SandboxIE vs. Shadow Defender differences?

Discussion in 'sandboxing & virtualization' started by a320ca, Mar 31, 2009.

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  1. a320ca

    a320ca Registered Member

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    What are the basic differences between the two? Seem similar to me. Pros and cons of each?

    Thanks!
     
  2. a320ca

    a320ca Registered Member

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    <sound of crickets...>





    can you run SB and SD at the same time? Any conflicts there?
     
  3. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Probably you are getting crickets, because these products have been discussed endlessly. You might search on those terms and do a little reading.

    Pete
     
  4. a320ca

    a320ca Registered Member

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    Thanks and yes I did search, but found nothing "directly" comparing the two products. :p Since then I have downloaded SD and ran it both alone and with SB and found the two actually play well together. SD is now part of my "on demand" apps along with SB. :thumb:
     
  5. Saraceno

    Saraceno Registered Member

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    I'll probably confuse you even more. Best to try out both programs as they complement each other.

    Think of sandboxie, by default, as protecting 'part' of your system. Your web browser for example. Once you close your browser, any possible malware is discarded, and you're free to continue using your computer. More advanced sandboxie users however, with the right configurations, can have their entire system protected. Users with the free version, will diligently right-click and run file or applications sandboxed. Users with the paid version, they will setup programs to be always sandboxed.

    Back to using sandboxie, if you want to keep a file you've downloaded, you have to 'recover' the file. Before recovering a file, you have to be sure it is 'clean', otherwise sandboxie isn't going to protect you.

    So to ensure a file you want to keep is clean, it's best to upload the file to services such as virustotal, or use an AV to scan the file before it is recovered.


    Think of Shadow Defender as providing 'whole of system' protection. Everything is protected. You don't have to setup a new application as 'sandboxed', or right-click and run the program sandboxed, everything is in 'shadow mode' and removed upon reboot.

    But if you want to keep a program, you must 'commit' the file to your 'real environment'. But once again, you got to be sure the file is clean before it is committed.


    Overall, sandboxie runs as light as a feather and allows you to protect the programs you specify, while giving you the freedom to do the things you normally do. Delete files, copy files, work on a document etc. You don't need to reboot.

    Shadow Defender also runs as light as a feather, allows you to test out programs, games, applications etc, knowing everything will be removed once you reboot. It's versatile, allows you to save the documents you want while in 'shadow mode', but if you want to delete files, remove some applications (installed before switching shadow defender on), you'll need to reboot, ensure Shadow Defender is off, then do your daily business.

    Some people argue a person downloading malware with shadow defender, will only remove the malware once the system is rebooted. But using sandboxie and shadow defender, that removes that problem. As you can clear out your browser with sandboxie, know your system is clean, and know any other system changes (installing programs/games) will be protected.

    All comes down to personal preference, for example, in basic terms, if you intend on just browsing the net (sandboxie), or you intend on testing a lot of applications (Shadow Defender).
     
  6. Saraceno

    Saraceno Registered Member

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    Just wanted to add a few more thoughts, as working 15 hours, and trying to type and think didn't go so well.

    Some pros with Shadow Defender. You can tweak system settings, and they return to normal after reboot. You can also set it up so a password is required to 'save/commit' a file to the real environment.

    You can also set it up to continue 'shadow mode' after reboot. This, with the password control feature, you could hand your computer to someone to use, and they won't be able to save files to your system. Your system will always be 'clean'.

    And regarding sandboxie, when I mentioned you can download a file then run a virus scan, it is safest with the paid version. With the paid version, you can force a folder to always run sandboxed. For example, call it 'test folder'. All your downloads from firefox or whatever you use can be saved to 'test folder'. You can then scan these files, run these files, knowing they will only run 'sandboxed'.

    Both are awesome programs. :isay:
     
  7. mjgent

    mjgent Registered Member

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    Nice explanation Saraceno. I just wanted add a few comments to what you wrote.

    I don't use Shadow Defender but from what I have read it will allow you to "test" programs that don't require a reboot to install. If a program does require a reboot and your computer is in shadow mode then it will be gone after reboot.

    Sandboxie I am more familiar with since I use it daily. To expand on what Saraceno mentioned, Sandboxie paid can be set up with multiple sandboxes with different rules. For instance you can set up a Sandbox to only allow specific programs to run and/or which programs can access the internet. You can also specify which folders/files on your computer they can have access to.

    They are both awesome programs.
     
  8. Saraceno

    Saraceno Registered Member

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    I'm still getting used to setting up multiple sandboxes, but you're right, once you do some 'tweaking', sandboxie kicks @ss.

    Shadow Defender is useful if you're testing out a large installation (eg an Adobe product), for a few days or more and you don't want to go through the hassle of uninstalling every component it seems to install.

    Regarding 'recovering' (sandboxie) or 'committing' (shadow defender) files, I'd say they are similar. 'Committing' files might be slightly easier IF you're using multiple programs at once. For example, downloading music, working on a couple of documents, using a file sharing program. You can go, 'keep that, and that, now I'm done - don't care for the rest'.

    Sandboxie is easier if dealing with a large download, say several GB.

    For ease of use, or giving to say a novice user, I'd say Shadow Defender is slightly easier to understand. Turn on, right-click and keep what you want.

    And regarding using both, that means you can leave shadow defender running for a number of days or more without having to do a reboot.

    But as Peter said, plenty of info on this forum about each. Especially sandboxie. Too hard for those experienced users to repeat what they previously said over again.

    :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2009
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