! Download at your own peril from Windows Live Messenger….
Skype for example the brother of Windows Live Messenger is a perfect example of how you should do it – no advertising – clean, simple and not resource hungry. However there appears a trend to move to an advertising model to monetize.. yeap I do understand this… but beware again the problem of adware or spyware popping up on your computer.
If you do happen to fall foul of Windows Live Messenger or your browser not working I suggest you run an anti virus scan. I’d also suggest you run this from ‘boot’. If you are unsure of how to do this, do a quick search in ‘help’ for ‘boot scan’ on your anti virus software. The next time you load your computer it will scan your computer without the risk of harming your computer, delete the offending file(s) and all should be well!.
Safe surfing folks!