11-25-2009 05:39 PM - edited 11-25-2009 06:31 PM
Thank you for getting an answer for me. I ended up going through several cycles of installing/uninstalling v5 and v6 alternately, while trying to monitor what processes were running and the event logs. Though I am no closer to knowing why I was having some of my troubles, I was able to solve a couple. I cannot help but think that removing the folder from AppData did provide some benefit beyond simply removing the SQL errors.
The issue with ZoneAlarm displaying on startup and not being able to stop it from running at startup turned out to be a registry hive issue between the current user and local machine hives for the startup entry of ZoneAlarm's client software. I was able to resolve that myself and will be sending a report to CheckPoint. It is my belief that this was not caused by LTT and was simply a coincidence.
I still do not know why there was resource (CPU) contention earlier, but I will continue to monitor for it and see if I can diagnose the cause. It is possible, now that I've had a chance to really look at things, that the more advanced real time scanning modes of the new AV/AS engine in ZoneAlarm 9.1 may actually be more the cause than LTT. I have decided that, at least for now, to keep the new version installed and see what happens.
For those wishing to keep LTT 6 installed but to minimize (if not totally eliminate) any running processes, the following seems to be have worked for me. Since I am not familiar with what all LTT 6 attempts to provide, anyone who tries these steps does so at their own risk:
1. Run LTT, go to Settings (upper right corner) and uncheck everything.
2. Uncheck the icon in the taskbar using the steps listed in the FAQ.
3. Go to (at least for XP) Start->All Programs->Accessories->System Tools->Scheduled Tasks and disable the SystemToolsDailyTest task. The PCDoctorBackgroundMonitor task could also be disabled if #1 did not do so already.
I have left these scheduled tasks enabled on for now, in the event that one or both of them is/are the cause of my high resource contention issue.
I have confirmed that LTT6 did not install any new services nor new startup items. It is possible that an existing service's files could have been updated, but I did not spend the time to do file comparisons between LTT5 and LTT6, so I don't really know one way or the other. Since the only automated execution that I can find appears to be covered by the steps above, I doubt that any services were updated. But that is just an educated guess.
Although it's a small thing, I would like to see more intelligence in the System Health->Windows Update check. Apparently, if WIndows Auto update is turned off, LTT always thinks an OS update has never been done. Surely there is a timestamp somewhere in one of the registry hives to indicate when the last OS update was performed. If so, that would be a better variable to control LTT's message. Then again, autoupdate may be the only thing that populates such a timestamp. If that's true, it will never have a value on my machines as I prefer to do updates on my timeframe. I have LTT set to ignore Windows Updates, but it would be nice to have it enabled and only report a problem when I haven't manually done an OS update in a while (say 1-2 weeks).
Better documentation on this new version prior to its push may have helped to eliminate or reduce some of the troubles we've seen.
Good luck to those with more serious issues than mine. As someone who's written software for nearly 30 years, I find it very encouraging that we have active participation from both Lenovo and PCDoctor. More often than not, this is not the case with a lot of commerical software.
11-25-2009 06:12 PM - edited 11-25-2009 06:22 PM
In response to the original post, I do like the features of the new version. Although a large portion of it seems to be a carryover from the previous tool, the new L&F is nice. I always favor functionality over looks, but both are great.
On the plus side, I like seeing a percentage of battery capacity remaining. Is a pulse load algorithm being used to determine actual capacity remaining or is it simply a value reported by the battery pack?
Having Scheduled Hardware Check under Sysem Health makes some sense, but it would also make sense under Diagnostics. Is the Diagnotics Quick Hardware Test what is executed by the Scheduled Hardware Check?
Also on the plus side is that the Device Manager alerts is driven by the OS and not the actual installed hardware. I have several components disabled via power off in the CMOS (such as firewire, modem, and the WAN adapter). It's nice that having them turned off doesn't cause an alert. Good decision on this one.
