NWN question...

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Rath Darkblade » Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:58 pm

OK. I'm downloading it again, and adding it to Avast's exceptions list. Hopefully it won't cause any more problems... fingers crossed.

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Re: NWN question...

Post by notbobsmith » Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:15 pm

Rath Darkblade wrote: In the meantime... notbobsmith, I would suggest you scan your computer for viruses...? Just to make sure? I'm no expert on these matters, but that would seem logical to me. What do the rest of you think?
I have the Platinum Edition on CD, but I'm currently using the version I bought from GOG when it was on sale. As such, I haven't used the patch for quite a few years. But it was originally downloaded from Bioware when they were still hosting the file so it is from a "clean" source. I kept the patch just in case. When I had it installed (this was several years ago mind you) McAfee never gave me any alerts.

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Rath Darkblade » Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:25 pm

Ugh!!! Image

Avast is giving me no end of trouble. :x I disabled Avast, put the file on Avast's exception list and downloaded it from NWVault, then disconnected from the internet. I then re-enabled Avast and scanned the file for viruses. Lo and behold, Avast again thinks that the file is a virus - and deletes it without giving me a chance to say yes or no. :shock:

I have had it up to here with Avast's interference. This morning alone, I've wasted over two hours on this crap. UGH!!! :x

I've just downloaded the file AGAIN from DPX's second link. Maybe I should switch to a different anti-virus - one that doesn't cause so many problems? What do you all think? :)

Thanks...

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Collector » Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:44 pm

I think Tawm is using ESET and likes it. I have used their online scanner to good results. Can't say about how common false positives are with ESET. Malwarebytes is good. Microsoft Security Essentials is not as highly regarded as it once was. I'd stay away from Norton and McAfee like the plague. AVG used to be great, but it became a huge resource hog to the point that it will drag a system to its knees. Kaspersky is well regarded, but I do not have any experience with it myself. Some like Panda, but I have also heard complaints about it, too.

I use a combination of solutions. I also keep a few live CDs on hand for emergency's sake. Just keep in mind that you only ever want one real time scanner active, otherwise they can interfere with each other and can cause sharing violations.

In the end though, the single most important feature of your security setup exists between your keyboard and chair. Stay away from naughty sites, be careful with any attachment downloaded, especially email attachments. If you need a small program/utility check what is on SourceForge first. Manually scan anything you have downloaded before doing anything with it.
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Re: NWN question...

Post by notbobsmith » Tue Mar 03, 2015 10:40 pm

I'd recommend an ad blocker as well. I've had "regular" sites try to take me to a "Your Flash Player needs an update" page. I thought I was pretty good with avoiding malware, but I think I got infected a few months ago through something like this. It looked like IE was giving an error message. I even tried force closing it through Task Manager. It kept popping up anyway, so I hit OK. Then the Command Prompt pops up and vanishes after a second (uh oh). Next thing I know, my computer slows to a crawl and Task Manager has 10 executables claiming to be Google Chrome (which I don't have) each hogging ~40 megs of RAM. McAfee didn't see it. Ended up restoring the system to factory default. All this despite my best efforts.
Collector wrote: In the end though, the single most important feature of your security setup exists between your keyboard and chair. Stay away from naughty sites, be careful with any attachment downloaded, especially email attachments. If you need a small program/utility check what is on SourceForge first. Manually scan anything you have downloaded before doing anything with it.

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Rath Darkblade » Tue Mar 03, 2015 10:42 pm

Collector wrote:I think Tawm is using ESET and likes it. I have used their online scanner to good results. Can't say about how common false positives are with ESET. Malwarebytes is good. Microsoft Security Essentials is not as highly regarded as it once was. I'd stay away from Norton and McAfee like the plague. AVG used to be great, but it became a huge resource hog to the point that it will drag a system to its knees. Kaspersky is well regarded, but I do not have any experience with it myself. Some like Panda, but I have also heard complaints about it, too.

