DVDFab and Internet connection

I have been using the DVDFab Express software to decrypt and copy some movies without major problems.

However, after copying the DVD and before burning it into a blank disk, my firewall alerts me that DVDFab wants to connect to the Internet. I have not let the program connect and the copying process went fine so far.

Does anyone know why DVDFab requests an internet connection at this particular moment of the copying process?

Thanks!

Hi huxl and welcome.

Number of past threads which speak to this.
In portmac’s (VSO) own words:

“…It is the burning engine (made by VSO-Software) sending the burn stats to the VSO media stats database. It sends information about the burner/media used, burn speed, amount written, date of burn, total burn time, success/failure, error codes if it failed.
There is no identifyable information sent at all…”

Here is the entire referenced thread, specifically post #6:

http://club.cdfreaks.com/showthread.php?t=163146&highlight=firewall

Thank you for your answer and clarification.

It is sad to learn that they have a sort of spyware attached to their software, even if the information sent is apparently harmless.

I believe that they should alert their customers about this issue and allow them to opt if they want to participate with their research or not.

Thanks again.

Huxl

The stats reporting is not spyware, if you dont like it kill it with your firewall.
Maybe Fengtao should add an option to disable the stats reporting in the software.

But after reading your post I doubt it has anything to do with the stats reporting as that only happens when a burn finishes, more likely it is the DVDFab software trying to check if there is an updated version available.
You can turn the update checking off in the DVDFab settings.

Actually, my posting says that the problem starts [U]before[/U] the burning into a blank disk. It appears that you have misread my posting.

Regardless and even if it is a case of updating the software, customers should be alerted of it as it happens.

I sincerely hope that Fengtao would revise its software and make the necessary changes.

Altbough everyone sensitive to spyware, seems jumping to conclusions in this case. Most spyware operates covertly, even with firewall in use. However, seems unclear what this connection is looking for as after the rip, prior to the burn. Generally with “check for updates” checked, Fab checks when intial application starts (as I remember, I currently leave unchecked). Would be a good idea for Fengtao to clarify the reason for this, and also probably a good idea to have user ability to disable, as doesn’t seems critical to anything.

I agree with HUXL. As far as I am concerned this is spyware and it should not be happening. My problem is fab express hangs up at finalization time for about 13 minutes, but only with dvd-r. It does not happen with dvd+r discs. This is using winxp machine. The playback is ok with dvd-r. On my old win98se machine Fab won’t even write to disk anymore. Just freezes. I am currently testing Anydvd and Clonedvd from Slysoft and have not run into any of the nagging problems that seem to plague dvd idle products. They run find on my win98se machine and winxp machine.

There is an option to stop Fab from checking for updates if I remember right it is part of the questions when you install and can be changed in the settings. I turned it off not for fear, but because it will tell you there is a new update only. You then have to close out the Fab product and go to dvdidle.com and download the update. I do check this thread and the download site daily to stay up to date. I have always allow burn logs to be sent to VSO because that helps them with trouble shooting and make the software better. I was really impressed with the results in the database link that “portmac” posted sometime back showing the success rate for different equipment etc. If I remember right it was based on over 3 million burns, something that is impractical to do manually.

Mack

Current as of today:

Total records 12.869 million
Average hits per day 51375 new records

http://burner.vso-software.fr/

Impressive…thanks.

I understand folks concerns re: apps that send data without some sort of notice given to the owners. Clearly, this notice needs to be given. Also, I agree with portmac that fab should have an option to enable/disable this feature. At this point, you can configure your firewall to your own preferences as portmac and others have said. There are quite a few threads on this topic.

Having said this, sorry, I just don’t see this as spyware. There is no malicious intent here, nor does this feature do anything to one’s pc except send burn data with the only purpose to update and improve vso’s products.
Here’s a decent working definition of spyware from Wikipedia:

"In the field of computing, the term spyware refers to a broad category of malicious software designed to intercept or take partial control of a computer’s operation without the informed consent of that machine’s owner or legitimate user. While the term taken literally suggests software that surreptitiously monitors the user, it has come to refer more broadly to software that subverts the computer’s operation for the benefit of a third party.

In simpler terms, spyware is a type of program that watches after what users do with their computer and then send this information to a hacker over the internet. Spyware can collect many different types of information about a user. More benign programs can attempt to track what types of websites a user visits and send this information to an advertisement agency. More malicious versions can try to record what a user types to try to intercept passwords or credit card numbers. Yet other versions simply launch popups with advertisements.

Spyware differs from viruses and worms in that it does not usually self-replicate. Like many recent viruses, however, spyware – by design – exploits infected computers for commercial gain. Typical tactics furthering this goal include delivery of unsolicited pop-up advertisements; theft of personal information (including financial information such as credit card numbers); monitoring of Web-browsing activity for marketing purposes; or routing of HTTP requests to advertising sites."

Just my 2 cents…

and, as usual, a valuable 2 cents!

Wow! I did not expect such a long thread and I am thankful to all of you for addressing and replying to my concern regarding FAV software’s unusual Internet connection.

I am not sure yet if I want to subscribe to this type of software, but I should state that I have had almost no problems using it. Although there may be no malicious motives in keeping statistics on the user’s software usage and results, I strongly believe that this approach must be done on [U]voluntary[/U] basis.

FAV should also understand that if it needs feedback about its software products, it should openly request it, instead of getting it without its customers’ knowledge and approval. In this regard and considering that what it was said in these postings is true, FAV current tactic is not malicious but it certainly is unethical.

Thanks again to all and we’ll meet again around.

Huxl