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TechTracker Uninstaller dangerous; how to disable?

by johnfrench--2008 / January 26, 2012 3:02 PM PST

Mac OS X 10.6.8, CNET TechTracker 2.1.0(489)

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All Answers

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Using the TechTracker Uninstaller
by CNETSupport / January 31, 2012 6:14 AM PST


When removing items from your machine with the TechTracker Mac Uninstaller, please note that when the uninstaller dialog box pops up, the ancillary file boxes are checked by default. They will be removed with the program, unless you prefer to leave the files, in which case you can simply un-check them in the dialog box before clicking "Mark as trashed."

CNET TechTracker Support

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Response misses the point
by johnfrench--2008 / February 1, 2012 11:20 AM PST

<span id="INSERTION_MARKER">The response fails to address the problem described in the original message. I am not (intentionally) using the TechTracker Mac Uninstaller to remove items from my system; I am simply dragging them to the Trash; from that point on, Uninstaller inserts itself, unbidden, into the process. That would be OK, I guess, except that, as I reported, on two occasions, Uninstaller has crashed, leaving my Applications folder in serious disarray, with random files (completely unrelated to the application I'm attempting to discard) in the Trash, where I would be in really bad trouble if I did not spend a significant amount of time restoring them to their proper place.<span id="INSERTION_MARKER">

<span id="INSERTION_MARKER">I am not trying to find out how to use TechTracker Mac Uninstaller nor am I trying to learn how it works, which is what the CNET response addresses. Until CNET has resolved the serious problems that has occurred with Uninstaller, both the crashing and the mangling of the Applications folder, what I want to know is how to disable Uninstaller, totally and completely. Located, as it is, in

<span id="INSERTION_MARKER"> /Library/TechTracker/TTEngine/Contents/Resources/Uninstaller

<span id="INSERTION_MARKER">it is clearly not a standard type of application; and I do not know how to get to it, much less get rid of it. That, fundamentally, is what I want to know how to do.

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Concerning disabling the Uninstaller
by CNETSupport / February 2, 2012 3:48 AM PST


At this time there is no way to disable the Uninstaller while TechTracker is installed on your machine - we are working hard to improve the TechTracker service, and this will be addressed in future versions. We apologize for any inconvenience in the

CNET TechTracker Support

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I just want to know does the uninstaller have a log
by kdmckale--2008 / October 14, 2012 8:21 AM PDT

Does the uninstaller log the files it moves to the trash? As the first user indicated, the uninstaller moves files that are UNRELATED to the application to the trash. I wish I had known this before agreeing. Thankfully it doesn't delete them outright. However, I am left with a trash bin full of files that belong somewhere, and I don't have the "put back" option I normally would have when something is moved to the trash.

Hence, I need to know where each of these 427 unrelated files go. I hope you were intelligent enough to have the uninstaller keep a log (hope because clearly something's not right on your end when you create an uninstaller that works the way yours does).

Your immediate response is greatly desired!!!

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As a follow-up...
by kdmckale--2008 / March 22, 2013 8:55 AM PDT

I never came back to describe the process I had to go through to restore all the files back to their original locations. This was only possible because I started to restore the files shortly after they were moved to the Trash and because my harddisk had not yet been reindexed. Accessing the old index of my harddisk, I had to search for each file name individually to reveal to me what the original location was (this had to be done from Terminal). It was a very long and tedious process!

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What index?
by Daniel J S / August 20, 2013 6:52 AM PDT
In reply to: As a follow-up...

I've been hit by the same issue - and have rescued a number of files and folders from my trash. Now, how do I find out where to return them? Where is the log that shows where they came from? What index can I refer to such that I can place these back where they need to go? Is there a way Time Machine can assist?

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How to disable if you're still curious...
by kdmckale--2008 / October 14, 2012 8:48 AM PDT

c|net rep is lying or doesn't understand how TTEngine is being loaded. c|net very sneakily put a LaunchAgent for this program instead of having it added to the list of software that is loaded per account from System Preferences.

