How to block the Chrome Software Reporter Tool (software_reporter_tool.exe) - gHacks Tech News

How to block the Chrome Software Reporter Tool (software_reporter_tool.exe)

If you run Google Chrome on a Windows PC and monitor processes that run on the machine, you may notice the Software Reporter Tool process eventually.

Software Reporter Tool, the executable file is software_reporter_tool.exe, is a tool that Google distributes with the Google Chrome web browser.

It is part of the Chrome Cleanup Tool which in turn may remove software that causes issues with Chrome. Google mentions crashes, modified startup or new tab pages, or unexpected advertisement specifically.  Anything that interferes with a user's browsing experience may be removed by the tool.

Chrome Software Reporter Tool

software reporter tool

The Software Reporter Tool scans the computer's drive and reports these scans to Google. Google Chrome uses the scan results to determine whether it should prompt the user to remove unwanted software from the computer as it impacts the browsing experience.

Google Chrome users may have two main issues with the Software Reporter Tool:

  1. It may cause a high system load when it scans the system. User reports range from it using 30% and more CPU while running. Since it may run for as long as 20 minutes, that is something that may interfere with other activity on the computer.
  2. The tool informs Google about the scan results which some users may dislike because of privacy concerns.

A Google community specialist mentioned that the tool scans folders related to Chrome only, but its scope is not exposed to the user in any way.

You find the Software Reporter Tool under the following path on Windows 7 and newer versions of Windows: C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\SwReporter\VERSION\software_reporter_tool.exe

The Version changes regularly, it was 24.137.203 at the time of writing.

Block the Software Reporter Tool

software reporter tool disable

Note: Blocking access to the program may prevent Google from removing problematic software from the system or informing you about it. You may use other software, antivirus software for instance, to remove threats or potentially unwanted programs from the system.

While you can delete the content of the entire folder or rename the executable file itself, doing so offers a temporary recourse only as Google will push the Software Reporter Tool to the system again when you update the web browser.

A better option is to remove permissions so that no user may access the folder or run the Software Reporter Tool.

  1. Right-click on the folder SwReporter and select Properties from the menu.
  2. Switch to the Security tab.
  3. Select Advanced on the page that opens.
  4. Click on "Disable inheritance" and select "remove all inherited permissions from this object."
  5. Select apply and in the Windows Security prompt "yes."
  6. Select ok.
  7. Select ok again.

No group or user should have access anymore to the Software Reporter Tool.

The advantage of this method is that the tool cannot be run anymore and that updates cannot be applied to it anymore either.

Closing Words

Unless you run into problematic third-party software regularly that interferes with Chrome, you may not need the Software Reporter Tool. Its disadvantages, high CPU load or privacy implications, may be reason enough to block it from running.

Now You: How do you handle the Chrome tool?

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Summary
How to block the Chrome Software Reporter Tool (software_reporter_tool.exe)
Article Name
How to block the Chrome Software Reporter Tool (software_reporter_tool.exe)
Description
If you run Google Chrome on a Windows PC and monitor processes that run on the machine, you may notice the Software Reporter Tool process eventually and may have asked yourself why it uses this much CPU or what it is all about.
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Comments

  1. MarkCB said on January 20, 2018 at 4:19 pm
    Reply

    It baffles me that people choose to use Google products these days. Their store is full of malware and their products get more invasive as time goes by. Post-privacy indeed.

    1. Skynet Free Update said on January 21, 2018 at 4:27 am
      Reply

      Google is a global data collection and surveillance system created by the US government.

      1. Anonymous said on April 25, 2018 at 12:34 pm
        Reply

        you think… started by two Russians… think about it..

      2. Anonymous said on June 12, 2018 at 12:31 pm
        Reply

        Put that tinfoil of your head

    2. jason_m said on January 21, 2018 at 5:20 am
      Reply

      The same can be said about Microsoft products. It baffles me that people choose to use Microsoft Windows these days. Their operating system is full of malware and their products get more invasive as time goes by. Post-privacy indeed.
      What’s the point of using a privacy focused browser on a spyware OS?

      1. dark said on January 21, 2018 at 11:54 am
        Reply

        Switching to Linux is best course of action. Linux Mint or Manjaro is a good way to start switching to Linux.

