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Abylon App-Blocker 2014 PRV Giveaway
$22.62
EXPIRED

Giveaway of the day — Abylon App-Blocker 2014 PRV

Block custom applications and Windows services from running on your system, remove tools, and gather detailed information about each program with Abylon App-Blocker.
$22.62 EXPIRED
User rating: 185 (32%) 401 (68%) 44 comments

Abylon App-Blocker 2014 PRV was available as a giveaway on April 24, 2015!

Today Giveaway of the Day
$49.99
free today
Fast, easy movie making.

Abylon APP-BLOCKER removes startup entries in the Start menu or Run, RunOnce, RunOnceEx entries in the Registry. It can prevent running processes permanently, stop or remove services.

The program includes a lot of information for each entry. An integrated link can be found on the Internet for further information.

System Requirements:

Windows XP/ Vista/ 7/ 8/ 8.1 (x32/x64)

Publisher:

Abylonsoft

Homepage:

http://www.abylonsoft.com/app-blocker/index.htm

File Size:

21.3 MB

Price:

$22.62

Comments on Abylon App-Blocker 2014 PRV

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#24

Anvir Task Manager is excellent for this IMO, but the free version does not permit quarantining startups after-the-fact. Had Pro version last year from a giveaway (hint, hint :) on another machine and it was awesome.

Reply   |   Comment by Lou  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#23

I prefer autorun organizer http://www.chemtable.com/autorun-organizer.htm for most startup tasks, processes and tasks. It is free. The main reasons is that it shows you a graph of percentage of others who have disabled that item. It also lets you delay the start of when a program starts (ie 30 seconds, 5 mins after you boot etc), It will recommend which programs to do this and for how long. You can TEMP disable an item and reenable it later with a click or disable it permanant. Gives a time boot up and with changes. A bulk remove tool too. I use autoruns occasionally to check for really hidden items like viruses but for general usage I use the autorun organizer and I've tried most. Wish them well but there is so many more features here and totally free.

Reply   |   Comment by datadragon  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#22

Why anyone would want this is beyond me. Unless you really know what you are doing, THIS IS A VERY BAD IDEA. But, then this is still a partially free country, so have at it, folks. Start shutting everything down at your little heart's desire and watch what happens.

I will say this: if you do not use Team Viewer or any other type of remote access, then TURN OFF ANYTHING THAT SAYS REMOTE, IN THE SERVICES. THESE TYPES OF SERVICES ARE SECURITY PROBLEMS. A lot of services that are running are really not necessary to the normal PC user. Tomshardware.com and thewindowsclub.com are great sites to get info on what is safe to shut down and what is not.

Reply   |   Comment by SoftwareBabe  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+8)

You are correct, sir! (Love TWC but haven't perused THW that much yet - thanks)

Reply   |   Comment by Lou  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

I mean Babe! (Didn't notice who I was thanking before I dashed that one off!)

Reply   |   Comment by Lou  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#21

Hello - i'am uwe and the developer of abylon APPBLOCKER. Sorry for my bad english - i hope anybody can understand me. I see negative and posetiv comments and suggestions for me. I know, that other can make it better but i try to find my way. Sometimes it is not the best and many things are a matter of taste.

I see constructive criticism in most comments. Some users do spend a lot of work to explain abylon APPBLOCKER and to compare it with other products. Many thanks to this persons.

For me as developer it is very difficult to develope for all MS operating systems (and x86 / x64bit). The most time i test our software and lose the focus on other important functions. Today APPs are countless interactions with other programs, virus scanners and settings. We are a small company and may not always meet the current requirements of the users.

For further development, I will definitely pick up some points mentioned here and try to develop for next versions.

ps.
I find free software also great. Please keep in mind that most of you are working and rightly be paid for its work I do not have rich parents or other grants and wants just to live from my work. This should not necessarily be condemned.

Thanks to all that like or don't like abylon APPBLOCKER.

Reply   |   Comment by abylonsoft  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+17)
#20

Tried this but it in no way compares to One of the best programs I have ever used to show exactly what is running on startup and in the hidden processes.
Each process is colored coded according to priorities.
(StartEd)

Tells you the must haves, the not needed, the safe to disable 'and' will link you to google for any process that you may want to look up.

