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HP's Toolbox = spyware?

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Brian Johnson_1
Occasional Advisor

HP's Toolbox = spyware?

HP's Toolbox uses a program called 'javaw.exe'.

This is, apparently, a version of Java and is used to communicate with my 2550. However, this 'javaw.exe' program cannot simply be replaced with a genuine Sun version of javaw.exe.

More worrying is the fact that, when I boot, the first thing HP's 'javaw.exe' does is to request access to the internet.

Why?
3 REPLIES
Mathias Byrö
Regular Collector

Re: HP's Toolbox = spyware?

Hi Brian!

I may be out in the blue here, but isn't it Microsoft's Java, Servicedesk is dependent by?

/Mathias
Ruth Porter
Honored Contributor

Re: HP's Toolbox = spyware?

Hi Brian,

Version 4.5 used Microsoft Java but version 5 does not.

Hope this helps

Ruth
http://www.teamultra.net
Brian Johnson_1
Occasional Advisor

Re: HP's Toolbox = spyware?

Microsoft invented their own 'Java' and referred to it as 'JVM'. Thier system was intended to supplement Microsoft's near-rival technology -- ActiveX -- for use in their browser -- Internet Explorer. However, the term 'JVM' had already been used by Sun to describe their own Java Virtual Machine.

When Sun (the inventors and producers of Java) took Microsoft to court over this, Microsoft first started calling their JVM just VM, then they let you choose which VM to use, and then eventually dropped their version altogether from their browser package. They effectively told users that if they wanted Java, they'd have to get it themselves. Which was fine.

Sun's Java is now the basis for Java applications.

HP has licensed and modified the core functionality of one part of Java so that they can provide a server-type system for monitoring the printer. Now, Java-based apps are often memory- and CPU-hogs and HP's Toolbox application is no exception. They've cut it down (by removing console functions etc) but it still doesn't make it any faster.

However, what I do take exception to is the fact that it tries gain access to the internet.

First point: what is it reporting about my computer and who is it reporting to?

Second point: given that this 'javaw.exe' program is accessing the internet, how safe is it? Sun's Java is updated regularly to close security holes and prevent it being suborned by hackers etc. Have HP updated their version?

Third point: If I block this 'javaw.exe' from accessing the internet, what effect will that action have when my *real* javaw.exe (the regularly updated, secure version direct from Sun) wants to access the internet?
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