Counterspy any good?

Discussion in 'other anti-malware software' started by M_S, Sep 13, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    I've just heard of Counterspy for the first time - on another thread on this forum. I've downloaded the trial and am running a scan right now. It looks a whole lot like MSAS, but it has caught two things that MSAS has missed in all recent scans ('iMesh Adware Bundler' and 'Win Spy Software Pro 8.3 Commercial Key Logger'). Is Counterspy any good? I would love to have something really good that would allow me to run fewer things ongoingly... Thanks.
     
  2. john2g

    john2g Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2002
    Posts:
    207
    Location:
    UK
    There is very little difference, if any, between CS and MSAS. They share the same code and mostly the same definitions.
     
  3. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    Okay, that's interesting. But why is CS catching things that MSAS has missed or ignored? It's now added to the list 'AB System Spy', 'CWS qttask Browser Hijacker' and 'CoolWebSearch Broswer Hijacker'.
     
  4. rdsu

    rdsu Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2003
    Posts:
    4,456
  5. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    Thanks for that Crow - I've read many of your posts, so your recommendation carries weight for me... However, at the end of that post you linked to there is a link to Eric Howes' site, and he seems (if I am reading his chart correctly) to be saying that Spyware Doctor comes out better than CS. Whatchathink of that? (I do recognise that he does work for CS, so maybe he's deliberately not pushing their product).
     
  6. rdsu

    rdsu Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2003
    Posts:
    4,456
    You are welcome ;)

    About Eric Howes and CounterSpy, read this page and the info that is on the bottom of the same page...
    http://www.spywarewarrior.com/elh/adw-state.htm
     
  7. Don Pelotas

    Don Pelotas Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Posts:
    2,257
    Counterspy is a very good AS, but like John2g i find it very difficult to recommende buying it, when MSAS is free and if you use a hostfile in combination with MSAS you will probably never have a major problem with spyware/adware. :)
     
  8. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    Thanks, Don. I am using a hostfile now, so maybe MSAS is enough for me. Does anyone know how long it is likely to stay free?
     
  9. Don Pelotas

    Don Pelotas Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Posts:
    2,257
    o_O
    They said it was going to be free, so i would assume it will be for quite some time yet = more than 1 year.
     
  10. rdsu

    rdsu Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2003
    Posts:
    4,456
    It seems that the MS AS only work for free until the end of this year...

    Maybe they extend that...
     
  11. Don Pelotas

    Don Pelotas Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Posts:
    2,257
    No, this was a internet rumour (including here at Wilders), quickly denied by MS.
     
  12. rdsu

    rdsu Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2003
    Posts:
    4,456
    OK, thanks for the correction... ;)
     
  13. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    Okay, I think I'm going to return to MSAS (which did seem pretty good to me), rather than paying for CS, especially since it seems to have quite a rep for false positives. I wish there was a golden bullet - one app that could bind us and keep us safe...
     
  14. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Posts:
    9,455
    I would never count on ONE AS scanner only, because AS scanners don't have the same maturity as AV scanners and adware/spyware will infect your computer alot more, than viruses nowadays.

    Using a hosts file is certainly a preventive protection, which is the best kind of protection.

    CounterSpy or MSAS is more a matter of money ($20.00 or $0.00), than having a better AS scanner.
    Both have updatings and both have different definition-databases in quantity and identity.
    So what MSAS doesn't remove, could be removed by CounterSpy and what both don't remove, could be removed by Ad-Aware or Spybot.
    The very best AS scanner doesn't exist and you are safer when you use more than one AS scanner.
    I count more on my discipline on the internet, than all these incomplete AS scanners.

    If you believe that your computer is malware-free, because your AS scanners didn't find anything, than you believe in fairy tales also.
    These AS scanners give you only the feeling of being malware-free, pure psychology.

    At SWI in the subforum "Malware Removal", users scanned their computer at least with Ad-Aware and Spybot and even more scanners, but they are still in trouble and need qualified helpers to solve their HijackThis Log.
    These users are probably careless on the internet, but it also proves that all these scanners don't remove everything.
    So it all depends on what you LIKE to believe. I prefer to be realistic. :)
     
  15. Bubba

    Bubba Updates Team

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2002
    Posts:
    11,271
    I'm not sure where you are gathering that info....but CS has a very good track record with a few FP's thrown in every once in awhile.
     