It's located in your local Library folder under LaunchAgents. I'm not sure if you can remove it outright, as I've not tested it but if you look at the plist file you'll see:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "">
<plist version="1.0">

In particular, I think changing the keys RunAtLoad and KeepAlive to <false/> will do it.

Opening in Property List Editor to uncheck these won't allow you to make these changes unless you first give yourself write privileges. This takes a few steps from the folder view and one line doing it from Terminal. Since I don't know your experience level, here's how from the folder level:
* Go to "Get Info" (command+I or right click or option click on the file)
* Unlock the lock in the lower right hand corner (this will ask for your password).
* Click the plus sign in the lower left hand corner (this will bring up a list of users).
* Select yourself and then in the column next to your name change "Read only" to "Read & Write"
* Click off your name and it'll ask for you to enter your password again.
* Re-lock the lock in the lower right hand corner.

Now, you can double-click the file to open it up in Property List Editor and uncheck the two options. If you do not have Property List Editor, you can just have it open the file in TextEdit and change the two <true/> lines to <false/> and then save.

That should work. Good luck!

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TechTracker Uninstaller problem status?
by johnfrench--2008 / March 22, 2013 5:40 AM PDT

More than a year ago (as the warning informs me, yes, I am aware that "This thread is more than 420 days old"; C|Net's subsequent silence is one of the primary reasons for this new inquiry), I posted a problem concerning the unstable, unpredictable TechTracker Uninstaller. In February, 2012, a C|Net representative replied that the solution I was seeking, viz., turning off the problematic application, was not currently possible; but that it would "be addressed in future versions." Since that time, I have received no update. What is the status of the Uninstaller and the ability to turn it off? In October, 2012, some kind user posted tentative instructions for disabling TechTracker Uninstaller; but before I go flailing about in the system, performing operations with whose results I am not entirely familiar, I'd prefer to have C|Net ring in on the issue with a more formal and official reply. Anybody out there?

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Good luck hearing back from c|net!
by kdmckale--2008 / March 22, 2013 8:49 AM PDT

I doubt you're going to hear back from c|net on this. If they didn't reply to my semi-inflammatory post, I doubt that they are going to reply at all. Regarding your questions, I have seen updates for c|net TechTracker download since I posted. However, they have not improved the issues we brought up originally. I honestly don't understand the thought-process at c|net for forcing this subpar product on us (by secretly incorporating it and not allowing us to disable it through the app).

It's interesting that you just replied because I was just looking back at my post the other day to disable the Uninstaller on another computer of mine. Still works like a charm (I realized I never came back to state that it worked) in OS X 10.8 as it did in OS X 10.6.

However, if you're uncomfortable making system changes like I suggested, then there's not much more you can do apart from uninstalling c|net TechTracker completely. That is, if it actually lets you uninstall it. My digging for a solution turned up the insidiousness of the TechTracker application, the duplication of itself in hidden locations, and its ability to not only restart itself regardless of how you terminate it but also to reinstall itself if you try to delete it in any traditional way. Again, I'm not really sure what c|net is thinking on their end. The software acts more like a virus or malware than any other app I've ever seen before.

Good luck!

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My experience matches your expectations
by johnfrench--2008 / March 22, 2013 2:03 PM PDT

Over the years I do not believe I have ever encountered a software publisher that exhibits lower quality applications and as embarrassingly poor responsiveness. Although I hoped that my pointing out C|Net's horribly misdirected first answer in this thread and the year-long empty promise of its second response might, somehow, cause it to provide some information of value, my expectation is that the only real purpose will be to allow me to vent my frustrations about a company whose lack of shame seems to be matched only by its technical incompetence. That any company would permit such a destructive application to remain uncorrected and not even deliver a way of disabling it is almost beyond belief.

It is helpful to have you confirm that your proposed technique for shutting down this miserable excuse for a computer program has been successful. As long as it was just a method that "should work", I was reluctant to make changes regarding an application that already behaves so badly. The last thing I want is to have it start doing even more bizarre and destructive things.

Now that you report that your steps do, indeed, work, I'll set out to remove this irritant from my life. Thanks for the information.

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