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View Full Version : Does Practical Machinist Have A Virus?



Too_Many_Tools
04-18-2008, 08:04 AM
The "other" site has been having problems ...again...which is nothing new.

Pages take forever to load, stop loading and multiple computers have locked up on it even with different ISPs.

But the new issue I have seen is that my virus checker is noting that a virus tried loading.

Anyone else seeing this happen?

TMT

garyphansen
04-18-2008, 08:07 AM
I have not had any problems as of last night. I will check again right after I post this, Gary P. Hansen

J Tiers
04-18-2008, 08:16 AM
No problems at all, other than a couple of the remote-site adverts that seem to have overloaded servers.... that slows a page load if you allow them.

garyphansen
04-18-2008, 08:22 AM
Just checked again. No problem. Gary P. Hansen

lazlo
04-18-2008, 10:44 AM
There was a post on PM yesterday where a lot of members were having problems with one of the Flash animated advertisements -- that might explain why some people are having problems and others aren't.

PM is fine for me, but I have all the adverts filtered...

Too_Many_Tools
04-18-2008, 10:55 AM
Hmm...I tried again and it still flagged PM as trying to download a virus.

I just tried five other sites and no warning showed up...there is something wrong with something (the ads?) on the PM site.

Have you gotten the most current update for your virus checker? It is easy to pick up a new virus that has been released on a popular site with high traffic like PM. Could one the ads be carrying a virus? It is a common way to spread them.

I think I am going to stay off PM for a few days until Thomas actually does some serious maintainance....something is very wrong with that site since I am not the only one seeing a problem. I don't need the hassle of rebuilding my hard drive files from scratch because of a stinking virus.

TMT

Mike Burdick
04-18-2008, 11:12 AM
TMT,

For what it's worth...

I have trouble with the ads on PM (I'm on dial up) and if I didn' use Adblock for Firefox the site would not be "practical" ;) for me to use.

If you are using Firefox you might consider Adblock and see if that helps.

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/10

lazlo
04-18-2008, 11:17 AM
Hmm...I tried again and it still flagged PM as trying to download a virus.

That sounds like one of the flashing PM advertisements is downloading an ActiveX or Flash script that's being identified as a virus.

Bruce Griffing
04-18-2008, 11:26 AM
I have several computers on a home network so anti-virus software is a noticable cost. I recently tried the free software that RR provides - CA internet security. After lots of experimenting I abandoned it. One of the reasons was it made the PM site slow as paint drying - but there were many others. Those of you having trouble should look at your AV software.

Too_Many_Tools
04-18-2008, 11:28 AM
That sounds like one of the flashing PM advertisements is downloading an ActiveX or Flash script that's being identified as a virus.

That is what I am thinking also.

And that is exactly the way the better viruses gain access to your machine.

Better to be safe than sorry on this one.

TMT

toastydeath
04-18-2008, 11:28 AM
Another vote for Adblock on Firefox.

quasi
04-18-2008, 11:29 AM
Yes Practical Machinist has a virus, a horrible, grumpy, virus named Milacron!!

DR
04-18-2008, 11:40 AM
Of late I've been having constant problems with the PM site using IE. I would get an "error on page" message. Trying again (an again) eventually I could view the page.

Tried using the adblock addon mentioned here with Firefox and the problem seems to have gone away.

Thanks for the suggestion.

BTW, I like PM, and I have been flamed by Don.

lazlo
04-18-2008, 11:54 AM
Of late I've been having constant problems with the PM site using IE. I would get an "error on page" message. Trying again (an again) eventually I could view the page.

Tried using the adblock addon mentioned here with Firefox and the problem seems to have gone away.

That seems to support the conjecture that it's an errant ad script that's fubar'ing people's machines.

Too_Many_Tools
04-18-2008, 12:10 PM
That seems to support the conjecture that it's an errant ad script that's fubar'ing people's machines.

And possibly loading a virus.

It is a common way to do it which is why I avoid sites that do it.

"Microsoft's idea of embedding active content on web pages as COM/ActiveX components (rather than e.g. Java applets) created a combination of problems in the Internet Explorer web browser that has led to an explosion of computer virus, trojan and spyware infections. These malware attacks mostly depend on ActiveX for their activation and propagation to other computers. "

PM needs to deal with it ASAP...something is not right and could be very wrong.

TMT

Evan
04-18-2008, 03:32 PM
After looking at the web page structure I see no indication that anything other than image files are being loaded from off site. No active X controls or other similar content is being loaded. The page uses Javascript but that isn't the problem.

There is one possibility and that is the "jpeg of death". It is possible for a jpeg to be infected with a virus. This came out in 2004 and there may still be infected files around. If you are running XP SP2 then it is a non issue for the web browser but all the various Microsoft applications such as Office also need to be updated individually to fix the vulnerability.

dp
04-18-2008, 03:43 PM
After looking at the web page structure I see no indication that anything other than image files are being loaded from off site. No active X controls or other similar content is being loaded. The page uses Javascript but that isn't the problem.

There is one possibility and that is the "jpeg of death". It is possible for a jpeg to be infected with a virus. This came out in 2004 and there may still be infected files around. If you are running XP SP2 then it is a non issue for the web browser but all the various Microsoft applications such as Office also need to be updated individually to fix the vulnerability.

