Copyright © 1999 - 2006, Sandra Hardmeier, All Rights Reserved Worldwide
Last updated 20/08/2006

STOP PRESS ... STOP PRESS ...

Windows XP SP2 will include a pop-up manager (just quietly, it works real well) ;o)  It will be turned off by default, but will be easily enabled via tools, internet options, privacy.

 

Update 6 August 2004 - not long to go now until XP SP2 is released.  It will be available via Windows Update, or can be ordered on CD.  The URL for ordering XP SP2 is:

http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/updates/sp2/cdorder/en_us/default810.mspx

 

Pop up windows when browsing are generated by the web page you visit, or they can be caused by hijacking software, or they can sometimes be "Netbios (Messenger) Spam". Netbios spam mentions "messenger service" in the titlebar.

 

If you have a new Router from Belkin, or if you have updated the firmware, you may see pop-up windows. As of 11 November 2003 the word was that Belkin would be removing the popups "shortly". Belkin's reply at http://www.belkin.com/ says:

 

"Important message from Belkin:
In response to a recent Usenet group posting stating that Belkin spams its customers through its routers, Belkin Corporation apologizes for the concern this has caused and is taking action to address the issue. To allay customersí worries, Belkin will offer a firmware upgrade that will be available via download from its website (www.belkin.com) on November 17, 2003. This upgrade will rid the redirect completely so that no additional browser windows will appear during the routerís installation process. Questions can be directed to our dedicated networking customer support line at 877-736-5771 or e-mailed to kannynmc@belkin.com."

 

For the pop up windows generated by web pages, you have a few options.  Disable active scripting at IE tools, internet options, security (not a good thing) or use a third party plug-in such as the MSN Toolbar (http://toolbar.msn.com/) or the Google toolbar (http://toolbar.google.com/) to prevent pop-ups.

 

Special note re Google:  Turn *off* the advanced options, and do not allow Google to take over as your search engine.  Apart from that, things should be pretty smooth.  Also, I've noticed that other Microplanet Gravity interferes with the installation process - I don't know why, it just does.

 

Special note re MSN Toolbar:  First, the download is roughly half the size of the Google toolbar (a good thing).  Make sure that you do not let MSN take over as search engine, or change your home page; the language adjustment is perfectly acceptable.

 

There are older programmes such as Proximitron (http://www.flaaten.dk/prox/) othat can also do what you want. 

 

I strongly prefer ZoneAlarm Professional, which is not free but works very well (and has the added advantage of being a very good firewall). 

 

In my experience some Pop-Up Stoppers cause problems when you want to open a new window in IE, or to open IE from a hyperlink in OE.  Pop-Up Stoppers can also cause other problems, such as when shutting down the browser, so be careful when choosing and always disable them to test if  you experience problems with your browser - whether it be crashes, or windows not opening (links not working in browser or emails), "page cannot be displayed" errors or other problems.

 

For the latter problem (hijacking), you will need to do some troubleshooting.  Also, update to IE6 SP1. It is a lot harder to hijack the latest version of IE.

 

IMPORTANT

Before you start using a programme to stop pop-up advertising, please make sure your system has not been hijacked - otherwise you will have two programmes fighting against each other - not good for any computer system.

 

The following examples are not an exhaustive list of pop-up software - the number of advert generating programmes is getting larger by the day.  If none of the following appear on your system, you should still give your computer a check-up, following the advice at troubleshooting.

 

Just a few examples of pop-up generating software are listed below:

 

GAIN (advertising software installed by gator.htm (also known as Claria) ) does not appear in Add/Remove Programs.

http://www.gatoradvertisinginformationnetwork.com/help/gainfaq.html

 

showbehind.exe

This file is included with freeware, and generates pop-up advertisement windows.  There is a removal tool available at http://www.showbehind.com/opt-out.html but I would not trust it. Try using the Spybot or Adaware first, discussed at the troubleshooting advice above.

 

msbb.exe

Apparently related to software called Songspy - causes IE to pop up advertising Windows every hour or so.  Deleting it solved pop-up window problems for some - I would recommend renaming.

 

wnad.exe

Also comes with wnad.dat, wnad-update.exe and wnad.lgc.  Use Task Manager (ctrl, alt, del) to turn off wnad then do the following:

 

Navigate to this key and delete any reference to the programme:

hklm\software\microsoft\windows\run

 

If you are nervous about using regedit, you can go to start/run and type MSCONFIG. Then go to the startup tab and take the tick out of the box that refers to the programme.

 

Rename the wnad files listed above.

 

Here is Microsoft's Knowledgebase article about this troublesome programme:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=KB;EN-US;q312931

 

dlder.exe

Clicktilluwin hijackware (advertising trojan) installed by (at least):

 

Bearshare 2.4.0 Beta 7


LimeWire 2.0.2 (no longer included)
 

Kazaa (no longer included) For information about even more Kazaa spyware/problems, look here
 

Grokster 1.33 (uninstaller available - http://www.grokster.com/virusinformation.html)
 

Net2Phone (unspecified versions)

 

BonziBuddy (removal instructions for BonziBuddy here http://www.pchell.com/support/bonzibuddy.shtml)

 

Noted as a trojan by some antivirus programmes (W32.DlDer.Trojan), this little nasty tracks your web surfing *and* uploads this information to a website (now apparently shut down).  It can also download *and activate* exe files (programmes).  You can expect to find a file called explorer.exe in your ..\windows\system or ..\windows\explorer file (note that a legitimate Windows file is also called explorer.exe, but that is in ..\windows

 

Clicktilluwin's statement and removal advice can be found here:

http://www.clicktilluwin.com/clickprivacyterms.htm