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Last post Author Topic: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?  (Read 7345 times)

Joe Hone

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WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« on: January 17, 2013, 11:06:20 PM »
I have both WinPatrol Plus and AnVir Task Manager installed on my computers but my right brain dominates and I can easily got lost using what to others is routine software. If you have used one or both, what do you like/dislike about it? Strengths or weaknesses? I did do a search here for both programs, but it has been a while and several updates since there was meaningful discussion about either. Each definitely misses things the other catches, and I haven't yet figured out how to harness the full potential of either program. Any opinions? I think this is a timely topic given the current member discount for WinPatrol Plus - and an opportunity to encourage others to check out the other discounts available.     

Curt

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2013, 06:48:39 AM »
I also use WinPatrol and AnVir Task Manager Pro (both for control of startup),
and Zemana AntiLogger

-that was 9 months ago. In the long run I got tired of answering so many pop-up questions, so I stopped trialing so many weird programs, and removed WinPatrol and Zemana. WinPatrol is really fine, but - I don't have the energy right now to go into details - I simply like the pro version of AnVir better. Of course it is not alone, I am also running Outpost Security Suite Pro at the same time.

If one is in the habit of testing many "unknown" programs, or visiting many dubious sites, I will think WinPatrol is a little more strict / trustworthy than AnVir.

cyberdiva

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2013, 09:10:30 AM »
I've used both WinPatrol Plus and, a couple of years ago, AnVir Task Manager Pro.  I found I much preferred WinPatrol Plus.  AnVir had a number of useful features, but as time went on, I trusted it less and less.  Its "security ratings" of programs on my computer were at times way off base, it offered inappropriately alarming warnings when I tried to delete a program from its startup list, and some of its features turned out to be little more than links to other companies' programs.  I finally removed AnVir from my computer. 

I do have some reservations about WinPatrol Plus as well, especially its inability to provide information about some programs on my computer, but on the whole I find it does a very good job of warning me when programs try to insert themselves into the startup menu without my permission or make some other changes I'm not expecting, and it gives me an easy way to control a number of services and tasks.

wraith808

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2013, 10:05:37 AM »
I think the inability to provide information about programs isn't related to WinPatrol PLUS, but the program in question.  The information provided is an opt-in sort of thing from the developer; they have to provide that information.  There's some information that can be retrieved from your system, but a lot of it comes from the application in question.

barney

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2013, 10:34:13 AM »
I think the inability to provide information about programs isn't related to WinPatrol PLUS, but the program in question.  The information provided is an opt-in sort of thing from the developer; they have to provide that information.  There's some information that can be retrieved from your system, but a lot of it comes from the application in question.

Wel-l-l-l ... yes, but ...

WinPatrol Plus, every time I restart my system, provides me with ~five (5) dialogs telling me that some unnamed program is trying to start, with two (2) buttons to either permit or deny that particular unnamed application.  Now, I know the program name can be either extracted from the application or from the system.  But, still, every restart, there are those same dialogs.  And I can't even [reliably] isolate them by a process of elimination  :(.  Not that it matters, 'cause WinPatrol provide no way for me to show those elements as safe.  I'm close on to ditching it:  if it cannot/will not tell me what software is trying to run, what else is it missing?  Reliability has become questionable.

rgdot

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2013, 10:41:26 AM »
Even the name of the application is missing? That can't be good, for your system (more than  WinPatrol actually)

wraith808

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2013, 10:42:07 AM »
Now, I know the program name can be either extracted from the application or from the system.

Incorrect.  Depending on how it's starting, those can be obfuscated.  It's one of the ways that malicious programs keep themselves out of the running objects table and out of task manager.

barney

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2013, 11:06:55 AM »
Even the name of the application is missing? That can't be good, for your system (more than  WinPatrol actually)
Now, I know the program name can be either extracted from the application or from the system.

Incorrect.  Depending on how it's starting, those can be obfuscated.  It's one of the ways that malicious programs keep themselves out of the running objects table and out of task manager.

Well, yes and no.  A developer can create such obfuscation, but why bother when there's no rationale for it?  While it's entirely possible I'm loading four (4) malware elements, I'm a bit doubtful.

I do know that one (1) of the startup dialogs was for MyInfo - because I took it out of autostart.  Every time I start it manually, I get that same dialog.  I don't think its name is concealed, since the firewall recognized it immediately.  Yeah, I know, the firewall could be using a different algorithm, and there have been references to MyInfo being not well coded, but still ...

mwb1100

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2013, 12:03:16 PM »
Have you let BillP (WinPatrol's author) know about the problem?  I have the impression that he's pretty responsive to feedback.

wraith808

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2013, 12:10:31 PM »
Well, yes and no.  A developer can create such obfuscation, but why bother when there's no rationale for it?  While it's entirely possible I'm loading four (4) malware elements, I'm a bit doubtful.

