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Contributor II
Message 1 of 3

Anyone having multiple computer issues with their McAfee Internet Security program?

Hello, I’m fairly new to this community. I wasn’t quite sure where I should place this post, simply because of the multiple issues I’ve been experiencing over the last several months. All of which I can say are definitely related to McAfee!

SPECIAL NOTE: I attempted posting this to McAfee Communities on the evening of May 22 and was unable to because I kept losing my internet connection. I finally gave up, obviously, attempting to post this May 23, 2012.

I’m wondering if there might be a number of McAfee users experiencing multiple issues? Or, are the majority of McAfee users having one or two issues with McAfee? I am experiencing multiple negative issues regarding McAfee Internet Security. And, I’ve been trying to find a post/thread that addresses multiple issues with McAfee; however, there doesn’t seem to be one.

So, another question to anyone who might be having multiple McAfee issues. Have you had any success using any of the workarounds suggested in these recent weeks? According to some recent posts, these workarounds are working for some people with varying results. However, it appears that these people seem to be experiencing only one McAfee issue, such as blocked internet connectivity, or excessive CPU usage.

I’ve tried some of the suggested workarounds and/or fixes, for example, turning off the NetGuard in McAfee’s firewall settings. Unfortunately, it didn’t work for my poor computer. I also tried the ‘Port 80’ suggestion, briefly, and that didn’t work. I’ve un-installed McAfee, used the McAfee clean/removal tool, re-installed McAfee, with absolutely no improvement. I’ve used the McAfee Virtual Technician with no success, although the Virtual Technician seems to think it found and fixed some issues. I have tried the chat sessions with McAfee technical support resulting in no successful fixes. I’ve searched the McAfee help and troubleshooting pages with no success.

By the way, sorry, this is so lengthy. I attempted to make this brief, but wanted to make sure that my descriptions would  make sense, hopefully, to anyone who might be newer to the computer community and may be looking for some validation or help with some of the issue they may be experiencing with their computers.

My computer is a Dell - 250 GB Dual Core with 1 GB memory

Operating System:  Windows XP Media Centre Professional with Service Pack 3

            (Up to date until yesterday’s issue began)

Browser:  Window Internet Explorer 8

            Internet connection is with high speed cable

Anti-virus program:  McAfee Internet Security

My computer is now unable to successfully update both McAfee and Windows, as of yesterday, May 21st. This issue began after a McAfee update installed itself onto my system yesterday. I was actually on the computer and watched (monitored) this particular McAfee update. The McAfee pop-up notification came up, letting me know the update had successfully occurred. (I admit to praying the update was ‘THE McAfee FIX’ for all the issues regarding McAfee’s glitches.) A short while later, I got a notification there were some Microsoft Windows updates available, so began the process of choosing and installing the updates onto my system (I don’t allow automatic updates from Microsoft, I opt to receive notification and check them before installing the updates). Shortly after that, I ended up with another notification stating Microsoft updates were available. I checked and installed what I thought were new Windows updates that just happened to be released just minutes after installing the last Windows updates. I got suspicious when I got a third Microsoft Windows update notification immediately afterward. This is when I decided to investigate the updates and check whether they’d been installed successfully. I checked the updates on my system and checked my update history on the Microsoft Windows Update web site. None of these Windows updates were installed. All the prior updates for Windows (including the updates from the last several days) had all been successfully installed. I searched the Microsoft Windows help and support pages to see if there was a recent issue, maybe a fix, perhaps an explanation regarding this sort of thing, troubleshooting tips, etc. What troubles me is this inability to install these latest critical Windows updates from Microsoft occurred AFTER the last McAfee update that had downloaded itself yesterday. I should note that my system received another McAfee update this afternoon, which I watched and monitored, and it appears to have NOT successfully installed itself?!?

Regarding some of these McAfee issues that I’ve been seeing posted within this McAfee Support Community. I am experiencing multiple issues that, in my opinion, are directly related to the McAfee Internet Security program. I’ve been very frustrated with all the difficulties these ‘glitches’ are causing my computer, preventing me from getting things accomplished in a reasonably timely manner. I joined this community so I could search for troubleshooting tips and hopefully come across some answers. And, hoped to possibly be of some help to others? Instead, while reading through some of the various posts, I began to feel helpless as I realized that there are other people dealing with similar McAfee issues, as I am experiencing. It’s quite disheartening to read some of the experiences McAfee customers have had when dealing with McAfee’s technical support. I’ve been subjected to a couple of not-so-good chat sessions with McAfee’s technical support. However, the other support chat sessions were not unpleasant, despite being unsuccessful in fixing the issues I’d initially asked for help with. The lousy chats were ‘failures’ simply because one of the support reps had an arrogant attitude and actually told me they were not interested in what the McAfee Virtual Technician log file said, nor the fact that although the McAfee Virtual Technician claimed to have found the issue and claimed a successful ‘fix’, it had not, in fact, fixed the problem. This particular support rep remotely executed a McAfee update and pronounced the problem solved, period. This rep also told me they were not interested in the symptoms that had accompanied this issue, informing me they were better than the McAfee Virtual Technician. Another McAfee support rep, again, rather than bothering to read what I had written in my request for a support chat session, (which was a description of symptoms and the procedures I’d attempted to use for troubleshooting), they simply ignored all the symptoms I’d offered and proceeded to go through ‘the list’. It didn’t seem to register with this person that I’d already performed ‘the re-start’, re-installed McAfee, not added any new hardware or software, already run the scan, done all the updates, not had any ‘virus warnings’ pop-ups, etc. I ended up being advised that I probably had a software conflict and that McAfee was definitely NOT the issue. This was despite my insistence that I’d NOT added anything to my computer, nothing had changed except the McAfee update. As for the other McAfee support reps I’ve dealt with in chat sessions, they have all sincerely tried to help.

