The Hosts file contains the mappings of IP addresses to host names. This file is loaded into memory (cache) at startup, then Windows checks the Hosts file beforeit queries any DNS servers, which enables it to override addresses in the DNS. This prevents access to the listed sites by redirecting any connection attempts back to the local (your) machine. Another feature of the HOSTS file is its ability to block other applications from connecting to the Internet, providing the entry exists.
You can use a HOSTS file to block ads, banners, 3rd party Cookies, 3rd party page counters, web bugs, and even most hijackers. This is accomplished by blocking the connection(s) that supplies these little parasites.
Example – the following entry 127.0.0.1 ad.doubleclick.net blocks all files supplied by that DoubleClick Server to the web page you are viewing. This also prevents the server from tracking your movements. Why? … because in certain cases “Ad Servers” like Doubleclick (and many others) will try silently to open a separate connection on the webpage you are viewing, record your movements then yes … follow you to additional sites you may visit.
In many cases using a well designed HOSTS file can speed the loading of web pages by not having to wait for these ads, annoying banners, hit counters, etc. to load. This also helps to protect your Privacy and Security by blocking sites that may track your viewing habits, also known as “click-thru tracking” or Data Miners. Simply using a HOSTS file is not a cure-all against all the dangers on the Internet, but it does provide another very effective “Layer of Protection”.
For Windows XP SP2 users you should see a Security Center prompt about allowing this connection. [screenshot]
Simply click No and continue. Yes the prompts can be annoying but at least you’ll know, however you should not see these prompts if these entries are included in the HOSTS file.
Note: this prompt only occurs if (example) *.doubleclick.net is included in the “Restricted Zone“.
Download: hosts.zip [right-click – Select: Save Target As] [Updated September-05-2011]
- doesn’t slow down web browsing
- doesn’t interfere with the “good side” of the web
- doesn’t slow down your computer
- doesn’t use up any memory or take any cpu
(you set it, close the program, and just remember to update it at least once a week) ps. or do up a .bat file 😉
Spyware, adware, browser hijackers, and dialers are some of the most annoying and pervasive threats on the Internet today. By simply browsing a web page, you could find your computer to be the brand-new host of one of these unwanted fiends!
The most important step you can take is to secure your system.
And SpywareBlaster is the most powerful protection program available.
- Prevent the installation of ActiveX-based spyware and other potentially unwanted programs.
- Block spying / tracking via cookies.
- Restrict the actions of potentially unwanted or dangerous web sites.
- Multi-Angle Protection
Build 4.4 (latest) Get it Here
SuperAntiSpyware will remove all the spyware, not just the easy ones. Quick, complete and custom scanning of hard drives, removable drives, memory, registry, or individual folders. Includes trusting items, and excluding folders for complete customization of scanning. Detect and remove spyware, adware, malware, Trojans, dialers, worms, key loggers, hijackers, parasites, root kits and many other types of threats. Light on system resources and won’t slow down your computer. Repair broken internet connections, desktops, registry editing. Real-time blocking of threats. Prevent potentially harmful software from installing or re-installing.
The free version does not include real-time protection, scheduled scanning and automatic updates.
What’s new in this version:
- More Efficient & Effective Scanning: New Scanning engine provides faster scanning while being able to detect even the most stubborn threats such as rootkits, rogues, and Trojans.
- All-new User Interface: Provides easy access to all important tools and features while presenting itself in an easy-to-use interface.
- Enhanced Real-time Protection: All new Real-Time Protection provides powerful first line defense against installation of new threats. With minimal performance
- Free Version Here
Hitman Pro is a second opinion scanner, designed to rescue your computer from malware that have infected your computer despite all the security measures you have taken (such as anti virus software, firewalls). Just relying on a single vendor is not sufficient to completely protect you. You do need a second source to make sure you are secure. Hitman Pro is designed to work alongside existing security programs without any conflicts. It scans the computer quickly (less than 5 minutes) and does not slow down the computer (except for the few minutes it is scanning). Hitman Pro does not need to be installed. It can be run straight from a USB flash drive, a CD/DVD, local or network attached hard drive.
