Beware: Unlocker 1.8.7 bundled with adware/spyware/junkware

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by Masterton, Jul 21, 2009.

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  1. Masterton

    Masterton Registered Member

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    Beware: Unlocker 1.8.6 & 1.8.7 bundled with adware/spyware/junkware

    Unlocker is a tool to help you to delete files which can't be deleted for some reasons. Unlocker used to be great until the developer decides to bundle an adware/spyware/junkware into the application in 1.8.6. Unlocker 1.8.6 & Unlocker 1.8.7 installs adware/spyware/junkware called eBayShortcut.exe. Although the installer gives you the option to deselect this ("ebay shortcuts") but unfortunately it gets installed anyway. :thumbd:

    The adware/junkware would not be uninstalled properly by the bult-in uninstaller when you uninstall unlocker.

    This is the threatexpert report: http://www.threatexpert.com/report.aspx?md5=ce49d389a9b30c1a0dbfadfbc1299136
    (the program tries to connect to adon-demand.de for some reasons :cautious: )

    Steps to remove eBay Shortcut:
    1. Create a txt file and save the following code:
    Code:
    start /wait unlocker1.8.7.exe /S
    ping -n 2 127.0.0.1 > nul
    DEL /F /Q "%ProgramFiles%\Unlocker\eBay_shortcuts_1016.exe"
    DEL /F /Q "%UserProfile%\Application Data\Desktopicon\eBayShortcuts.exe"
    DEL /F /Q "%UserProfile%\Desktop\eBay.lnk"
    DEL /F /Q "%UserProfile%\Application Data\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\eBay.lnk"
    DEL /F /Q "%UserProfile%\Start Menu\eBay.lnk"
    
    REG DELETE HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run /v UnlockerAssistant /f
    pause
    2. Change the extension from .txt to .cmd
    3. Double click to run it.

    See more: Beware Unlocker 1.8.7

    I'm looking for alternatives to replace this junk unlocker. A product called LockHunter seems good but I haven't tested yet. Tell me if you know there is a good alternative.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2009
  2. Saraceno

    Saraceno Registered Member

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  3. GlobalForce

    GlobalForce Regular Poster

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    Posted 8-29-08? According to the 3-9-09 post it appears to have been cleared up. Other than quoting, are you able to proof there's still a threat?

    Ah ... promotional feature - and the aspect I'm looking for confirmation on: added fully optional shortcuts to eBay during the installation. Simply untick "eBay shortcuts" in the choose components page during install if you do not wish to have those. Anybody, I no longer run Doze?

    Besides, unless the install option was resolved I'd have no idea why thedatalist would currently push eight-seven.

    OK, looks to have been cleared up last September, I'm guessing shortly after the article surfaced.

    PS - You can remove locked files the old-fashioned way if you have the inkling!
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2009
  4. Masterton

    Masterton Registered Member

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    I have installed it before I posted. Initially I noticed the new version has the "ebay shortcuts" thing during installation. ebay shortcut was still added to the desktop even if I unchecked it before installation. Then I created the bat file to remove traces but I forgot to put the pause command.

    I don't bother to install it again to see if the uninstaller can remove its bundled adware/spyware properly *now* (I guess probably not). It would be a silent update if the uninstaller works now. It's because the version number hasn't been changed since the new release with spyware.

    The Internet has a cleaned-up version with that unlocker assistant adware/spyware removed.

    The connect out and the undesirable "feature" alone are enough to ruin the reputation of the developer. I don't think you should still trust that program even if he tries to clean it up after discovery. It's time to find alternatives when the developer starts to do something which doesn't want to respect your privacy.

    The "opt-in" is a bad intention. I wonder who wants to install this "feature" so it shouldn't be on by default. The developer wants to trap people into installing crapware/adware for people don't pay too much attention during setup.

    What does the post have to do to tell you that the developer has cleaned or "un-bundled" the crapware after the article.
    The thread just said someone reported some anti-spyware found an infection and he wondered if it's false positive. The expert told him it's not a false positive and told him several freeware including unlocker have these installed. The person said he never jacked with E-bay at all but he had installed unlocker in the past few months. So unlocker is most likely the culprit.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2009
  5. virtumonde

    virtumonde Registered Member

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    True,but there are many software that have the same behaviour.Also google,yahoo all think you "deserve"their homepage-search etc.
    The fact that was added even if you unticked must be an unpleasent bug.I have it installed,on vista and xp,without ebay shortcut.
    FileASSASSIN is one contender,i'm sure there are other tools also
     
  6. GlobalForce

    GlobalForce Regular Poster

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    Minus the although and your addition of what's in parenthesis, your "word for word" quote tends to be misleading, suggesting the comments weren't based on your experience, rather quoting the authors. Your second line merely a play on words - uninstalled correctly, properly ... what have you.

    No, no ... she's still bundled - I stated looks. I (yes, speculation on my part) thought if there were any misrepresentations with the installer that Tony would have pointed them out. As for my own findings I'm unable to confirm your results. Dwnld'ed and md5 verified from the authors site.

    8.7-1.gif

    *Program files below - no ebay anything in app-data or the registry.

    8.7-2.gif

    "I don't think you should ..." - an opinion you're entitled to.
     
  7. Masterton

    Masterton Registered Member

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    Yes that's the checkbox I unchecked.
    Yes the instruction part is copied from the source as I quote. The original source has a good instruction. There is no point of rewriting the instruction.
    Let's see if this makes things differently. I set up two accounts on the computer, one administrator one LUA. I installed the program by Run As. The shortcut still showed in the LUA.
    You may then searched for the word "ebay" in the whole drive to see if you come up with anything.

