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Windows 7: Win 7 Sidebar Gadget Security Issue


13 Dec 2012   #1

Win 7 ultimate 64
 
 
Win 7 Sidebar Gadget Security Issue

Back in July 2012, Microsoft recommended the nuclear option for all sidebar gadgets. Seems someone figured out how to take over your machine via them. Has Microsoft corrected this issue? Is it safe to reinstate gadgets? I miss several of them.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Dec 2012   #2

Windows 7 x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by davnel View Post
Back in July 2012, Microsoft recommended the nuclear option for all sidebar gadgets. Seems someone figured out how to take over your machine via them. Has Microsoft corrected this issue? Is it safe to reinstate gadgets? I miss several of them.
I don't think they can make them safe so the advice to remove them and use something else remains. I ignored their advice and still have all my gadgets working fine - I chose useability over security as I often do and fortunately I am still malware free regardless of the apparent 'risks' I take.

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14 Dec 2012   #3

Win 7 ultimate 64
 
 

Thank you, I'll likely reenable them, but I'd be interested in application level substitutes for gadgets.
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14 Dec 2012   #4

Windows 7 x64 SP1
 
 

I think plenty of people are still using their gadgets - if they were working OK before the panic then they should still be alright. Some of these might be better alternatives - RocketDock seems to be used by many here -

The Best Application Launchers and Docks for Organizing Your Desktop - How-To Geek

I think we can go overboard on security aspects and get a little paranoid at times. As someone who runs as admin with UAC disabled and who uses IE9 for much of the time I might be more worried than most but I've never had any malware - I also use the not-flavour-of-the-month NIS which apparently keeps me safe. I do regular images of my OS using Macrium however and that works fine for me.

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14 Dec 2012   #5

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit
 
 

My understanding is that the risk comes from using third-party gadgets from unreputable sources, as they can contain some nasty spyware or adware. Stick to Microsoft's gadgets or those known by all to be safe and you should be fine.

Of course, that is just my understanding and I have been wrong before.
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14 Dec 2012   #6

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

I use the gadgets and haven't come across any issues (I only use the weather gadget).
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14 Dec 2012   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I don't think there is a significant risk in gadgets, the bugs were there since day one and yet have to see anyone being hacked by a gadget. Also, if you have reasonable security measures like antivirus, firewall and most important common sense, you can for most time rest assured that you're safe.
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 Win 7 Sidebar Gadget Security Issue




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