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Want to stop MIRC and MSN Messenger..........

Posted on 2004-10-05
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Last Modified: 2008-02-01
Hi all,
        I want to block the use of MSN Messenger and MIRC for anyone who uses my PC...... i.e no one can sign in using MSN Messenger and MIRC.......How can I do this ? Maybe something like Zone alarm is what I need but I want it completely invisible from the user......Can it be controlled from within Windows ?
        My actual situation is that I am the main user of my system....But when I am not at home my brothers keep on waisting time by chatting on MIRC and Messenger......I first tried to make an administrative user and then a Restricted user......But my brothers hacked through it and now they can enter through that administrative user as well......
       In short I want to restrict my brothers from Using MIRC and MSN Messenger (Preferably if they are unaware of what is happening) and as you might have deducted my brothers also know quite a bit of Computers.........

I have Windows XP Professional with SP2 installed.........(Isn't there something in the firewall of windows that can help me)

Imran Arshad
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Question by:imarshad
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46 Comments
 
LVL 65

Accepted Solution

by:
SheharyaarSaahil earned 125 total points
ID: 12226020
Hello imarshad =)

u are running XP Pro, u cna use gpedit.msc to restrict their user accounts from running MSN Messneger and MIRC... checked this yet ??

HOW TO: Restrict Users from Running Specific Windows Programs in Windows 2000/XP:
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=323525 

Or by registry editing....

Restrict Users from Running Specific Applications (Windows 2000/Me/XP)
http://www.winguides.com/registry/display.php/969/
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LVL 10

Assisted Solution

by:Longbow
Longbow earned 75 total points
ID: 12226144

You need to prevent user to use softwares.

Description of the Software Restriction Policies in Windows XP :

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;310791&Product=winxp
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LVL 7

Assisted Solution

by:katacombz
katacombz earned 125 total points
ID: 12226622
try this

start>run
type secpol.msc (local security opens)
go to software restriction policies
then right click on additional rules
select new hash rule
brows to teh executable for the offending applicaton (eg: mirc32.exe)
make usre the box showing dissalowed is selected
apply and ok
then the applications cannot be ran even if they are moved or renamed.


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by:katacombz
katacombz earned 125 total points
ID: 12226636
footnote

one more thing you will have to have mirc installed to set up a hash rule, but it can be uninstalled afterwords same with messenger.
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LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:stevenshealthcare
ID: 12227001
My two cents. First, the above methods should provide you some relief. They should prevent your brother from abusing your system. Secondly, after you put them in place I suggest you take your brother out behind the wood shed. ;-)
David
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LVL 65

Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12227013
>> Secondly, after you put them in place I suggest you take your brother out behind the wood shed. ;-)

lol !! :D
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Assisted Solution

by:katacombz
katacombz earned 125 total points
ID: 12227275
also if your brothers are "restricted suers" change the admin password.

or circumvent the situatoin entirely and go into the bios and set a boot password.

this way they will not even be able to start the system and access the O\S.

beyond this if they are stil hacking into teh box i would suggest you take your brother out behind the wood shed. ;-)
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LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:doswell
doswell earned 25 total points
ID: 12228806
make sure you change the admin password, other wise they can boot into safe mode with no admin password and do what they like.
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LVL 4

Assisted Solution

by:envoguecomputers
envoguecomputers earned 25 total points
ID: 12229242
Actually, you can download ZoneAlarm (firewall) from www.download.com and from the program control tab, you can restrict/allow whichever programs you want, nice and easy.
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LVL 16

Assisted Solution

by:Sohel Rana
Sohel Rana earned 75 total points
ID: 12229256
Hi:

In the following PAQ you will find some third party software names in order to block most types of chatting softwares :

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Applications/Q_21070374.html

rsdn
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12229993
Sorry for the delayed response.....I was off for a dinner party.....I am going to check these suggestions one by one and let you know.......

Imran
0
 
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12230808
envoguecomputers,

>>Actually, you can download ZoneAlarm (firewall)
Yes I do have ZoneAlarm......But as I have stated earlier I want it to be invisible from the User.....Can Zone Alarm be used in stealth mode?

katacombz,SheharyaarSaahil and Longbow

You all have given almost the same link/method of using gpedit.msc /secpol.msc.....I have tested it and it worked quite nicely except one thing........It displays a pop up message "Windows cannot open this program because it has been prevented by a software restriction policy. For more information, open Event viewer or contact your system administrator"

I assumed myself on the place of my brother and googled to find the solution of this problem......and it took me 2 min. to find the solution, provided that I have administrative rights(Though I knew it beforehand).......

