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26Dolphins 24. Sep 2010 12:02 PM

Odd issue with Secunia PSI

Every time I run Secunia PSI on Win XP SP3, it stops the sound assigned to Windows Explorer.
That's the only side-effect.

Anyone else experienced this?
Any ideas on why this happens and how to solve it?

Thanks in advance.

Anupam 24. Sep 2010 12:13 PM

That's odd. I never had such a problem. How does the sound come back on then? After PSI exits, or by other means?

I am having XP SP2 though.

26Dolphins 24. Sep 2010 02:36 PM

Hi Anupam,

It is odd, isn't it? PSI doesn't break sound in general, so it took me a long time to realize that PSI was responsible for the loss of sound in Windows Explorer.
Unfortunately, I can't remember if this was happening with the previous version of PSI as well.

The sound doesn't come back on until I restore it through Control Panel, after exiting PSI.

A mystery?

Anupam 24. Sep 2010 02:47 PM

That's really strange. I cannot understand why running PSI would turn off the sound. Maybe you should post about it on their forum?

I had a problem earlier on my system, where the sound would turn off automatically, and randomly. Then, it would have to be turned on from the Services. It was strange. I had searched for the problem on Google, and many people were having it. A solution was provided, but never the cause. I had asked about the cause too, but no answer. Its still a mystery for me.

Strange things happen on computers sometimes.

26Dolphins 24. Sep 2010 03:24 PM

I'm not sure I'll get any help from their forum, as at least one member there (NathanG here) posted about the exact same thing about a month after v. came out and no one took interest in it. He's on Vista x64, so the problem must be OS irrelevant.
He also mentioned having the same problem with IE, which I can't confirm since I never use it.

It looks like my best shot is the next version.

Thanks for your time, Anupam.

Anupam 24. Sep 2010 04:03 PM

26Dolphins, I think I might be having the same problem as you. I had not read your first post very carefully, where you said about the Windows Explorer sound. I just overlooked the Windows Explorer part, and took it as the whole sound on the system.

Out of curiousness, I just used PSI, and I was not able to hear the click sound that comes when you open a folder, or hard disk etc. That's the Windows Explorer sound, yes? Now, I don't know if the problem started because I used PSI, or the problem was already there before. I really cannot tell, because I do not have a speaker attached to my system, but headphones, and I very rarely use them, except for listening to music, or watching movies. So, I don't know for how long the problem has existed, or what could have caused it.

I don't even know what the default sound should be for Windows Explorer. I went to "Sounds and Audio Devices" in Control Panel. Under the Sound tab, for me, it says the Sound Scheme is blank. Should it be Windows Default? I think its OK if its blank?

Also, under Windows Explorer, the sound needs to be enabled for "Start Navigation", and "Complete Navigation"? For both of them, "None" is present. What is the default sound?

I don't know what caused it, but if PSI caused it, its definitely strange, as it should not mess around with system settings. Its job is to scan the software installed, isn't it? There is nothing about sound in the PSI settings too.

Let me know the default sound, and I will run PSI again, and observe the behavior. If its because of PSI, I will search for this issue more on Google.

I ran PSI on my system just now, and strangely, it still shows the Firefox vulnerability. In the solution, its written that the vulnerability will be fixed in versions later than 3.6.9. Well, its Firefox 3.6.10 that I am using, and the advisory still exists on PSI. They missed it, or Mozilla have not fixed the vulnerability yet? Strange.

26Dolphins 24. Sep 2010 06:05 PM

Hi Anupam and sorry for the delay.

Yes, the Win Explorer sound is that "click" you hear when navigating through drives, folders and files. That "click" is the default one (Windows Navigation Start.wav).

The default Sound Scheme in Win XP is not blank, it's either the Windows Default, No Sounds or any custom one you apply. If you open the drop-down menu, you'll see the Windows Default and the No Sounds one, but no "blank".
PSI messes up with this and puts it to blank, if you don't have any other custom ones - after breaking the Win Explorer sound what's left doesn't correspond to any saved Sound Scheme. Now, if you do have a custom one like me, the mess is a little different. PSI still breaks the Win Explorer sound, but when I check the Sound tab it still shows my custom one. Trouble is, it's not really my custom one as the asigned Win Explorer sound is broken (it still has a speaker icon, but gives me an error if I try to test it). I then have to reapply my custom Sound Scheme (choose sth else from the drop-down menu & apply, then choose my custom & apply). If I don't reapply my custom Scheme and just asign the sound to Win Explorer, Windows doesn't recognize it as my custom one and asks me if I want to save my previous config.

