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What is Google installer, and why is it trying to access the Internet?

21 November 2009

I just reinstalled Zonealarm on all our computers. After paying for more bandwidth, we ran out in a day. Either some malware us using one or more of our computers for spam, or Telkom’s meters need need recalibrating. No way are we uploading 50 to 70 Megabytes a DAY!

So I reinstalled ZoneAlarm from scratch, not as an update, which means revoking all previous permissions. And then I get lots of messages saying “Google installer is trying to access the Internet”.

Well, I ask SmartAdvisor for advice, and it says:

  1. If you do not know what Google Installer is, or why it is trying to connect, deny it permission. You can always grant permission later if you need to.
  2. After you deny permission, determine whether Google Installer still performs the functions you need it to. If it does, no further action is required. If it doesn’t, use the Programs tab to grant access permission.

Right, well I don’t know what it is, or why it needs to access the Internet every ten minutes, so I’m denying it permission. Maybe it has been responsible for thase massive uploads.

And then I see these advertisements — get R1500 off your new laptop if you sign a contact for 250 Mb of Internet access each month for two years. 250 Mb? Are they joking? That’s about one day’s Internet access nowadays. And if you work out the cost it’s about 80c a megabyte. Telkom charges about 7c a megabyte, and I can’t afford that at the rate they bill me for it.

18 Comments leave one →
  1. 21 November 2009 6:16 pm

    Google Installer is a program that Google uses to install a number of programs and to enable easy updating. It’s not malware or anything dodgy and only downloads and installs programs if you tell it to.

    Likely you’ve installed a google prog in the past and this has been installed with it.

  2. 18 January 2010 5:47 am

    I DISagree with Chris’ post (sory Chris)…

    I had the same thing come up after installing ZoneAlarm. If you Google googleinstaller, you will see it is malware… here is a link that I found helpful

    Download all the recommended software (which should all be free) and run the scans.

    Hope this helps

    Wayne Clayton

    • 19 January 2010 10:42 am

      How do you know that the “recommended software” is not itself malware?

  3. Eazy permalink
    7 February 2010 2:51 am

    Thing is, this is not mall-ware as such, but i do not accept ANY software to connect the internet without my explicit approval. It is just another marketing information tool of Google. Updating once a day should be quite sufficient, Google is abusing its reputation here! They should realize that a reputation is damaged faster then it is build…. For this reason and this reason alone Google Chrome is not my primary browser.

  4. Judy Shepherd permalink
    9 February 2010 11:03 am

    Just found a way to stop this from happening constantly …thought you might be interested

    Click Start > Control Panel > Administrative Tools
    Double click Services to access the Services management console window
    Scroll to find the Google Updater Service
    Right click the service and choose Properties from the drop down menu
    Next to Startup Type choose the dropdown list for Disabled

    Hope this is useful

    • 11 March 2010 6:42 pm

      Very smart approach and good help Judy. Thank you. Following part of your instructions. I set Google Updater to “manual” and am now wondering how I initiate the process when I want it to run. Any insight???

      • 19 March 2010 7:36 pm

        it seems like the way to initiate google updater would to manually suggest that a google product on your computer update itself…

      • Bob permalink
        21 April 2010 1:47 am

        Maybe create a shortcut to googleupdater.exe and put it somewhere easy to access?

        • 21 April 2010 6:36 am

          Or do a search for it and delete it, at least until I know what it is doing and how much of my bandwidth it is using.

    • ewqqqq permalink
      21 February 2013 2:19 pm

      thank you !

    • Reth Molloy permalink
      16 October 2014 8:59 pm

      Thanks a lot for that!

  5. 12 August 2010 1:41 pm

    is it esential?

    • 12 August 2010 6:54 pm

      If I knew the answer to that I wouldn’t be asking what it is, would I?

  6. 4 October 2010 6:05 pm

    You can keep the Google Updater ( Google Installer) from “calling home” very easily. Just open up Task Scheduler (under Programs – Accessories – System Tools) and disable either the second instance (it’s the one that repeats the attempt every hour) or both of them. You can also edit them and tell it to check once a week or as often or little as you would like.

  7. Graham permalink
    4 January 2011 8:50 am

    Wow, a response from Google! Don’t you feel privileged?! 😉

  8. 5 April 2013 9:48 pm

    You can not be sure that was from Google Administartion. Besides I looked into his instruction, and the google updater that is bothering me is not listed in in PC at all. Not do I find any “google Updater” application on my PC. I guess it is some Malware after all and I will treat it as such intil better info appears…..

    • 6 April 2013 4:34 am

      It was a message that I used to get from Zone Alarm firewall when I had it on my computer. It kept popping up and it was very annoying.

  9. winXPuser permalink
    2 September 2015 5:04 pm

    Had exactly same annoying problem. Everything the user “Google Administration” said is correct. I now have a shedule for the update, that wont annoy me at all.
    Thanks Google Administration

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