  16. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2005
    Posts:
    1,203
    Location:
    USA
    You are correct, M_S, in the sense that Eric Howes has indicated that he has chosen to remain neutral and not include CounterSpy in recommendations based off of his relationship with Sunbelt.

    That being said.....I (personally) think the three commercial products worthy of consideration for one's real-time, dedicated anti-spyware application are Spy Sweeper, CounterSpy and Spyware Doctor (in no particular order)....based off of reviews, track record and personal experience. Any of these three products are effective and do an excellent job, so it is up to the end user to decide which one he/she favors. It's kind of like Coca-Cola or Pepsi....or Crest or Colgate.....or McDonald's or Burger King - just go with the one you LIKE the best! The differences between the apps probably isn't great enough to consider one as more worthy than the others. I had been disappointed with Spyware Doctor the past couple of months due to a few false positives (which Spy Sweeper and CounterSpy also have) and the high CPU spikes and high memory usage. I'm now happy to report that the FPs with Spyware Doctor have been corrected, as has the CPU and memory usage problem. As long as Spyware Doctor addresses and corrects the problems that users report, I have no problem recommending it......but I haven't used Spy Sweeper and have only trialed version 1.2 of CounterSpy, so I can't really supply an informed opinion as to those..
     
  17. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    Thanks for that JRCATES - I'll check out Spyware Doctor. And Bubba, I picked up my info about false positives on a discussion I started under the same heading over on the donationcoder forums. And my response is also based on my own experience: I'm a little suspicious of the five items CS threw up earlier, since I have scanned with MSAS, Spybot, and AdAware in the last week, and had SpywareBlaster running for most of that week, and none of them caught anything...
     
  18. Mongol

    Mongol Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2004
    Posts:
    1,581
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Counterspy did have a bit of a false positive problem early on but with the big increase in staffing they are few and far between. It seems all Spyware programs get the occasional clunker (false positive) but my experience with Counterspy is they issue a correction super fast. Check out their research center page here: http://research.sunbelt-software.com/definitions.cfm
     
  19. lmnop

    lmnop Guest

    counterspy beta is free. MS is beta as well.
     
  20. Bubba

    Bubba Updates Team

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2002
    Posts:
    11,271
    While it may be a mute point....unless we knew what the 5 items were it's hard to comment one way or the other. As you may know....these programs are not clones of each other and just because program A found something does not necessarily mean programs B,C,D should. However....for the most part Ad-aware, CS, MSAS, Spybot....etc....have many of the same items contained in their databases.
     
  21. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    lmnop, how do you get the beta of cs?
     
  22. Don Pelotas

    Don Pelotas Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Posts:
    2,257
    Here:http://beta.sunbelt-software.com/, but be warned, last time i tried it, my pc slowed to a crawl. :)
     
  23. M_S

    M_S Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Posts:
    64
    Okay, I've signed up for the beta - am downloading it now - and I'll give it a shot... But now I'm tired, so off to bed. Thanks all for your help so far.
     
  24. patermann

    patermann Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2005
    Posts:
    49
    Location:
    UK
    Both CS and MSAS are based on code acquired from Giant but, although there is common code because of that, I do not think that they are exactly the same. (Also, I am sure that I read somewhere that the code has been rewritten for the new CS beta.)

    As for the definitions, Sunbelt have an agreement with MS such that MS have to give them copies of the MSAS definitions until 2007 but they use them to supplement their own definitions, not as the only definitions in CS. Sunbelt have a research division which investigates spyware (they recently found an id theft ring whilst investigating CWS) and this is why CS finds more nasties than MSAS.

    It is also important to note that recently MS have been downgrading a lot of spyware which they now recommend the user to ignore if it is found on their PC! You can still remove it if you insist but naive users will just keep the spyware because MS say it is not a problem.

    (Note that I have no connection with Sunbelt whatsoever - I am not even a customer at the moment, although I may well be as soon as the new version comes out of beta.)

    HTH

    patermann
     
  25. Don Pelotas

    Don Pelotas Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Posts:
    2,257
    They may have rewritten it, but despite a different coloursceme etc, there is still a lot of MSAS feel about it for me to see this as anything but a development of a Giant/MSAS clone.

    To me it's like this, if you can pretty much get the same thing for free and combine it with a hostfile and be very well protected then there is not much to think about, i don't mind paying to support, but in this case i think you are paying too much for too litte extra. Just my 2 cents. :)
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.