Long story short, it doesn't really matter what sound is asigned to Win Explorer. Just asign one and do the PSI test. The results are always the same, sound breaks the moment you run PSI.

The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced it's a v. problem. What worries me the most is that the sound loss issue seems to have been overlooked, though, as you say, it's not just a sound thing, it's messing with system settings :mad: and maybe won't be fixed in the next version, which is now in public beta.

About the Firefox vulnerability, my results differ in that it doesn't have a solution. Clicking on the link in "Status" takes me here. That Advisory is dated from Aug. 31st (before build 3.6.10) and probably hasn't been updated yet - User mgroves makes the exact same point, but no feedback.

Anupam 24. Sep 2010 06:55 PM

OK, I was able to reproduce the problem. My sound scheme was blank. I selected the Windows Default, and the Windows Explorer click sound was back. Then I ran PSI, and after I ran it, I checked the sound, and indeed its gone. So, the problem is definitely with PSI, and its somehow changing the sound setting.

But, this time around, I experienced a different thing. Now, I experienced the same problem as you. My sound scheme remained Windows Default, and when I clicked on "Start Navigation", I got this error :


Windows cannot find the file %SystemRoot%\media\W. Do you want to use the file for this event anyways?
So, PSI is messing up with this setting somehow. I don't know where that "W" came from.

Seems like my default sound scheme was blank only. Might be because of the sound driver I am using for my system. Because, if I remember correctly, I always saw it as blank. Still, the problem is there that PSI is messing up the sound setting of Windows Explorer. I did not notice this earlier, and maybe others too did not. It might be happening with many users.

Its really strange, because I cannot figure out why would PSI need to change this particular setting.

I had followed the link to their forum, and I can see why the post about this got lost. There are so many comments on that page, its a mess, and a comment could easily get lost.

I will search on Google for more about this, and see what I find. Its indeed odd.

About the Firefox advisory, I too went to the same page for which you provide the link. The solution is there in that advisory. I too had seen the comment from a lone user there. Its unanswered. Seems like PSI might not have updated the advisory.

Too much involved with their beta product?

Anupam 24. Sep 2010 07:20 PM

I searched on Google for a bit, and could not find anything more, except this :

Here too, the user posts about the same problem, but in this post, he points that the registry setting is being changed. His OS is different, but the problem is the same. So, this issue is irrespective of the OS.

There is no answer to the problem. The contributor has asked to contact Secunia support team, and I have done so. I sent a mail to their support just now, explaining about the problem, and gave links to the problems on their forum too. Lets see what they have to say. Its weekend, so we can expect some delay. Lets see. I am interested in their reply.

26Dolphins 24. Sep 2010 08:47 PM

Hi Anupam,

I'm sorry to say that I was certain that you'd be able to reproduce the problem.
That's the exact same error I get.

The forum thread you linked to is over a year old, yet the problem still exists - not a good sign.
I just did the PSI test, this time keeping an eye on the registry key mentioned in that post.
PSI changes the value of HKEY_CURRENT_USER\AppEvents\Schemes\Apps\Explorer\ Navigating\.current
form my setting (Windows Navigation Start.wav) to Windows Naviga :eek: :confused: :eek:
And that explains why you get that error and why the sound doesn't come back on, unless you force it back through the Control Panel.

If you take a closer look at it, the changed value represents the first 14 characters of "Windows Navigation Start.wav". So, I asigned "Windows Information Bar.wav" and run PSI. Guess what? That registry value was changed to "Windows Inform", which is also 14 characters long. Conclusion: PSI can't handle more than 14 characters, so ends up screwing the sound up.

Now, if you asign a sound which name includes non-standard latin characters after the term "Windows XP" and run PSI, that registry value changes to "Windows XP " (there's a space at the end). So, another safe conclusion is that PSI can only handle basic/ standard latin characters.

I think it's a PSI code issue.
If I don't get too lazy over the weekend, I may try out the beta version to see if the problem's still there.

Anupam, thanks for emailing them.
Maybe you can pass along these findings when they reply?

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