SheharyaarSaahil,

>>http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=323525
applies to windows 2000 only........(at least the article says so)

Imran
0
 
LVL 7

Assisted Solution

by:katacombz
katacombz earned 125 total points
ID: 12230950
1.  create user accounts on the system
2. put your brother into a restricted user account
3. delete any backdoor accounts that may have been created
4. use strong passwords for administrative accounts EG: #P@455w0rd and do nto give it out
5. in the bios change settings so system will only boot to the hard drive this will prevent them from booting to floppies erd commander cd's and changing the admin password
6. password protect the bios
7. if needed put security screws in the case so they cannot clear bios passwords with a jumper.

or purchase a removable hard drive tray and when you cannot p[hysically monitor the system shut it down and lock the ahrd drive up in a secure location and force all other users to boot to a Knoppix cd and use that as thier computer interface\O\S

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Expert Comment

by:katacombz
ID: 12230957
0
 
LVL 65

Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12230984
ok so here is the situation....

u can try to password protect ur account >>> he already hacked it !!
u can try restricting the use pf programs >>> he will search on google and get a solution
u can try restricting the Installation of programs >>> still if he can hack the Administrator account, and can search on google, and then he will be able to break this restriction also !!!
even if we put a BIOS on ur computer, so that he cannot start it..... there are 1001 methods out there to hack or delete the BIOS password !!!!

in short..... we can put Thousands of restrictions,,,,, but for every restriction there is a solution,,,, and if there is a solution,,,, he will get it via google..... so.... ?? :)
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Expert Comment

by:Sohel Rana
ID: 12231226
>>in short..... we can put Thousands of restrictions,,,,, but for every restriction there is a solution,,,, and if there is a solution,,,, he will get it via google..... so.... ?? :)

If google fails then reinstall the OS, right?  :)

rsdn
0
 
LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:Sohel Rana
ID: 12231296
Hi imarshad:

If you really don't want to allow others use mirc or other chat programs, then the best way is not to allow them to use your computer. Becuase if they are little bit clever about computer matters then they can easily find a way.

rsdn
0
 
LVL 65

Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12231342
btw how do u connect to internet,,,,, via dialup or broadband ??
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Expert Comment

by:Longbow
ID: 12231423
http://www.sharewareconnection.com/verschwindibus.htm

Can this software help you ?
It can hide windows on your desktop.
0
 
LVL 13

Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12231457
>>btw how do u connect to internet,,,,, via dialup or broadband ??

Via Network Card and you can call it Broadband.......though the Max downloading speed is limited to 20k......
 

>>in short..... we can put Thousands of restrictions,,,,, but for every restriction there is a solution,,,, and if there is a >>solution,,,, he will get it via google..... so.... ?? :)

>>If you really don't want to allow others use mirc or other chat programs, then the best way is not to allow them to use >>your computer.

So I should stop thinking about blocking them ???

>>u can try to password protect ur account >>> he already hacked it !!

Maybe this is the important point......Can I create accounts so that it will be hard to hack ? I know anything is possible but has SP2 given some more security for the administrator User account ?

So can you guide me so that I can do the following

1) Delete all current accounts including Administrator accounts as well

2) Create a Power user that is invisible to all other users. It is like administrator of the system. It will be only used when there is some trouble around (Is something like this even possible)

3) Create an Administrative account, say by my name, that I will be using......

4) Create restricted accounts so that I will assign these to my brothers......

if you people like I will start a new Question for this ????

Imran
0
 
LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:Longbow
ID: 12231459
You can also hide an icon from the system tray ;
http://www.tweakxp.com/tweak909.aspx

And hide an application from the Task manager :
http://www.codeproject.com/useritems/preventclose.asp
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LVL 65

Assisted Solution

by:SheharyaarSaahil
SheharyaarSaahil earned 125 total points
ID: 12231516
>> Via Network Card and you can call it Broadband

what i was thinking that MSN messenger(not sure abt MIRC) looks for IE internet settings to connect to internet.... sometimes if we set IE to work offline, MSNMessenger also refuses to connect, so what if we can put a "fake" proxy in Internet Connection settings for ur connection, so that he cannot connect via this fake proxy and will get thrown back..... !!

and then we will goto regedit, and put a restriction on IE so that he cannot change the IE options...... do u think he will guess that there are restrictions present on IE and he has to play with regedit :-?
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Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12231523
>> 1) Delete all current accounts including Administrator accounts as well

not possible!! in XP u cannot delete the original Administrator account, and neither can create another Administrator account... !! :-/
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Expert Comment

by:Longbow
ID: 12231526
Set a password on your BIOS and lock the PC case with a good key !
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LVL 13

Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12231664
>>not possible!! in XP u cannot delete the original Administrator account, and neither can create another Administrator
>>account... !! :-/

How to access that original account ? How do I know that when I installed what User Name and Password I chose ? Is the user name of that account always administrator or it can be different ? I just want to change the password of that administrator account so that hacking from that side is not possible.........

>>another Administrator account...

I didnot mean another Administrator account but simply an account with administrative rights......

>>http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index-en.html

katacombz, this is for Linux.... Are you advising me to shift to Linux ?