You don't even have to intentionally do it.  You can have your process started by rundll32 or svchost and not sign it, and then, though you can see something appear in the ROT, you don't have any idea of what it was.  Of course, none of these might be the reason- it's just that the question of it's as simple as extracting it from the process name or such information is not the be all to everything that runs.  I guess in the end, mwb said it best:

Have you let BillP (WinPatrol's author) know about the problem?  I have the impression that he's pretty responsive to feedback.

Because only he'd know how he was doing it and could only fix it if it was reported.

cmpm

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2013, 12:20:48 PM »
This is from support for WinPatrol-

ALERT: Windows Updates from Microsoft this week caused many system files to be uninstalled & replaced. WinPatrol users may see multiple alerts about a program being uninstalled. These messages expected & safe.
Just click OK and know that if these were dangerous attacks you'd be protected.

http://www.billp.com/support.html

I'm not really sure what all that means. ?

I've had a few quirks, like loosing some startup items myself.
Had to add them back in.

Tinman57

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2013, 08:39:43 PM »
  I've been using WinPatrol Plus (Registered) for years now and wouldn't use my computer without it.  I've only had a couple of minor issues that wasn't the fault of the program and was cured within a day or two.  The author, BillP, actually emails you with helpful information within a day or so after asking for help.  Not only that, but he's a really nice guy too, we have emailed back and forth a few times on non-WinPatrol related things.  He's just a down-home type guy.
  Anyhow, WinPatrol is extremely safe to use and doesn't try to install any crapware.  It has saved my butt on several occasions when apps attempted to do things on my system that wasn't kosher.  The info system is up-to-date and is a big help when trying to figure out what is running in the background and whether it's safe to stop it and such.
  WinPatrol is an integral part of my system.

Joe Hone

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2013, 09:21:53 PM »
Anyhow, WinPatrol is extremely safe to use and doesn't try to install any crapware. 

AnVir installed 3 utilities all of which scan for various things (registry errors, PC performance, outdated drivers) and then asks for payment/install prior to finishing. That alone is pretty objectionable. I'm still soldiering on with both, but I'm finding WinPatrol gives more alerts, although when AnVir alerts on the same start-up it alerts first. I'm not convinced that makes it the better program, however. 

mwb1100

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2013, 12:01:16 AM »
AnVir installed 3 utilities all of which scan for various things (registry errors, PC performance, outdated drivers)

I used to use both as well, but then when I checked out an upgrade Anvir did something like that and I dropped it.

Curt

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2013, 02:59:57 AM »
AnVir installed 3 utilities all of which scan for various things (registry errors, PC performance, outdated drivers) and then asks for payment/install prior to finishing.

I too would  like programs not to try selling me things I didn't ask for. However, I #know# by experience that such practice is commonly used in the software world, so I always watch carefully what I am clicking "Yes/Okay/Next" to, when I install a program. Of course even more if the program is new to me. Don't you? I mean, you too will say that that software trialing isn't for blind or mindless people, right?

You said "AnVir installed 3 utilities". I say, Yes, that is sad, but first you told it to!  ;)

mwb1100

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2013, 03:59:49 AM »
I might be blind or mindless at times, but I don't like software doing that whether or not there's a box I can uncheck to prevent it.  For some software that's "free" I might not be too angry depending on how intrusive or hidden the crapware is. 

But it's completely unacceptable behavior for software that I'm paying for - even if I haven't paid yet because it's a trial.

Tuxman

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2013, 04:06:54 AM »
Quote
WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?

Sysinternals Suite.

Curt

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2013, 05:58:31 AM »
But it's completely unacceptable behavior for software that I'm paying for

-I think you're exaggerating. Without knowing, of course, my guess is that you have at least one program installed that did exactly this during installation. But I will of course agree that it's completely undesirable behavior.

Joe Hone

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2013, 06:10:04 AM »
You said "AnVir installed 3 utilities". I say, Yes, that is sad, but first you told it to!

Now that I've learned how the industry works I'd say yes, that in the future, it is up to me to prevent the installation of spurious add-ons, but not the first time it happens. This is similar to downloading for the first time from softpedia or cnet, where one clicks on a link for a particular software, unaware that the prominent colored download tabs definitely do not download what they are looking for - invariably, what they are looking for is linked via a generic, underlined script somewhere lower down on the screen. Yes, these sites need revenue to survive, but when I go to the hardware store, no one sneaks something I don't want and didn't choose into my cart and then charges me for it as I leave the store. I don't know about for you, but the practice of bait-and-switch comes to mind for me.

Shades

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2013, 06:16:25 AM »
ProcessExplorer (part of the Sysinternals Suite that was mentioned by Tuxman) can be configured to show a notificiation the moment services and processes are started and/or stopped. If memory serves me right, it also allows you to do quick and easy web-research for any of the entries in its extensive overview.

The whole Sysinternals Suite) is about 12Mbyte to download, actively maintained (by one of the main Windows architects at Microsoft, offered freely and its portable.

