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SpyBot Advanced Options and Tools - Spyware Help

Posted by Jim Bernstein

Many people use Spybot Search and Destroy because it is a very effective and free utility for removing spyware from your computer. But I’m sure a lot of the Spybot users most likely don't take advantage of its extra tools and features. For details on how to use the basic features of Spybot check out or spyware tutorial.

To enable the advanced features first you need to switch Spybot from basic mode to advanced mode. This is done from the mode menu from the main window. After enabling advanced mode you will notice that there are now more options such as Settings and Tools.

From the settings area you can adjust various settings like what language to use and to have Spybot ignore certain cookies or file extensions that you don't want scanned or recognized as spyware. You can also set up automatic scheduled scans if you want your computer to be automatically checked for spyware at certain times without your intervention. There is also a settings section within the settings area that lets you fine tune the way the program works in regards to items such as icons, backups, updates and logging etc.

The tools section is where the really good stuff is located.

Here you can view logs of your scans as well as logs of previous scans as well as save and export them. You can also customize what information you want in your reports.

The Secure Shredder tool is designed to permanently delete files from your computer so that they are not recoverable by file recovery methods. There is no guarantee that it will make them 100% unrecoverable but its better than a simple delete for sure.

The Resident tool is a permanently running application to protect your system. Currently, it consists of a browser helper for Internet Explorer that will block download of files known as malicious. The TeaTimer is a tool that monitors the processes called/initiated. It immediately detects known malicious processes wanting to start and terminates them giving you some options how to deal with this process in the future.

The IE Tweaks are very small changes to make your system a little safer and more secure. Locking the hosts file will prevent most hosts hijackers from doing harm; locking the IE settings will prevent other users of your computer to change your preferences.

System Internals will search your registry for any inconsistencies such as missing help files, missing shared DLLs, wrong uninstall information and broken desktop links. Always be careful when changing the registry since doing so can render your computer unusable.

The System Startup tool shows you what programs are set to start with your computer. It is very similar to usingMSCONFIGfrom within Windows. From here you can edit, insert or delete startup items. Spybot color codes the entries based on legitimate, unknown/unneeded or malicious program types.

The Uninstall Info section shows you the uninstaller programs on your system. You can use it to remove the uninstall information of no longer existing programs as well as to simply get an overview. It is very similar to the Windows Add/Remove Programs utility.

Winsock LSPs display a list of installed network drivers as a reference for professionals, and allows this list to be exported for future reference. A Layered Service Provider is a system driver linked deep into the networking services of Windows. It has access to every data entering and leaving the computer, as well as the ability to modify this data. A few such LSPs are necessary to allow Windows to connect you to other computers, including the Internet. But Spyware may also install itself as an LSP, thus having access to all the data you transmit.

If you use Spybot on a regular basis there is an area under Info and License that allows you to donate to their cause. It is recommended that you do to keep this great program free and continuously updated.


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