      2. Tommy said on May 2, 2018 at 7:35 pm
        Reply

        User friendliness and familiarity. A lot of people want the advantages of using a computer without the work that goes into learning the details necessary to install and (particularly) utilize less common operating systems. It’s just convenient to have Windows and know that basically any major program on the consumer market will be able to function without much additional effort because it is such a popular system.

        But if you can make a case for setting up my next computer with some user friendly flavor of Linux and convince me that I could continue to work with ease with media, games, and music production hardware and software I’d probably be open to it. I just want to spend my time using my computer rather than figuring out compatibility issues!

      3. Hyp3rSoniX said on May 2, 2018 at 10:04 pm
        Reply

        Well said dude! I have the exact same opinion! And sometimes, it’s easier to shut down (at least known) microsofts privacy invasive functions than setting up a usable Linux System…

      4. gunga said on September 17, 2018 at 5:26 pm
        Reply

        Agree. Same reason I buy a prebuilt computer instead of spending hours/weeks trying to piece one together to only have more problems. Does anyone here build a car from parts when they want to go to the store?
        Glad that Martin actually looked into what this program does. Only reason I am here is that I noticed when I open Chrome, the computer slows to a crawl for 5 minutes. So I looked at Task Manager and the disk is at 100% due to this program for about 2 minutes. Then the CPU ramps up to 30-40% again due to the SRT. Makes me suspicious, so I will remove permissions.

  2. Richard Allen said on January 20, 2018 at 4:46 pm
    Reply

    I’m going to guess and say that “Disable inheritance” is a Windows 10 option, I’m not seeing that in Win7 Pro.

    Actually, I have CCleaner setup to remove the contents of the SwReporter folder in Chrome and Chrome Dev. One of the best things I like about CCleaner is being able to choose specific files and folders.

    https://s14.postimg.org/k0bh6c24x/Sw_Reporter_Properties.png
    https://s14.postimg.org/iy1ans3w1/CCleaner_custom_file_and_folder_cleaning.png

    1. Decent60 said on January 20, 2018 at 7:12 pm
      Reply

      Your Image has the “Inheritance” permissions in it. Right above where your cursor is.
      You need to uncheck that box to disable it.

      1. Richard Allen said on January 21, 2018 at 1:36 am
        Reply

        Thanks, I see what’s going on now. In my earlier screenshot the box for inheritable permissions is greyed out but if I click on “Change Permissions” I can then uncheck the box in the new window. My mistake was clicking on “Edit” when I got to that window. Duh. Anyway, I ended up leaving the permissions alone. I’m fine with just seeing an empty SwReporter folder, nothing there to run. And to be honest, other than changing a file to “Read Only” I’ve never been comfortable when mucking around with permissions. I would rather edit the registry, which I’ve done for years, but changing permissions always makes me nervous, doesn’t make any sense. ;)
        “https://s14.postimg.org/mm40qlsg1/software_reporter_tool.png”

    2. xxxx said on February 16, 2018 at 11:55 am
      Reply

      Don’t use CCleaner it’s notorious for being packaged with trojan horses

      1. Tom Hawack said on February 16, 2018 at 12:07 pm
        Reply

        Don’t believe everything you read, CCleaner is NOT packaged with trojans. It would be, notoriously moreover? “Imagination is funny, it makes a bee think of honey, just as I think of you…” :=)

      2. Robert Talada said on May 27, 2018 at 3:17 am
        Reply

        The copy of CCleaner that was on their webserver WAS, at one point, infected with malware. This issue has long since been resolved.

    3. mharu said on July 17, 2018 at 4:36 pm
      Reply

      The main issue with CCleaner is that while it’s powerful and good stuff, cleaning of registries was default in cleanup as well. I haven’t been using it in a long time so I don’t know if they made it optional, but cleaning of registries is generally a very, very bad idea. That’s the source of its notoriety.

  3. chesscanoe said on January 20, 2018 at 4:47 pm
    Reply

    I wonder if blocking all permissions prevents installed Chrome extensions from being automatically updated, disabled, or removed.

  4. KJFOE-04 said on January 20, 2018 at 4:58 pm
    Reply

    You can Block it also from Windows Firewall for Inbound and Outbound connections…as a program and that’s all…end of reports to Google…just remember to change folder’s path when you update Chrome because Software Reporter Tool maybe will change at new version.

    1. Stefan said on January 21, 2018 at 9:08 am
      Reply

      Windows Firewall is a joke ! It lets through whatever Microsoft and their “partners” agree on, even if it tells You it is blocked !

