Thursday, January 17, 2008

non-support: Symantec can't help itself

I ran Cygwin setup, which contacts the Internet to update this fine free collection of UNIX utilities for Windows.

Norton 360's firewall pops up an alert "A program is attempting to access the internet", which is fine. The bug is that the Alert said "Name: NCH Swift Sound Setup". I don't have any such program. Norton's signature database or algorithm is mis-identifying the Cygwin setup program.

So I contact Symantec Technical Support and say "Please pass on this BUG in Norton 360 to its engineering manager"

But company tech support can't handle that. They only know how to help customers, they're incapable of helping the company. So the first reply I get from "Solomon.S" is this issue might occur if your PC is infected with virus or virus-like programs. I reply that my virus scan is fine and "I am trying to help Symantec improve Norton 360 by informing you of this bug in your program." I get another reply from Solomon.S telling me how to change the status as "Allow" in firewall settings for NCH Swift Sound.exe.

Here's my third message.

You still don't get it and I am angry and frustrated that Symantec as an organization is too stupid to accept my bug report.

I am *BEGGING* you to file the following BUG against Norton 360 in your internal bugbase:

"Customer reports that Norton 360's Internet firewall alert mis-identifies the setup.exe program from the Cygwin product as NCH Swift Sound Setup."

How can I be any clearer? I don't need help, Symantec needs help.

How can you stand your job when you have no ability to improve the quality of Symantec's products?

Open source: experienced users like me get a bug login and file a bug against the project; other users can find the bug and comment on it. Eventually someone with QA or engineering ability looks at the bug and the project gets better. Commercial product: the support organization is a barrier to improving the product.

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  • I don't have any Cygwin software on my machine and this morning Symantec Internet Security warned me that NCH Swift Sound Setup is attempting to connect to a DNS Server - at 3:03AM! It suggests that I "always allow connections from this program on all ports." I have no NCH software. What gives? I'm not going to do what Symantec is recommending and that's scary. Might something else be going on here? Virus? Trojan?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 23, 2008 6:58 AM  

  • anonymous,
    You probably have a different setup.exe program running that ^%$#@! Symantec mis-identifies as "NCH Swift Sound Setup". Run taskmgr.exe, and look in the Applications or Processes tab. Try disallowing access and see if something fails. If you really trust that setup program, allow access. Most setup.exe programs are self-contained and don't need to access the Internet. But if the setup downloads additional components (like Cygwin) or does a registration check, then it will need to connect.

    By Blogger skierpage, at January 25, 2008 5:12 PM  

  • It's a Windows Update component being misidentified.

    By Anonymous Sean, at April 11, 2008 6:44 AM  

  • Sean, perhaps, but the only program I was running that resembled Symantec's bad guess "NCH Swift Sound Setup" was cygwin setup.

    By Blogger skierpage, at April 11, 2008 2:07 PM  

  • Sean's theory about a misidentified Windows (or Microsoft) Update component may be correct in my case - I don't have cygwin. I was in the midst of an automatic Microsoft update (.NET Framework 2.0 Service Pack 1) last night when I received a warning regarding "NCH Swift Sound Setup" attempting to access the network. I blocked the attempt, since I didn't recognize the program name. I then received a warning about "mscorsvw" attempting to access the network, which I allowed, recognizing it as the name of a legitimate .NET process. The update completed successfully, so I have no idea exactly what I blocked, or whether there will be side effects. I'm glad to find this site, though - now I can stop wondering whether I downloaded something from "NCH Swift Sound" and then blew my buffer. :-)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 13, 2008 2:24 AM  

  • I'd agree this is most likely a legitimate .NET Framework 2.0 update, which Norton is simply too pitiful to recognize.

    Within the Symantec "Security Alert" Dialog (for NIS) there was a referece to a folder placed -- oddly enough -- on my secondary HD. Within that folder were a series of .NET Framework install files, EULA's, *.ini's and Logos, etc. The installer "vs_setup.msi" contains the follwing comments: "This installer database contains the logic and data required to install Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 SP1."