I remember trying to get some help regarding that awful McAfee DAT file fiasco some of us suffered from, and through, a couple of years ago. At that time, trying to get someone at McAfee to hear there really was a problem was literally impossible. And, I was able to be specific about the issues my computer was having. It was awful having the McAfee reps tell me there was definitely nothing wrong with the McAfee program, that I’d done something to my computer. I lost so much work, time and sleep over that fiasco. To me, in some ways, this seems to be a repeat of that situation. This experience, plus the latest sessions I’ve had with McAfee’s technical support leave me feeling ‘left out in the cold’.

Despite what I’ve been saying in the previous paragraphs … being a support rep can’t be an easy job. I’ve helped friends and relatives fix their computers via phone, email and remotely, many times over the years … not easy when their term for a computer related problem is that  ‘thingie that spins’ or you know, that ‘thingie that plugs into it’. Another difficulty is the different names or labels used, for example ‘menu’ might mean a ‘drop down list’ to someone else, or may even mean a ‘dialogue box’. I’ve not had a lot of chat sessions with McAfee technical support. However, I’ve had enough interaction with them to suspect they may be very limited with the solutions they are allowed to offer. It appears they may have a ‘check list’ they must adhere to, which I can understand. (As most of us know, re-booting the computer, modem, router, etc. can often solve an issue.) I know the McAfee support reps can offer remote assistance, enabling them to re-install or re-set the default settings for your internet browser, or perform a manual update for McAfee, etc. That reminds me, during a McAfee technical support chat session, the rep performed a manual McAfee update on my computer (I’d given the rep permission to access my computer remotely). I was told by this McAfee rep that I must leave the McAfee automatic updater ON. This was despite my telling the rep that it was already set to automatically update and the rep was accessing my McAfee program in order to do the manual update on my computer, so could see that automatic updating was enabled! This was in the recent past and, at that time, McAfee update was not working correctly!

During a chat session with McAfee’s technical support my Internet browser was changed back to its default settings and was ‘self-repaired’ by the technical support rep who asked permission to do this via remote. And, of course, I gave my permission. Unfortunately, I lost my Dell home page on my browser and was left with the MSN home page. I can retrieve the Dell home page, but for now, I’m leaving the browser as it is. This particular support rep was quite good, had communication skills and sincerely wanted to fix the issues I was having with my computer. I didn’t have any of my computer issues resolved, but this rep really tried to fix my issues.

So far, my computer has a number of McAfee related issues listed below. I’ve included one issue that’s been recently resolved (the McAfee short-cut icon) I think-hope?

-  The CPU usage issue. This has been going on since last fall; makes it very difficult to get much accomplished.

-  The dratted McAfee Service Host error message pops up on my computer, a lot, and I faithfully try to send the error report to Microsoft each time. It doesn’t always work, though, due to that excessively high CPU usage issue that has been plaguing my computer.

-  The issue with the McAfee short-cut icon constantly re-appearing went on for quite a while. For my computer, this has finally been resolved. However, I see that this issue is still a problem for some people, unfortunately.

-  There is an issue with multiple McAfee icons randomly appearing in my computer’s system tray. This occurs fairly frequently, but randomly. It happened two days ago, there were three McAfee icons in my system tray.

-  There is an issue with McAfee appearing to simply shut down. My husband and I have both witnessed this occurring. There have been no error messages, no pop-up messages, no warning. From what I can tell, it is a random event. I’ve suggested to my husband that he just save his work, then close all programs and re-start the computer. He constantly checks to make sure McAfee is running.

-  The McAfee icon in the system tray randomly disappears. I checked to see if a McAfee update or scan might be causing this ‘disappearing icon’ issue and it doesn’t seem to be the automatic McAfee updates and or McAfee scan are the cause. I don’t know if this symptom might be related to the McAfee program closing, or if it is a separate issue.

