MS really hidden files....!

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by godfather11, Dec 26, 2004.

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  1. godfather11

    godfather11 Registered Member

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    I stumbled across the following article, which is a few years old.
    But is it still valid?

    "Microsoft's Really Hidden Files v2.1 by The Riddler June 8, 2001 " full article at the following address:

    http://www.nethole.com/articles/01/08/07/1442243.shtml

    It was absolutely incredible and nearly unbelievable that it could be true.
    But I don’t doubt it!
    Since we are now in Dec 2004, I am very curious and extremely interested whether the MS scam is still going on today. I mean, are there still "hidden files" which no one is supposed to find?
    I have been using Windows XP Home since April 2004 (I added SP2 when it was launched).
    If these 'hidden files' still exist, is the pass to discover them still the same as explained in this article?
    If anyone knows more about this, could you please let me know.

    BTW, I have recently switched to Firefox, but still use OExpress for my e-mail.
    Many thanks.... :cool:
     
  2. no13

    no13 Retired Major Resident Nutcase

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    Wouldn't YOU like to know?
    IMHO........
    these files were NEVER hidden
    The content.IE5 folder is still visible... and COMPLETELY editable thru Windows explorer... how? create the toolbar called "Desktop" in the taskbar... use it as a menu to navigate thru the entire system (check it out! It's fun)

    In Win98/ME.....Turn on the "View hidden files" option from the "View" tab of "folder options" in control panel.
    "Go to "C:\ " then to "Windows" then "Temporary Internet files" and then "content.IE5" is visible and TOTALLY editable!!! I used to pick up flash ecards from that folder (that don't get saved using "save as" feature)

    The *.mbx files are Outlook/OE inbox files... tamper wiwt them as you wish, I don't wish to tamper.

    With WinXP.. I no longer bother about these things... they're unimportant.
    All these files are critical to the proper operation of your PC and were hidden just like critical windows components. If you're still paranoid, Get CCleaner(free) or Ace Utilities(30 day trial)... tey'll do almost everything the article says is "hidden"

    Further, my opinion is NOT to go back there... IMHO it's a tabloid and not a security article... I won't be visiting that site anytime soon...
    The article is just an obfuscation of true facts... It is a security risk to kep IE cookes...But its not as if MS is "spying" on you...

    Get CCleaner. Stay safe.
    [by the way, EVERY SINGLE BROWSER KEEPS THOSE FILES IN ONE FORM OR THE OTHER... don't believe me? ask around...]
     
  3. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    no13 may have a point, i am sure some people are better off being protected from themselves when it comes to computers. Still i think most of us go through certain phases as we gain sophistication with computers. Just off the top of my head.

    1 - No one could possibly break into my computer and find anything out about me.

    2 - Sure, there are people out there who could break into my computer, but people like that would be pretty bored at what they find.

    3 - I don't understand it, but for some reason there are armies of computer geniuses, marketing experts, and god knows who else, that seem hell bent on finding every scrap of information about me. what do they want? i wish i could just tell them and they would go away.

    4 - This is unbelievable. These people are flat out steeling. Right out in the open. Everyone who has been online for a couple of years could name names, and yet they continue to thrive. a constant stream of neebies, and several major industries built around fraud, id theft, human engineering, vauge promises...

    5 - All I know is every time I deny access to anything on my computer to any program or entity connected to it, I feel I have won a small victory.
     
  4. bigbuck

    bigbuck Registered Member

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    I hope you're right...because that article scared the pants off me! I bookmarked it thinking I will have a look for this stuff when I have some spare time...
     
  5. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Curiosity aroused i took a look....

    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    5) and while you're in here you might as well go here:


    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/Software/Microsoft/Windows/Current
    Version/Explorer/RemoteComputer/NameSpace/
    {d6277990-4c6a-11cf-8d87-00aa0060f5b5}
    6) Delete the {d6277990-4c6a-11cf-8d87-00aa0060f5b5} key. This will make the "Find: Files or Folders" utility perform searches much faster.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    I don't know if it is a typo or a modification, but the key

    {d6277990-4c6a-11cf-8d87-00aa0060f5b5}
    on my machine has evolved into:
    {d6277990-4c6a-11cf-8d87-00aa0060f5bf}

    come on guys, this is creepy! should someone update spybots or something? Just for fun I deleted the key. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

    - HandsOff
     
  6. no13

    no13 Retired Major Resident Nutcase

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    Wouldn't YOU like to know?
    I think I'll say this again... All standard "cleaning" or "washing" etc. programs remove all that crap without your even thinking...

