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Megalo = VIRUS!

51 posts in this topic

We've had yet another instance of well-meaning users downloading and installing the 'Megalo' plugin pack.  That's where their problems begin.

I know it sounds great to get all* the plugins in one go. But it isn't. It's a disaster. For YOU and for your PC!

You see, the accursed Megalo pack illegally bundles and redistributes plugins without permission.  This is SOFTWARE PIRACY!  It's ILLEGAL.  Then of course there's the VIRUS.  That's right, you get the EVOGEN virus absolutely free with all those outdated plugins.  That is the motivation these thieves have for creating this abomination.

 

If you have installed this nasty bit of slime, please DO consider your PC infected. 

 

You should remove ALL traces of the download and ALL the plugins it installed.  Then SCAN, CLEAN and SCAN again using the latest virus scanner you can lay your hands on.

 

If you want plugins - get them from this forum or from links posted here by the plugin author.  NEVER install a plugin from anywhere else.

 

 

 

Here's a little sampling of what our esteemed forum users have had to say about the Megalo pack....

 

DeathTBO has informed me that he's gotten the PSDPlugin to work.  The circumstantial evidence certainly seems to point to Megalo as the culprit ...

  

Bad idea. Very bad idea. There be dragons there.

And by dragons I mean you'll probably get a virus. And, they're redistributing all of those plugins without permission from the plugin authors. It's pretty disgusting.

The megalo pack is illegal. Get your plugins from this forum.

There's your problem right there. ONLY download effects from this web site.

That plugin pack is an unauthorized compilation of (probably outdated versions of) plugins from this forum. Whether or not it is virus infected, you still need to delete the plugins and download the most recent versions from here.

You should also run a full antivirus scan. There's no telling what that plugin pack had lurking in it.

The 'megalo' pack is a collection of stolen plugins and contains malware. The plugins are also mostly out of date. It is only safe to download plugins from this site or sites linked to by the plugin's author. If you had it before that's probably why you needed your computer repaired - there is no safe 'megalo' pack!

- Safe, original and up-to-date versions of the plugins can all be found on this site, via the plug-in index.

Please take the time and think about it. What could be the motivation to provide something for free on a dedicated page without any reference?

The only law breaker is the individuals who are packing the plugins into an all in one pack, (you just got drawn into a quick download solution) most will be obsolete versions and as already mentioned, have most likely got spyware and/or viruses, it has been mentioned also that the only safe place to get plugins for paint.net is on this forum. I hope you have learned from this mistake. It may take a while to download all the plugins that you require from here, but at least you know they are up to date and most importantly - clean. :)

Hmm... Avast never detected anything in the paint.net directory but it detected the megalo effects setup as a virus. Evogen to be exact.

Other users need to be warned. You can see now why we take such a dim view of that website and plugin pack.

Do NOT download the plugin pack you mentioned.

It is illegal and rips off the hard work of the plugin authors :(. It also contains many out of date plugins which simply don't work with the latest release of Paint.Net :/.

Do yourself a favour and download the plugins you need from this forum.

I recently installed some "Megalo's Plugin Pack" and it just kept crashing my paint.NET....

I have never seen a link to a "megalo pack" on this forum ever !

Like I say this forum is the only safe place to download plug-ins. Never get plug-in packs from outside sources, they are illegal and may contain spyware or viruses.

The Megalo pack is software piracy. They illegally bundle both new and old plugins AGAINST the express wishes of the plugin authors. Of course they are not doing this for the welfare of the Paint.NET community.

You have found the reason why we delete all references to that particular plugin pack. You never know what you're going to get installed along with the plugins they bundle.

Your best bet from here is to first safeguard your system. Assume you have installed both viruses and malware. Scan. Clean. Scan again. I recommend installing and using Microsoft Security Essentials and while you're at it enable your firewall and check it's settings carefully.

Once you have your system secure and clean - then you have a safe environment to reinstall Paint.NET.

 

... the only safe place to download plugins is this forum, or from links posted here by plugin authors. Even then, you should scan downloaded files before you do anything else with them.

The Megalo pack is an illegal theft of many plugins on this site. I definitely recommend removing it.

We've had problems with users installing that pack for ever. You're doing the right thing by removing it completely and starting over.

Megalo pack is illegal software piracy and contains the Evogen virus. You need to remove ALL of it and fix you infected system. Then replace the plugins with new versions downloaded from this forum.

 

* You don't get "all" the plugins anyway.  Most of the latest plugins are yet to be defiled by these software thieves.

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Pinned for great justice.

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Thanks for the pin David. I'm hoping a little warning might help a few users out before they get into trouble.

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It was definitely a great idea to pin this thread. I saw it while looking up PDN tutorials on YouTube, and was already suspicious.

 

The name itself, Megalo, to me seems like what someone might name a shady, illegal site to download pirated content. Anyone else agree?

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I really wonder why this site is still online then, if it is illegal. Is there no way to take this site down? Many people will spread this site everywhere. On Twitter, Facebook etc. Happened to me as well. Fortunately I only downloaded the zip-file.

 

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It has been tried, to no avail.

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Ok. Thank you. I am spreading warnings about the site now on Twitter. And I tell people to download plugins only using the official forum.

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Thanks!