There are even instructional videos around (made by the author) that help you eleiminate all kinds of nasties that could find a way on your PC with these tools, if the vast range of available functionalities inside this suite overwhelm you.

Jibz

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2013, 06:48:42 AM »
While the sysinternals suite is very powerful, I think for the majority of users something like WinPatrol is both easier and safer to use (as in less likely they will shoot themselves in the foot).

Curt

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2013, 07:02:14 AM »
the practice of bait-and-switch comes to mind for me.

-I agree with you, just as I agree with mwb1100, in the sense that this practice is very undesirable. We don't want it, but we've got it and will continue to get it even more anyway. Greed, poor morale, and lack of laws & law-enforcement for the Internet. I actually think this is why Google sometimes is trying to act like a policeman. The problem being of course that Google itself is driven by the greed for money. The Ten Commandments have poor conditions on the Internet...

I also agree that Sysinternals Suite is very fine, but also a little difficult to set and to use.

Tinman57

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #22 on: January 20, 2013, 04:50:45 PM »
Anyhow, WinPatrol is extremely safe to use and doesn't try to install any crapware. 

AnVir installed 3 utilities all of which scan for various things (registry errors, PC performance, outdated drivers) and then asks for payment/install prior to finishing. That alone is pretty objectionable. I'm still soldiering on with both, but I'm finding WinPatrol gives more alerts, although when AnVir alerts on the same start-up it alerts first. I'm not convinced that makes it the better program, however. 
Before the app is loaded it's passed to your anti-virus for permissions first, that's why it's always first to notify.

Curt

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #23 on: January 20, 2013, 05:32:35 PM »
-the task manager doesn't include anti-virus scanner, but it can check files with 30+ antivirus engines

Joe Hone

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Re: WinPatrol Plus or AnVir Task Manager?
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2013, 08:34:12 PM »
Having spent several weeks running AnVir Task Manager Pro and WinPatrol Plus side by side, here are some of my thoughts about how they compare in the areas where they share similar functions. They are very different in what they do, but for protection from malware, they offer similar performance. I have to state up front that my bias is toward WP and BillP, even though I like the overall functions of AnVir as much or better; single individual developer, niche product that fills a real (as opposed to fanciful or empty) need, lifetime license with free updates, may be installed on multiple personal computers, no adware (see post #12), very strong developer support, and so on. Cudos to BillP and WinPatrol.

I have been running both programs on XP and Windows 7. Both give me peace of mind knowing that I get alerted to program changes and thus any malware changes are brought to my attention and for that alone I would pay for either one.

When it comes to alerts for program changes, AnVir nearly always notifies me first – often, if I check “no” when it asks if I want to allow the process, WP never even opens. I don’t know how critical the timing is for alerts, but there is clearly a longer delay for WP. However, WP first alerts when a program has been deleted or removed, and WP tells me when AVG, the current anti-virus program I’m running, downloads updates. Not a critical warning perhaps, but AnVir doesn’t seem to notice.

WP Plus gives access to an online database that tells you what the process is for, how safe it is, and whether you can turn it off. This is very useful if you are interested in improving performance and willing to spend a few moments linking from WP to the website to do your due diligence. AnVir has nothing similar.

As far as GUI, both are fairly complicated, but AnVir’s has familiar drop down menus and takes just minutes to get comfortable with, plus its main screen is fairly intuitive and is configurable with different processes. WP does not have a main screen, and overall the GUI feels cumbersome and archaic, it is definitely ready for a revision.

WP has short descriptions explaining the function of each screen which are not overly wordy and are surprisingly useful. While AnVir has a tutorial that is accessible from the help screen, it isn’t that helpful to find specific functions, and overall AnVir takes a bit more guesswork to figure out some functions.

Both programs allow for tweaking of Windows with things like delayed startup, control scheduled tasks, etc. but this is where AnVir really separates itself from WP. Granted, it is a task manager and thus is not totally amenable to side by side comparison with WP – AnVir will replace Windows Task Manager if you want – but the control it gives over the OS is impressive. The tools menu has a function called Tweaker for Windows, and gives you six screens with over 60 check boxes, plus a dozen additional drop down menus for function control, just to enhance the performance of your computer. In addition, the traditional drop down menus that are fixed in the menu bar (file/processes/tools/view/help) give you access to much more OS functions than WP Plus.

As gatekeepers for undesired processes being installed on your computer, both programs perform well and at one time or another, running them individually, they have both warned me when a website tried to install something I wasn’t aware of and didn’t want. If they were priced comparably, and if both offered lifetime licenses with lifetime free updates, AnVir would be my choice – WinPatrol would be duplicative in my experience. But here is where the clear value of WP trumps the extra functions of AnVir. There is something to be said for a one time purchase that will actually give you access to current updates for the foreseeable future, and Windows Task Manager isn’t all that bad, so in the end I can do without AnVir. Plus WP does give me the ability to streamline my computer’s performance, so overall I believe WP to be the better deal.