    About unlocker it still doesn't support 64 bit. LockHunter that I mentioned previously has. The interface is similar with information about what locks up the file. It can also remove stubborn malware which doesn't want to leave you. :rolleyes:
    mainWindow[1].png

    FileASSASSIN is nice and adware free. However it doesn't list what processes are locked.

    Found KillBox too. But I haven't tested it so far.
     
  8. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    I've also used Unlocker for a long time, I have never seen anything about ebay shortcuts. I have a vague memory when I last installed it that something was optional, like the yahoo bar with CCleaner, but I've never noticed anything installed extra.
     

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  9. Pinga

    Pinga Registered Member

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    Where?
     
  10. ViVek

    ViVek Registered Member

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    i prefer LOCK HUNTER
     
  11. MerleOne

    MerleOne Registered Member

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    I think that eBay_shortcuts_1016.exe, that was indeed present in Unlocker install dir, is "just" the Ebay shortcut installer, so as long as is it not run, there shoul be no problem. I have however erased it, just in case.

    Thanks anyway for notifying us.
     
  12. Masterton

    Masterton Registered Member

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    It's not allowed to share in Wilders. :(
     
  13. Masterton

    Masterton Registered Member

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    I installed it again in a virtual box. The first case was to simply install it in admin account. The second was to use Run As to install. I downloaded the program from the official website. I unchecked "check for update" and "eBay shortucts". No eBay shortcuts had been installed in neither cases. I forgot where I downloaded the program when I first installed it. From seeing the result I got, I guess I downloaded from third-party site like download.com or anything similar, so the 1.8.7 version I got was not the most up-to-date since the developer performed a silent upgrade (an upgrade which doesn't change version number) on Unlocker.

    Tested Killbox (aka Pocket Killbox). The good is it's portable. This means no installation required. You can drag and drop to delete several files and folders in different location at once.

    The bad is the interface looks unintuitive, no windows explorer integration, a bit slow in deletion process, a minor bug which the delete button is hidden a few times after I perform deletion.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2009
  14. Pinga

    Pinga Registered Member

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    But PM works wonders :D

    Thanks!!
     
  15. jAS0NH

    jAS0NH Registered Member

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    Re: Beware: Unlocker 1.8.6 & 1.8.7 bundled with adware/spyware/junkware



    i'm running vista64, i didnt know unlocker was spyware until recently.
    it added those ebay shortcuts executables AND avg is telling me it tried to
    communicate with http://212.27.63.123/

    which looks like some free hosting site. god knows what info he created while that site was active.

    it sucks how freeware authors end up being criminals.
     
  16. Pinga

    Pinga Registered Member

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  17. tipstir

    tipstir Registered Member

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  18. renegade08

    renegade08 Registered Member

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  19. DasFox

    DasFox Registered Member

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    Thanks for the post, I unchecked Ebay, but I see the .exe, I'm going to uninstall this thing, who knows...

    So LockHunter is the most popular?
     
  20. renegade08

    renegade08 Registered Member

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    Ha-ha, most popular.
    Probably not at the moment.
    But as Unlocker although is a really good app, is no longer supported . Last version was released 01/05/2008.
    Take in mind that it doesn't support 64-bit, while LockHunter does.
    Also with release of Win 7, i don't really know what will happen to Unlocker.
    LockHunter is developed by same guys that are making USB Safely Remove which is great app. And they are really making great effort for USB Safely Remove, as i have tracked them before, so i guess that LockHunter, it would be logical choice of action, as no other vendor strictly concentrate and don't bother itself making this kind of applications.

    Time will tell.
     
  21. StevieO

    StevieO Registered Member

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    I'll stick my neck out and say, as far as i'm concerned Unlocker is NOT Malware !

    I've used various versions, including the latest, and Never had any problems with it, or seen any outbounds, or had any ads, or redirects etc etc.

    In fact it's proved Extremely useful over n over again, on mine and other peoples PC's.

    From what i've gathered, the guy who codes it, and provides it for free, and has to pay for keeping his www going for all these years etc, asks for donations. Guess what ? i bet as per usual hardly anybody, if anybody, has/does ever donate ! So i presume he decided to try and raise some $ to help pay for those ongoing expenses, by including the ebay stuff.

    Here's an explanation about it.

    " un-checking the "eBay Shortcuts" option does stop the installer from running, but it does dump the exe file into the unlocker directory under Program Files. "

    http://www.donationcoder.com/Forums/bb/index.php?action=printpage;topic=13230.0


    -

    Shuttle launch Live now - http://www.livestream.com/spaceflightnow
     
  22. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    Thanks guys very much for the tip about Lock Hunter. That seems like a very good unlocker replacement.

    One thing I noticed that I do not like is that it seems to mess with the Erase contect menu entries with respect to folders.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2009
  23. renegade08

    renegade08 Registered Member

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    Hi ssj100,

    I really don't know if LockHunter can support USB drive removal errors.
    I have just installed several days ago and i haven't tested it fully.
    I have both them installed with Unlocker, which have saved me a lot of times.

    As for your question use "Write us via the suport form "
    http://lockhunter.com/support.htm ;)

    Probably you know they are same guys behind USB Safely Remove.
    Have you ever tried USB Safely Remove?
     
  24. DasFox

    DasFox Registered Member

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    Safely Remove is crap, does nothing better then the windows app. I still get locked USB drives that I can't remove with it and the Force to remove button is greyed out and I sent them an email about 8 days ago with no reply. So if these are the same guys, forget it, I'm not installing their junk! :thumbd:
     
  25. tgell

    tgell Registered Member

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    You might want to try a small utility called USBDeview from Nirsoft for USB drive removal.

    Code:
    http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/usb_devices_view.html
     
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