ThinkVantage Configuration Update Stalls

God (I am persuaded) brought a thought to my mind: Maybe your anti-virus, anti-spam, firewall Zone Alarm is blocking ThinkVantage in that final stage.

I had set out to do an overdue update to the ThinkVantage software on my IBM ThinkPad R51e.

All went well until I tried to install the ThinkPad Configuration Update. Overall progress went to 99%, then backtracked to 98%, then eased back up to 99% again. Back and forth, back and forth.

I tried this installation repeatedly in the course of several days. I tried it as a directly downloaded-and-installed process. I tried it as a deferred update installation. Always the same results.

I searched Google. I searched Lenovo’s forums. I found no help.

So a week ago this evening, I finally posted a request for help from the Lenovo Community: ThinkPad Configuration Update Stalls on R51e.

No. Deal.

Then late last night (or was it early this morning?), God (I am persuaded) brought a thought to my mind: Maybe your anti-virus, anti-spam, firewall Zone Alarm is blocking ThinkVantage in that final stage.

This morning I uninstalled Zone Alarm. That’s right. I didn’t just turn it off, I took it all the way off my computer. (I’d decided to do a fresh install of it anyway.) Then I initiated the process of doing that troublesome ThinkVantage update. And this time it worked! Praise the Lord!

Since then I did a ThinkVantage Rescue and Recovery Backup. On Friday I’d like to do a disk image using True Image.

8 thoughts on “ThinkVantage Configuration Update Stalls

  1. I’ve always just used the built-in Windows firewall, that comes in all Windows systems since XP Service Pack 2. Event then, an argument could be made that a software firewall has no use if your computer is behind a NAT router (all consumer routers sold these days are NAT routers). That is because the very nature of NAT makes the router a hardware firewall itself. A software firewall is only useful if you’re connected directly to the internet (an extremely bad idea), or if you need firewall protection from other computers on your local network.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network_address_translation

    • Thanks for your input, Philip!

      How can I tell if my router is a NAT router?

      FWIW, my desktop computer (8 years old) is XP SP2 and my ThinkPad (6.5 years old) is XP SP3.

      • Check your local machine’s IP address. If it begins with 192.168.x.x, or 10.0.x.x, it’s almost certainly behind a NAT router. I believe it was only in the very early days of the internet that you could buy a router that wasn’t NAT, so unless your home router is extremely outdated, you likely have it. Here is some helpful information:
        http://ask-leo.com/how_do_i_know_if_im_behind_a_nat_router.html
        http://www.grc.com/nat/nat.htm

        • This is very interesting stuff, Philip, thanks! I’d never heard of a NAT router before.

          I don’t use a router, just an Actiontec M1000 modem, which is NAT, from what I could see online. (And my local machine’s IP is 192.168.x.x.)

          Do you not use any kind of security software such as ZoneAlarm, AVG, or McAfee?

          • The Amazon product page for your modem specifically mentions NAT, so you’re fine in that regard.

            On my Windows machines, I have the built-in Windows firewall turned on (in case another computer on my network would become infected), as well as Microsoft Security Essentials antivirus. MSE is free, doesn’t slow down my computer, it’s based on Microsoft’s corporate AV engine, and it doesn’t nag me to upgrade to some bloated paid security suite with a thousand features I don’t need. I’ve never had a problem with this setup, and I can’t remember ever having a virus (of the digital variety). Of course, that is partly attributable to other good online habits, such as staying away from the murky parts of the internet, keeping my systems up-to-date with security patches, and using an alternate web browser like Mozilla Firefox. Antivirus software is not an impenetrable defense; it’s reactionary in nature, a cat-and-mouse game with the malware. AV software is only aware of existing malware. When a new piece of malware appears on the scene, the AV companies need to create a “signature” for it, and then the AV software is updated, leaving a window of opportunity where you’ve vulnerable. In the same way, when an operating system flaw is discovered, there’s a window of opportunity where you’re vulnerable until Microsoft issues a patch for it. The best protection is not in software, but in responsible online behavior.

            Apologies for the lengthy comment, but computer security is something in which I have a deep fascination.

          • No need to apologize for the lengthy comment, Philip. It’s great stuff, as far as I’m concerned. I really appreciate your taking the time to be helpful.

  2. I would agree with Philip and he did a great job on the subject. I have to admit that I am an exclusive Google Chrome user instead of Firefox but I guess that is similar to a Ford vs. Chevy analogy. Additional firewall programs are pretty much unecessary resource drains on your system.

    • Thanks for adding a second perspective here, Rob. I really value your input. In the mouth of two or three witnesses, you know (except I think the context for that is capital cases). 🙂

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