While you were in there did you notice the web beacon links? Those are especially annoying. Information about me is for sale all over the world - I'd like to be the one closing the deal and deciding who I close it with.

snowman
04-18-2008, 03:45 PM
THANK GOD

I thought I was the only one. I think I even posted something to this effect a week ago or something.

The site takes three years to load, if at all.

lazlo
04-18-2008, 04:48 PM
I just took a look at the PracticalMachinist page source.

It makes extensive use of Javascript, and the scripts are all hosted on a server and site analytics service called "Omniture:" http://www.omniture.com/

There's a grid of 26 "OAS" Javascripts (Omniture Ad Scripts) that load on each PracticalMachinist page. So as advertisers come and go, Omniture just updates one of the OAS Javascripts, and the PracticalMachinist page never changes.

It's impossible to tell what the 26 Javascrpts are doing without running a debugger -- I only see a big banner ad plus 2 rows of 8 smaller ads, so a bunch of the scripts are probably just stubbed out.

This also explains why I can't get PracticalMachinist to load on my Blackberry -- it has a partial implementation of Javascript.

MikeHenry
04-26-2008, 06:58 PM
I've had no problems with the PM site. It seems fast enough to me (broadband) and there's been nary a hint of malware from my AV and firewall.

Mike

JRouche
04-26-2008, 10:58 PM
I also dont see any slow down of the site. Fires up like NOW with Firefox. Oh, and the light speed of FiOS helps :) JR

Mark McGrath
04-27-2008, 03:27 AM
I found PM very slow in IE with the "error on page" that others mention.Changed to Firefox and it flys again.I have never found any indication of a virus from PM and wonder if it`s something to do with TMT`s obvious hatred of Don Thomas and PM.
Mark.

J Tiers
04-27-2008, 10:37 AM
I found PM very slow in IE with the "error on page" that others mention.Changed to Firefox and it flys again.I have never found any indication of a virus from PM and wonder if it`s something to do with TMT`s obvious hatred of Don Thomas and PM.
Mark.

Quite possibly...... that, or PEBKAC................... :D

Mark McGrath
04-27-2008, 10:51 AM
Quite possibly...... that, or PEBKAC.

What`s PEBKAC?

Mark

lazlo
04-27-2008, 12:20 PM
I found PM very slow in IE with the "error on page" that others mention.Changed to Firefox and it flys again.

That's more than likely because you're running AdBlock. I'm pretty sure that the problems people are having with PM are due to one of the JavaScript ads.

As I mentioned earlier in the thread, I don't have any issues on PracticalMachinist, but this issue (of people's web browsers slowing down) comes up every 6 months or so, and it seems to be related to the ad banners.

Mark McGrath
04-27-2008, 02:49 PM
Lazlo,
PM had been very slow for me on two computers on different broadband suppliers since they changed to the new format.Strangely enough cnczone which uses the same format has rarely been a problem.
When it was slow in IE,if I clicked on the message "error on page" it said it was expecting another character on the end of line 341 or something like that.

toastydeath
04-28-2008, 12:54 PM
I'm not sure why this continually comes up.

The documented fix is to switch browsers and use ad-blocking software. If you are unhappy with that fix, you will need to work around the problem and accept that it is going to be slow. There's been some fairly thorough investigation done by a couple people on PM - it IS the ads, and there's nothing you can do about it aside from block them.

Also, PEBKAC - "Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair."

lazlo
04-28-2008, 12:56 PM
I'm not sure why this continually comes up.

Every once in awhile there's an errant banner ad that does weird things with some versions/configurations of browsers.
Last year there was a specific ad that was giving people fits (a Haas ad, IIRC), and Don actually had the Omniture guys take it down.

I'm quite sure Don doesn't approve of your documented fix of blocking the ads :D

J. Randall
04-30-2008, 12:43 AM
I have been using Firefox and I don't block ads. My whole computer had been running a little slow overall and pretty slow on PM with some timeouts to. I downloaded some shareware program called ccleaner. I think it was recommended on this site a while back. It took a few minutes to run the first time, but eversince it has been sailing along like it used to, pretty fast. I am on DSL, absolutely no problems on PM since, with all ads running.
James

dp
04-30-2008, 02:22 AM
PM's problems go beyond the ads images. Its the ad rotators, the cookies for each ad that your browser downloads, the DNS lookups because the time-to-live for the ad servers IP is so low, the java scripts (some of which appear to be broken) for each ad that has to execute every time you click the mouse to a new page, and the sheer volume of all of it per page. And of course my personal favorite, the web beacons that follow you every where you go on the net. If Don proxied most of that it would not be the problem it is, and the consequence of not proxying it is people use ad blockers which undoes the intent of having ads. And given that sites with a nearly fixed population that is not likely to wander off the site to chace an ad, they're ultimately more annoying than they are profitable to the regular visitors. All but the very dense board ops realize this quickly.

Norman Atkinson
04-30-2008, 04:40 AM
Hang on! Somehow there is a very valid point to make.
How, where and what Don Thomas does is NOT YOUR BUSINESS.
Until you put your hand in your pocket- for whatever purpose, your comments are not correct.

You are present at his site- on his terms.
Put up or shut up!

Norm

Evan
04-30-2008, 05:52 AM
You don't need ad blocking software, Firefox will do it just fine.
http://vts.bc.ca/pics3/adblok.jpg