Imran Arshad
0
 
LVL 65

Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12231691
>> How to access that original account ?

boot into safemode, and u will get there the Administrator user on welcome screen,,,,, this is the ORIGINAL Administrator account !!
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Expert Comment

by:katacombz
ID: 12231700
Knoppix is a linus operating system that will run from a bootable cd with no hard drive in the computer.

what i was suggesting is that if you cannot control the behaviour of other users on your computer, and cannot lock the out to put the hard drive into a removable sled and when you are not at the system remove the hard disk from it and take it with you.

then allow all other users to boot to the knoppix cd and make them use that then no matter what they do they cannot mess up your computer. and since it si on a cd they cannot install software
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12231882
OK thanks all experts for your help...............
I will try to figure out a way from these suggestions....I will most probably split points on basis of useful information......

Imran Arshad
0
 
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12232290
>>boot into safemode, and u will get there the Administrator user on welcome screen,,,,, this is the ORIGINAL
>>Administrator account !!

I did and I found 2 accounts over there.....

1) Administrator (Computer administrator)
2) Imran (Computer administrator)

but the problem is that I cant change the password.....I loged into Administrator and through (Control Panel) / User Accounts I tried to change the password.....But when I click on the button (after entering all info of old and new password) I get the error "Windows Cannot change password".....Why is it so ? Is this behaviour normal ? How to change the administrator password?

Imran
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12232333
u must be entering a wrong OLD password !!

>> How to change the administrator password?
from the same control panel>user accounts, choose Administrator user, and hit Create a Password !!
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LVL 7

Assisted Solution

by:katacombz
katacombz earned 125 total points
ID: 12234435
right click my computer and select "manage"
then click the + next to local users an groups
right click on administrator in thesers folder and select "change password"
thgis will allow you to change the password for the account without knowing the old one as long as the account you are logged in with administrator rights to the system
remember to use strong passwords
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LVL 13

Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12235309
Thanks katacombz,
This was useful......

>>u must be entering a wrong OLD password !!
This cant be the case.....as I have loged into Windows (Safe Mode) with the account titled Administrator and with the same password.....How can Windows let me allow to sign in using the same password but wont let me change the Password?????

Imran
0
 
LVL 65

Expert Comment

by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12236844
hmmmmm so u were trying to change the Administrator password, i thought u were trying to change the password for Imran user account !!
So has it changed now or still giving the same error :-?
0
 
LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:AlfaLAN
AlfaLAN earned 25 total points
ID: 12243825
If you have a (nat)router (possebly built in your broadband modem) you could restrict the ports for msn (TCP&UDP:1863) and mirc (TCP:6660 - 6669).
Change your password for your router and keep it safe for your brother. This should keep him busy for a while.

If you can post what type of modem/router you have (if this would be an option) and we can help you through the configuration.

You could also try to restrict access to the IP and/or URL adresses of the msn server (google for it) and maybe even mirc?
Hope this helps?
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:Snodlander
ID: 12256569
Why don't you just tell your brothers to cut it out?
Ask them not to do it, tell them you've had enough and it's not funny any more?
Ask them nicely, be sincere and you'll get better results.

I have a number of brothers of my own and believe me the more you try to get one up on them, the more they will try to get one back. It's a game called sibling rivalry.
The problem is - they will win, because you're competing over Windows and Windows is so easy to hack.
All it takes is one little Unix floppy disk and you can reset any Windows Administrator password.

Sure you could restrict the use of the floppy as a boot device, but then they go into the BIOS and change it back.

So you password protect the BIOS, and then they use the BIOS reset jumper on the motherboard to get around it.

My point being: Whatever restrictions you put on your machine they can be overcome. Windows does NOT provide enough security, and neither does your hardware. You are far better off TALKING TO YOUR BROTHERS!!!
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LVL 16

Assisted Solution

by:Sohel Rana
Sohel Rana earned 75 total points
ID: 12257446
Hi imarshad:

Another way is you better install keystroke or computer monitoring software. And tell your brother or friend who uses your computer often. I am sure they will reduce or stop using chat program in your computer, afterall this is a privacy matter. :)

rsdn
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LVL 10

Assisted Solution

by:Longbow
Longbow earned 75 total points
ID: 12257472
If you use an ethernet ADSL modem or Cable modem you can
 disable your network card.
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Operating_Systems/Q_20707071.html
I would create a logon and a logoff script wich enable and disable the network card for your own account.
So nobody can use the Internet except you.
If your brother is only in the Guest Group it can't enable the network card.
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LVL 8

Assisted Solution

by:plq
plq earned 25 total points
ID: 12262548
Wow what a big thread. My tuppence worth and apologies if anyone else has said this - is that you can set NTFS permissions on the messenger EXE so that only you have access to run it. Sorry I don't know what the exe is called cos I always take it off ! You might also want to take it out of registry run although I've got a feeling it reinstalls itself in there in which case your other users will get an err msg.
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Expert Comment

by:Snodlander
ID: 12468872
Hey Imran....

Gimmie Points.







please :o)
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12469906
I donot want to delete the question.......
I want it to be open for a couple of more weeks......

Imran
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12469918
In fact I want it to be open til 20th November.......After which I will split the points.....

Imran
0
 
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Author Comment

by:imarshad
ID: 12630471
I hope that I have splitted the points correctly.......

Imran
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by:Sohel Rana
ID: 12630482
Thanks imran for the points.

rsdn
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