Will allow you to start, stop, delay or disable a process.

(There is a pro and free version but unless you're a tech .. go for free)
If the link below doesn't show .. (nOOb here), go to Outertech dot com and click on Change Starup.


StartEd is a Windows application that helps you to change startup configuration including Programs and System Services from startup folder and the registry. You can safely disable or uninstall startup programs directly from StartEd.

Are you unsure about disabling specific startup programs? StartEd recognizes startup programs that are either obsolete or memory hogs, and has you covered with a backup feature. You can safely disable such items to increase your computer's performance.

System services

StartEd displays detailed information about System Services so that even novice users can manage their startup. You can even filter the service list, so that only services with a specific keyword are displayed.

A warning message will be shown if a System Service vital to your computer's stability is about to be disabled.


Reply   |   Comment by mrclose  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)
#19

"Installed and registered without problems on a WIn 8.1.3 Pro 64 bit system. Many registry changes...
Even if I run this software as Admin, it does not recognize a single task, or a single startup..."


In XP Mode VM:
The installation performed the following activity:
130 files added
1 file deleted
7 files updated
628 registry entries added
0 registry entries deleted
61 registry entries updated

Installed 4/24/2015 7:59:22 AM
The 1st category shown in Karl's posted image was also empty, but the other categories or lists were populated. All items could be clicked & the checkbox for those items turned gray. 2 categories could be clicked a 2nd time to clear the check boxes. Clicking a 3rd time got the original [non-grayed] checked box back.

Abylon APP-BLOCKER adds an autostart program + a service also set to start with Windows -- no changes were recorded in the VM when graying, clearing, or restoring items, suggesting maybe the running app blocks stuff itself, as its name says. Using the popular Autoruns by comparison moves the specified registry entries to a new key, e.g. HKLM\ SOFTWARE\ Wow6432Node\ Microsoft\Windows\ CurrentVersion\ Run\ AutorunsDisabled

* * *

"If you unknowingly permanently stop a service which is critical to your PC running, then maybe on your next computer boot up, you may see a permanent hour glass and the computer cannot do anything beyond that. It hangs forever."

The services listed in the Control Panel -> Admin Tools -> Services app can normally be set to manual from Autostart, so if Windows or something else needs them they will be started. Services that don't show up there are often listed multiple times in the registry -- moving/deleting just one may cause problems. Apps can be listed in 2 or 3 [32 bit vs. 64 bit Windows] "Run" registry keys -- these entries can usually be deleted. Where it can get extra tricky is if/when one part depends on another, e.g. sometimes when drivers are involved, & you only stop one part, so something else tries to start but cannot.

One of the reasons I have multiple copies or versions of Windows installed is so I don't need to use bootable discs or USB sticks to fix something. It's old but I still use ERUNT to back up a copy of the registry -- that backup can be restored after booting to another OS, whether it's another installed copy of Windows as on this rig, or an OS on bootable media. Because it is old, I've sometimes had problems with something updating between the time I do the backup & when I restore it with ERUNT, e.g. security software, but it's never been anything insurmountable, & always less work than restoring a partition backup.

Often if you can't get into Windows proper Safe Mode will work, & in those cases you can try restoring a Restore Point you created just before you made whatever changes. I usually do both, set a Restore Point & create a ERUNT backup.

* * *

"I have been a loyal user for over a decade of SysInternals’ AutoRuns... I was curious to see if this program offered anything new or interesting."

Autoruns is not always accurate when it comes to allegedly missing files, does not limit the user in any way from doing something [very] bad, & disabling [unchecking] a service may only remove one registry entry when in fact 2 or more must be removed, which can break stuff like Windows. This isn't new by any means, though the April version is worse about listing files missing that are not.

If Abylon APP-BLOCKER blocks apps/processes itself, without changing the registry, I would guess that APP-BLOCKER settings could be changed, or it could be disabled in Safe Mode, & everything would be normal re-booting into Windows. Or you might rename the program's folder, which can be done after booting to a lot of bootable media, which should keep it from starting.

