NNNNNOOOOooooo……!


From “Making Windows XP Start Faster” at http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1768883,00.asp

Two of the services listed under “Stopping Unneeded Startup Services”

  • Automatic Updates: This service enables Windows XP to check the Web automatically for updates. If you don’t want to use Automatic Updates, you can disable the service. You can always check for updates manually at the Windows Update Web site.
  • Windows Firewall/Internet Connection Sharing: If you do not use these features, you can disable them.

NNNNOOOOOoooooo….!

Comments (41)

  1. That’s just fantastic. You should make sure companies know where to send their malware related bills next time…

    Unbelievable.

  2. Ilya says:

    See, no matter what SafeWhatever technology there is always a human… ahem… factor.

  3. Uwe Keim says:

    Hah, you at Microsoft are working hard to make things more secure and then a dumb, ignorant editor comes along tries to erase all these effort with one single article. Unbelievable!

  4. Josh Koppang says:

    I’m with you. I am used to end users making dumb decisions like this, but someone actually let that in PC Mag?

    I have a tip: turning your anti-virus and anti-spyware software off will speed up your computer, too.

  5. David Betz says:

    Heck the first thing I did when nLite came out was use it to remove that useless Firewall stuff. I can’t imagine how insane the creators of that thing were. It totally kills all my services all the time. All my friends and family want to put me up for some new kind of Nobel prize for disabling that toy. What a complete waste of time. I could never figure out why anyone would want security software on the end system. It belongs in an intermediate location. Hello? A REAL Firewall perhaps? Anyhow, other completely useless services I removed were IPSec and the computer browser.

    And some programs like, um, oh yes…wordpad 🙂

  6. lol! and you wonder why people complain when they get infected.

  7. Mike Dunn says:

    Because a few seconds shaved off the boot time is FAR more important than, y’know, keeping out the bad guys. *rolleyes*

  8. BillT says:

    Micheal,

    Please write directly to that PCMag editor, and others in that editorial department, and use the power of your position at Microsoft, to gently correct their misconceptions. (From the principle: "Tell the people who can make a difference.") Also, write a better article, and see if you can get them to publish it.

  9. Paul says:

    About time Microsoft started taking these MONKEYS to court… might prevent some stupidity from the editors…

  10. PC Magazine gave were good advices. The advices are not for basic users but more advanced users that know how to keep their machine secure and running whithout needless ms stuff running around. Great article! Thanks for pointing me this.

  11. Ilya Birman says:

    For Automatic updates: YYYeeeessss, of course YYYyyeessss…

    First learn to pay per traffic. The try to enable automatic updates. You know, I would prefer buying and Mercedes Benz or something if I had such money.

    Microsoft has no idea that some people actually have to PAY for internet. Automatic updates is very good feature, but is has to be off by default. Ask user to switch it on after Windows installation, but don’t do it automatically!

    And, everyone knows that those updates don’t help anyway. The only think that helps is your brain. When you surf without clicking strange links, when you ignore promts for installing magic toolbars, it all goes ok. For me. For 3+ years.

    And for firewall, it’s, of course, NNNNOOOOOooooo… "If you do not use these features" is bullshit 🙂

    No one "uses" a firewall. It just has to run in a background.

    So I’m only 50% with you 🙂

  12. MaverickUK says:

    What if the PC is stand alone, not connected to the internet? Then there would be no advantage in running these services.

  13. Karl says:

    While he should be more explicit about "If you do not use these features, you can disable them", we shouldn’t forget that Windows Firewall is not the only firewall in existance…

  14. . says:

    If you are behind a NAT why install the ICS Firewall, its stupid. It also limits your network performance by design.

    If you are going to run a firewall run Kerio or something and not the built in crap.

    If you have a spare machine, run SmoothWall but with the cost of ADSL NAT routers plumeting and easy always on switch on toaster ease, why bother.

    Dont buy a simple ADSL modem get an ADSL Nat router with switch, worth the investment for the NAT feature alone.

  15. Ahhh… Unbelievable…

  16. G. Man says:

    PC mag and the other rags like it, is garbage. Every issue is in big block letters "Make windows start faster!! Optimize windows!! Fix all your problems!!"

    Its all crap. Its not even worthy of using as toilet paper. Anyone who actually buys this recycled drivel just deserves what they get.

    Does anyone REALLY have a problem waiting for Windows to start? Windows XP starts amazingly fast I think. Its about 3 times faster than Linux on the same box. Also, XP has been so stable for me that I never need it to start it up anyway. Who is so bothered by the startup time they are desperate to follow this idiotic advice in hopes to save 5 seconds? You spend 30 minutes to save 5 seconds every month? Brilliant.

  17. G. Man says:

    I cant tell if David Betz is being sarcastic or not. I have seen advice before about the Computer Browser before, but you should not disable it. Just because stuff seems to work doesnt mean everything is fine. I remember Raymond Chen or somebody else talked about the need for the Computer Browser. Just do a search on msdn blogs for it.

  18. I can’t believe they’d even publish that! If you haven’t already, Michael, you should send a letter/email to the Editor-in-Chief.

    There’s certainly a lot better services to disable that should be disabled or set to manual anyway on XP (or at least SP2), like the Computer Browser and its dependent Server service for home machines.

  19. David,

    I’m really glad that you’ve got an external hardware firewall.

    But you’re not 99% of the Windows customers. They NEED the firewall. The firewall’s NOT useless to them.

    And, of course, by disabling the firewall, you’ve set yourself up as an M&M security system. You’ve got a hard candy shell on the outside and a soft chewy center on the inside. Once someone brings an infected computer onto the network, you’ve just lost all the computers on that network.

    We run with the firewall enabled on all 7 computers here at my house, AND we have an external firewall.

    Defense in depth is a good thing.

