Super Hidden Index.dat Files?

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  #1  
Old 03-05-02, 07:25 AM
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Super Hidden Index.dat Files?

Hello. Everyone: Here is a good tip and Site, I found 20 Hidden index.dat Files on my pc! Has anyone deleted these, and did you have any trouble afterwards so far? Here is the site>>> http://netsecurity.about.com/library.../aa020402a.htm Please let me know, Tom
 
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  #2  
Old 03-05-02, 07:39 AM
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Just downloaded the program to try this. Just had to reformat hard drive and haven't reinstalled everything, but am online constantly. This would be a good time for me to try it out, haven't got too much to lose at this point. Will try it and get back with you and let you know how it goes.

Kay
 

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Old 03-05-02, 08:29 AM
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I've installed the program, and yes it found some history files that I thought that I had deleted before when I cleared the history. I ran it once before I cleared the history, then cleared the history, and all temporary internet files, then ran the prog again. It refound those that I had cleared, again. I had the program clear them for me, ran the prog again. It found a site this time that didn't register the first time. I deleted it with the prog, and then ran the prog again. Nothing there but this site, but I run this one all the time anyway.

In the article it stated that OutLook Express is affected by this as well. Spider (the prog I downloaded) does not even search this area, nor is there an option for this. However, if you will read the article link by The Riddler, it explains how to manually protect your OExpress. I haven't completely read the article, nor implemented any of the suggestions.

What I've done so far hasn't bothered my system, boot time, etc. Seems to be running fine, and my virus protection and system checker hasn't reported any problems. We shall see, however....

Kay
 
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Old 03-05-02, 11:39 AM
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Thank you Kay for the info, i want to get Spider too but i am a little confused as to which version to download, I have XP and want to make sure! Tom
 
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Old 03-05-02, 11:53 AM
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I can't remember which spider I downloaded, but in the article I linked to it said you can make these files seen in Windows XP Pro. Obviously there is a difference between XP and XP Pro. I simply run Windows 98 and pray for the best since I goof around on this thing and corrupt more files than anyone in their right mind should. {hence my need to reformat the HD yet again...I can mess it up so back that just reinstalling windows doesn't fix it...total cleanup LOL} Am seriously considering getting a CDRW to replace my zipdrive.

After I recover from taking my rather rambuncious 6 month old puppy (retriever @45# vs. me @ 110# 40yr old woman) to the vet I will sit down and look over the paper that The Riddler wrote and work on some the suggestions in it. I will get back with you tomorrow on what I discover and then maybe over the next few days we can watch how it effects my system and find problems that may popup. All of the things that the Riddler talk about are done in DOS mode and I'm a little rusty on that, but missed DOS at one time when Windows popped up {not a mouse person} so maybe it will all come back to me.

Kay
 
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Old 03-05-02, 12:20 PM
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i have the CdRW built in to this xp home edition and I love it, i still have my old 98se but no rw on that, was going to get one for it but someone might buy it anyway! Hope to hear from you when the dust settles from using Spider!
 
  #7  
Old 03-06-02, 04:11 AM
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tomtom DL the 1.16 version of spider. I use it on both NT and 2000. I cant say how it works on XP since I refuse to get XP. But anyhow I have been using spider for almost a year, and have not had any problems with any systems I have. You must however have admin rights on NT and 2000.

Brian

p.s the spyder documents say much the same as riddler, but is mush shorter. If you do a search for erasing internet history, or find a post from me way back when, like july or something like that, 2000 left a nice post about removing the .dat files automaticaly on bootup. (I think)
 
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Old 03-06-02, 04:22 AM
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Brian, Thank You for that info. Thats probably the version of Spider thats for XP too but I want to make sure, I know that what ever version it is that it will delete the files but it does not tell you what the files are, as it does in ALL other windows OS's, so i am told, do you find this to be true?
 
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Old 03-06-02, 09:23 AM
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Not sure I am understanding your question. spyder will delete .dat files from 5? folders. All these are are info gathering files, for what is your guess. you can do a searach for *.dat in 98 through 2000. and each time you delete them they will be recreated each time you surf the internet. Its not a "one time" thing. these are "magic" beans...I mean files, they never go away, just the info they contain.