* * *

"I prefer to avoid any third-party software that “gets its hooks” into the very foundation of my operating system and manipulates it’s critical core functions."

That's understandable, but I didn't see APP-BLOCKER doing anything so severe -- it adds the Exelock service, with a registry key under ...ControlSet\ Enum\ Root\ & another under ...ControlSet\ Services [Note you may have more than one ControlSet section in the registry].

Yes, I think it's nicer when software doesn't add to the ControlSet sections of the registry, but that's simply because when I get into editing those parts of the registry, it's somewhat common to have to set permissions for a key, but that's more annoying than difficult.

* * *

"What does this app more than good ol’ “msconfig” ?"

I think of Msconfig as more of a diagnostic tool [& a way to get into Safe Mode with a VBox VM] -- if you don't want the easier GUI of an app like APP-BLOCKER, many [myself inclued] prefer to just make many changes directly.

There are 2 or 3 "Run" keys in the registry -- add them to the Favorites in Regedit. Right click a registry key, & it can be exported to a .reg file -- double click a .reg file & everything in that file gets added to the registry. So you can easily export/save a copy of a run key, delete an entry, & if it doesn't work for you, put it back by double clicking that .reg file, in Safe Mode or regular Windows. For services set to Autostart I normally just set them to manual in the Services app window.

Note: just because it might seem easy to put back, back up at least the registry & know how to put things back if you have to before fooling with the registry or services.

* * *

"While programs of this kind are risky, I have found them very helpful where systems are clogged by browser helper objects, unnecessary programs starting with Windows and even malware. I have a rollback program ... I would recommend keeping to hand a suitable Microsoft Emergency Repair Disk or a system disk which gives external access to System Restore. If you have set a restore point before tweaking the system, you will then be able to restore it even if it does not boot."

Often it might be simpler/safer to disable browser add-ons using the controls built into the browser. When it comes to mal-ware, you might have success but don't count on it -- if you suspect or know your system has been compromised at least try a thorough scan & cleaning with good security software, or preferably restore a known good backup, or better yet wipe the disk & reinstall.

Rollback apps can be OK, but unless you're talking about one of the virtualization apps like Karl regularly uses, I don't like giving up that much control or disk space -- for me doing a partition image backup to another internal hard drive is more flexible, & gives you everything you get with the typical rollback app & more.

A Restore Point is great because it doesn't take the same amount of time & disk space as a disk/partition image backup. BUT, because it's not a real backup, it does not always work. It might work 1000 times, but if it's the 1001st time that it fails, you're still up the creek -- all it takes is one failure when you really need it, & if that's all you've got, you're in trouble. I'm NOT saying don't use them -- I AM saying it's not wise to only depend on Restore Points.

Reply   |   Comment by mike  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+32)

I agreed with most of your points, Mike. I especially appreciate your shout-out to ERUNT: an incredibly useful tool and one of the first things I set up on any new Windows install. It should be set to "Auto" on every user's machine, and it would have saved me a lot of grief had it been doing its thing on my nephew's laptop (see my little story below).

However, you said, in response to a part of my earlier review:

Autoruns is not always accurate when it comes to allegedly missing files, does not limit the user in any way from doing something [very] bad, & disabling [unchecking] a service may only remove one registry entry when in fact 2 or more must be removed, which can break stuff like Windows....


Here I respectfully part ways with you. Well, technically we do agree on one point: Autoruns is certainly not perfect. It can (once in a "blue" moon) miss something, and its user interface is in drastic need of an overhaul. For example, its ancient table-column controls aren't even sortable, as is customary when one clicks on a column header in similar programs.