  20. Frog51 says:

    Personally I always disable the XP firewall – but only because I have a dedicated firewall which does the job much better.

    Anything I can do to speed up XP is essential, Windows has always been slow to boot but XP is much slower. Yes, it gets you to the desktop faster but is then unusable for up to 4 minutes until all the nonsense loads.

    The only reason I have it on one of my home machines is compatibility issues: my non-techy relatives use it and if I want to use all of MSN messenger functionality I need to be on XP. Crazy – w2k and 2k3 are sooo much better!

  21. Michele says:

    As linked from Andrea Boschin (in Italian):

    The mother of all the stupid people is always pregnant!

  22. What boggles me is why people aren’t using the S1&S3 Suspend and Hibernate modes more… most desktops in the past oh 5 years have this support built in, and if you’re concerned about boot times, is really a time saver.

    I’ve got my computer to suspend when pressing the shutdown key on my keyboard, and it will resume when I hit the space bar — boot time is about a second 😉

  23. Forgive me if I lost the sarcasm..

    "why anyone would want security software on the end system"

    Um. Anti-virus, Anti-spyware, Anti-Popup, ACLs, auditing, security policy, protected memory, Execute Disable (NX)…

    Motherboards are coming integrated with firewalls on their internal nics (http://www.nvidia.com/page/pg_20041015762843.html)

    Seems like lots of people want security on the end system.

  24. Jonathan says:

    Frog51: "Yes, it gets you to the desktop faster but is then unusable for up to 4 minutes until all the nonsense loads."

    Something similar happens to me when I first log into Windows; nothing works for a minute or two, and then suddenly everything kicks in. I was able to isolate it to a USB network adapter that I have installed; when it’s uninstalled everything starts up right away. Your situation is probably something similar: a poorly written driver or service.

  25. Me says:

    Frog51, you must either have a very slow machine or installed many applications that loads when the desktop loads.

  26. Dean Harding says:

    Firewall software on the PC does a better job at blocking /outgoing/ connections from software you don’t want connecting to the network. A hardware firewall can block specific ports, but it’s not much good if you’re already infected with a virus that is trying to send out thousands of emails. If you’ve got a software firewall, it’ll tell you that somevirus.exe is trying to make an outgoing connection and you can block it.

    Also, I completely agree with Sean here. I don’t think I’ve actually "Shut Down" my computer in months – I always put it into hibernate (well, my laptop into hibernate, cause it uses no power and my destkop in suspend mode cause at least it stays plugged in). Boot times are in the seconds 🙂

  27. Bruce McLeod says:

    I think that this could be the first post in a series entitled – "Dumb things people can do to increase their attack surface." I have already come across a contender for the next post; Wrapping the execution of your program in a batch file that disables and then re-enables code access security. Yep, it is happening here – http://epgrunner.sytes.net/contentpages/mainpage.aspx#austar and I blogged about it here – http://www.teknologika.com/blog/General/Security/RemoveCaspolMinusSOff.html.

  28. Joe says:

    To much people search in a search engine and they type in "How to make my computer even faster for free" like geez people dont want to waste their money on computer stuff so they just ask for free stuff. Dont trust this websites that say they can help you make your computer even faster… they can crash your computer… thats what happened to my friend. And some website give you viruses then free pcscans. And last thing if you turn off your anti-virus and/or anti-spyware it will make your computer faster but you need it to make your computer EVEN faster like deleting the viruses. Here if you want to make your startup faster try mine FREE and if an uninstaller it’s better then windows uninstaller

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  29. Joe says:

    To much people search in a search engine and they type in "How to make my computer even faster for free" like geez people dont want to waste their money on computer stuff so they just ask for free stuff. Dont trust this websites that say they can help you make your computer even faster… they can crash your computer… thats what happened to my friend. And some website give you viruses then free pcscans. And last thing if you turn off your anti-virus and/or anti-spyware it will make your computer faster but you need it to make your computer EVEN faster like deleting the viruses. Here if you want to make your startup faster try mine FREE and if an uninstaller it’s better then windows uninstaller

    Start up Faster 2004:

    http://www.pcfaster.com

    Free for 21 days or u can oder it if u like it!

    Your uninstaller! 2004:

    http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php“>http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php“>http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php“>http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php

    Note: In http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php“>http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php“>http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php“>http://www.ursoftware.com/download.php You can download Start up faster and My uninstaller in this website

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  30. Mark Dormer says:

    Read what it says.

    If you do not use it….

    If you don’t want to use it….and manually check for updates.

    There is also a caution note on the article warning not to touch if you don’t understand.

    Seems reasonable. Seems clear.

    It’s just offering users information.

    Perhaps we should ban the knowledge. Only the elite can be trusted with it. <g>

  31. Michael Howard says:

    >>If you do not use it.

    >>If you don’t want to use it.

    Problem is, most home users won’t know, seriously, they won’t know if they "don’t want to use it"

  32. lewis says:

    well depends who this article is aimed at… home users who know nothing about security then bad advice cus well you will get mullered for it.

    people who know should know better i liked the XP firewall untill i got a router as i had 5 machines sharing internet through a win2k3 server ICS and i used the firewall to forward ports for certain people and it worked a treat no problem at all.

    Frog51: "Yes, it gets you to the desktop faster but is then unusable for up to 4 minutes until all the nonsense loads."

    and in reply to that I would look do a msconfig and turn of things in there you will be surprised what crap starts with your pc my comp boots very quickly.

    but with xp firewall on networks it makes things tricky so we disable it

  33. Leahn says:

    most users don’t actually know what they are prior to knowing if they want to use it or not. You would be impressed, if you worked with support, on how many users will stop puzzled if you ask them to press the winkey on their keyboard, or how many will ask you "where do I find the control panel again?"