Brian
 
  #10  
Old 03-06-02, 09:43 AM
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to: bsb

I think what the main idea of this question is: why are these files kept on our computer, and why can we not delete them when we tell them to be deleted. What is the purpose of having the 'extra' data files that we would prefer that other's not see. I'm not a rich person, but that makes it even more important to me. "What if...." someone could access my credit card info, or my bank account passwords. One large incident and it could financially ruin my small family.

I also realize that this would be an ongoing process, either while finishing a site, or simply just shutting down the system for the night.

I do like having a record of where my computer has been since I do have children and like to know if I need to keep trusting them on the system. The history files are great for this, as well as some of the other files that record the sites.

Do you know of a way to limit the permanent file sizes? That would be a plus for me. If we knew that it was turning over a lot, then that would cut down somewhat, for me anyway, the chance of someone invading my privacy. I know how to do that on the files that I can control, but these others are a concern (mainly as WHY are they there and WHY can I not have simple controls over them}. These files obviously don't effect the performance of the system or cause it to self destruct when removed.

Kay
 
  #11  
Old 03-06-02, 08:20 PM
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Kay, would you rather have a humongous registry and slovenly performance instead of those index.dat files.

Riddlers rant failed to grasp enabling and how networked files are handled. Enabling is an aggregate Windows theme: ease of use; delusion of empowerment; the ability to monitor and undo user actions, and an "intuitive interface", among other things.

Computers appear to be intuitive through programming. The cpu pre-fetches instructions, sometimes erroneously, based on pervious instructions. Extending similar logic to the OS entails a file based system of records.

Most people seem to enjoy enabling, but turn toward resentment when they find out they are being managed. So, you tell me, how would you implement a user management system comparable to Windows.

There are plenty of legitimate issues that Windows can be bashed for: forcing on an archaic motherboard design, punky tools, exceeding the limits of an OS, crunching competition, borrowing and repackaging ideas, and more, but Riddlers disenchantment and reading of sinister into a "user management mechanism" deserves a dummy sticker.

Riddlers referrals to programs highlights his level of understanding of how networked files are handled and it underscores him as an alarmist

Since I prefer less PC administration than NTs or networked computers require the following applies to Win9xs.


Files opened for sharing can be re-initialized.
Qbasic example:

[code]
'get base file bytes - default size when created
'binary want raw byte view. 'access read - only requirement this time. 'shared - networked file

OPEN "C:\WINDOWS\COOKIES\index.dat" FOR BINARY ACCESS READ SHARED AS #1
a$ = INPUT$(16384, 1) 'get raw bytes assign to A$
CLOSE 'close it

' write zerobyte (empty) file
' output to overwrite

OPEN "C:\WINDOWS\COOKIES\index.dat" FOR OUTPUT ACCESS WRITE SHARED AS #1
PRINT 1, "" ' write 0
CLOSE

'write default
OPEN "C:\WINDOWS\COOKIES\index.dat" FOR BINARY SHARED AS #1
PUT 1, 1, a$ 'write raw bytes from beginning of file
CLOSE

[/code]

The former was deleberly written squentially. It applies to Win9xs only, but it may be run within a WinDOS session "with the browser unloaded" with no ill effects.

While it's not deletion, its the closet thing to, without resorting to kludgery. The basis for limiting file size is hinted at also. Zeroing and writting the defaut size or deletion is preferable to the overhead of reordering the file(s). [Qbasic is on both Win95 and 98 setup CDs]. Visual Basic is applicable to other versions of Windows.

If it is your impression that I have been defending Windows, you're wrong. I was bashing a half baked twit allured by Windows transparency and who resented it's implementation. If you resent being managed, do the management yourself

Yes, I delete index.dats regularly. To me they are wasted disk space, and I require less Windows intervention than others may.

Since you mentioned credit card information: are you aware that a more likey place to store credit card transaction information is within the Registry. It happened to me once. That sellers domain is now blocked.
 
  #12  
Old 03-06-02, 08:36 PM
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registry?