I use a combination of solutions. I also keep a few live CDs on hand for emergency's sake. Just keep in mind that you only ever want one real time scanner active, otherwise they can interfere with each other and can cause sharing violations.
Of course! :) I have used Malwarebytes for ages, and I thought it was well-regarded, but it's good to have my opinion backed up by that of an expert. :) I've heard good things about Kaspersky too; I've heard about ESET, but haven't used it. Do you or Tawm know what it's like? Can you tell me more, please? :)

Yes, I used Norton many many years ago, when I was just starting out. It's a resource-hog; I haven't used it in decades. I switched to AVG, which (as you've pointed out) is a resource-hog too. After that, I switched to Avast. I haven't had a problem with it, except that it returns false positives. (And... I'm not sure why... I just found out that it deleted the NWN patch file without asking me. Again.) :x
Collector wrote:In the end though, the single most important feature of your security setup exists between your keyboard and chair. Stay away from naughty sites, be careful with any attachment downloaded, especially email attachments. If you need a small program/utility check what is on SourceForge first. Manually scan anything you have downloaded before doing anything with it.
I agree completely with your third paragraph. I am already very careful with attachments and anything that I download, scanning them all with both Malwarebytes and Avast. I also don't open any email attachments, nor do I open any email from anyone I don't know - but maybe that's too careful? What do you think?

I've heard about SourceForge before, of course, but I didn't know what it was for. Can you please elaborate? *smile*

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Collector » Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:57 am

You will have to ask Tawm about ESET. I will agree with using an ad blocker. It also has the benefit getting rid of web annoyances. Adblock Plus is highly recommended. It is an extension for Firefox and I believe there is also a version for Chrome. If you use Firefox, you might want to consider the No Script extension.

SourceForge is the home of many open source projects. The DOSBox downloads are on SourceForge. It is the first place I look for any program/utility needs. http://sourceforge.net/
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Re: NWN question...

Post by DeadPoolX » Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:24 am

Rath, you probably have Avast set to delete files it believes are infected. Go to SETTINGS, then choose ACTIVE PROTECTION, select "customize" under the FILE SYSTEM SHIELD or WEB SHIELD heading (it depends which you want to modify). Once there, click on ACTIONS, and from that panel you can tell Avast how to respond to viruses or other malware.

Regardless, it seems there's something weird going on there with you and Avast. I'm not sure why you're having this problem, but I'll bet it's because of some setting you've incorrectly made or something you need to adjust. The vast majority of the time the problem stems from something the user either did or didn't do, as opposed to the software itself.

I disagree with Collector on that Avast is "notorious for false positives." I've only had one problem with it -- and that was easily fixed -- in all the years I've been using it. I've had far more problems (ranging from false positives to hijacking the entire machine) with other virus scanning software.
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Re: NWN question...

Post by Tawmis » Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:45 am

Collector wrote: I think Tawm is using ESET and likes it. I have used their online scanner to good results. Can't say about how common false positives are with ESET.
ESET is amazing. It is, however, not free. My co-worker (like 7 years ago) went to one of their conferences, and was given several CDs that had like a 6 month trial. He gave me one of the CDs, I did the trial - and was hooked. It's completely non-invasive. It doesn't slow down my system. It updates on it's own, notifies me if there's Windows updates to be installed. Comes with a firewall. I can't say enough good things about ESET. Seriously.
Collector wrote: I'd stay away from Norton and McAfee like the plague.
Agreed.
Collector wrote: In the end though, the single most important feature of your security setup exists between your keyboard and chair.
So very true.
But even the best sites get hacked, so even if you're using common sense, protection is still a good idea.
Collector wrote: Adblock Plus is highly recommended. It is an extension for Firefox
Again, highly agree.
DeadPoolX wrote: I disagree with Collector on that Avast is "notorious for false positives." I've only had one problem with it -- and that was easily fixed -- in all the years I've been using it. I've had far more problems (ranging from false positives to hijacking the entire machine) with other virus scanning software.
I think experiences vary. While I swear up and down about ESET, I am sure a google search can find negative comments too. I just know that there have been several threads here (with download installers, running things from here, where AVAST was what was causing the issue).

http://sierrahelp.com/forums/viewtopic. ... 915#p51915
http://sierrahelp.com/forums/viewtopic. ... 728#p51728 (scroll back, then mention Avast)
http://sierrahelp.com/forums/viewtopic. ... 282#p50282 (probably the one issue you mentioned, that you figured out)
http://sierrahelp.com/forums/viewtopic. ... 254#p49254
http://sierrahelp.com/forums/viewtopic. ... 052#p49052

So it's probably all a matter of customizing your Anti-Virus, whether it's Avast, ESET, or whatever - to get the best experience.