  5. pHROZEN gHOST said on January 20, 2018 at 5:17 pm
    Reply

    Quote: “A better option is to remove permissions so that no user may access the folder or run the Software Reporter Tool.

    The advantage of this method is that the tool cannot be run anymore and that updates cannot be applied to it anymore either.”

    Good idea. But, down the road, there’s no telling how Google will react to this. Will they, for example, not allow the browser to run?

  6. Tancred said on January 20, 2018 at 5:48 pm
    Reply

    What the fuck Google??

    Maybe I should stop using Chrome.

    1. Mike said on January 20, 2018 at 7:10 pm
      Reply

      There is very little reason to use Chrome anymore IMO.

      On mobile, Brave is built on top of Chrome and provides much better privacy/security features (tracking/ad protection, fingerprinting protection) than Chrome and Brave is entirely open source. On desktop environments, Firefox and Opera offer equal to or better performance than Chrome and Vivaldi is only slightly slower, but offers a much more robust feature set that eliminates the need for many Chrome Store extensions.

      Only place I use Chrome anymore is on my cheap Chromebook that I only open for very basic web browsing or travel. Other than that, I have found living without Chrome is a be a pleasant experience.

  7. TimH said on January 20, 2018 at 5:49 pm
    Reply

    Use Chromium, such as from http://chromium.woolyss.com/

    Doesn’t have this.

    1. ULBoom said on January 21, 2018 at 6:08 am
      Reply

      the only one worth using.

    2. JC said on January 21, 2018 at 8:44 pm
      Reply

      Is it safe? I don’t know if these builds from woolyss are trustworthy.

  8. Anonymous said on January 20, 2018 at 6:33 pm
    Reply

    WTH Google.

    What’s next, nVidia drivers bundled with Chrome

    1. dark said on January 20, 2018 at 7:07 pm
      Reply

      Possible if Nvidia got paid by Google. This kind of crap only happens on Windows.

      1. Skynet Free Update said on January 21, 2018 at 4:29 am
        Reply

        Apple does its own spying.

    2. TomBosley said on January 20, 2018 at 9:26 pm
      Reply

      Windows utility to disable Nvidia’s telemetry services:

      https://github.com/NateShoffner/Disable-Nvidia-Telemetry

      1. Stefan said on January 21, 2018 at 9:10 am
        Reply

        Disable the service, restart computer, remove the registry entries, restart computer and then remove the telemetry folders and telemetry recovery.bat in the Windows folder.

  9. dark said on January 20, 2018 at 6:40 pm
    Reply

    Chrome spyware? wtf google?

    Does Chromium has this software_reporter_tool.exe?

    Google is also very screwed internally according Bryan Lunduke video.
    youtu.be/nPVgratX9Uk?t=12m45s

    Solution: Use Waterfox.

    1. jason_m said on January 21, 2018 at 9:06 am
      Reply

      Waterfox is only a part of the solution. Even if you delete this spyware exe you still have many other spyware exe from Microsoft to spy on you.

      1. dark said on January 21, 2018 at 11:57 am
        Reply

        Waterfox is only a part of the solution only on Windows. Switch to Linux and then install Waterfox on it.

  10. pHROZEN gHOST said on January 20, 2018 at 7:02 pm
    Reply

    Think about this.

    What happens when Google decides that Vivaldi, Chromium, Firefox, Edge, Opera, etc are malware?

    1. jason_m said on January 21, 2018 at 9:11 am
      Reply

      Why Microsoft decides on various updates to make Edge the default browser on my system again and again even if I had it changed to Vivaldi, Chromium, Firefox, Opera, etc ?
      Isn’t this what hijackers – malware programs do?
      Think about it too.

  11. dark said on January 20, 2018 at 7:08 pm
    Reply

    What if you deleted software_reporter_tool.exe?

    1. JC said on January 20, 2018 at 7:12 pm
      Reply

      It’s downloaded again automatically.

    2. seeprime said on January 20, 2018 at 9:05 pm
      Reply

      I delete the entire folder SRT is in, as the tool prevents Sandboxed web browsers (using Sandboxie) from reopening at all, without using task manager to end the processes (3). Oddly enough, Chrome performance seems to have degraded with the last two updates. Now, streaming Amazon Prime pauses for about 1/2 second every couple of minutes. Edge plays Prime perfectly, and without a washed out image that I didn’t realize Chrome was rendering. Netflix on Chrome is also somewhat washed out these days. I’m beginning to think that we may be in peak Chrome, if issues keep sprouting and aren’t fixed ASAP.