Okay, now you're in an area that I have yet to tamper with. I do agree with wasting space on my hard drive too. I have often wondered where it all went when I barely have any software on my system. Wow, what happen to the days of DOS? It was so much easier on me, aside from learning DOS-speak first. I do like the ease of Windows for the most part now that I've learned where things go (sometimes) when I save or install new things. I've also gotten extremely comfortable, too comfortable I'm afraid, with sitting here paying bills onlines, and ordering things that I find online. I will have to print out what you wrote because a lot of things I didn't understand.

What about my financial program when it goes online to check the status of my bank accounts and credit cards? Other investments? how at risk am I?

Kay
 
  #13  
Old 03-06-02, 09:18 PM
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Grandpappy DOS has been put to pasture, but he still works (IBM released a new version of PC-DOS, and 4DOS has a new release also).

As with other things online security is relative. You're safer connected to a secure sever on a secure connection. That would apply to banking and most finical transactions. Some credit card transactions are handled on non-secure connections. Your browser settings should be set to inform you when you're connecting to and leaving a secure connection.

Relative: as safe as handing someone your credit card or handling your check. Theft resistant, but not theft proof.
 
  #14  
Old 03-07-02, 03:26 AM
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Who is this jerk?

WHO IS THIS JERK!
 
  #15  
Old 03-07-02, 05:53 AM
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which one? LOL

Which one are you talking about tomtom59? Some simple questions and Microsoft get bashed, and someone tries to unload a ton of laptops on us!

Wish the laptop guy luck, his website is down, and even states it in his message. Not only that, he doesn't take credit cards, and talked of other forms of payments?????

....back to the question (original), I didn't even read the article from Riddler yet, and don't have enough information from the guys that seem to know how to write files in QBsic or whatever. Where do you put these batch files when you create them to run at boot up? I don't remember the order of things in DOS since I've been using Windows so long.

I did something strange yesterday. Doesn't help as far as the hidden data files, but I made my index.dat files in windows 'read-only' and now windows won't even write to them. I'll have to change it and see if windows actually wrote to them without me knowing it, but there are no files added to those temp folders, and no new cookies showing up. I still have the option check in internet option to allow cookies. So far no smoke or fire. Only downfall to not allowing these temp files that I see is that my web pages load slower.

No one has even touched the Outlook Express issue. How do we protect those files and emails that we've sent? Does IExplorer 6.0 help keep them protected. I noticed that OE automatically compresses my folders and I didn't tell it to. Not complaining, just an automatic deal.

Kay
 
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Old 03-07-02, 07:26 AM
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Didn't you know that Microsoft is the root of all evil??

Deleting .dat files is just "one" more personal security step you can take (with in your own machine). Why these files are there I don't know, nor do I really care. I guess a lot of companies can use then to track their employ internet usage, but thats why they put up proxies, so you can't get to some sites.

The average internet user realy needs to not worry about much. If your worried about identity or financial theft it can happen if you don't even use a computer (but we all know that, I like to point out the obvious).

If you want to track the internet usage of family members, (kids) you can use spyder to do this, before you clean the files out you can scroll through all the .dat files and see where the system has been.

If your really worried about getting hacked online your only defense is to not put secured info on the pc. Like someone said, there are those who have sniffers looking for "key" info or triggers to alert them of a potential target. I am no expert by any stretch of my imagination, but I would guess that just logging on and bringing up your home page will supply enough personal data to cause you problems. unless you are running a firewall or proxy, but even these can be circumvented, and by some of the security bulletins I've read, quite easily.

Depending on the sites you visit you could spend a life time online and never have any problems. Even if you did visit the "unmentionable" sites on a regular basis you could never have any problems.

I look at it this way, Unless I advertise something someone wants I have as mush chance of getting hacked as I do winning the lottery. (76,000,000:1)

I am startig to forget what my point was, so I will end here.

Brian
 
  #17  
Old 03-07-02, 08:08 AM
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Thanks Brian

I'm just going to remember to remove these files on a regular basis just simply to clear my hard drive of unnecessary files. It's only 4 g and can fill up fast if I don't watch it.

The worse thing that has happen to me is that I got a virus on my computer. Dumbest part is that it was a virus made back in the 80's. I forgot to reinstall the virus protection .... I know...equivelant of running naked through the briar patch.