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Rath Darkblade » Wed Mar 04, 2015 4:00 am

Collector wrote:You will have to ask Tawm about ESET. I will agree with using an ad blocker. It also has the benefit getting rid of web annoyances. Adblock Plus is highly recommended. It is an extension for Firefox and I believe there is also a version for Chrome. If you use Firefox, you might want to consider the No Script extension.

SourceForge is the home of many open source projects. The DOSBox downloads are on SourceForge. It is the first place I look for any program/utility needs. http://sourceforge.net/
No problems, collector. I already have both Adblock and NoScript and I agree that they're pretty amazing. :)
DeadPoolX wrote:Rath, you probably have Avast set to delete files it believes are infected. Go to SETTINGS, then choose ACTIVE PROTECTION, select "customize" under the FILE SYSTEM SHIELD or WEB SHIELD heading (it depends which you want to modify). Once there, click on ACTIONS, and from that panel you can tell Avast how to respond to viruses or other malware.

Regardless, it seems there's something weird going on there with you and Avast. I'm not sure why you're having this problem, but I'll bet it's because of some setting you've incorrectly made or something you need to adjust. The vast majority of the time the problem stems from something the user either did or didn't do, as opposed to the software itself.
Hmm... DPX, I've done as you said - i.e.:

1. I've gone to SETTINGS;
2. Chosen ACTIVE PROTECTION, and then select "customize" under the FILE SYSTEM SHIELD and WEB SHIELD headings.
3. Once there, I clicked on ACTIONS.

Now, I'm not sure what to tell Avast - here's what it tells me:
file_system.png
web_shield.png
All the options are the same for the "file shield" and the "web shield", regardless of if a file is infected or suspected of being infected; i.e. Avast brings it to my attention and it is up to me to tell Avast what to do. The first response is to try and fix the file (i.e. to try and delete the infected file within a zip file or an exe file). If that doesn't work, the infected file is quarantined; if it's impossible to quarantine, the entire zipfile or exe file is deleted.

My problem is that, quite often, Avast will delete these files without even telling me (at least, I assume that it's Avast?). The last time that the NWN-patch was deleted, I didn't even run a virus-check - I just restarted my computer, and the patch was gone. :shock: This was possibly because Avast assumed it was a virus. Luckily I'd already run the patch, and successfully too. I ran a virus-check after running the patch, and found no other viruses at all. ;)

I'm still concerned that Avast tells me that the NWN patch file is a virus. No matter where I downloaded it from - notbobsmith's Dropbox site, the NWN Vault, the bioware link that you gave me - Avast says it's a virus. WTF? :shock:
Tawmis wrote:
Collector wrote: I think Tawm is using ESET and likes it. I have used their online scanner to good results. Can't say about how common false positives are with ESET.
ESET is amazing. It is, however, not free. My co-worker (like 7 years ago) went to one of their conferences, and was given several CDs that had like a 6 month trial. He gave me one of the CDs, I did the trial - and was hooked. It's completely non-invasive. It doesn't slow down my system. It updates on it's own, notifies me if there's Windows updates to be installed. Comes with a firewall. I can't say enough good things about ESET. Seriously.
Tawm, I've used Nod32 in the very distant past (maybe something like 10 years ago). I think it was free then, but I'm not surprised that it's not free now.

If I have to change antivirus, I'm currently tossing up between BitDefender and Panda. Does anyone know about them? BitDefender has gotten good reviews in PC Magazine (an Australian magazine for PC users); however, when I go to BitDefender's website and try to download their anti-virus, it gives me a choice to download it from their servers - or from websites like Brothersoft.com or from Softonic.com. However, I heard that both of these websites were notorious for malware? Have I heard right? If so, this looks very dodgy to me... :shock: :P

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Re: NWN question...