    The main problems are three...
    1. IE's cache is open/uncoded in any form (Firefox uses some encryption orsomething that I don't see the cache, while Opera used to rename ALL files to operXXXX.xxx and mangaged by using index files (like index.dat for IE)
    So any Trojan/worm theoretically can operate from there... But if you have updated AV/SSM/PG/Tiny firewall or the likes... you're safe Just block code/script/prohram execution from the cache directory
    2. Cookies are a privacy concern... But you know about those already (If you don't, there are some excellent discussions at WSF, and google is always there)
    3. IE cache is LARGE and uses a lot of space ( and I think a large portion stays in RAM, thus slowwing thew system, BUT I'm not so sure about it)

    So regular cleaning of IE cache, registry and cookies is basically OPTIMIZATION rather than SECURITY.
    About the outlook inbox thing... OBVIOUSLY these programs need to keep all your messages somewhere... that they don't tell you the location is a choice that keeps the offline content (i.e. inbox mesages copied to your HDD) safe
    This protects MS from a large number of support calls wanting to know "where the inbox went" (after you deleted those files)...

    I'll repeat the names of Aplications to use when in doubt.
    1. CCleaner [free, beautiful app]
    2. WinPatrol [free, has a PLUS paid version with one or two goodies I don't even remember 'coz I didn't buy it]
    3. Ace Utilities [Paid, great buy says a friend... I've seen the trial and it works great]
     
  7. no13

    no13 Retired Major Resident Nutcase

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    Wouldn't YOU like to know?
    Different IE/Windows verisons usually imply slightly changed registries.

    MS office no longer has "Find Fast"

    Windows XP has an "Indexing service" set to manual start [start if neeed]. Disable it. No performance lags seen.

    Try to find "Black Viper's" page on "windows XP services"...... except for touching "DNS client"... follow his instructions for a "SAFE" configuration....
    Performance jumps by upto 30% on slower PCs... I found 6% increase at no-load... 15% at full-load (playing games)..... 52 running process, 320 MB (out of 507) RAM consumption, 20 tray objects.... almost no difference playing GTA vice city [yes I know it's 2 years old, but you can't argue with economics]
     
  8. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    I thought this little story really captured the essence of the technique

    Then -

    i feel compelled to add another visual, so, on to the next post...
     

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  9. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    fast forward to the present:


    Incidentally, it annoys me to no end that if you reformat a partition in which you disabled the indexing the new partition will by default be set to indexing, and stay that way until I happen to remember...

    ...Okay, if I am understanding the point that is being made here, yes, we can say now they call it an indexing service, yes it can be turned off, yes damage control is possible...but have you noticed how neatly the content of microsofts words faded into the background?

    "...indexing for faster searching..." meaning what, exactly? Are they saying that an average user performing average searches on their hard drive will spend less time waiting for the results of these searches? I think you know that just the opposite is true. Did they lie? did they misspeak? or were they refering to the time it will take them to find the files that they are looking for? Or maybe they mean that searches for office documents will appear faster than for their competitors products though at the price of degraded performance across the board?

    To my limited abilities to follow this convoluted methodology, all i get is that it is more terminology that in the end cannot be pinned down to any concrete meaning. But whatever the meaning is, it is not likely to be related to what they appear to be saying.

    Black Viper, i believe (don't quote me on this) states that the Indexing Service, and the Restore Service are the two most worst services when it comes to actual performance degradation. Well, if I'm wrong, he should have said it!

    Okay, okay, i'll shut up!

    - HandsOff
     

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  10. godfather11

    godfather11 Registered Member

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    Thanks guys for the feedback.
    Most of it is lost on me, since I am far too inexperienced to fully understand your explanations. All I can determine is, that I should get myself a good cleaner and all is safe!
    My actual concern was/is, that if my computer breaks down and needs to be repaired off side, can the mechanic recover all the history of my browsing and/or read my old e-mails? Assuming, ofcourse that he is aware of these so-called
    "really hidden files" and how to find them.
    :cool:
     
  11. bigbuck

    bigbuck Registered Member

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    Cheers GF11....Join the club!......But hang around Wilders long enough and you're bound to pick up a trick or two! Only the most helpful of people on this Forum!
    Buck.
     
  12. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    godfather11, which OS do you have? (XP,ME,98se etc.) if you have XP im thinking of doing the same thing as you want to do - using a cleaner to totally erase the data. so we can do it together :)

    the two options we have, which i can think of are - MRUblaster which i already have, and eraser, which i have, but i havent set it up.

    can anyone tell me if MRUBlaster does the job? or would it be better to manually setup eraser's tasks to do it on reboot? thanks.
     
  13. Sum1

    Sum1 Guest

    Why dont you read Post No. lucky "13". Its ALL there for ALL to see .......