    Considering that I was in the middle of an XP security update and do use the .NET Framework package, I'd give this one a green light.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 15, 2008 6:42 AM  

  • I just got the same warning when installing the .net framework for 3.5

    Sounds like a bogus report from symantec...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at June 04, 2008 12:26 PM  

  • When installing Garmin MapSource I got the same alert from Norton Internet Security.
    "NCH Swift Sound Setup is attempting to access the Internet."

    Kind regards,

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 19, 2008 4:00 AM  

  • We are more than a year later and Symantec still hasn't done anything about this bug. Today I also received the bogus NCH Swift Sound Setup alert. By looking at the program path and the processes running in Task Manager I could tell it was a legitimate Microsoft SQL Server update, so I allowed it.

    Just to vent some more: Norton Internet Security has protected me several times from viruses and other attacks, but I find it a bit of a resource hog. Worse, it's a real attention seeker. By default their automatic LiveUpdate connects EVERY FOUR HOURS. Each time it finds shit to download that it needs to install and the installation always last several minutes during which my computer severely slows down. The maximum allowed interval for automatic liveupdate is 24 hrs, which is retarded, so I have disabled it and just do it manually ones a week or so.

    By Anonymous Venting, at March 18, 2009 1:48 PM  

  • Adding to the heap: I received this notification today for a .NET Framework 3.5 update.

    By Anonymous Jessica, at August 08, 2009 6:03 PM  

  • Not sure what triggered it, but I just got this alert. Also at 3:03 am.

    By Anonymous WendyLou, at August 22, 2009 2:04 AM  

  • This post has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Connor, at August 22, 2009 8:04 AM  

  • I got this message today also. "NCH Swift Sound Setup" sounded sketchy to me, since I am aware of no such program on my XP machine. So I decided to search this topic before making a choice.

    In my case, I don't have any special .NET that I was aware of relevant to my install, but I noticed the path to Setup.EXE was a directory from the root of my C: drive "C:\1ba57900c5cdaa2d40f7e8ba", and the time stamp 3:00 am. Looking at these files in this directory with the Setup.EXE, they appear to all be from Microsoft, and the EULA text files in multiple languages reference .NET.


    It appears that Norton in misidentifying a Microsoft Security Update Seutp.EXE as the suspiciously named "NCH Swift Sound Setup", so I am allowing it in my case.

    By Blogger Connor, at August 22, 2009 8:08 AM  

  • Well, I believe everyone is on track with Symantec mis identifying a .net frame update as that is exactly what is happening on my pc at this moment....NCH swift sound setup attempting to access the Internet...setup.exe c:\7df1b311374d3e343...etc. I will dive in and allow....I did create a restore point first...Been having trouble using my restore points...they don't work when I try to restore with them--OS generated and when I generate one...Any ideas out there???

    By Blogger Lakotahope, at September 16, 2009 7:45 PM  

  • Hi everyone.
    Just had the same popping into my eyes.
    First time a couple of days ago when running MS .NET Update.
    Now when installing different program. Seems like Setup.exec has been registered as NCH... no matter from where it is run.
    Any idea hot to get rid of that association?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at October 29, 2009 4:20 AM  

  • Scrapped Symantec and reinstalled McAfee. McAfee comes free from Comcast, so I'll allow it to operate for a while, but it is real slow on boot up. Delays a little further anything else trying to run, like Firefox. McAfee/ Spybot/ Defender socialize well with one another.
    The freebies from Zonealarm and AVG work well also--with their requisite updates...

    By Blogger Lakotahope, at November 03, 2009 11:49 AM  

  • i also got this alert at around 3:03 am, but alas, i was not running any microsoft updates. all i was running was my firefox. but i did a little googling, and i came across a website http://www.nch.com.au/
    for a company named NCH Software, which has a program called swiftsound. it must come default in windows xp or something. hope this helps

    By Anonymous Suspekt, at March 21, 2010 1:09 AM  

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