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8/29/2006
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Pocket Anti-Spyware

A big problem with anti-spyware products is that computers are sometimes too infected to allow software to be installed or downloaded. ParetoLogic has a unique solution in its XOFTspy Portable Anti-spyware, which operates directly from U3 smart drives.

Anti-spyware products are quite popular with most computer users and all solution providers. A big problem with most of these products is that computers are sometimes too infected to allow software to be installed or downloaded. ParetoLogic has a unique solution in its XOFTspy Portable Anti-spyware that operates directly from U3 smart drives. Other applications can also run from U3 smart drives, and this lets computers be shared by different users while keeping applications and data private.

U3 technology is available in USB flash drives made by most popular vendors including Kingston, Memorex, SanDisk, Verbatim and others. Not just a label, the U3 platform allows the drives to store software, settings and data so that applications such as XOFTspy can run directly from the drives without having to be installed on the computer. A low-level software infrastructure called the U3 Device Services serves as a bridge between a flash drive and the applications stored on it. A GUI called the U3 Launchpad installed on all U3 smart drives lets users launch the applications. Available U3 applications include business productivity, entertainment, security and more. Note that a U3 Software Development Kit is available for software developers to port applications onto U3 smart drives.

XOFTspy detects and removes spyware, trojans, keyloggers and adware, and it's licensed for use on multiple computers so it can be used repeatedly on any computers that have USB ports. The program can be downloaded for $14.95 from U3's Software Central download area at http://software.u3.com/Product_Details.aspx?ProductId=103&Selection=5. It will run on any U3 smart drive, which users may already have. If not, an extensive list of U3-compatible smart drives can be found at the U3 website, and they cost no more than ordinary flash drives. For example, a 1 Gbyte U3-compliant Memorex Mini TravelDrive costs only $29.99 from Amazon.com. They are also available from distributors such as Accutech, Azerty, Dexxon Digital Storage Inc., Ingram Micro, Supplies Network, Tech Data and United Stationers.

For test purposes, ParetoLogic sent the Test Center the XOFTspy Portable Anti-spyware installed on a 512 Mbyte Memorex Mini TravelDrive. The drive is tiny, measuring only 2.25 inches long by 0.85 inch wide by 0.27 inch thick. The drive can be used to run U3 applications and also to store and transport files such as songs, photos and documents.

The XOFTspy Portable Anti-spyware application launches when the U3 smart drive is inserted in a USB port. The application protects not only the host computer, but also the smart drive itself, even if the host computer has no Internet connectivity. Tested on a Hewlett-Packard notebook computer running Windows XP Professional, XOFTspy detected and removed 59 pieces of spyware and adware. This is a terrific tool for solution providers to keep in their pocket at all times.

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