  12. Kubrick said on January 21, 2018 at 12:32 am
    Reply

    I decided to ditch chrome and have replaced it with linux chromium.Runs well so far and i dont need the flash player etc.
    This seems to be primarily a windows issue so its another good reason to use linux instead.

  13. Ann said on January 21, 2018 at 12:57 am
    Reply

    how can i send this to myself? I need to see it as I do it.

  14. Albert McCann said on January 21, 2018 at 1:25 am
    Reply

    Here’s a more permanent way to stop software_reporter_tool.exe from running:

    ————————snip—————-
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\software_reporter_tool.exe]
    “Debugger”=”systray.exe”

    ————————snip—————-

    Save the text between the snips to a file, and name it BadChrome.reg

    Import BadChrome.reg into the registry, and every time software_reporter_tool.exe attempts to run, systray.exe will run instead. Running systray.exe will then silently and harmlessly exit.

    1. Tom Hawack said on January 21, 2018 at 10:57 am
      Reply

      Maybe another Registry hack to prevent a given file execution:

      [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\DisallowRun]
      “1”=”software_reporter_tool.exe”

      “1”, “2”, “3” etc are incremented on each add.

      I use this for several applications on Win7 and it does the job, i.e:

      [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\DisallowRun]
      “1”=”mrt.exe”
      “2”=”mconduitinstaller.exe”
      “3”=”ieLogic.exe”
      “4”=”ExPromo.exe”
      “5”=”askbarsetup.exe”
      “6”=”APNSetup.exe”
      “7”=”ApnStub.exe”
      “8”=”WerFault.exe”
      “9”=”MSASCui.exe”
      “10”=”syskey.exe”
      “11”=”cipher.exe”
      “12”=”vssadmin.exe”

      I’m not a specialist, only reporting what I once discovered and apply flawlessly.

      Otherwise, because I don’t run nor even install Google’s Chrome all I say is this : the era of companies behaving as tramps and wishing to be considered as first ladies is flourishing.

      1. Bert64 said on October 17, 2018 at 4:56 pm
        Reply

        I’ve checked your many blockings on the net.

        You are RIGHT blocking these only:
        > The syskey.exe utility (original from Ms windows), you are RIGHT to block this, as is old, considered no more secure, full of flaws, and as it is also used by hackers as a part of ransomware scam
        > cipher.exe is the new cipher utility from Ms and is secure,but has been seen used also by ransomware, and if you don’t use it, it is saviour to block it.
        > for vssadmin.exe, it is suggested to rename it and/or block it, as ransomware uses sometimes it to delete shadow copy of your files prior to encryption. So, it could be right to block that file, but you should be aware that windows could need it to do something legitimate.

        You are NOT right IMHO blocking these:
        > Mrt is an antimalware from Ms, updated montly, it finds malware and should not be blocked IMHO.
        > The werfault.exe is used for Windows Error Reporting. From web: “It is a feature that allows Microsoft to track and address errors relating to the operating system, Windows features, and applications. It gives you the option (you could disable that from options) to send data about errors to Microsoft and to receive information about solutions”, and it shoud not be blocked same way of above.
        Anyway your suystem has a fault or hangs, the wer thing could be useful to analyse the problem, even if, Ms response pages often don’t prove really useful in my experience.
        > MSASCui.exe is windows defender and you should not block it, is the antivirus from Ms

        For the others, if you have all this crap and malware installed, then you hardly need to seriously remove badware and crapware from your Pc, it is not safe as it is now.
        How to seek help: for any of these, seek Google normally, then if something alarming found, seek specifically on bleepingcomputer forum (add “site:bleepingcomputer.com” in the search bar) to see expert advice, or open a request on their site bleepingcomputer.com forum, on thread “Am I infected”.

        What I have found:
        > ExPromo.exe seems part of GOMPLAYER bt Gretech and is not malware but maybe crap.
        >It seems tou are affected by mconduitinstaller.exe (PUP.Optional.Conduit.A)
        Also ielogic.exe is Conduit, the software installed is DVDVideoSoftTB Toolbar, it will install silently other things.
        >askbarsetup.exe is the long know ask toolbar and you have blocked setup, but see my Unchecky advice below on simplest way to avoid it.
        APNSetup.exe is part of Stub Installer and developed by Ask Partner Network (same of above).
        APNSTUB.EXE is known as: a variant of Win32/Bundled.Toolbar.Ask (same of above).

