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Thread: Disabling Messenger Spam

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002

    Post Disabling Messenger Spam

    I have recently been getting lots of spam through Microsoft's built in Messenger service. To disable this service, go to a DOS prompt and type "net stop messenger." This must be run after every time your computer is reset, so you may want to create a .bat file and set it to autorun at start up to turn messenger off for you.
    Deus ex machina.

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002

    related to Ingsoc's post

    Hey all,

    I recently read something similiar (if not the same thing) in a Newsletter I subscribe to. Below specifically relates to Win XP, but may work for other NT based OS's:

    All credit goes to WinXPnews.

    New Form of Spam Hits Windows XP Computers

    Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse, those scumbag spammers have now hit a new low. As if pop-up ads and email spam wasn't enough, now they're taking advantage of the built-in Windows Messenger service. The Messenger service isn't the same as the Windows Messenger. It allows you to broadcast messages to all the computers on your network. For example, if you open a command prompt and type:

    net send * Hello World

    All the computers on your network within "broadcast" range, will see a dialog box pop up that says "Hello World". Now the dreaded spammers are actually sending these message service messages over the Internet! To say that this is the lowest of the low doesn't do justice to the heinous nature of this kind of spamming. If you see what appears to be a regular Windows dialog box with "Messenger Service" in the title bar and then some spam in the body of the dialog box, you've been "Messenger Service Spammed". If you're running an Internet firewall, you shouldn't be seeing these messages since the firewall should be shutting down the ports the service uses. Another way to stop the messages is to shut down the service. Here's how:

    1) Click Start and then click the Control Panel.

    2) In the Control Panel, click the link on the left side that allows you to switch to Classic View.

    3) Open the Administrative Tools applet.

    4) In the Administrative Tools window, open the Services console.

    5) In the Services console, scroll to the Messenger service entry. Right click on it and click Properties.

    6) In the Messenger Properties dialog box, click the Stop button. After the service stops, click the down arrow in the Startup type drop down list box and select Disabled. Click Apply and then click OK.

    Now you're protected from these spammers' form of unusual punishment.
    \"Eagles May Soar, But Weasels Don\'t Get Sucked Into Jet Engines\"

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    D'Oh, I was looking for a tutorial on this! Anyways, I knew it's hard to stop spam, but next time ask it in Microsoft Security Discussions or Newbie Security Questions. Tutorial's forum is meant for posting tutorials and only that.
    Space For Rent.. =]

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    I posted a quick guide on how to stop it..
    Deus ex machina.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    No question was asked. The original message contained instructions on how to shut off the service. Close enough to a tutorial for me!
    Mike Reilly

  6. #6

    link for information

    This was discussed in another thread earlier, but I can't find the thread right now.
    Yet, this link was posted in the thread:
    Please go here for information on this, and how to disable the popups from coming onto your system without stopping the Messenger service. There is a lot of good info here (especially the link it provides to "Minimization of network services on Windows systems" article).

  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    I thought that in winXP your could turn netsend (messenger) off in the settings? (I did)

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    If this is what I'm thinking, then what happens is something gets set to start running on your computer startup, which also enables your Windows Messanger to startup at bootup also. Then this "application" uses something from the Windows Messanger, and you can't simple exit out of the messanger since there is a "system service" using it. You have to go through and shut it off as stated above. I had a friend who had this same problem, and he figured it out the hard way on how to get ride of it. But speaking of, my "Kazaa" computer just started having the same problem and I got to fix it.
    [shadow]There is no right and wrong, only fun and boring...
    Formatting my server because someone hacked into it sounds pretty boring to me...
    That\'s why it\'s all about!

  9. #9
    AO Security for Non-Geeks tonybradley's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002


    I have an article with steps to disable the Messnger Service. There is also a link to download a free software application that automates the disabling of the Messenger Service for the novice that doesn't want to go under the hood and do it themselves.

    Some people may find that disabling the Messenger Service kills some functionality they were using- there are actually legitimate uses for the Messenger Service as well. For those users I suggest using a personal firewall application like Zone Alarm or Sygate (do an AO search and you will come up with 5000 different opinions and reviews) to block those types of communications.

    See the article here:

    Annoying Pop-Up Spam

  10. #10
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Redondo Beach, CA
    You know what.. I had the admin at the school stop the Messenger Service to stop Messenger Spam. And I still got it. I stood there and watched him disable it and stop it from starting and still got it. I think there is more to this than just the Messenger Service or MS has something else running somewhere.
    Goodbye, Mittens (1992-2008). My pillow will be cold without your purring beside my head
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