Second Opinion Malware Scanner
If your child is not feeling well and you suspect he or she has a virus infection you’re going to visit your doctor. But what do you do when the doctor tells you that he cannot find anything but your child still does not feel very well? Of course, you go to visit another doctor for a second opinion.
This is the same what Hitman Pro does for your computer. Hitman Pro is a second opinion scanner, designed to rescue your computer from malware (viruses, trojans, rootkits, etc.) that have infected your computer despite all the security measures you have taken (such as anti virus software, firewalls, etc.).
Why A Second Opinion?
Research shows that computers are still run a chance of getting infected because the existing anti virus program is not giving you a 100% protection. “32% of computers infected, despite presence of anti virus program.” Read more…
Just relying on a single vendor is not sufficient to completely protect you. You do need a second source to make sure you are secure. But in most cases, installing a second anti virus program is not a viable solution. Two programs are effecting the performance of the computer dramatically, and sometimes even conflict causing the computer to crash.
Hitman Pro is designed to work alongside existing security programs without any conflicts. It scans the computer quickly (less than 5 minutes) and does not slow down the computer (except for the few minutes it is scanning). Hitman Pro does not need to be installed. It can be run straight from a USB flash drive, a CD/DVD, local or network attached hard drive.
Hitman Pro offers you a Free Scan for a second opinion. It is designed to check if your security measures work. If nothing is found (and we sincerely hope so), then you will never need a license. When a virus is found, then you will receive a free 30-day license to remove the threat.
SurfRight has done an extensive research of malware files to determine the common characteristics (behaviour) of malware. The Hitman Pro client uses this research in its Behavioural Scan, when it scans the computer for virus activities or suspicous files that have the characteristics of malware. Click here for more details about the Behavioural Scan.
For the files that are classified as suspicious, the Hitman Pro client sends a request to the Scan Cloud for confirmation if these files are indeed malicious. The Scan Cloud is a cluster of multiple computers, residing on the Internet. The Scan Cloud will respond to this request with the answer:
When the file is unknown, the Hitman Pro client uploads the file to the Scan Cloud where the file is scanned using the anti virus programs of 5 different vendors. Each of these anti virus programs analyzes the file and responds with “safe” or “malicious”. Click here for more details about the Scan Cloud.
When the file is classified as malicious by the Scan Cloud, the Hitman Pro client is placing the infection into quarantine. Various techniques ensure that all infections are completely removed without false positives. Click here for more details on the removal process.
Who Should Use Hitman Pro?
- Computer users can use the Free Scan of Hitman Pro as a quick check (less than 5 minutes) to ensure that the existing anti virus program has not missed a threat.
- Help Desk and Support organizations can use the Free Scan of Hitman Pro as a quick check for viruses and other malware. It can be run from USB or CD/DVD. No installation is required.
- Get 32 Bit Here 64 Bit Here
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a surprisingly effective freeware antimalware tool. It’s a relatively speedy malware remover, with the quick scan taking about 8 minutes even with other high-resource programs running. The heuristics engine proved on multiple computers during empirical testing that it was capable of determining the difference between false positives and dangerous apps.
The app has some nice features rolled in, too. It supports multiple drive scanning including networked drives, context menu options including a scan-on-demand for individual files, and the FileAssassin option under the More Tools section for removing locked files. The interface is simple, but pleasant-looking and well-organized. Tabs live just below the oversized logo, with few options per tab to keep down the clutter. The installation process was fast enough, but interestingly offered up the well-kept changelog and an instant definition file update.
Do note that the real-time protection is restricted to the paid version, as is the scheduler for updates and scans. Overall, though, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a responsive malware remover that does what it should with a minimum of fuss.
Get it Here