OTOH, I feel you are being overly alarmist when you say "it doesn't limit you from doing something "very" bad..." Frankly, in the 12+ years of using Autoruns, I have not once done something which resulted in any serious harm to Windows. Even during the handful of times where I've gotten overly aggressive with the program, I never did something which a quick re-boot into Safe Mode couldn't fix. Most of the actions one is likely to perform are reversible (unless you were to go hog-wild and delete list-entries wholesale--not a common scenario!). But for contrast, GOTD seems to offer several "Registry Cleaner" programs every other week, and these programs are far more dangerous for the "average" user, as my poor nephew found out a few weeks ago. An otherwise well-respected utility suite (and I was the one who installed it on his system!), which happens to have a registry-optimization module, popped up a message on his screen which said something like "We found 500 obsolete registry keys..would you like us to clean the registry?" The kid blithely clicked "Yes" and proceeded to find out the hard way that those "500 keys" were most definitely NOT "obsolete!" His system was decimated. The OS was so FUBAR that even the program's own undo/rollback function would not work. I struggled for over four hours to try and undo the damage to his Windows 8.1 system, but in the end the only recourse was a factory restoration of the OS.

My point is that those programs are far more dangerous than something like Autoruns, because they make it so easy and normal-seeming for the average computer user (even rank amateurs) do to severe damage. And ironically, as most bona-fide Windows gurus will tell you, there is almost no reason to perform these "tweaks" on the registry in the first place. Most people do it because they have this smart-looking app simply tells them they should do it (and the program must know what it's doing, right?), or because they think it is something that Windows users "in the know" are supposed to do (it's not).

But at the end of the day, something like Autoruns is less dangerous not only because the types of things it typically does are less dangerous, but also because if someone is firing it up in the first place, they probably have a specific goal in mind or problem to solve. Most users advanced enough to identify, download, and install Autoruns probably aren't going to blindly hack away at their system like a farmer threshing wheat (but this is more or less precisely what the ubiquitous "registry cleaner" does).

I do understand where you're coming from though: Autoruns can be misused in the wrong hands. But this applies to any system utility (and I've already belabored the 'Registry Tweaker' example). And I'll be the first to admit that Autoruns--or any other tool in the SysInternals Suite (after all, they were originally designed for expert use)--should not be the first choice go-to tool for the Windows novice. But for that matter, the fact that today's GOTD has a less nerdy-looking interface than Autoruns does not make it safer, either. As others have mentioned, caution must be exercised--and there is never any substitute for common sense.

Reply   |   Comment by Robert Garofalo  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+10)
#18

My practical advice to abylonsoft is to look at the GUI of the CCleaner which also offers the facility of stopping unwanted services.

BTW, a useful piece of software does not even list essential services.

Reply   |   Comment by Sigrid.DE  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+4)
#17

A nice alternative for those overwhelmed by Autoruns is Starter http://codestuff.obninsk.ru/products_starter.html. It has 3 tabs: Startups (limited to startup folder and registry Run and RunOnce), Processes (list of running processes) and Services (friendlier and more complete than the standard MS Management Console). Old but much better than this. Highly recommended.

Reply   |   Comment by papin  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+9)
#16

I have been using Anvir Task Manager 6.3.1, which was given as a Giveway here, many years back, it does the same thing.
Check ,uncheck the required app from the Startup menu, and on re-start the checked application, doesn't run anymore.
Anvir Task and similar program like the above mentioned Abylon App-Blocker, will work wonderfully for
Win7, since there are tonns of application running during startup, that eve if a user unchecks them,
the system will boot to desktop much quicker and saves some time.
Stopping the app, also means stopping its services, i already have Anvir Task, won't download this.
Thanks anyway.

Reply   |   Comment by Snake-in-the-Eagle-Shadow  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+7)
#15

Google "Black Viper" for all info about Windows Service settings.
I've found it useful to create an XL file of service settings. One column has the Default setting (ex Microsoft); next column has a date and any change made to any setting.
This allows me to easily recognise/reverse any change if my machine 'acts up' after any change.
"AOMEI BackUpper Pro" has also saved my ass when necessary at other times.

Reply   |   Comment by Henfracar  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+16)
#14

Startup management is important to me, and I am not inclined to experiment with new software. I use WinPatrol and Anvir Task Manager to manage my startup processes, and alert me to changes which have been made without my permission, which is not unusual after installing new software. I recommend these well-proven tools - but only to people with sufficient knowledge and experience to use them safely.

