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Windows 7: Windows metrics source lies about identity

22 Feb 2010   #11
smarteyeball

 
 

I just want to say thanks Mr. Kennedy - you have given me a lot of laughs over the years.

Please keep it up - for you Sir, are comedy gold


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22 Feb 2010   #12
thefabe

Windows 7 ultimate 64 bit / XP Home sp3
 
 

Off topic cause enough has been said quite well also. I just wanted to say to smartyeyeball excellent use of the tattoo posted for your avatar. Gotta love it. Fabe
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22 Feb 2010   #13
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Likes to talk about himself in 3rd person as well,

Bug in Windows 7 RTM

Randall Kennedy Has Clearly Lost It
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22 Feb 2010   #14
smarteyeball

 
 

'Journalistic' Credibility = ZERO

Comedic value because of it = PRICELESS
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22 Feb 2010   #15
dmex

 

Hi Randall,

Im a developer for Process Hacker a Task Manager replacement and alternative to Microsoft's Process Explorer, I was reading your exo.blog and become confused by a section of your post from "What took you so long?":

"Which is why we factor all three of the above counters into our final Peak Memory Pressure Index calculations. Because when these three counters climb above the thresholds we’ve defined for the WCPI calculation process, it means that your PC really is running out of memory."

Whats the threshold you defined and how exactly do you calculate (code based) the 'Peak Memory Pressure' from these three counters?

As our development team understands memory, calculating a PC 'running out of memory' requires consistently monitoring 7 different counters, we have always refereed people to this guide for basing calculations: Ask the Performance Team : An Overview of Troubleshooting Memory Issues

As seen from the above information, monitoring three performance counters are not indicative of memory pressure or running out of memory. It is necessary to monitor other counters, such as those mentioned and displayed in the graph from the article above, to get the complete picture of what is happening in each users particular case.

We had a feature request for identifying memory issues, during development of the feature we found it was nearly impossible to reliably report 'out-of-memory' problems because results are skewered by a user casually running memory intensive tasks like VMs or CS4 for a short time during long periods of sampling and vice-versa running memory intensive tasks for long periods during short periods of sampling. We found it best just to report the counters and refer users to that guide so they can make their own calculations and decisions based on their individual and particular application and Windows usage.

Im curious about how the threshold value is calculated and if it's hard-coded in your reporting application, instead of being dynamic and an example of how it takes the three counters and preforms the calculations? Does it take x and x memory counter and a count of processes for a % of memory use then divide by its own start/run-time or something?

If you can briefly explain how it works it would be appreciated by many users on this forum and many others elsewhere who discredit and currently rightfully distrust your "85% of Windows 7 PCs are under performing" findings, this would help clear up the confusion for many people and I would be inclined to join the exo.performance.network knowing its calculated correctly.

Steven
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22 Feb 2010   #16
Scotteq

Windows 7 (x64)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SGT Oddball View Post
Randall C. Kennedy = FAIL

Exposed as the lying useless hack he really is

You forgot "Unemployed"
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22 Feb 2010   #17
Scotteq

Windows 7 (x64)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dmex View Post
...this would help clear up the confusion for many people and I would be inclined to join the exo.performance.network knowing its calculated correctly.

Steven

I would highly recommend against that...

Apparently the app transmits complete and uncensored user data over an unsecure port. While it is arguable whether that data may or may not be used for other purposes; or whether ZDnet's testing is valid. Having acknowledged that... Knowing now what it does, that the creators are working out of private residences, and that there is undeniably a shell game being played with the identities/pseudonyms of the protagonists...

I wouldn't touch an app like that. Not Ever.


Source: Why we don't trust Devil Mountain Software (and neither should you) | Between the Lines | ZDNet.com


Quote:
We registered as users and downloaded copies of InfoWorld’s Windows Sentinel tool and XPNet’s DMS Clarity Tracker Agent.

Based on our tests, the InfoWorld Windows Sentinel and the DMS Clarity Tracker Agent are identical. The screens that appear during setup (including the end user license agreement) are the same. MD5 checksum hashes of the file downloaded from XPNet and the one from Windows Sentinel match perfectly. The only difference is a single letter in the file name of the executable.

