1 2 Previous Next 13 Replies Latest reply on Aug 7, 2010 11:01 AM by Peter M

    How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer

      I have an HTPC (Home Threater PC) running Vista Business with McAfee AntiVirus Plus installed on it.  AntiVirus Plus is currently set to run the scan at 4 AM once a week, but it doesn't wake the computer up to perform the scan.  Instead, the scan starts when the DVR software wakes the computer to record a program.

       

      Seems like AntiVirus Plus could (should?) wake the machine up in order to run the scan.  Am I missing something about how to configure it?  Alternatively, is there some way that I can schedule Windows to wake the machine up at the correct time?  I suppose I could get the DVR software to do it by scheduling a program to be recorded at the appointed time, but that seems silly.

       

      Any suggestions?

       

      Mike

        • 1. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer
          Peter M

          It can't be done directly through the McAfee interface.  You would need a scheduled task to wake the computer just before the scheduled scan was due to take place.

           

          We have auggested they introduce this but no success thus far, sorry.

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          • 2. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer

            The paid/registered version of Malwarebytes Antimalware (MBAM) has an option to "wake computer from sleep" to perform a scan.

             

            This could be your other scheduled task.

             

            MM

            • 3. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer
              Peter M

              Isn't there a danger of the paid version of MBAM clashing with McAfee?  I know the free one is OK.

              • 4. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer

                Hi, Ex_Brit:

                 

                Not that I have seen.

                 

                I've been running MBAM Pro on all 3 systems (2 of which run "2009" McAfee) since January.

                 

                As a "precaution" against startup conflicts, I had been disabling MBAM's active protection start at boot-up (opting instead to manually start the service a minute or 2 later).

                However, with the latest MBAM update to v. 1.46 I thought I would try it -- it works fine.

                With Vista and Win7, MBAM automatically loads a minute or 2 after Windows starts, by which time McAfee is loaded and running.

                (With XP, one has to make a minor registry tweak, OR disable the MBAM load at startup, OR use WinPatrol to set MBAM for a delayed start.)

                 

                MBAM is *not* an anti-virus and is designed to work alongside the major suites/firewalls/AVs.

                With some, one needs to do a little tweaking of one's firewall settings to be sure the MBAM files are excluded/allowed.

                But I haven't had any problems with that on the McAfee systems (Webroot on my laptop has been a little dicier).

                 

                Moreover, the real-time IP protection from MBAM is a welcome addition to the McAfee firewall -- it has blocked many malicious IPs, thereby possibly preventing infections, and allowing me to manually add those ranges to the "banned IPs" in the McAfee FW.  And the new, paid version allows users to program "flash" scans which run every time the definitions update, typically several times daily (as opposed to only once daily updates with McAfee).

                 

                OTOH, I am (thankfully) still running the OEM "2009" "Dell" versions of the McAfee Security Center.

                I don't know what will happen when/if I receive the 2010 updates.

                I will have no way to know when it arrives until I am prompted for a reboot AFTER installation.

                By that point in the process, it will be too late to perform proactive steps.

                So I assume I will end up with a mess when this happens (crashes, hangups, errors, conflicts and even BSOD) until I *uninstall/cleanup* EVERYTHING (McAfee, MBAM, SAS, WinPatrol) and perform a clean installation from scratch.

                As such, I'm really not looking forward to it.

                If it doesn't go smoothly, I will likely jump ship to a competitor that provides more of the features & configurability options that have been progressively stripped from McAfee.

                 

                Regards,

                 

                MM

                • 5. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer
                  Peter M

                  Interesting info, thanks.

                   

                  By the time Dell uploads the 2010 product to clients machines most of the kinks should be ironed out.....let us hope.

                  • 6. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer

                    It's not just the "kinks" -- it's the fact that NOT knowing when the version update is coming doesn't allow the user to take the usual proactive steps to avoid potential conflicts and errors (such as disabling or uninstalling other security apps).