Reply   |   Comment by Julia  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+13)
#13

another little utility that manages start ups is winpatrol. its been around and on my computers for years watching for new start-ups and asking for my permission before oking them. old stuff is not necessarily bad and new stuff is not necessarily good or better.

Reply   |   Comment by clas  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+33)

I agree. Winpatrol has been around for many years and is regularly updated. It also does far more than manage startups - it has modules for hidden files, scheduling, services, active tasks, cookies and more in the free version, plus there's an expanded paid version. I've had it running for years and it's never steered me wrong.

Reply   |   Comment by Dan O  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+14)

In addition to stopping start ups, WinPatrol can delay starting them which speeds up the boot process. It has many other options also. There is a free version and a yearly license version, which adds some functions. https://www.winpatrol.com/winpatrol/

Reply   |   Comment by Nisse  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+13)
#12

One more comment: Karl's link to the old reviews of this program leads to a very interesting list of freeware utilities in this field by Giovanni.

Reply   |   Comment by BAW30s  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+33)
#11

Thanks to Robert Garofalo for a thoughtful review which will be useful to developers and users alike. I completely agree: Autoruns is the program of choice here, at least for the more experienced user. It is very comprehensive, listing everything which starts up with Windows in great detail and I have found it invaluable.
This program is much simpler, and so could be of some use to less experienced users. It is less dangerous than Autoruns for the same reason: less is shown to block.
While programs of this kind are risky, I have found them very helpful where systems are clogged by browser helper objects, unnecessary programs starting with Windows and even malware.
I have a rollback program which enables me to restore my system should it become unbootable, as it did once after using Autoruns too enthusiastically. Failing this, I would recommend keeping to hand a suitable Microsoft Emergency Repair Disk or a system disk which gives external access to System Restore. If you have set a restore point before tweaking the system, you will then be able to restore it even if it does not boot.

Reply   |   Comment by BAW30s  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+18)

BAW30s,

I agree with all of your additional points (and thank you for the compliment, btw)!

Reply   |   Comment by Robert Garofalo  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)

Dear BAW: "Microsoft Emergency Repair Disk or a system disk which gives external access to System Restore..." describes exactly what I believe I would need in order to fix a laptop (XP SP3) I bricked last year. Unfortunately I have neither type of disk for this machine, nor did I find such a tool on Ultimate Boot CD (although I was at least able to clone the drive and recover files). Do you know of any other boot CD that could access System Restore in this case? I just had to ask!

Reply   |   Comment by Lou  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#10

Abylon Blocker sounded pretty good in the beginning. I must admit, I know nothing about this giveaway. After reading the comments from all you gentlemen. I trust your judgment and will pass on this. Thanks!

Reply   |   Comment by Jim0214  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#9

Before I install and try : What does this app more than good ol' "msconfig" ?

Reply   |   Comment by PaulVdB  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (-8)

Yea! for us old techs!!!! ;)

Reply   |   Comment by Thomas Roberts  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#8

Perhaps if I were running a non-GUI version of DOS this application might have some appeal to me. However, Windows has become such an incredibly complex - and sensitive - applications platform, that I prefer to avoid any third-party software that "gets its hooks" into the very foundation of my operating system and manipulates it's critical core functions. It's disconcerting enough that Microsoft is constantly releasing bug-fixes and patches to repair what one can only assume to be poorly-written code. To introduce yet more sources of instability into an operating system - which can only be described as shaky at best - is an open invitation to disaster of the highest order!

That's not necessarily intended to impugn the efforts of the Microsoft software engineers. After all, they're forced to deal with rapidly-changing device architecture by dozens if not hundreds of computer manufacturers, which introduces even more variables into what was already an unstable situation at best.

Perhaps the most distressing thought I have is that Microsoft has been competing against itself for so long that in many cases the original foundational intent of Gates et al to fill a market need has been lost in the complexity of it all, and service to the consuming public has been reduced in priority, being replaced by the typical corporate mindset of creating the greatest amount of profits possible, by whatever means.