As for the software itself, the installer is not digitally signed. It installs two Windows services: Cfwtracker.exe and Cfwupload.exe. The tracker program adds information at regular intervals to a database (in Microsoft Access format) stored in the user profile of the currently logged-on user. The upload module periodically sends that data to a remote server.

At its website, DMS claims that the software transmits data securely:

******************
Running in tandem with the DMS Clarity Tracker Agent, the Tracker Upload service spools collected data to the exo.repository for later review. The service uses an SSL-secure web connection that is compatible with most enterprise firewalls and proxy server implementations.

******************

We found this claim to be untrue. In our tests, using machines in widely separated geographic locations, the DMS software made simple (non-secure) HTTP connections on port 80, transmitting data to a server at IP address 66.115.28.220. The IP block at 66.115.28.* has DNS A records that point to devilmount.com, xpnet.com, and csaresearch.com. All of those companies are registered to Devil Mountain Software and include the name Randall C. Kennedy in the registration information.

When we attempted to use a browser to make a secure connection to https://xpnet.com, we received two certificate errors. The certificate associated with the site, originally issued by Equifax Secure Global eBusiness, had been issued to a different domain, csaresearch.com. In addition, the certificate had expired on September 7, 2009.

XPNet.com has no privacy policy on its site. Its license agreement contains no privacy information whatsoever. InfoWorld, however, made a prominent claim about privacy on its page that, until this weekend, offered the Windows Sentinel program:

***************
Performance data is uploaded to the exo.performance.network, where your most recent one week of data is stored for viewing and analysis. Performance data will be shared in aggregate only and never identified as linked to your individual account.
***************

The Feb. 19 exo.blog post appears to have violated that policy in a big way.

We conducted tests using the software downloaded from InfoWorld’s Windows Sentinel page and from XPNet.com and found no differences in their behavior. In both cases, the captured data was sent to the same server, which is under the control of Devil Mountain Software. As noted previously, InfoWorld pulled the software over the weekend.
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22 Feb 2010   #18
dmex

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Scotteq View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dmex View Post
...this would help clear up the confusion for many people and I would be inclined to join the exo.performance.network knowing its calculated correctly.

Steven

I would highly recommend against that...

Apparently the app transmits complete and uncensored user data over an unsecure port. While it is arguable whether that data may or may not be used for other purposes; or whether ZDnet's testing is valid. Having acknowledged that... Knowing now what it does, that the creators are working out of private residences, and that there is undeniably a shell game being played with the identities/pseudonyms of the protagonists...

I wouldn't touch an app like that. Not Ever.
I dont think that app works in the slightest, I mean it doesn't even correctly obtain memory usage from the right performance counters. but I would like to see Randall answer my question but I doubt he will considering he's a bit spineless when asked direct questions from poeple with more experience programming on Windows than him. His tool is a complete failure because results are skewered by a user casually running memory intensive tasks like VMs or CS4 for a short time during long periods of sampling and vice-versa running memory intensive tasks for long periods during short periods of sampling.

I didn't see that story and I have yet installed or used that software because of the above reason and now that story too, I also did suspect some nefarious uses of the software.

One of the more useful features of ProcessHacker is injecting dlls into a process, When Ive got time I guess I should intercept internal calls its been making at specific addresses and offsets (trivial to find thanks to PH's feature set) and see what its upto in a virtual machine.
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24 Feb 2010   #19
rck01

Peanut Butter & Jelly.
 
 

Confessions of an Internet "Shock Jock"

Randall C. Kennedy comes clean about his past, his relationship to Craig Barth and how it all came tumbling down. Includes an inside look at the politics of IDG and why you can never trust an IT publication that's as obsessed with page views as InfoWorld.

exo.blog: Editorial: Confessions of an Internet “Shock Jock”
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24 Feb 2010   #20
CarlTR6

Windows 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Interesting read and I am glad I was able to "hear" your side of the story. For folks like me who are not in the IT world, who use a computers as tools and for recreation, personal integrity is the bottom line. As you admitted, you compromised your integrity and destroyed your credibility.
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 Windows metrics source lies about identity




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