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Msg: "Unable to access update server" (but doubted)

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MBAM used to work fine for me, but now appears to time out trying to update the database.

Or I have a rootkit, but MBAR says no, as does Kaspersky's TDSSkiller.


Running Windows 7, but which I infrequently boot.  Having been a few months since last, I tried to run MBAM free version, 2.0 I think, first thing, as I've become accustomed to doing after letting it fall behind for so long.


It balked at the manual "update" complaining in the end "unable to access update server."


I first decided perhaps a new version of MBAM was in order, or perhaps I was offered an update, but I ended up installing v2.2.0.1024 first over and then alongside the older version. Same behavior regardless.


Finally started reading the forums and learned about clean install. Did that with mbam-clean.exe. Twice, once for each version, rebooting in between. Installed cleanly. Same complaint/behavior.


I've since spent four days using liveCDs to hunt for a rootkit and other malware which might be in place preventing MBAM from phoning home.


However, lately I'm beginning to suspect MBAM's update server is dropping me on my head because I suffer from a very low-speed internet connection--which however I still pay royally for.


Here's the behavior whether running MBAM as administrator or as limited user:

* comes up reporting a database version of "v2015.09.22.05" (Yellow dot)

* Clicking "Update" returns a msg "Checking for Updates" and animated blue bars scrolling across L->R

* after a time "Updating database" appears and a new sequence of much shorter bars begin "stepping across" the screen L->R, but only make about 3 steps before, after a lonnng wait

* reporting "Unable to access update server"

* and then erasing that and returning to reporting "v2015.09.22.05". If you haven't been paying close attention you might even miss the "Unable" message.

(As I'm writing this, it is later in the evening--when the neighbors on my party line all go to bed, and the blue bars have now progressed to the 50% point--a new high-water mark. Before I started this post, they would get to about 5%. Still sloww as molasses. AND, it just failed again with the Unable message.)



* I think "Unable to access server" is not a correct characterization of what's happening, which I think is the MBAM client timing out because of my stupid slow link.


I have downloaded and run mbam-rules.exe from the desktop, but although it reports successfully installing new rules, MBAM still sees only "v2015.09.22.05". Also the documentation which recommended the offline rules update, mentioned using the output to update 'rules.ref' which can no longer be found per se in the app's install tree.



* How does the MBAM client handle slow internet connections?




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* The blue bars reached 80% before giving up this time.


Another Question

* What's actually being updated by the "Update"? Files? Registry entries?

* Could I just download those and install the necessaries OUTSIDE the client?


BTW, in addition to "running AS administrator", I enabled the password-less administrator login account and logged in as administrator to try the run. Same non-result: appears to contact the server and get some of the database, only to quit and report "Unable to access update server."


Since I get the "Updating database" and blue-bar sequence even when running as a limited user, I conclude that in my install case at least, administrator rights are not needed to do an Update.

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Okay, it just succeeded.


The new database version is v2015.12.11.01. Tomorrow. Can't get any fresher than that.




* Ensure that poor bastards stuck with declining-quality networks aren't further punished by your software, misleading them into believing they're machines are 0wn3d.


Thank you all.


Good night.

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