I have a feeling that if developers of software like today's offering could be held responsible for damages occurred by misuse of their software, such "panaceas" would be much fewer, since a corrupted registry with no backup could result in one heckuva I.T. bill to set things right again - if such a thing is even possible! If software developers had to foot that bill, they'd likely not bee as eager to put forth this kind of software, and if so, disclaimers and warnings would/should abound to the point that the "average" computer user would be sent running for the exits rather than take a chance on using it.

I do nonetheless thank the developer for offering this package today, and I truly hope people find it useful in improving the performance of their computers. Please excuse my skepticism, which may be completely unfounded - yet I don't wish to take a chance of damaging my system, and thus I'm afraid I must humbly decline your generous offer. I see above that this developer has a number of other titles which I DO have some interest in, and hopefully the developer will offer one of THOSE titles in the near future.

Thanks for enduring the rant of an old codger who sometimes doesn't know when it's time to shut up and let someone else talk. I'll take the opportunity to do just that right now! Thanks again!

Reply   |   Comment by Don Hill  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+23)
#7

A better alternative is the freeware Autoruns for Windows for examining all startups, and for turning them off and on via a single click.
It can even save the current state and also compare it to a previously saved state.

Reply   |   Comment by Harry M  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+37)

Agree, Autoruns is the best and easiest to use for this task. And it is totally free.

Reply   |   Comment by bruce  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+18)
#6

As I have mentioned a few times regarding software like this or any other software that will change the registry: make sure you have a restore point before running the software,better yet make a backup or image on an external drive. Please never use a partitioned part of your C drive for a backup. If your C drives dies so will your other partition.

Reply   |   Comment by Doobo  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+34)
#5

I'll confess up front that I wasn't too excited upon seeing this GOTD, being that I have been a loyal user for over a decade of SysInternals' AutoRuns, which I consider to be the gold standard in the Windows startup-management arena. However, I was curious to see if this program offered anything new or interesting. Sadly, it doesn't.

The software is competently put together, and it does show the various programs set to start up automatically with Windows. The typical registry keys, e.g., Run, RunOnce, etc. are queried and presented in a tree-view style layout. Clicking on the individual entries shows a panel with additional information regarding the given process, such as path, file timestamps, and the ability to post an online search query in order to dig up information on a file which you may not recognize. The program, as you would expect, allows you to temporarily or permanently disable any executables in your startup stream.

The Germans typically produce competent software, and this program does what it says; however, it unfortunately does not do anything which the aforementioned AutoRuns doesn't already do better. For example, both show you startup entries, but due to the nature of App Blocker's tree view, detailed information on a process is not evident until you click on an entry, whereas AutoRuns shows all relevant fields of information for all entries at a glance, in its column-based format. Furthermore, App Blocker seems to be limited to only showing conventional startup locations (and Services), while AutoRuns digs up potential self-actuating program candidates from virtually every crevice of your OS, such as shell extensions, drivers, system-image hijacks, scheduled tasks (very important, as the Windows Task Scheduler provides a means by which certain programs can circumvent UAC security prompts), Sidebar gadgets, and others. Autoruns will even give you complete control over Internet Explorer BHO's, as well as the legacy Boot.ini and Win.ini startup files.

All in all, I couldn't see paying the normal asking price of $22 for abylon App Blocker, except maybe in an exceptional case where a Windows neophyte may be scared to tinker with--or overwhelmed by--the plethora of information given by AutoRuns. Admittedly, App Blocker has a snazzier interface; given Autorun's age, its UI is decidedly homely and non-elegant (albeit functional, given the huge amount of information on tap). Even there, all is not rosy with App Blocker, because I REALLY dislike large Facebook and Twitter icons competing for space with actual program controls. It has been a recent trend that I very much wish would go away. What's wrong with stashing that stuff in a menu where it belongs? Are people going to automatically assume you don't have a Facebook page if they don't see a giant logo in the UI? But hey, that's just me--maybe I'm old fashioned that way...

In any case, I am not convinced this program has anything on Windows' own homegrown stalwart MSCONFIG, let alone the granddaddy AutoRuns.