                     

                    It is not unreasonable that one might have to do this before installing a major version update to one's security suite.

                    What *is* ridiculous is not being given sufficient timely notice in order to be able to do so.

                    Something as "easy" as popup from the sytem tray.

                    Alas, my crystal ball is broken.

                     

                    Aside from that, I still don't understand how it is that I (and others like me with OEM McAfee products) would get major software updates from our computer makers, rather than from McAfee.

                    I know we've been around and around on this before, and I've seen that the question still arises (including another new thread just this week).

                    And I don't doubt your information or sincerity.

                    But Dell only provides what they pre-install.

                    They insist that updates (including major version updates) will come not from them, but from McAfee.

                    Indeed, that's the only thing that really makes sense, and that's how it worked with other ISS on my other computers in the past.

                    Yes, they provide BIOS updates, driver updates, etc.

                    But I''ve never seen a way for them to provide major software updates for 3rd-party applications, even security suites. (Similarly, when MS releases a new Office version, the user obtains that from MS, not from one's computer maker.)

                    At least, that's their story and they're sticking to it.

                     

                    I clearly don't understand how all this is supposed to happen.

                    I guess I'll find out when/if it does.

                     

                    Regards,

                     

                    MM

                    • 7. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer
                      Peter M

                      I know and we have complained to the powers that be.   Looks at it this way, at least it keeps us on our toes.

                      • 8. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer

                        Hmmm.  I've had some time to look at this and I have discoverer that on XP and Vista, it is possible to create a scheduled task that awakens the computer.

                         

                        1) For XP, go to Settings/Control Panel and double click on Scheduled Tasks.

                        2) In the Scheduled Tasks window, double click on Add Scheduled Task.

                        3) In the Scheduled Task Wizard, click Next.  There will be a long wait, so be patient.

                        4) In the list of programs, locate McAfee AntiVirus Plus, select it and press Next.

                        5) Give the task a name like, McAfee Scheduled Scan, and select the desired recurrence schedule, such as Weekly.  Press Next.

                        6) Enter a time for the scan to start, such as 5 minutes before your virus scan is scheduled to start,  and select the day that the scan is scheduled to run.  Press Next.

                        7) Enter your user name and password and press Next.

                        8) Click on the "Open advanced properties for this task when I click Finish" and press Finish.

                        9) In the advanced options window, select the Settings tab.

                        10) At the bottom, click on Wake the computer to run this task.

                        11) Press the Apply button.

                         

                        There is a similar Wizard for Vista, but I believe that it is in the Administrative tools.

                         

                        Note that this will only work if the computer's hardware supports waking it and if the computer was put to "Sleep".

                         

                        So, using this I can get the computer to wake up at the proper time, but the latest McAfee won't run the scheduled scan.  When I get up in the morning, I can see in the logs that the machine starrted at the proper time and later when back to sleep, and the McAfee program is running when I rewaken it, but the scan schedule has moved to 10 minutes from when I power the machine back on. In fact, despite when I when I set the scheduled scan to run, it appears to start at some random time.

                         

                        Is this a known problem?

                         

                        I also note that when I scheduled the task using Windows XP, the Run box has:

                         

                        C:\PROGRA~1\McAfee.com\Agent\mcagent.exe /desktopicon

                         

                        The /desktopicon is an old school command line option.  Sure would be nice if there was a /startscan command line option.  Does anyone know the list of command line options?

                         

                        Mike

                        • 9. Re: How to have a Scheduled Scan wake up a sleeping computer
                          Peter M

                          There is a 10 + 10 rule with scheduled anything in the 2010 products (if I have interpreted what I've been told correctly).  If the computer is busy it will wait 10 minutes, twice and then is supposed to go ahead with the task.   It might be an idea to set the computer to awaken more than 10 minutes before a scheduled scan as it could still be waking up when the 1st delay is activated.

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