Linked by Howard Fosdick on Tue 19th Oct 2010 23:23 UTC
Windows In previous OS News articles, I described how mature computers up to ten years oldĀ can be refurbished and made useful. One article identified and evaluated different approaches to refurbishing. This article tells how to performance tune a mature Windows computer to make it serviceable again. I hope it will interest anyone who wants to tune Windows.
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UltraZelda64
Member since:
2006-12-05

IMO, it's not a good idea to "clean up" Windows either. It'll always end up a half-assed job. It's impossible to know 100% that you've got everything. Hint: You probably didn't. Once a system is breached, you cannot trust it any more. Period. And yet, these articles keep encouraging it, and explaining how it can be done instead of going the safer route--reinstalling Windows. WTF?

Either find those original Windows discs, or break down and order a new set from the computer's manufacturer. Don't like it? Well, I guess that's what you get when you use and depend on proprietary, commercial software. Or go the easy route and get one of the various free BSD or Linux-based operating systems out there.

Anything is better than attempting to "clean" an infected Windows machine.

Edited 2010-10-20 17:24 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I got the impression that this was written for general maintenance rather than recovery. In terms of tuning and general maintenance, Windows can benefit from it as more users benefit from these types of articles.

Now, in terms of a security breach and malware; we're not talking a system tuneup anymore. Mind you, there are still times when "as best I can tell" is the requirement for lack of option to nuke and pave. These types of articles help people get through that.

Reply Parent Score: 3

UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

"I got the impression that this was written for general maintenance rather than recovery."

Except that, "unknown" PCs are specifically mentioned in the article. Which means, machines that were originally owned by someone else, but the new owner wants to "clean" it up for his/her own use. Who knows where that thing has been, and what kinds of nasty things it has contracted over time. Maybe porn, warez or drive-by download sites in IE6? And I wouldn't want to know just how many such pieces of software it has.

If you know exactly where that computer has been, and that is not dangerous sites--ie, it has been in your possession since it was new and you can somewhat trust it, I have less of a problem with this article. The problem occurs when it tries to help someone "clean" instead of properly *nuke* some stranger's PC, which for all you know, could be one of the top 100 botnet-infected computers in the country.

That's the common theme with these articles though. They teach some useful things to readers who would like to do some general cleanup and maintenance, but they assume that such a cleanup is all it takes to get some random, used Windows system back in good working condition and secure again. That's just dangerous, given the fact that it is obviously directed at less experienced users.

These less experienced users the articles are targeting are exactly the ones who will be at the most risk when doing something like this; hell, even experienced users can't be 100% sure they've got everything, but it's far more likely for a less experienced user to skip (accidentally or not) an important step or miss some bad stuff.

Reply Parent Score: 2