    Good luck
     
  14. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    thanks. maybe i should have started a new thread. i dont want clean sweep and i dont see a link for it in post#13 there's a link in an earlier post (#2) which links to a 404 error here i know my link to eraser linked to a busy server message, but there're other mirrors.

    i have MRUBlaster and Eraser. and as Godfather said "Most of it is lost on me, since I am far too inexperienced to fully understand your explanations." and before Godfather had started this thread i was going to do the same thing; if he wants help with either MRUBlaster or Eraser i'll help, if he wants Clean Sweep, hopefully for him, someone else will help o_O
     
  15. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    i'm not having a go at you Mr.P. :) all i'm saying is *if Godfather wants help with either MRUBlaster or Eraser, we can set it up together* nothing more, nothing less.

    However, as you say Eraser can't do what i require, maybe i should take your advice. what can it do that Eraser cant? thanks
     
  16. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    i have my Eraser setup to overwrite 350 times and it can overwrite anything you want it to, as far as i know o_O i havent set it up, so im not sure about index.dats . so far ive only ever used it to erase unused disk space or files.
     

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  17. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    no hard feelings :) thanks for the picture. is this the link to the software you are talking about? i cant find anything about Clean Sweep from the link you gave, there's something called DELETE DOCTOR too, is it that? Clean Disk Security is $25 and DELETE DOCTOR is free. Eraser is also free.
    http://theabsolute.net/sware/
     
  18. godfather11

    godfather11 Registered Member

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    Hi guys, again many thanks for your help.

    bigbuck - yep, hoping to stick around here to learn many o tricks and tips from all you intelligent and helpful members. Cheers to u as well!
    Have you had time to look at that creepy stuff yet?

    iceni60 - I am using XP Home, Ad-Aware SE Personal, Spybot S & D, Reg Seeker.
    Had a look at MRUblaster and believe that Spybot and RegSeeker do the same by cleaning last visited pages pretty well.
    Eraser seems to be more suitable for cleaning "self-selected" stored information, ie. something you have stored yourself. But will it find these
    so-called " really hidden files" ?

    All things being equal, I feel that Mr.P probably has the right idea with his suggestion to use "clean sweep".

    Will let you know what happened after using the program next week.

    gf11
     
  19. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    yes it will :) all you have to do is show Eraser the path and select when you want it to erase it (day and time of day, or at reboot) then you dont have to open it again. Eraser is one of the all-time great programs recommended by many experts and works 100%. but if you would rather use something which you should be paying for, and isnt in the same class as Eraser, it's up to you


    Mr.P dont take that personally, i dont know how else to put it.
     
  20. Rainwalker

    Rainwalker Registered Member

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    Interesting and helpful stuff.............the pic sent me to the fridge.. ;)
     

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  21. godfather11

    godfather11 Registered Member

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    Back again.

    Have d/ld "Clean Disk Security" as suggested by Mr.P and read through the help files. It certainly is a brilliant program but you'll have to have cotton fingers to avoid pushing the wrong buttons. LOL
    Now, since you both (Mr.P and ice) agree that "eraser" does the same job for free, I'll have to have a look at it more closely. $25 is not a lot of money, but when you are on a pension, it seems to be safer in MY pocket!

    Only been at Wilders for two days and have learned a heap already.
    Thanks to all.
    gf11
     
  22. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    to get eraser to do what you want you need to select file>new task, then select either files on folder or file, then navigate to the folder you want to erase, and pick when you want it to be erased (time of day or reboot)

    that's just to give you an idea, if you decide you want to use it i can help setting it up. but, it would be great if anyone else wants to do it too. i wont be able to find all the places which need to be erased, but with help we'd probably be able to erase just about everything which needs to be.
     
  23. bigbuck

    bigbuck Registered Member

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    Are you guys talking about these cleaning apps to clean the 'unused' section of your HDD's? (as this is where all deleted files still sit!) or are you looking to shred files 'on the hop' as you find them?
    Remember spybot has a handy little shredder (under tools) that can be set to 99 passes....
    Just wondering?
    Buck.
     
  24. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

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    i was thinking of using it instead of CCleaner and maybe MRUBlater so on every reboot it will erase index.dats, recently typed URLs, run, sun java temps etc. but i suppose an easy way around that would be to use CCleaner, then erase unused disk space, i might end up doing that.

    gf11, you can get, and read about, CCleaner from the link below, then use eraser to erase unused disk space.
    http://www.ccleaner.com/
     
  25. bigbuck

    bigbuck Registered Member

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    Is this any good to you?
    http://cleanup.stevengould.org/ from http://www.stevengould.org/...
    It's a nifty and safe little app that I have used for some time now.
    Recommended by this fellow http://www.rayshaw.im.com.au/ (this link has been down for a couple of days)
    Buck.
     
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