Crawler(dot)com toolbar

Downloaded and tested the search toolbar, which allows users to search multiple search engines at once.

Test run Aug 25th, 2005, clean Win XP Home, no patches, not activated, no drivers except automatically-installed items from the Windows installation. Items listed as detected by HijackThis.

Installing the Crawler toolbar added these items to the system settings:
Running processes:
C:\Program Files\Crawler\CToolbar.exe

R1 – HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Search Bar =
R0 – HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Start Page =
R1 – HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,SearchAssistant =
R1 – HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,CustomizeSearch = res://C:\PROGRA~1\Crawler\ctbr.dll/sa
R0 – HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,SearchAssistant =
R0 – HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,CustomizeSearch = res://C:\PROGRA~1\Crawler\ctbr.dll/sa
R0 – HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar,LinksFolderName =
R3 – URLSearchHook: (no name) – {1CB20BF0-BBAE-40A7-93F4-6435FF3D0411} – C:\PROGRA~1\Crawler\ctbr.dll
O2 – BHO: (no name) – {1CB20BF0-BBAE-40A7-93F4-6435FF3D0411} – C:\PROGRA~1\Crawler\ctbr.dll
O3 – Toolbar: &Crawler Toolbar – {4B3803EA-5230-4DC3-A7FC-33638F3D3542} – C:\PROGRA~1\Crawler\ctbr.dll
O8 – Extra context menu item: Crawler Search – tbr:iemenu
O18 – Protocol: tbr – {4D25FB7A-8902-4291-960E-9ADA051CFBBF} – C:\PROGRA~1\Crawler\ctbr.dll

When Internet Explorer is NOT running, CToolbar continues to run, and it autoplays with the system.

Uninstall results–this item not removed–it’s the IE home page:
R0 – HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Start Page =

Overall: The main executable runs when it shouldn’t, for no stated purpose. Uninstall doesn’t restore home page but does restore all other settings. Search results from toolbar show pay-for-display ads first, clearly labeled, before showing true search results which may or may not be on the first page of results.

Summary: I wouldn’t automatically delete this one if the user finds it helpful–doesn’t appear to do anything disruptive. The publisher should fix the way it runs ctoolbar, so that it starts with IE, and doesn’t run all the time.