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Two glasses of red wine awarded by Anura Guruge

Cheers Auslogics. Way to go! Thanks.

by Anura Guruge

As has been documented here I started using the free Auslogics tools, Registry Cleaner, Registry Defrag and Disk Defrag, in January 2010, when I finally had enough of System Mechanic, trying on a daily basis, to hijack my PC from underneath me.

In general, I always liked the Auslogics tools. They appeared to do what they were supposed to do, were very stable, untemperamental and unintrusive. Yes, I did not like that Registry Defrag does not allow me to insist on a Defrag — it [i.e., the software] always determining whether I need a Defrag or not.

But, over the last 18 months I have really got to trust and love the Auslogics tools. I got to know that I could run them and they would do their thing without fuss or bother.

The last time I had downloaded the tools from Auslogics was around June 2010. Around that time they started to aggressively push their top-of-the-line, ‘BootSpeed.’ BootSpeed never appealed to me. It looked like a System Mechanic ‘wannabe’ — and I was not looking for a product that was going to take control away from me. But, I fully appreciate that there is a market for BootSpeed and that Auslogics needs to make money — so that they can also provide the FREE tools that I love.

I use all three of the tools at least once a month — usually at the start of each month. I have found that Windows 7 is not as susceptible to registry clutter as was XP. Plus the raw horsepower of this PC overcomes any small degradation in performance. Of late, each time I used the tools, I used to wonder: ‘Wow, I wonder if they have a newer version.’ But, I never even bothered to look. [Oh, I also got my wife using Auslogics on her new Windows 7 ASUS laptop.]

Then two days ago, I got another of the regular e-mails I get from Auslogics. This one actually talked about DOWNLOADING the Free Tools. This felt like an omen.

So, yesterday, I downloaded all three of the FREE Auslogics tools, viz. Registry Cleaner, Registry Defrag and Disk Defrag.


I had to download each through CNET and I HATED and RESENTED that!

I do not trust CNET. It also tried to con me into downloading stuff I did NOT want. It even tries to trick YOU!

I wish Auslogics would STOP using CNET — though I think they get some financial benefits from using CNET. I discovered, to my joy, that you can bail out of the CNET installer as soon as the software is downloaded.

Yes, all three of the Auslogics’ installers also try to get you to install a whole bunch of stuff you don’t want like the ASK toolbar, twitter account for Australian girls gone wild, Facebook page for the Australian Rugby team etc. etc. At least, if you are paying attention, you can spot all ‘thirty’ of the check boxes and uncheck them. To be honest, I can live with this. I know they have to make money. Now, if they gave me even more compelling options … other than Australian girls gone wild, I may consider keeping some of those boxes checked.

All this said, either CNET or Auslogics still installed the STARTNOW toolbar on FireFox. I was livid. Thankfully uninstalling it, permanently, is trial using the FireFox Add-On manager. But, this is SO STUPID. Don’t try and rape me. Be nice. I know it is free software but that doesn’t mean you have to always try and see how you can screw me. But, I will forgive that too … because it was easy enough to fix.


I ran all 3 of the tools. The interfaces have changed. But, they seemed to work well.

Also NOW there is a CHECK FOR UPDATES option in the HELP menu. Bravo. Thank you.

So all said, I am still a big fan. I like the CHECK UPDATES. I hate the installation process. But, overall, it is worth the hassle.

Hence, my award of the coveted ‘Two Glasses of Red’ — and that can even be Australian Shiraz, Yellow Tail.

Cheers.

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To be honest, the last time I had FireFox 3.6.3 crash was on May 12, 2010. So nearly a month ago. But, I will also readily concede that of late I have NOT been hammering on FireFox either — given that I am not doing as much concentrated research.

The other night, I got curious and went looking to see when I might get FireFox 4. Well that is still a ways out … FireFox 4 in essence being 3.6.7 … renamed as 4.

But, I saw that the 3.6.4 beta was on its final days. Pretty close to being released. Well, I had used the beat of 3.6.2. So, I was game. Not working on a book … at least, on in anger. So a bit of instability wouldn’t druve me totally nuts.

On Monday, June 7, I downloaded and installed FireFox 3.6.4 on my XP box. I was amazed how smoothly it went. It was treated as a straight upgrade and my theme and plug-ins all seem to work.

So yesterday, Tuesday, June 8, after I installed all the Windows updates and checked out this PC … I went for broke. I upgraded to FireFox 3.6.4. beta. (I think it was rc6). Again, the upgrade was smooth and everything just came up. No messages that I had incompatible plug-ins.

So far, so good. I will keep you posted.

Thanks.

Anura Guruge

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I have been running FireFox 3.6.3 since April 3, 2010.