        Basic Cleaning procedure.
        First of all, close all running programs, then open Ms Program and Features uninstaller, and install all programs, NOT marked Microsoft, you have’nt knowingly installed, as toolbars and so on. You better uninstall all these toolbars if consented to! These uninstall may require reboots. Keep in mind that any of these could lie showing being uninstalled but leaving self running in background.
        Then, install Malwarebyte’s antimalware MBAM, form their site http://www.malwarebytes.com, and do a through cleaning with it, with consent to reboot removal after it finds all crap and malware. This is a long-known secure program.
        If you can’t install or run anti-malware legitimate software, then you should run Rkill from bleepingcomputer and then retry to run antimalware sw without rebooting.

        Prevention
        First rule, don’t install from unsafe sites, that is, torrents, sites that have bad reputation or make you download strange installers instead of the real product. Better to always resort to original developer web pages, you find it mentioned or linked in download pages, or by a search on google, and then you go to his site and download from there. Don’t download things from known malware spammers sites! They often reclamize self as antiviruses or utilities but aren’t.
        Keep an antimalware running, as MBAM, Grindr or other sw well-known in the AV community.
        As a side but VERY USEFUL precaution, l will suggest you to install and keep always running the wonderful UNCHECKY little tool (minimal memory and cpu consumption), to help you avoid have side installations while you install anything. ;-) It simply disables unwanted options from installer screens without you have to carefully inspect them.

    2. dark said on January 21, 2018 at 12:01 pm
      Reply

      or try this. create an empty text file with notepad and rename it to software_reporter_tool.exe, then replace the original software_reporter_tool.exe with empty software_reporter_tool.exe

    3. John Miller said on April 26, 2018 at 11:56 pm
      Reply

      It actually needs to be: “Debugger”=”systray.exe” (text-form of double-quotes instead of word-form) else Registry Editor won’t import it.

    4. Anonymous said on October 11, 2018 at 3:11 pm
      Reply

      Could you show an image of what the Reg:key looks like once this has been imported?

      Might help! ;)

    5. Joe said on October 11, 2018 at 3:22 pm
      Reply

      Perhaps you caould show an image of how the REG key looks after importing?

  15. Dave said on January 21, 2018 at 1:26 am
    Reply

    Thank you for this useful information. My 10-inch tablet running Win 10 with 2GB chokes on Chrome which is my preferred browser. Making this change appears to have solved the problem.

    1. archie said on January 21, 2018 at 7:37 pm
      Reply

      “My 10-inch tablet running Win 10 with 2GB chokes on Chrome which is my preferred browser”

      Someone is confused : Chromium is your preferred browser, not Chrome. Quite a few iterations of the Chromium browser are available, Google-Chrome being the worst, the least respectful of user interests and also the most bloated.

      I have been using iron for some browsing needs, where chromium works best. You should give a quick look at the many options offered, imo.

      1. Dave said on January 21, 2018 at 8:49 pm
        Reply

        I guess you know my preferences better than I do. Perhaps you didn’t know “Chromium is an open-source Web browser project started by Google, to provide the source code for the proprietary Google Chrome browser. The two browsers share the majority of code and features, though there are some minor differences in features and logos, and they have different licensing.”

      2. Dave said on January 21, 2018 at 10:15 pm
        Reply

        Installed Chromium on another computer. Pretty much the same as Chrome. Quickly picked up all my settings and extensions. It was using between 60% and 90% of the cpu for well over 5 minutes upon startup :-( Chrome doesn’t do that do that any more :-)

  16. Sir Pixelot said on January 21, 2018 at 2:45 am
    Reply

    Chrome (Google) is so privacy invasive its sickening. I hope Firefox Quantum proves to be a strong alternative.

  17. Anonymous said on January 21, 2018 at 4:01 am
    Reply
  18. ULBoom said on January 21, 2018 at 6:05 am
    Reply

    My stripped Chromium doesn’t have that folder, yay! I won’t let standard Chrome or its variants on any device, they dig too deep.

    The green one, No Widevine, RTC, etc., version.
    https://chromium.woolyss.com/

    FF is still far more private if you change the appropriate settings.