This was just an interesting subject, and I like to know a little more about my computer. Didn't want it to turn into a battle, just a FYI kind of deal. It did answer a question of why my hard drive was full at one time and I couldn't figure it out. I thought I had deleted all unnecessary files and unused programs, but now I know that part of the culprit was these files.

I hope no one got the impression that I'm a paranoid person, I'm not. All of this is so fascinating. Takes some brilliant minds to come up with these things, although it is sad that some people use their powers for evil instead of good.

Kay
 
  #18  
Old 03-08-02, 01:46 AM
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Whos the Jerk?

Im only trying to sell laptops. Sorry for bothering you.
 
  #19  
Old 03-08-02, 05:41 AM
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Q & A

We use this site is for information gathering on do it yourself projects, and on occassion people will ask where can you get a laptop. That's when you put your web site link on a page. Not a sales pitch.

As a salesman, use this site to better help your customers. Understand your products better, etc. Please don't try to sell us anything. Right now we're trying to fix or cope with what we already have LOL.

Try posting some of your laptops on e-bay. I just bought one online for a lot less than I've seen advertised, seller seems happy with his price. We both got what we wanted.

Kay
 
  #20  
Old 03-08-02, 01:38 PM
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Kay, very well put! So to move on, I am downloading the version Brian mentioned and look into this Riddler for myself. My index.dat files are growing and this bothers me when permission is not given for things!
 
  #21  
Old 03-08-02, 05:22 PM
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Cool Report

Hey guys, report this sales pitch type of stuff to one of the moderators and as I did we will get rid of it. Sorry for the inconvenience but the guy didn’t know any better so we wont tar and feather him this time But sir, to post as you did then have your site down is not a good business practice, not to mention no credit cards. Most folks won’t send checks etc in the mail today. Anyway you are welcome here any time! Just no sales pitches, put up a link to your site and I bet you get a lot of hits from the good people here looking for a bargain! Thanks for your understanding.
 
  #22  
Old 03-08-02, 05:27 PM
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Cool System Mechanic

I don’t usual offer software as some of you may know. But I ran across a program called “System Mechanic” at www.iolo.com It is designed to do exactly what everyone is talking about. The program is not overly expensive but man it really does the job! All the way down to the registry! And safely too! Backups are always recommended by the program. Check it out and see what you think.
 
  #23  
Old 03-09-02, 09:10 PM
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A question about spider

I downloaded and ran spider on two computers. 1. a home built less than one year old and a 1998 Compaq. On the home built I ran spider and it came up with the URLs on Note Pad so I hit select all & delete checked once again and they were all gone.

On the Compaq I ran spider and 3/4 of the way through the scan it said the file was too large. Did I want to display on it word pad so I said yes.

I have tried everything to delete the URLs and everytime I rescan the same exact URLs return as if they were never deleted.

Any Ideas why notePad removed all the URLs the first time? And with the large quanity of URLs having to be displayed on wordpad. I can't remove them with any method and due to the hundreds of them it seems that I should get rid of them now.

I tried to copy and paste part of the URLs to notepad then delete. I tried to copy the URLs to Diskette. I tried to save the URLs to a folder on the desktop and delete the folder. The URLs are on wordpad & clipboard And since they return I have to believe the URLs are still in the same Folders that spider keeps finding them in at every scan.

I would like to remove the URLs as I did with my Other Computer but I get the Idea somehow that wordpad is not going to let me do it. Has anyone else had the URLs displayed on wordpad? You name it I'll try it. Thanks for any help offered.
 
  #24  
Old 03-10-02, 12:02 AM
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I don't know how spider works exactly, but suspect it was written with Visual Basic using API functions. API functions are explicit. Evidently spider relies on Notepads API functions. Thus when defaulting to Wordpad it will not work. When a file exceeds Notepads memory limits that message is displayed.

On fat16 and fat32 drives use the DOS DELTREE command on the History, Cookie, and Tempor~1 folders. Do this in Real DOS Mode. The folders are rebuilt when Windows starts. For usage type: deltree /?
 
  #25  
Old 03-10-02, 11:49 AM
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In other words you are saying since I have so many URLs to be removed, and have to do that with notepad, not wordpad I have to remove some of the files I can get to first.