Now, if App Blocker were to add a couple of unique features into the mix, they could potentially increase their value proposition. For example, how about adding a startup-order manager? That's a utility that allows you to re-order, and even delay by specific time intervals, individual startup entries in order to optimize boot time and prioritize critical programs over non-critical ones. I've had need for this functionality in the past, and had to download a separate utility since the venerable AutoRuns doesn't have this feature.
Here's another feature they could consider: a boot timer. A lot of system-tweakers such as myself like to benchmark their boot sequence. Want to see how your new SSD compares to your old mechanical hard drive? Want to see how an antivirus program you are trying out impacts boot time, or some other programs that have a run-at-start setting? Then you need a convenient way to measure how long it takes to get to a usable desktop (besides using your watch, heh heh). In fact, a boot timing feature would go hand-in-hand with the previously proposed startup-order manager/delayer.

So, bottom line: If App Blocker beefed up its startup management capabilities, and perhaps added a startup delayer and precision benchmarking, it would have a product with some very nice synergy within its feature-set. A side benefit for abylon would be the possibility of then justifying their price tag, since there is much less available freeware with this particular combination on tap. And since it could potentially replace two or three programs in my current toolbox, I might even be willing to cough up a few bucks!

Reply   |   Comment by Robert Garofalo  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+144)

I voted "yes" at the "Did you find this comment useful?" because this is one of the most helpful and insightful comments I've seen here in a long time (and there are a bunch of helpful and insightful commentators on this sight daily). I specially liked your suggested enhancements to this program and I hope the developers take them to heart.

To be honest, I would have voted "yes" a couple of hundred times if I could have. Thank you Mr. Garofalo for taking the time to write such a complete comment. I hope you'll come back and help again.

Reply   |   Comment by Madmaler  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+36)

@Madmaler,

Thank you for the kind words, I appreciate them! There are a few individuals on here who admirably take the time to actually test out the software offered, and report back with objective findings of substance, in contrast to the floodgate of two-sentence "reviews" which merely and gleefully bash the program (or sometimes blindly praise it with with equal lack of rationale). I appreciate those intelligent write-ups, so although I don't often post, when I do I try to offer something which respects both the developer and the prospective buyer. Thanks again.

Reply   |   Comment by Robert Garofalo  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+10)

Thank you Robert for all your comments.

I liked especially your comment about clutter with 'Facebook' etc. Unfortunately, this is becoming a trend. Every site from shopping and news to information is cluttered with these 'social' site icons taking up limited screen real estate. Additionally informational words are replaced with not-so-intuitive icons, you end up searching through layers of menus and settings to find what you are looking for. Now even applications are falling for this 'social' clutter and pictures!

Too much power and bad influence from the likes of Facebook and Google.

Reply   |   Comment by vin  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+9)
#4

Write name/alias in CAPITALLETTERS without spaces to get correct registration items!

Reply   |   Comment by I Persson  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+13)
#3

I'm using the 84K StartupMonitor.exe on boot. It alert me of any changes. Some time I approve some time I don't . Had no troubles .

Reply   |   Comment by Adif  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+30)

Seconded. I've used Mike lin's startupmonitor for years too and it's a super tiny application and super useful application that monitors all startup programs and pops up a window giving you the option to allow or disallow the moment any program tries to start up. A great security feature. You can still obtain it at his now archived site at https://web.archive.org/web/20131113154828/http://www.mlin.net/StartupMonitor.shtml

Reply   |   Comment by Dave  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+13)
#2

If you unknowingly permanently stop a service which is critical to your PC running, then maybe on your next computer boot up, you may see a permanent hour glass and the computer cannot do anything beyond that. It hangs forever.
How do I know this?
From personal experience while fooling around with Windows services.
I had to reinstall my whole OS and start all over again adding in the various software from scratch.
Today's Giveaway software is not to be blamed for that episode which happened long ago.
Be careful what you do with such software.

Reply   |   Comment by ric  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+93)

I see this statement frequently
quote "I had to reinstall my whole OS and start all over again adding in the various software from scratch."
You can avoid this in future by booting up on a boot disc and creating a disc image of your operating system on a seperate partition or external hard disc on a regular bais enabling you to return your computer to the exact state it is in when you make the image. There is free software to enable you to easily do this here http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx
Hope this is helpful.