  19. Stefan said on January 21, 2018 at 9:04 am
    Reply

    Are there still people using this NSA-browser ?

    1. jason_m said on January 21, 2018 at 9:15 am
      Reply

      Of course they do. People don’t care about their privacy, that’s why they use Chrome and Windows.

      1. dark said on January 21, 2018 at 12:45 pm
        Reply

        People don’t care about their privacy until they are well educated, then they start doing everything to gain privacy.

      2. Mike said on January 21, 2018 at 12:58 pm
        Reply

        I think people care about privacy, but they also care about convenience. That is why Windows and Chrome are so popular. Linux may be better for privacy and alternative browsers may be better for privacy, but the “average” user probably has no clue what Linux and if they do know that it is, they have little understanding of how to configure it. Windows, Mac OS, and Chrome OS are all so popular because they are all relatively easy to maintain and use. Chrome is so popular because you can sync with it across all devices easily (yes, I know other browsers have this feature).

        The average consumer has clearly made a choice that they are willing to give up privacy in the name of convenience.

      3. Tom Hawack said on January 21, 2018 at 1:24 pm
        Reply

        “The average consumer has clearly made a choice that they are willing to give up privacy in the name of convenience.”

        Maybe is is worth wondering what defines the “average consumer”. Average in terms of what? Intelligence, education, technical skills (computing), will, determination ….

        Is the average consumer in the majority? Maybe so, no idea. But I do believe that the “collective unconscious” is concerned and by misinformation/disinformation but also by a worldwide spread of others experiences and knowledge, as if a battle was continuously going on between both.

        Of course some know more than others and truth is a dangerous certitude. Searching for it seems a necessary condition to at least discover what is not true. Searching in these terms is maybe the fundamental point of “education” which would mean that, in an analogy to faith, searching for it is in a way having found it, or at least allowing ourselves to find it : 100% of those who win at a lottery have the winning ticket, so to say.

        I remain confident, but emancipation always takes time when free of radicalism which sinks the baby with the water. Whatever, it’s up to each of us to think and act, no one can, should and will take us by the hand.

      4. dark said on January 21, 2018 at 4:03 pm
        Reply

        >Linux may be better for privacy and alternative browsers may be better for privacy, but the “average” user probably has no clue what Linux and if they do know that it is, they have little understanding of how to configure it.

        The same average user is likely using Android which is Linux. Linux is just as easy to use if you install the beginner friendly distro’s like Linux Mint, Manjaro, Solus, etc.

      5. Willy said on January 21, 2018 at 10:15 pm
        Reply

        Yes, and as long as the Linux / UNIX ‘Gurus’, keep pushing away from a GUI interface, they just drive most users away. I have never seen the point in typing a 100 character line of text to do a simple job that I can accomplish with a single click of my mouse.

      6. Mike W. said on January 22, 2018 at 10:24 pm
        Reply

        @dark

        Yes, Android and Chrome OS are built on Linux, but I meant for that the average user likely has no clue how to download, install, and run Linux on their home PC. Android and Chrome OS come pre-installed on user devices and there is very little that the average consumer has to do in order to have a fully functioning device.

        I’m not putting down Linux, I think it is a superior choice for those “in the know” or for those that read tech blogs like this one, but for the casual consumer who “just want things to work”, Windows and OS X will continue to dominate for that exact reason. Similarly, for Chrome, Chrome will continue to dominate because a lot of people prefer it due to it’s cross-platform sync and the (not deserved) reputation the browser has as being ultra-secure.

      7. rob said on March 7, 2018 at 3:03 am
        Reply

        Android™ Operating System (OS) FAQs. Android is an OS created by Google® for use on mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets.it is linux… But using browser as interface
        if not people wouldnt know how to use it

  20. Nebulus said on January 21, 2018 at 10:38 am
    Reply

    I handle the Chrome tool by not installing and using Chrome in the first place. Although I’m not very fond of what Mozilla is doing either, Firefox is still my primary browser.

    1. dark said on January 21, 2018 at 4:05 pm
      Reply

      You can use Waterfox.

  21. Sophie said on January 21, 2018 at 12:28 pm
    Reply

    I’m not surprised, but this is truly horrible. I would not touch Chrome, so I’m really not that bothered.

    I have on my PC, three Chrome variants………. Epic, Slimjet and Cent

    But my impression with Chrome, and even the variants….is that whenever I fire them up, that I feel as though I’ve gone back to 2006.

