Author Topic: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?  (Read 8161 times)

Offline Autumner

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Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« on: April 28, 2015, 04:28:02 PM »
A question for the more technical of you: do you know if there's a way to prevent/block a program/process from accessing a particular system device? TIA.

Offline BenYeeHua

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2015, 10:32:24 AM »
Not sure which hardware did you means, but check did sandboxie supported the feature that you are asking or not.
And ya, some anti-virus can block it, but I am not sure which one can do what's you need. :)

I guess the best ways is just disable the hardware, and let the software running without Admin right.

Offline Autumner

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2015, 11:19:43 AM »
Thanks BenYeeHua, that's a good suggestion. I'll try it. I want to block Skype from accessing a PCI card because it crashes (tries to use it as a webcam - disabling the hardware works but is not really an option).

Offline edkiefer

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2015, 11:51:22 AM »
would this help

http://download.cnet.com/windows/webcam-lock/3260-20_4-10222404.html

I don't know why if you try to go to there home site, it just goes to google search page on my end .
I have not used above app, just did quick google on webcam blocking .

Edit: it seems it only free for 3 months use .
« Last Edit: April 29, 2015, 06:29:51 PM by edkiefer »
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Offline BenYeeHua

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2015, 12:09:01 PM »
Thanks BenYeeHua, that's a good suggestion. I'll try it. I want to block Skype from accessing a PCI card because it crashes (tries to use it as a webcam - disabling the hardware works but is not really an option).
So it was a webcam or just something like a Video Capture card?
I would said that many Anti-virus supported blocking the webcam, until you allow it to access it.

For paid AV, it is Kaspersky and Symantec.
For free AV, so far I only know that, 360安全卫士(I am not sure did 360 total security supported it or not) also supported it. :)
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Just checked more, ESET also support it.
If you are Windows 8, then try using Moderm version of Skype. ;)

Offline Autumner

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2015, 12:27:57 PM »
Thanks a lot, that seemed exactly like what I want. Visited the page and had the same Google redirect problem (feels a bit fishy, honestly). I tried with the CNET installer. It downloads it but the installation fails (not good either).

I use Outpost which doesn't have such a feature. It's a TV tuner/capture card, not a webcam at all.

Offline edkiefer

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2015, 01:02:30 PM »
Yes, I don't know. I saw people install it and say it works but i don't like the miss direct link , seems like site is blacklisted or something .
This one says they tested it and it was ok , virus-free
http://www.brothersoft.com/webcam-lock-498931.html

But be careful , many DL site add toolbars and other junk with it .

I just noticed newest OS is listed as Win7 , no 8.0 so maybe it doesn't like Win8 .
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Offline Jeremy Collake

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2015, 05:55:58 PM »
Funny, this was in my TODO folder. Nice research on what competition I'll face if I do ever offer anything like this. Not so much hide as block. I'll have to dust out DriverSpyNt code and work this some time.
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Offline Autumner

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2015, 06:03:10 AM »
Yes, looks like it's incompatible with Windows 8, tried from Brothersoft too. Also, I'm not sure if those A/V suites can block the "webcam" per application or completely disable it (which wouldn't work for me). It's also possible that they won't detect this device as a webcam at all (which would be correct anyway).

Thanks Jeremy, it'd be great if Process Lasso could do this too in the future.

Offline BenYeeHua

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2015, 11:21:36 AM »
Yup, I also not sure can they block access to PCI device or not, because most of them are saying about blocking USB, which is strange...(as it will always be USB webcam)
But ya, my AV is asking that did you want to allow the access for the webcam or not, for each application that asking access for the webcam.
This is what's it is looking like, if you wonder. :)

You may try the modern version of Skype first, if it don't crash, then you can using it when windows 10 is coming out, which supported windowed mode for Modern apps. ;)
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But ya, the real issues is still Skype detected it as webcam, did you tried to report this issues to the hardware developers?
Because I think if you are reporting to Skype(Microsoft), they will just ignore you. :P

Offline Autumner

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2015, 12:23:00 PM »
Thanks BenYeeHua, is that 360 total security? Looks like Skype modern will work because it asks for webcam permission before starting, but I hate modern apps and it also wants to merge Microsoft-Skype accounts for some reason. Nah.

