Q: My CyberPatrol Internet filtering software has gone haywire.
Out of the blue, CyberPatrol isn't working and I am receiving pop-up window messages such as "CyberPatrol has detected tampering with the initialization files, Internet access is disabled by CyberPatrol" and "unable to access headquarters," which is the only place in the CyberPatrol screen display where you can change or uninstall CyberPatrol.
I've already checked to see if a virus or worm has corrupted CyberPatrol, and I can find no evidence of this.
My question is how do I rehabilitate CyberPatrol or uninstall it if it won't allow me to get to the place where you can change/check settings or uninstall the program?
Any help you could afford me would be greatly appreciated.
-- John Zfirstname.lastname@example.org
A: Wow, what a web we weave when the robots decide that we are trying to deceive, eh, Mr. Z?
I found your answer by wading through the technical support postings on the CyberPatrol Web site.
You are going to need to fish out the original software -- either downloaded or on a CD -- that you used to install this nuclear-powered Internet decency-enforcement software. Then you need to reinstall the software in order to override the robotic feature called Internet Disable.
I mention robots because CyberPatrol pretty much violates the Rules of Robotics as drafted by Isaac Asimov in the novel "I, Robot," by attacking humans who try to protect themselves from robotic damage.
CyberPatrol is supposed to run in the background and filter out smut, obscenity, and all kinds of other stuff in serious ways that a talented 8th grader cannot defeat.
It's viewed as a godsend by many parents fearful of damage to their children by the cesspool side of the Internet. It accomplishes this by going, as you say, haywire, when it detects that somebody like a computer-savvy kid is trying to tamper with any part of it.
So when you tried to fix things you activated a nasty module that is supposed to completely disable all Internet access from the machine.
Mighty stern stuff in this reviewer's opinion, but badly needed in the view of many parents.
The fix is to go ahead and repeat the process of installing the software, which will restore the missing files that trigger its suicide response.
While installing it you will be asked for your original administrator password. The idea is that if parents don't tell the kids the password then it's OK to let the parent do an uninstallation.
When you provide the code on a machine like yours with the software already in place, a box comes up with an uninstall command.
Here's a link to CyberPatrol's uninstall instructions: