1 2 3 Previous Next 24 Replies Latest reply on Mar 8, 2011 10:07 AM by Pritish

    Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...

      SaaS 5.2.  What a pile this upgrade is.   Before continuing to read, please note that this is going to be a LONG rant.   I've never experienced such chaos in an enterprise product as I have with SaaS 5.2.


      We've been a "McAfee Total Protection" customer for years.   I orginally chose McAfee about 10 years ago because in my testing, McAfee was the most transparent of all security suites.   No slowdowns, no hiccups, and a "set and forget" type configuration.   I've enjoyed being a McAfee customer - until SaaS 5.2.


      Once my 40 workstations were plagued with this upgrade, my users productivity came to a screeching halt.   Our .NET application, which is fully contained on an in-house, GIGABIT network was crawling.  20-28 seconds to load a web page.   15-18 seconds to return back to the previous, and low and behold, Task Manager shows MCSHIELD.EXE at 74% cpu on a Core2Duo 2.6Ghz machine.    I won't even begin to explain how painful work was for our users that have older P4 HT machines.  I could have sent them home for the day.


      A call into support suggests that we change some settings on our policies.  Apparently, a very high paying individual (developer) suggested that the CPU usage setting of the policy be set to "HIGH" by default.   I'm suggesting he was "HIGH" at the time of this decision.   Setting this to "VERY LOW" seemed to help a smidge, but it wasn't until I disabled everything but the On-Access-Scan that we were able to regain the performance that we had before 5.2.


      McAfee support ended up completely re-creating the policy for us, as it was suggested that this was the problem.   (Seems to be a catch-all solution....delete and recreate.   Uninstall and Reinstall.  Come on McAfee...this is GOLD support, not the local high school's help desk!)


      A week or so goes by, and suddenly a new error is happening on our network.   As people are logging off their machines at the end of the day, their roaming profiles are bombing out, because certain cookies could not be read.   The specific error was "ACCESS DENIED". 


      Further investigation into this issue led me to .... MCAFEE.   By default, "Potentially Unwanted Programs" contain default cookie entries to block.   This normally wouldn't be a problem, but I believe the METHOD in which McAfee uses to block these cookies is very ****-poor.   It seems as though McAfee is forcing the cookie to be CORRUPTED rather than just DELETING the cookie from the user's folder.   This in turn creates network errors when trying to copy the profile back to the server.


      Another point that I noticed while a support agent was controlling my machine - she had shut off the on-access-scanner from the SaaS Console on my workstation....and proceeded to tell me that it was Disabled.    However, in viewing task manager, you could see that upon accessing files or websites, MCSHIELD continued to use CPU Cycles and generate I/O.  




      Today, it's a whole new realm.  Printing to any of my network printers is slower than a camel walking through a snowstorm.   45 seconds to spool 20 pages?    Let's see what's hampering us this morning when we print.   Low and behold, there's MCSHIELD.EXE using 64% CPU while spooling a print job to a printer on the LAN.   Amazing.


      Folks, it's time to look another direction for your security needs.   Clearly there are issues with McAfee's latest generation of products (at least their SaaS offering).   Tech support is of no use, as their solution is just to uninstall/reinstall.   Recreate the policy. 


      Upon renewal, I will NOT be renewing our company's contract with McAfee.   We've shared our story with another security provider, and they've offered us a very competitive offer to switch over to them.   I've demo'd their product both at home and in business situations, and the performance is second to none.   Plus, their support department speaks ENGLISH natively.   There are 23 other companies that I support/consult for that I will also be moving to this provider.   These corporations value my opinion and experience, and require a solution that is simple, affordable, and allows them to get work done.


      McAfee, it's been a fun 10 years.   Thanks for the memories, and good luck to you in the future.

        • 1. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...


          I have read your post.

          We completely understand the gravity of your situation and we sincerely apologize for all the inconveniences that was caused by the McAfee products.

          We would like to mention here, that our Engineers are working very hard to resolve these issues ASAP.

          If you could provide us with the Service Request numbers that was given to you when you had contacted McAfee Gold Support, it would be really helpful in going through your case and to help you better.

          Please provide us with the Service Request number that you would have received when you contacted McAfee Gold Technical Support.


          Pritish P.



          on 3/12/10 3:50:29 AM IST
          • 2. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...

            Hello Pritish....


            Service Request# 3-1313456581

            Service Request# 3-1301349161

            Service Request# 3-1298834021

            Service Request# 3-1297594871

            • 3. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...



              Thank you very much for providing the required information.


              We have sent this to our Sr. Technical Support team and they will get back to you ASAP.




              Pritish P.

