cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r22472132-MS-Update-Quietly-Installs-Dangerous-Firefox-Extension
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/securityfix/2009/05/microsoft_update_quietly_insta.html
Quote
Microsoft Update Quietly Installs Firefox Extension
A routine security update for a Microsoft Windows component installed on tens of millions of computers has quietly installed an extra add-on for an untold number of users surfing the Web with Mozilla's Firefox Web browser.

http://annoyances.org/exec/show/article08-600
Quote
Remove the Microsoft .NET Framework Assistant (ClickOnce) Firefox Extension
Intended For
Windows 2000
Windows 7
Windows XP
Windows Vista
The Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1 update, pushed through the Windows Update service to all recent editions of Windows in February 2009, installs the Microsoft .NET Framework Assistant firefox extension without asking your permission.
This update adds to Firefox one of the most dangerous vulnerabilities present in all versions of Internet Explorer: the ability for websites to easily and quietly install software on your PC. Since this design flaw is one of the reasons you may've originally choosen to abandon IE in favor of a safer browser like Firefox, you may wish to remove this extension with all due haste.
Unfortunately, Microsoft in their infinite wisdom has taken steps to make the removal of this extension particularly difficult - open the Add-ons window in Firefox, and you'll notice the Uninstall button next to their extension is grayed out! Their reasoning, according to Microsoft blogger Brad Abrams, is that the extension needed "support at the machine level in order to enable the feature for all users on the machine," which, of course, is precisely the reason this add-on is bad news for all Firefox users.

Oddly it isn't greyed out in Firefox running under  Windows 7
13 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 257
Fixes: 20
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

Another reason to run Linux  Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy
jim:blue too many smileys  so excess removed even though the comment is very valid mod:end
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

yet another reason to do manual selection of M$S update, I have never allowed Net on my machines
Waldo
Grafter
Posts: 473
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

Quote from: Oldjim
Oddly it isn't greyed out in Firefox running under  Windows 7

As a result of this update?
fred
Grafter
Posts: 57
Registered: 27-02-2008

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

Pierre: "yet another reason to do manual selection of M$S update"
Or even never to use MSUpdate, but instead try Autopatcher at http://www.autopatcher.com/
After a bit of a spat with MS, they cause you to download all the updates direct from the MS site, but then present you with a complete list for you to choose what you do with them.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

when I do a manual update it gives  me a list of the available items, plus a description, it does not download these until I say OK.
Looked at the front page of Autopatcher, does it let you check which ones you want?
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,668
Thanks: 409
Fixes: 5
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

So glad I don't automatically update anything, whether it comes to windows, AV or any other application which 'asks' me.
I just turn it all off, and do so when I feel Smiley
fred
Grafter
Posts: 57
Registered: 27-02-2008

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

Quote from: pierre_pierre
Looked at the front page of Autopatcher, does it let you check which ones you want?

Absolutely yes. You can even uninstall merely by removing the tick from the box on the list it presents you with. Gives you a complete list of all updates, and whether installed or not. It pre-ticks some boxes, mostly the "Critical Updates", but you can undo them with a moment's thought, if you don't want them.
It will download everything, so that you can burn the whole lot to a CD, and then make your choices when updating a newly installed machine before letting it loose on the interwibbles.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

not much different to M$S manual, only M$S doesnt down load those you unclick, have checked it with netmeter
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 18,686
Thanks: 1,944
Fixes: 247
Registered: 11-01-2008

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

They've offered a patch to remove it, but they do like to make it hard for you http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/1184512/microsoft-offers-patch-mozilla-users

Customer / Moderator / If it helped click the thumb / If it fixed it click 'This fixed my problem'

Community Veteran
Posts: 26,718
Thanks: 930
Fixes: 10
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodhy addon to Firefox without asking

Quote from: Waldo
Quote from: Oldjim
Oddly it isn't greyed out in Firefox running under  Windows 7

As a result of this update?

Excellent! That fix works under XP as well.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

No - it was always there in Windows 7. It only needed fixing in Vista and XP
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,718
Thanks: 930
Fixes: 10
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

Whatever the case, I'm very grateful for the link to a very much simpler way of getting rid of it than the registry hacks given in your original links.!
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
Not applicable

Re: Microsoft slide in a dodgy addon to Firefox without asking

Didn't know anything about this so am glad it has been raised here. My.NET addon wasn't enabled so I enabled it, downloaded the patch from the link above, ran it and it turned the addon into 0.0 but on restart it changed number back to 1 (I think).
Anyway, it has allowed me to uninstall it as you usually do with addons so is that it now?  Huh