-  There was an issue with the McAfee updates taking a VERY long time, often longer than an hour and the updates were most often not successful. I attempted manual updates a few times per day. The manual updating also took an extremely long time. This is an issue that seemed to be fixed? That is, until yesterday, and today, when both McAfee and Windows updates stopped being installed. To repeat myself again … First, there was a McAfee update, yesterday May 21, 2012, which seems to have led to the Microsoft Windows updates not installing. I then had constant notifications that there were Windows updates available, and, today May 22, 2012 the McAfee update was unsuccessful, despite showing it was downloading an update onto my computer (I watched all of this happening on my computer).

-  There is an issue with my internet connectivity. The browser keeps losing internet connection. The ‘diagnose connection’ option doesn’t work. The browser crashes, occasionally, and sometimes shuts down. As of May 22, my internet connection is even more unstable. For example, I can’t track parcels. I can access the courier’s home page, but lose my connection as soon as I attempt to access the courier’s tracking page. I’ve found this is occurring with other web sites, too.

I sure hope this has helped someone. And, as many others are, still really hoping McAfee finds out what is causing all these issues soon!



2 Replies
Reliable Contributor
Reliable Contributor
Message 2 of 3

Re: Anyone having multiple computer issues with their McAfee Internet Security program?

A long post, from which I cherry-pick the question about the Windows Updates yesterday. That was Microsoft's fault; many people on their forums were asking about that problem. I had it too. It should now be fixed, and only occurred where users had Notify/Don't Download or Download/Don't Install settings for Microsoft Automatic Updates.

There's a nice summary of it all at http://msmvps.com/blogs/bradley/default.aspx

The frequent McAfee updates are usually downloads of new DAT files. If you want to check whether a new version of one of the McAfee programs has arrived, open up Security Center, select About, and check the dates.

How can you tell a McAfee update has failed? Was there an error message?

Most of the McAfee problems you mention are, I'm afraid, still ongoing. The one that stands out is your McAfee updates taking an excessive time to download. If you have a high-speed connection most updates should be finished in a few minutes at most. You say you've run MVT once : it's pretty good at finding and fixing problems, so it doesn't hurt to run it as often as you need to. Try it again, but if all it finds is "DAT not up to date" then you can ignore that message.

The download problems might, perhaps, be to do with the firewall. As an experiment, try turning off the firewall before you do a McAfee download, and disable Netguard temporarily. Switch on the Windows firewall as a precaution. Then see how long the download takes.

As for the rest of the issues, all I can say is, everyone wants them fixed. We hope they are, and soon.

Contributor II
Message 3 of 3

Re: Anyone having multiple computer issues with their McAfee Internet Security program?

Hello Hayton!

I know... it was a looooong post! Thank you for taking the time to read it ... not an easy read ... I didn't proof-read it 'til now, oops. I was in a hurry to post it before losing my connection ... again ... *dramatic sigh, with hand to forehead*

Thank you for the link regarding the Windows updates, I've now got that issue fixed! And, talk about a coincidence, eh? I had immediately jumped to the conclusion that the McAfee update had brought on another issue. Simply because Windows update 'hijinks' occurred immediately after the McAfee update ... Most of the time, it is unusual for me to do the 'rush to judgement' thing, however ... this time? ... that'll teach me, eh?

As for the recently failed McAfee update, I was sitting at my desk and watched it fail to install. I opened up the McAfee program in order to check the progress of the update it was doing. It seemed to be loading onto my computer correctly, then it simply failed to install, without any error message. I checked and found that I stil had the DAT 6719 file. So, at least it didn't 'back up', as had happened before (quite some time ago).

The McAfee updates were taking a very long time to download. This seems to have been recently resolved, as they've been loading and installing, within minutes, for the last several days.

I have used the McAfee Virtual Technician, several times, over the last several months. Results have ranged from registry errors to DAT file not up to date. Recently, the MVT reported a registry error and a VERY out of date DAT file. These have been corrected. I mention the VERY out of date DAT file because it was seriously out of date. And, I did have the automatic updating enabled. I've not used the Virtual Technician for several days and will give it another try.

I will definitely try out your suggestion to turn off the McAfee firewall (and NetGuard). And, will use the Windows firewall as a precaution (thank you for mentioning this additional step).

Thanks again for your suggestions and for taking the time to read my book, Hayton.

Take good care of you,


Message was edited by: okanaganfan Okay, I feel like a mom who's in the doctor's office, with a child who's been projectile vomiting, dehydrated and running a 41 degree fever. And, as the doctor walks into the room, the fever breaks, the child becomes bright 'n' bushy tailed and claims to be starving. Anyway ... Shortly after posting the above, my McAfee quickly and successfully updated to the DAT 6720 file, just thought I should add this.  on 5/23/12 8:15:32 PM PDT
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