Reply   |   Comment by David Murphy  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+96)

If you need advice about which services to change to manual or disable try the Black Viper's website. As far as advising someone to do what most of us are doing? Yes, there are really no excuses not to have at least an external drive with your system image on it for backup. There are free apps such as Macrium and AMOEI to help you do that. I really never had the money ...so I thought...to buy an external drive. And that is why I found this site. Free apps. Daily. I also had to redo my operating system over and over when I experimented with unknown programs. Long,tedious process indeed. I picked up a refurbished drive for $25 and never looked back. Armed with a backup image I never have to worry again about trashing my system. You can get good advice about how to remove some startup menu items from a search if you don't want to use msconfig. As suggested here Autoruns is good for removing startups. For experienced users only though. I got too aggressive a few times and my computer wouldn't reboot to Windows. No problem. Backup image available.

Reply   |   Comment by Maureen  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+47)

I agree with David and Maureen.
If you have a Seagate or WD internal or external drive, then you can Get for FREE the Acronis DiscWizard
You get it from the HD drive site (not from Acronis). Here is the link to the Seagate site's DiscWizard -
http://www.seagate.com/au/en/support/downloads/discwizard/
You have to install it, but then I recommend that you create a bootable CD from the installed program's options.
As David points out, use the bootable CD to create your images (thus Windows is NOT running).
After you create the image, you should immediately Verify/validate it, to ensure that it is healthy.
(Some young programmer decided to bury the latter option away, so you have to go to the 'Recover' area, and locate your image, and choose Verify/Validate)

From a PC perspective, the above is the best advice you will ever get,
Rob

Reply   |   Comment by Rob Down Under  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)
#1

Installed and registered without problems on a WIn 8.1.3 Pro 64 bit system. Many registry changes.

A small German company with all required legal information.
We had a previous version Abylon APP-BLOCKER 2013.2 on August 6, 2013. Here are the old reviews:
http://www.giveawayoftheday.com/abylon-app-blocker-2013-2/

From the description it is more than a "startup manager", from the installation directory it is crowded with many files.

Upon start a resizable window opens, fancy in colors. I do not find an option to switch the language to English. So my screenshots will be in German.
http://i.imgur.com/NM16Alg.png

Hmmm.... Even if I run this software as Admin, it does not recognize a single task, or a single startup.
http://i.imgur.com/OBeYaMi.png

The only "working" part are the system services.
http://i.imgur.com/Zd6vCan.png

Does not work in my case. Uninstalled via reboot. There are easier ways to control startups.

-----------------
To answer a question. I keep some programs, not many. What shall I do with hundreds of installed programs, which I never use? I only keep programs installed, which I really use on a regular base - except one of the undeleters, never used up to now.
And I have a collection of portable tools. Liberkey (recommended - a french product), portableapps (the original) or Lupo Pensuite ( a newcomer). The most used portable applications are loaded into a RAM drive, where they are immediately at hand, when needed.

Reply   |   Comment by Karl  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+171)

Thanks for your tip, I realy like it, and if you have more of this type so would I be glad if you could tell me about them to?

Reply   |   Comment by PCMan  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+23)

So Karl, if you keep installing progs that you'll never use, why do it in the first place? Is it some kind of sense of self importance? Long winded reviews are still long winded, and not very helpful except maybe to the inexperienced.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike OD  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (-50)

Thanks for the extremely valuable info. I wished you give us a hint on how to communicate with you outside of this site, a possibility like Ashraf has with dottech.org; or a blog or a forum where you are also active.

Thx.

Reply   |   Comment by Gary  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+15)

Wow. Amazed at your expertise in computing. I am in my seventies and too late to delve deeper into this fascinating field. I have lot of portable programmes. Caan you tell me how do you load them in Ram Drive. I have 16 GB ram in my Dell Alienware computer.

Reply   |   Comment by D P Rangan  –  5 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
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