Author Topic: Any System Safety Monitor Users?  (Read 7657 times)

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Offline herbalist

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Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« on: August 10, 2005, 05:35:15 AM »
Anyone here using System Safety Monitor? For those not familiar with it, it's an advanced, rule based application control program that gives the user control over what apps are allowed to run and which can be launched by other apps. It can detect hooks, dll injection, can control what apps can install drivers, and much more. It also monitors important registry areas and other autostart areas. It can even watch the window captions, closing any that contain words of the users choice. Configurable for multiple users. Runs on 98 thru XP. As far as I know, it's the only program of its kind that runs on 98.
It requires a lot of configuration, so it's not for the inexperienced. One of the most powerful security apps I've used.
SSM Site
The program has been in beta since it's release and has been improved with each new version. Rulesets can be exported and imported into new releases.
My system runs exclusively on freeware, but when this ones release as finishedl, I will buy it.
Rick

Offline Ghost

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2005, 03:02:46 PM »
hi again,
i have winpatrol 9.7 installed on my 98 but, and here is my newbie thing, is SSM like winpatrol and if it is, does it use les resorces than winpatrol?

E

Offline herbalist

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2005, 12:17:14 AM »
The last version of Winpatrol I've tried was 9.0 so I can't compare directly to 9.7. The amount of resources SSM uses varies heavily, depending on that it's doing at the moment. At idle in the tray, it uses about 4mb on mine.
Both perform many of the same functions. Both monitor autostart and IE settings in the registry. Both can monitor and control running processes. SSM doesn't check cookies but will watch the window captions. Where that's especially useful is parental control. If you blacklist the word "Sex" or "XXX", any window caption (title bar for your browser for instance) with those displayed will be closed.
Regarding process control, the easiest way I can describe this part of SSM is like this. SSM is to process control what a rule based firewall is to internet traffic control. The biggest difference between WP and SSM in this regard is in the level of configuration and control given to the user. For a given application, SSM will let you choose who and what is allowed to launch it. For instance, if you choose, an app can be allowed when launched by windows explorer, but blocked if launched by your browser. It can be allowed for one user but not another or not one with administrative priveleges. It adds that ability to win98 via a password option. Critical system tools can be kept out of reach of anyone you choose, as can common programs like IE6, quite useful if you don't want kids using IE6 instead of Firefox. It can also be set to ask you whenever a given app tries to start. It can be set to block any app not explicitly permitted by the ruleset. It intercepts and alerts you whenever an installer tries to start, including those that install a lot of rootkits. One feature I've especially grown to like is the ability to "keep process in memory" on any app you choose, and automatically restart it if something kills it. I use this option for my firewall, resident AV, and file monitors. If any of them are killed, SSM restarts them. A big asset to a layered security package.
You can also control what apps are allowed to use hooks or dll injection. It alerted me to 2 hooks Yahoo instant messenger sets at launch, one for monitoring the keyboard, one for the mouse, and allowed me to block them individually. Turns out that Yahoo functions fine without them, making me wonder as to their actual purpose.
SSM is extremely effective against adware, spyware, and trojans. The vast majority of these are either running processes in themselves or installers that hook your system or apps like IE6. It will detect and intercept the process or installer. It will alert you to new registry autostarts or any other section of the registry you choose to monitor. It watches the usual .ini files and user autostart area of the start menu and can be set to monitor whatever other files you choose. Exactly how often each is checked is your choice.
The biggest difference between them is how much you can configure. SSM requires that you configure it, far more than Winpatrol. Depending on your skill level and understanding of your OS, that can be a big advantage or disadvantage. Just how far you want to push the configuration is up to the user, but you do need at least a basic understanding of the components, what they do, and which are necessary. If you block the wrong component or process, you can lock yourself right out of your system.
Not being that familiar with WP, I can't address the other differences.
Rick

Offline Ghost

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2005, 01:41:27 AM »
hi herbalist,
well again, ive printed out your description and ill be up tomorrow afternoon to let you know what ive decided to do. either keep winpatrol or use ssm.
thanks :thumbsup:

E

Offline herbalist

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2005, 02:32:41 AM »
Sure thing. Winpatrol is a very good application. While not quite as potent as SSM, it's by no means weak. It protects a lot of people. SSM takes the idea of application control farther and is more suited for people who enjoy this kind of configuring and are willing to invest a good amount of time into it.
Rick

Offline herbalist

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2005, 02:41:07 AM »
Eagle,
I suggest that you don't try to set up SSM at the same time you're starting with a rule based firewall. Until the firewall is configured, you'll be seeing plenty of alerts from it. SSM will give you many more alerts than a firewall until it's configured. If you try to do both together, dealing with alerts will be most of what you'll be doing, in quantities you probably won't want to see, always on top of what you're otherwise doing. It'll be much less irritating if you keep these separate for now.
Rick

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2005, 10:01:24 AM »
 :thumbsup:

Offline Ghost

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Re: Any System Safety Monitor Users?
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2005, 08:38:55 PM »
hi herbalist,
im going to stay with winpatrol for now. i actually dont see a need for it either. but one thing at a time for this eagle.  :lol:

E