Product Revew–Hotbar

Test run July 21, 2005, default settings on clean install of Windows XP Home, OEM edition. Unpatched, no service packs, antivirus, or blocking software. Hardware firewall was the only security in place.

Version tested: Listed in folder names as
‘Click here’ on main Hotbar page gave no option, but started the “Take control of email” installation, despite listing several other products.

Redirects searches to

Summary: A kinder, gentler product than the last time I looked at Hotbar, circa 2003. Still doesn’t do anything useful, but no longer appears to take over the system.

Recommendation, Business systems: Remove. Serves no business purpose.

Recommendation, Personal systems: Remove. Redirects web searches.


First license I’ve seen that regulates emotional content–‘desire’ is apparently now a legal term:

“(b) You shall receive, and desire to so receive, various products/services, marketing ads, and campaigns of third parties through the appearance of links, menus, pop-ups, and other methods on and/or in connection with the Service and the Software (all of the foregoing “Third Party Promotions”).”


End of first installation caused spontaneous reboot, followed by standard Windows file check of drives. Corrupted file c:\windows\system32\config\software.log. On a second reboot, no Hotbar product appeared to have been installed, although one new entry showed up in HijackThis:

Added to running files:
C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\WeatherOnTray.exe
C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\HbOEAddOn.exe
C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\HbSrv.exe

System settings changes, according to HijackThis:

R0 – HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,SearchAssistant =

O2 – BHO: ShprRprts – {2A8A997F-BB9F-48F6-AA2B-2762D50F9289} – C:\Program Files\ShopperReports\Bin\\ShprRprt.dll

O2 – BHO: Hotbar – {B195B3B3-8A05-11D3-97A4-0004ACA6948E} – C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\HbHostIE.dll

O3 – Toolbar: Hotbar – {B195B3B3-8A05-11D3-97A4-0004ACA6948E} – C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\HbHostIE.dll

O4 – HKLM\..\Run: [WeatherOnTray] C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\WeatherOnTray.exe

O4 – HKLM\..\Run: [Hotbar] C:\Program Files\Hotbar\Bin\\HbOEAddOn.exe

O4 – HKLM\..\Run: [wzalvupo] C:\WINDOWS\System32\bkteqtfq.exe

O9 – Extra button: ShopperReports – Compare travel rates – {946B3E9E-E21A-49c8-9F63-900533FAFE14} – C:\Program Files\ShopperReports\Bin\\ShprRprt.dll

O9 – Extra button: ShopperReports – Compare product prices – {E77EDA01-3C56-4a96-8D08-02B42891C169} – C:\Program Files\ShopperReports\Bin\\ShprRprt.dll

O16 – DPF: {69FD62B1-0216-4C31-8D55-840ED86B7C8F} (HbInstObj) –


Misleading: Separate uninstalls for Hotbar Outlook Tools, Hotbar Web Tools, and Shopper Reports by Hotbar, resulting from one install program of Outlook Tools. Each of these ended the install process with a visit to a web page asking for feedback on the uninstallation. Reboot was required after the last of the uninstalls.

Left behind two empty readonly folders in c:\Program Files, for Hotbar and ShopperReports.

These settings were left behind:
O16 – DPF: {69FD62B1-0216-4C31-8D55-840ED86B7C8F} (HbInstObj) –

No shortcuts were left behind.