I had thought that 3.6.3 was slightly better on hangs than FireFox 3.6.2, and my Windows 7 Reliability History appears to confirm that. I have had one FireFox hang since I installed 3.6.3 — BUT I also recognize that I have not been banging FireFox as hard as I normally do, since I am going through a transition in my work.

Yesterday, or day before, I got an unsolicited ‘pop-up Windows’ from FireFox saying that it had, unilaterally, disabled my Java Deployment Toolkit plugin because it was known to cause instability! Wow.

This is kind of interesting because on March 23, 2010, I had suggested that you upgrade to the latest and greatest Java because I had the feeling that it was Java that was responsible for many of the crashes.

So if YOU are using FireFox 3.6.x … go to TOOLS and invoke ADD-ONS >> Plugins. See if FireFox will tell you to disable Java Deployment Tools. Even if it doesn’t try it.

Maybe it will help.

Good luck.

Cheers,
Anura Guruge

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As soon as I powered up today, much later than usual because I had to take the kids for an Easter egg hunt, I got FireFox 3.6.3.

So am I posting this using FireFox 3.6.3.

But, from what I can see from the 3.6.3. Release Note … this is SUPPOSEDLY an update JUST to fix one … apparently VERY SERIOUS … security issue. Whiskey, Tango and Fox. This security exposure is SUPPOSEDLY so grave that they won’t even tell us what it is UNLESS we are a registered user with Mozilla.

But, here is the kicker. It is dated April 1, 2010. So all of this could be nothing more than an April Fool’s joke by Mozilla. Damn YOU, Mozilla.

Us loyal FireFox users are being abused with the never-ending hangs. Now you release and update and there isn’t even ONE FIX for the hangs.

Damn YOU. At this rate … I will soon ditch FireFox with the alacrity that I ditched IE and System Mechanic.

I am hoping, against hope, that 3.6.3 does have some NEW code to fix the hangs. If not, DAMN YOU Mozilla. Long live Google. Long live Chrome.

Hope this help. Good luck.

Cheers,
Anura Guruge

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FireFox 3.6.2 continues to test my patience and mettle. Crashed again last night. Second crash in 48 hours. Both times was when I was trying to upload a file via a pop-up window. I do this most days. One is from my online GoDaddy file backup site, the other at Typepad.com (where I have www.popes-and-papacy hosted).

Playing around on my XP machine I noticed that there is a difference between FireFox 3.6.2 and FireFox 3.6 rc2. So I reinstalled FireFox today. Not sure whether it will help. Install finished normally. BUT, when I went to restart Windows 7 for the Windows 7 Update … I got a message that FireFox was not installed properly and needs to complete its installation. It did that. Not sure what that was all about.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

Cheers,
Anura Guruge

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There are a couple of ‘security’ conferences taking place right now where professional hackers from around the world are showcasing their considerable talents to win cash prices and kudos.

A couple of them managed to hack past IE 8 and get into Windows 7, maliciously, with ease. But, other hackers also managed to skirt past security on FireFox running on Windows 7. So that is not good. As far as we know none of these ‘exploits’ are being exploited right now to hack into Windows 7 systems. All it means is that there are people out there who know how to do it, IF they wanted to.

No updates from Microsoft or Mozilla as yet.

So just a heads up. Here are two good links you may want to read: < link1> & <link2>.

All the best.

Cheers
Anura Guruge

P.S. No Windows 7 updates today, i.e., March 26, 2010

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I had always suspected that my FireFox 3.6 crashes were related to scripts — in particular Java Scripts (JScripts).

Just now I had an email from the Mozilla (read ‘FireFox’) support form that kind of confirmed this.

What we need to do is upgrade to the latest (and greatest) version of Java, viz. 6.0.18.

If you look … by starting up the Java console (by going to Windows 7 START and searching on ‘Java’) … you will probably notice that you are still at 6.0.17 (or maybe even lower). I have automated Java updates, but unlike Windows, I think Java only checks for updates MONTHLY).

Anyway … I forced it to update and I got 6.0.18.

Once you have that you need to disable your 6.0.16 and 6.0.17 ADD-ONS in FireFox 3.6.

To do that go to FireFox TOOLS >> ADD-ONS.

When the list of ADD-ONS is displayed DISABLE all Java entries that are NOT 6.0.18. Do NOT worry if you do not see a 6.0.18 entry. Disable all the non 6.0.18 ADD-ONS.

Now restart FireFox. Don’t close the tabs. FireFox will automatically restore them. FireFox will also, with luck (<< smile, smile >>), install the Java 6.0.18 ADD-ON … since you will have that installed on your PC.

I did this … 20 minutes ago. Worked OK.

So please try this. You really have NOTHING to lose. Honest.

Good luck.

Cheers,
Anura Guruge

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