Post by Collector » Wed Mar 04, 2015 11:45 am

DeadPoolX wrote:I disagree with Collector on that Avast is "notorious for false positives." I've only had one problem with it -- and that was easily fixed -- in all the years I've been using it. I've had far more problems (ranging from false positives to hijacking the entire machine) with other virus scanning software.
I have no doubt that that is your personal experience as a user, but mine is on the support side from having to deal with others' PCs. You can easily find examples of both good and bad user experiences from any package. Tawm can attest to that. In a support role you see averages, not just your own personal user experience.

And that is not even counting issues of false positives that that people have posted here. A topic that keeps popping up over and over on the NSIS forums is with false positives from Norton, McAfee and Avast. It seems that they are too lazy to do a proper scan of all the files to be checked so they take shortcuts. The NSIS installers use stub files that the installers are built around. Because some malware authors have used NSIS in the past to package their goods. I have seen them take a legitimate installer and pack it in a second installer that both executes the legitimate installer and delivers the malware package. These three companies take the shortcut of IDing these stubs to flag the file instead of the rest of the package, which is where any nasties, if any, will be. Lazy and unprofessional.
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Re: NWN question...

Post by DeadPoolX » Wed Mar 04, 2015 5:25 pm

Rath Darkblade wrote:Now, I'm not sure what to tell Avast...
Rath, you can tell Avast to take "no action" when it detects a virus, PUP, or something suspicious in both the Web Shield and File System Shield.

Normally I wouldn't recommend that, as it reduces Avast's usefulness overall (what good is a virus scanner that doesn't detect and fix/quarantine/delete viruses?), but in this situation, it might be worth it to try it.

Something else to try is, instead of turning off Avast entirely, try switching off the File System Shield or the Web Shield, but not both. If it works when only one of them is disabled, then you know the problem is within the settings for that particular shield.

Even if you had to turn both shields off temporarily, at least you wouldn't be entirely unprotected, like you would be if you switched off Avast itself.

BTW, even if completely turning off Avast was the only thing that worked in this situation, you have to ask yourself: "does Avast cause me other problems, and if so, does it do so on a regular basis?"

My point is that if this is the only case where you've had a problem with Avast, you might want to consider keeping it. No virus scanner is without its own set of problems, so if Avast normally works fine for you, it might be worth it to keep it.

On the other hand, if this is just one in a long line of issues you've had with Avast, then it'd be in your best interest to replace it with something else.
Rath Darkblade wrote:[...] it gives me a choice to download it from their servers - or from websites like Brothersoft.com or from Softonic.com. However, I heard that both of these websites were notorious for malware? Have I heard right? If so, this looks very dodgy to me... :shock: :P
I wouldn't necessarily trust Softonic or Brothersoft as download sources, but you've got a virus scanner right now. If Avast detects something (at anytime before, during, or after the download) then you'll know to avoid opening and installing the program.

Once you know that the file is clean, you can uninstall (or at least completely deactivate) Avast. I might err on the side of deactivation as that way if you decide to go back to Avast, at least it'll already be there and ready to go.

BTW, if you reduced the effectiveness or turned off Web Shield and File System Shield, turn them back on before attempting to download off Softonic or Brothersoft.

Regardless, you don't want two or more active virus scanners running at once.
Collector wrote:I have no doubt that that is your personal experience as a user, but mine is on the support side form having to deal with others' PCs. You can easily find examples of both good and bad user experiences from any package.
That's true, any piece of software, regardless of what it is, will have its fair share of those who like or dislike it.

Plus, I could see how seeing things from a support viewpoint might change the situation and overall impression.

I'm not some sort of Avast fanboy (although I imagine such a thing exists, despite sounding ridiculous), it's just I've found far more success with it than any other virus scanner in the past, including AVG when it was good.
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Re: NWN question...

Post by Collector » Wed Mar 04, 2015 6:05 pm

And your experience will also be based on the fact that you have some idea of what you are doing. You are not clicking on everything that pops up on the screen, you are not installing every free screensaver or "required" codec a page offers. In short, you are not testing the limits of the AV out of ignorance.
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