Then when the files that are not super hidden are gone, rerun spider, and it will then fit onto note pad for removal.

Am I reading you right?

When were talking about working in DOS I am very poorly trained in that. I have a Dos for dummies book and will follow your instructions. I just need to know If I have the over all concept right. Thanks for your reply 2000
 
  #26  
Old 03-10-02, 08:33 PM
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Too many URLS? In a word: Yes". Yes, to your other quesiton also.

The problem files are Index.dat files in the respective folders. In real DOS they have no special privilages, but within Windows [including WinDOS sessions] they are held open in file sharing mode "networked files".

Removal is extremely simple in Win9xs: boot to Windows. >Start >Shut Down >Restart in MSDOS Mode. At the command prompt enter each of the following commands in turn.
deltree /y C:\WINDOWS\HISTORY
deltree /y C:\WINDOWS\TEMPOR~1
deltree /y C:\WINDOWS\COOKIES
exit

The process is complete. Run disk defragmenter after Windows reloads. Apotential drawback is loss of site settings stored within Cookies. All cookies are gone!

For WinME use a Win9x DOS boot disk; boot to DOS. Then enter the commands from drive A: For NTs [NT, 2000, XP] try the program recommended by Bigmike.
 
  #27  
Old 03-10-02, 09:08 PM
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Got It.

Thanks 2000 I will give them the boot. Then run Spider and get the rest of them out of the Compaq. Would it be alright to run disk Doctor instead of Defrag. I had been using Norton Utilities for over a year on my Computer and the Compaq.

Then I started my Computer in Safe mode and ran Scan Disk & Defrag a month ago, and everything went haywire. It took me a few days to put everything back to normal. I read a post once, where it was said that once you start using Norton Utilities you can't use both anymore.

I wrote Norton but never got a reply. So I am a little gun shy of trying to use Scan Disk or Defrag again. I also thought when you start in safe mode that it shut down a lot more programs than by suhting them down one at a time.

The only reason I mention this is while going through Scan disk at the 2 hour mark It said it had stopped 10 times did I want to keep geting the message. The entire time for the Scan Disk took 7 hours and 20 minutes.

I never had any trouble with Norton Utilities until I did that. It removed so many programs I had to run SFC and put them back in with the Win 98SE CD before I could get the Computer to run right again. Now this was my Computer, and not the Compaq. The Compaq has been using Norton also for over a year. Thanks for all your help.
 
  #28  
Old 03-11-02, 12:30 AM
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Sure. The point is to defrag the disk after massive deletion. Mixed use of disk scanning or defrag utilities is not a good idea, because they won't work identically.
 
  #29  
Old 03-11-02, 07:28 AM
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Thanks 2000,
I see now what happened.

Just to let you know 2000. Everything turned out just fine. Thank you very much for all your help.

Marturo
 

Last edited by marturo; 03-11-02 at 03:41 PM.
  #30  
Old 03-13-02, 10:47 AM
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Question to: 2000

Is there any way to run that in a batch file? Can you still create batch files in DOS. I haven't used DOS in years. I know that I used to create batch files so that my children could type one letter to access a particular program. Seems to reason that I still could.

I did run the individual commands and could not believe how much hard drive space it created. I was truly amazed considering that I had just reformatted my hard drive earlier this month.

Thanks,

Kay
 
  #31  
Old 03-13-02, 01:36 PM
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Batch files still work. In fact, with each release of Windows batch capabilities have been enhanced. It's my understanding that the current NTs [2000, XP] have the greatest enhancements. A possible exception is WinME. WinME being what Win95 was supposed to be: the transitional phase to NT.
 
  #32  
Old 03-13-02, 01:51 PM
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win 98

so i can create a batch file in windows 98 and just run it while in dos mode. okay, i'll try.

i keep waiting to see smoke coming from my machine. guess that's the way to learn. finally got smart and backed up the hard drive. reinstalling isn't the problem, it's the registry deal. i finally figured out how to back that sucker up. most of the time i just have to reinstall windows, but the new registry had no idea what was on the machine.

thanks for your help.

kay
 
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