    Talk about ‘do no evil’, or whatever their pathetic mantra was.

    1. Kubrick said on January 21, 2018 at 5:46 pm
      Reply

      @sophie.
      If you think you gain privacy by using chromium variants then think again.All variants connect to google domains upon start up.The problem i have with using variants is that not only do you connect to google but also to the variant developers servers.
      I always say you are better using chromium and i simply dont get why people use slimjet,slimboat and other offshoots.

      1. Sophie said on January 21, 2018 at 8:01 pm
        Reply

        @kubrick – Your comment made me check this a little further………..Epic in this case, through my firewall.

        I can see that Epic connects to (at least)

        -id.l.google.com
        -googleapis.l.google.com
        -safebrowsing.cache.l.google.com

        With their respective IPs.

        This is not desirable, but I am using chained (2) VPN, through two different VPN servers, and I think this is the reason I’ve never paid too much attention to this.

        But it certainly pays not to be complacent, and to be aware of almost everything that goes through your device, these days. Thanks.

      2. poe said on January 21, 2018 at 8:17 pm
        Reply

        We’re living in the internet era where everything is connected. Your OS is tracking you. Your ISP is tracking you. Your VPN provider is tracking you. Even cellphone operator is tracking you too.
        If you don’t want to be tracked, don’t use internet, don’t use phone, maybe live in the mountain?

  22. akg said on January 21, 2018 at 3:06 pm
    Reply

    offtopic – ff loads all top sites on every start, and eats bandwidth,how to stop it ,any suggestions ?

  23. Anonymous said on January 21, 2018 at 6:25 pm
    Reply

    Google also invents machines, robots. Imagine tomorrow its robots doing the same, eradicate humans or whatever counteracting its projects. Good Morning America.

  24. Steve said on January 21, 2018 at 7:49 pm
    Reply

    This so called “Software Reporter Tool” (SRT) nonsense is why I have zero to do with Goggle. A privacy respecting way to check for chrome interference is to create hashes of chrome related plugins/apps/etc and report a limited/filtered list back to the Goggle mothership. To perform this limited task, it would take only a few minutes if done by a competent developer. Thus, I assume there is no way SRT uses 30% + CPU for up to 20 minutes IF it is only scanning folders related only to Chrome. I would assume it is doing much more than that. Thus, my paranoid tinfoil hat assumption is it is scanning the entire hard drive and reporting the findings to Goggle and other interested parties.

    The following is a hit/miss approach. A long time ago I wrote a very simple application that captures startup parms passed to it and logs them to file whenever the app is executed. Whenever I encounter spyware such as this Goggle SRT, I copy & rename this parm capture app to software_reporter_tool.exe and drop it into the folder to replace the original SRT. I can then trace what files the app is trying to pass to the mothership; assuming SRT logs to a file and uploads the findings. I used this approach when I disabled telemetry in firefox. Regardless of my disabled settings, firefox pingsender.exe was constantly trying to send telemetry files back to Mozzilla upon FF shutdown. Of course instead, the telemetry file locations were logged so I could see that Firefox was neither respecting my settings nor my privacy.

    Another interesting approach to this would be to run an older ver of Systernals Procmon.exe and then install chrome to see what files SRT is hashing. Make this task simpler by exiting all unneeded apps/services before starting. PS: this might not work. Goggle devs are sharp enough to write SRT to test to see if utilities such as Procmon are running and then behave during those times. Given Goggle’s past behavior, my easiest assumption is to just assume SRT is up to no good.

  25. poe said on January 21, 2018 at 8:12 pm
    Reply

    Nice, Google is so kind! Now Chrome is acting as antivirus too.
    Chrome users should be happy!

  26. K Huber said on January 24, 2018 at 12:39 am
    Reply

    Could not find this folder or file after extensive search.

  27. C said on January 31, 2018 at 4:52 am
    Reply

    This does NOT only scan files related to chrome. I discovered it in the resource monitor scanning all sorts of files in a number of folders on my desktop. None related to chrome.

  28. Anonymous said on January 31, 2018 at 6:44 pm
    Reply

    There needs to be a IP block list for Google.

  29. Peter said on February 16, 2018 at 8:46 am
    Reply

    I just deleted the directory it was sitting in after I saw it eating up all my CPU

  30. Joppe said on February 18, 2018 at 1:38 pm
    Reply

    Will this program connect directly to the internet or will it do it through chrome? I have my firewall set up to prompt me when new programs want to access the internet.