Yes, hardware developers say it's Skype's fault (they are right) and Skype just ignores the issue (you are right). So I'm stuck with Skype 7.1 until I buy a webcam (at least Microsoft offers interesting solutions: having to buy hardware to solve software problems  ::)).

Offline Jeremy Collake

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2015, 02:10:41 PM »
What people don't realize is that we have a vast cyber-security infrastructure still being built, and part that has been neglected (partly due to complexity) i is per-process hardware restriction. However, it is an area I have an active interest, as a user and developer.
Software Engineer. Bitsum LLC.

Offline BenYeeHua

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2015, 10:11:23 AM »
Thanks BenYeeHua, is that 360 total security? Looks like Skype modern will work because it asks for webcam permission before starting, but I hate modern apps and it also wants to merge Microsoft-Skype accounts for some reason. Nah.

Yes, hardware developers say it's Skype's fault (they are right) and Skype just ignores the issue (you are right). So I'm stuck with Skype 7.1 until I buy a webcam (at least Microsoft offers interesting solutions: having to buy hardware to solve software problems  ::)).
Nope, it is China version, as I can remember, 360 TS don't has this feature yet.(they just use the same Engine to scan the software, but difference code for other feature.)

And ya, for modern, it is just like Google Play Store, it need your account to install apps.
Of cause you can just side-load the software by using PowerShell, but it is a very boring ways to install and update the Modern apps.....(and that is why in China, most Android software provide their own update system too)

So Skype will just access the wrong webcam, even you has set it to the correct webcam?
For the software in the picture(QQ if you wonder), it is accessing the webcam only if you choose it as your webcam, and of cause you can disable it by choosing "No webcam". :)

What people don't realize is that we have a vast cyber-security infrastructure still being built, and part that has been neglected (partly due to complexity) i is per-process hardware restriction. However, it is an area I have an active interest, as a user and developer.
Yup, so far only Android can do that, but you need to root(or just using Android vulnerability to get the root permission) for letting the apps to manage the access/permission too.

Offline Autumner

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #13 on: May 01, 2015, 01:25:18 PM »
So Skype will just access the wrong webcam, even you has set it to the correct webcam?

No, if there's a webcam it selects it and works fine. The problem is when there's no camera. It will just default to the TV card and boom, crash instantly. No time to deselect anything and even if there was, it would be impossible. That's the only 'camera' it sees. There is no "don't use a webcam" option anyway. If I disable the hardware it works ("no webcam available"). If I re-enable it while Skype is open, it'll crash immediately. Earlier Skype versions default to the TV card too, but won't crash.

Offline BenYeeHua

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2015, 05:25:40 PM »
No, if there's a webcam it selects it and works fine. The problem is when there's no camera. It will just default to the TV card and boom, crash instantly. No time to deselect anything and even if there was, it would be impossible. That's the only 'camera' it sees. There is no "don't use a webcam" option anyway. If I disable the hardware it works ("no webcam available"). If I re-enable it while Skype is open, it'll crash immediately. Earlier Skype versions default to the TV card too, but won't crash.
Yup, even Adobe Flash Player don't provide "Disable", so it should be normal to see Skype don't provide this private feature too.

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And lol, I think I just know another workaround for this issues, you can just install a virtual webcam to fix this, and then choose it as the webcam. ;)
But I guess the issues is how to find a virtual webcam that works without downloading a malware first... :P

Offline Autumner

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2015, 09:50:49 AM »
Interesting. Didn't know it's a default malware business though. Searched a bit and they are all fishy indeed. If you run into sth. legit please let me know! Oh well, fingers crossed for Skype 7.5 but not holding my breath.

Offline Jeremy Collake

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2015, 10:31:33 AM »
Well, Microsoft (who owns Skype, of course), has gotten a lot better recently, so maybe hold out a *little* hope.
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Offline BenYeeHua

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Re: Is there a way to hide hardware from a process?
« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2015, 01:53:49 PM »
Well, Microsoft (who owns Skype, of course), has gotten a lot better recently, so maybe hold out a *little* hope.
Yup, at least they are providing update via Windows Update now, even I don't has Skype installed...
Based on the Update, they are checking the registry, if the value is there, then they will just provide the update.

And I still wonder why the registry is there, I wonder did it is caused by the Skype for Business(from Office 2013, replaced the Lync) or not...