When LTT first displays, several of the 5 boxes at the top of the main window show (cursive i's) while the software does it's checking. At a quick visual glance, however, the cursive i gives the impression of exclamations. Since an exclamation point usually carries the connotation of a problem, it might be clearer if another symbol was used to indicate the state has yet to be determined. Maybe just a dash? Maybe I'm missing something obvious, but the letter i doesn't seem to convey what is actually meant.
Although I know that I can stop it by turning off window animation (or whatever the setting is called) the rapid minimize/restore cycle when LTT first loads is a bit annoying. Could a disable refresh or hide window possibly elminate this without forcing the user to turn animation off?
I also really like the Performance and Configuration HIstory window. Being abe to quickly see and drill down into not only LTT's testing but some of the event logs is darned handy!
11-25-2009 09:51 PM
Your post is dated from July. Is this something still of concern? If it was in July, then are you having problems today with Lenovo System Toolbox or Lenovo ThinkVantage Toolbox? The latter is an upgrade of the former, although the names and capabilities have obviously changed somewhat. As noted in another post, we are preparing a release of an updated version that we believe will fix the issue being reported.
11-25-2009 10:10 PM
Thank you, vbap. I have forwarded your bug report to our engineering team and forwarded the idea of allowing UBT panels to be dismissed like dynamic support and other messages. I was also pleased to read that you were happily surprised by one of the features
A few days ago, our CTO used the performance and configuration tool to troubleshoot a blue screen, so we're pretty excited by the potential for improving PC use practices.
Finally, you point out something important: Perhaps the greatest value of the tool is to those who do not have benefit of an IT organization to solve problems. We are looking at how to adapt the tool for use in larger managed environments, but we are taking it slowly.
11-25-2009 10:21 PM
Thank you very much for your insights both in your emails. I have forwarded both your technical thoughts and your product improvement suggestions to our CTO for consideration. I will also share the product improvement thoughts with our product marketing manager and our Lenovo account manager.
I am also appreciative of your encouraging comments on the importance of Lenovo and PC-Doctor collaborating to address problems when they occur.
11-25-2009 10:54 PM
I have noticed a bug with the "Security & Networking" area, under "Internet Connection Status" - when I am connected through a firewall, the status shows as "Not Connected" (in case it matters, this particular LAN connection also requires authentication).
Sorry - I need to correct this - I meant when I have internet access through a Proxy Server, it was reported as "Not Connected".
11-25-2009 11:58 PM
In the "Lenovo Support" section, under "Access Online Support", the two options I have (Get latest drivers, and communicate with other users), look like they are hyperlinks, but when I click them, nothing happens.
11-26-2009 03:04 AM
The Toolbox looks just that an impressive self service software that alerts my machine for the necessary issues that may arise. Its just that a tool and can come in handy. I have installed it on a older laptop T40. Shall I say that it installed as an update on the machine. So I proceeded to install the tool on another machine I own, T43. I discovered that there was a slightly different version of the Toolbox. I went to the Lenovo site where it lead me to go. The site had a link to download that file but one problem the ' exe ' file is not working or corrupted. Is there anyone else having this problem. I have a couple of the IBM/LENOVO laptops at home on my wireless network so they are stable machine for me.
I looked at the flash video and felt that it would be useful for me. How can I get this downloaded on my machine or has the link been reported as not working. Can we look forward to having the link update with a functional link to install the product.
11-26-2009 09:43 PM
I installed Avira Antivirus and did a full system scan. Unfortunately, the ThinkVantage Toolbox still says that Antivirus is disabled. I'm sure that Antivirus is enabled, but the Toolbox doesn't recognize it. Is this a problem with Avira or the Toolbox?
11-27-2009 10:02 AM
In my tests, LTT does not recognize Microsoft Security Essentials either.
Also, it complains I'm not making backups just because it assumes I would use the lame Lenovo backup system instead of a good one.
And it keeps reminding of the many Lenovo products/accessories/add-ons we should buy. The so-called "tool" is just poorly-disguised advertising....
And talk about S-L-O-W.....