              • 4. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...

                Full agreement with your post.  we have over 50 clients all running McAfee SaaS and the majority are now sufferring from severe resource issues caused by McAfee.

                In the past, our success rate when raising a general support issue is pretty much nil.  if it's not related to a specific account the Support don't seem to know how to deal with it.


                If McAfee can't sort this out quickly then we'll be forced to move all our clients away to a less resource intensive package too, which is a shame because other than the resource issue the package works well.


                Come on McAfee, lets get an update out next week to resolve this because it is a very serious issue.

                • 5. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...



                  Nice to hear that someone else is sharing the pain alongside myself.   Surprisingly, just a few days after I originated this post, our systems seem to have magically found their missing cylinders, as performance has been....impressive.   Now, being that SaaS is ultimately controlled by McAfee....well, I'm sure you follow.


                  However, there are still broken pieces in the web administration interface.   Just try once to approve a "Potentially Unwanted Program".   The "APPROVE" links do not work.   Even the APPROVE ALL button laughs back at you as you click it in frustration.   While I'm on the subject of Potentially Unwanted Programs, I've turned OFF both the PUPS and Spyware features of the software, though the programs still detects and displays PUPS in the admin interface.  THE SOFTWARE IS BROKEN. 


                  The McAfee support specialist I most recently talked to was shocked to see a program quarantined when I opened it - even though that feature is apparently disabled.


                  Try opening up the Console (From the lower-right tray icon), logging in, and then disable the on-access scanner.   Now, open task manager, and copy a file or browse to a website.   Watch MCSHIELD.EXE CONTINUE to scan.


                  I've been told that a patch is due to be released this week (or maybe next week);  another is to be released in January.


                  I've just finished an Alpha Test with a different software vendor, and next will will begin a beta test of their "2011" version product.   I have to wonder if McAfee considers TESTING their products in a real-world environment before releasing this smut out to its (overpaying) clients.

                  • 6. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...

                    Hi Ruthey,

                    McAfee Engineers are intensively working on all these issues.

                    We hope that the patch that is to be released in this month and the other patch that will be realeased in the month of January will resolve all the current issues that customer's are facing.

                    Please bear with us.


                    Pritish P.

                    • 7. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...

                      For the last three days I have been uninstalling SAAS 5.2 on our Windows XP machines and installing Security Essentials. We are getting response times of 10 to 15 seconds when we go to graphics laden pages. Taskmgr says that mcshield.exe is the culprit. For one day it seemed okay on a couple XP machines. The users said the response time was slower but not unbearable. Today the machines were getting 15 second response times. The McAfee support guy who responded to my ticket asked me to disable McAfee and see if the problem went away. The problem did not go away. Mcshield.exe seems to ignore whether McAfee is disabled. The only way I could get Mcshield to stop hogging the CPU was by uninstalling McAfee. This problem does not appear to be as severe a problem on the newer and more powerful CPUs. The machines have a normal response time when using Security Essentials.

                      • 8. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...



                        Great to hear from you.    Your experience sounds very much like mine.   Our workstations consist of two different generations of machines.   Our older machines are P4 630 HT @ 3.00Ghz, 1GB DDR-400 RAM.   Our newer workstations are Core2Duo 6750's @ 2.66Ghz, with PC2-6400 2GB RAM.


                        I can't even begin to express how slow the P4's were running.  Don't get me wrong, the 6750's were also experiencing lag, but no where near what the P4's were.


                        I still find it strange how "magically" everything seemed to have worked itself out after starting this thread.


                        I'm actually going to be speaking with some McAfee folks later this month - so I appreciate you taking the time, Bill to share your experiences. 

                        • 9. Re: Fellow Users, It's time to take a different direction...


                          Totally hearing you and am facing a lot of the same issues with any of our clients that have been upgraded to 5.poo, um 5.2... Cookies stopping roaming profiles from being loaded or written back to the server, system resources being totally consumed and the list goes on....

                          We've had a case logged with Gold tech support for over a week and they're impossible to deal with. It has apparently been escalated to 3rd tier support but try and speak to them and it's basically impossible. I've made 3 attempts and been blocked by the monkeys each time, requested call backs and received nada.


                          We've requested a rollback option to go back to the previous version which was running issue free pretty much for our clients but have been advised that it is not possible. Makes me think, about change management within McAfee and whether it exists or not.... Like yourself we are at a point of making the decision of whether to go through the time consuming option of assessing alternate solutions and redeploying to all our clients... Just what every IT professional wants to be doing :-)


                          Merry Xmas McAfee, thanks for the extra hours that will need to be spent at work over the "holiday" period...

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