    1. Rick said on February 19, 2018 at 8:24 pm
      Reply

      I’ve seen it start running even when my Chrome browser is closed. I disabled SRT about a month ago using the method in the article. I haven’t caught it running since then and Chrome seems to be updating OK despite no longer having permission to update the SRT that oh-so-kindly tried to overheat my CPU every week.

  31. SUman said on February 26, 2018 at 1:17 am
    Reply

    When i removed folder permission its coming back for folder owner .Please help modifying this on 100 of machines through some GPO

  32. Anonymous said on March 26, 2018 at 8:56 pm
    Reply

    I do not want any tool to mess with my webcam

    wihtout my permission!

    1. chesscanoe said on March 26, 2018 at 10:51 pm
      Reply

      An effective way to prevent software from “messing with” your webcam is to place a piece of tape across the lens, and if you use a translucent tape, cover the light as well, so you retain the ability to visually tell if your webcam has been activated unexpectedly. A paper address sticker works well.

  33. scriptkid said on April 18, 2018 at 4:20 pm
    Reply

    the worst spyware is steam, you should really uninstall it as soon as possible.

  34. Tomislav Matas said on April 25, 2018 at 12:02 pm
    Reply

    I’ve wrapped up the described procedure into a windows batch file in order to clean permissions on every profile, not just the own one. Works fine for me and have it executed on a couple of Windows 7 and Windows 10 mchines.

    Copy the below in a texteditor and save it as “DisableGoogleSoftwareReporterTool.bat”. Than execute that batchfile with administrative privileges.

    @echo off
    cls

    setlocal ENABLEDELAYEDEXPANSION
    setlocal

    :: Get the path where _this_ batch actually resides, fyi.
    set MyPath=%~dp0

    :: The version independent subfolder of Google’s Software Reporter Tool
    :: beneath %userprofile%
    set GoogleSwRTSubDir=AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\SwReporter

    :: Process own profile.
    call :RemoveInheritedPermissions “%UserProfile%\%GoogleSwRTSubDir%”

    :: Process all other user’s profiles.
    :: NOTE: Requires administrative privileges!
    FOR /D %%f IN ( “%SystemDrive%\Users\*” ) DO (
    IF NOT “%%f” == “%UserProfile%” (
    call :RemoveInheritedPermissions “%%f\%GoogleSwRTSubDir%”
    )
    )
    goto done

    :: ————————————————————————-
    :: — subroutines start

    :RemoveInheritedPermissions
    :: — Parameter %1: directory

    echo RemoveInheritedPermissions %1 …

    :: revert all ACEs to inherited ACEs where appropriate
    icacls %1 /reset /Q 1>nul 2>nul

    :: remove all inherited ACEs from directory
    icacls %1 /inheritance:r /Q 1>nul 2>nul

    :: deactivate inheritance for directory
    icacls %1 /inheritance:d /Q 1>nul 2>nul

    goto :EOF

    :: — subroutines end
    :: ————————————————————————-

    :done

  35. Matthew Parker said on June 21, 2018 at 3:44 pm
    Reply

    :: Block Google Chrome Software Reporter Tool

    reg add “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer” /v “DisallowRun” /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

    reg add “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\DisallowRun” /v 1 /t REG_SZ /d software_reporter_tool.exe

  36. 8-Bit Loading said on October 22, 2018 at 2:00 pm
    Reply

    The easiest way to solve this:
    1)Go to your search bar and type Task Manager
    2)Launch task manager
    3)Press more details and click on CPU(Make sure the arrow in the CPU box is down)
    4)Find Software reporter and click it
    5)Then go to your down right edge and press end task
    The software reporter would still be on your PC/Laptop but its and easier way of ending that CPU eater.

  37. Armond said on November 8, 2018 at 9:39 pm
    Reply

    Just discovered this article. Thanks.
    Martin, Maybe there’s a group policy setting for that? I believe there are some templets when downloading Chrome enterprise versions? Let’s check.

  38. Armond said on November 8, 2018 at 10:10 pm
    Reply

    Well I found
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Wow6432Node\Policies\Google\Chrome]
    “ChromeCleanupEnabled”=dword:00000000
    “ChromeCleanupReportingEnabled”=dword:00000000
    But seams it’s not working:( any idea? Any way to get it to work?

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