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Hummm...why not create a Paint.NET plugin-framework, where Paint.NET. from within the application displays a list of plugins that are submitted by 3:ed parties.

 

The plugins could be uploaded and registered on the "Paint-NET official plugin page".

After that the community will rate and grade the plugin and and the uploader/creator of the plugin will gain reputation based on number of downloads, complaints, feedback, gradings and so on.  So if he did a good job with version 1 of a plugin, then he will start with a high reputation for the second version or if he makes a completely different plugin.

 

Also, one could use Total Virus and their API to submit any plugin uploaded and let them evaluate it for any virus...you could keep uploading it for a couple of days since not all virus engines they use get daily updates and if it is a new virus in the plugin it might take some time for it to get detected by the different virus-detection-engines.

 

https://www.virustotal.com/en/documentation/public-api/

 

 

Doing something like this will have many benefits since it will be more easy and accesseble to non-techical persons to install a plugin, as well as easier for those who develop the plugins to get reach with their effort.

Perhaps there should even be a possibility for commercial plugins??  as long as they are optional and doesn't interfere in any other way it might be a good way to get even more functionality into the software....just make sure the plugin-API is stable before you do something like that.

 

/NUN

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A plugin manager is a highly-desired feature, yes.

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... why not ...

Features like that don't come out of thin air and take quite a bit of time to develop, test, and debug. Other things just came first.

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hummm....perhaps the way to go is to introduce an extension framework in the app where you could get help developing different modules of the application.

Perhaps making part of the application open source?  Perhaps the gui could be broken of from the core graphic engine and handled as separate entities?  then it would be possible for the community to work on utility features, gui things and that stuff, when the core is still maintained as today?

 

Or just make it all open source and just let people submit features and modification via you so you still have control over what goes into the source.

 

/NUN

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Sorry to hear that TechyButterflies :(  We do try to warn people.  Unfortunately the damage is usually done by the time the User starts asking questions on the forum.

 

I hope the removal is not too much of a problem.

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TechyButterflies, I think an easier way to get rid off the infection is to do System Restore. This would hopefully revert the system back to a date before it was infected, although if no restore points are available, you will have to do the tricky virus removal procedures though I'm afraid.

 

http://www.wikihow.com/Do-a-System-Restore

 

After a system restore operation, you must delete the Megalo package that has infected the computer by highlighting its files and pressing Shift+Del to delete them permanently.

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 It was not a problem! Nothing was found! And YAY my grandpa isn't mad!! Thank god because no signs of the plugin in paint.net, so I assumed I've installed it incorrectly.

Edited by TechyButterflies
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Well, I had no idea about this.

 

Come on, seriously? I've seen adobe have mass plug-ins officially, so why not paint.net?

 

True, you can't redistribute most plugins without authorization, but how does a user know about it before it's downloaded?

 

For Paint.net, it's one of the first things that comes up on the search! So the new and unexperienced user is BOUND to download it.

 

By the way, I found these plug-ins useful, and never got a virus from it. So I don't know where your virus is leaking at.

 

Right now, I'm using a pc without the plugins, due to a new nanovirus that has infected my PC down to the very hardware itself. The virus litterely turned my gaming pc to charcoal. So, I'm on my crummy laptop with the newest version of non-plugined Paint.net, which, unfortionately, doesn't serve it's purpose or it's reputation.

 

What I'm trying to get at is this: Most users of paint.net have the megalo plugins and say it works wonders and is the best paint program ever due to ease of use.

 

I thought that too.

 

Now, I'm having to dig through the entire blinkin website to find every little plug-in to feed my needs and heart's content, or at least, every plugin I used previously.

 

But some... just don't work like they did in the Megalo plugins. Megalo used the flawless versions of the plugins. Now, I'm downloading crappy versions that don't work anymore, plus, it's a long time till I get every one of those plug ins.

 

One more thing I might mention. Whoever developed Megalo Plugins had a bright idea, and worked it out pretty good until you decided to update Paint.net and make them deprecated towards their installation paths. To make matters worse, you even made the program look different. It took me weeks to figure out what was where and why it was doing that, amoungst the loss of many program settings and such.

 

I am hardpressed to say that this simplified version of paint.net is not what I once apprieciated and loved. I might as well go to gimp than deal with the likes of you. But I cannot escape the fact that gimp has it's own problems.

 

Please don't delete this. This is a tribute for all who can see an upset user over paint.net, and everyone should see this and second guess "Is this the program I'm looking for?"

 

Cause I'm new, I won't get any views at my journal, even if I hanged around long enough. I'm simply nobody in the online world, whether it be facebook, twitter, myspace, linkedin, whatever. I have no significance, so where am I to warn others? I have the right to say what I want to say, and people should let it be and not be so judgemental or discourteous. I've seen many bogus websites do this only to make themselves look better.

 

So, that's the end of my complaints and rants. Now on to asking questions.

 

Don't get me wrong, Paint.net is a wonderful free tool to use. But changes have been made, and I hope you find the time for us users to fix them, and not just for yourselves.

 

As for Megalo Plugins, I agree... don't download them. I will reinforce the matter here: It's downright immoral piracy and theft!

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Come on, seriously? I've seen adobe have mass plug-ins officially, so why not paint.net?

Because they are not ours to redistribute and we are not Adobe.

 

What I'm trying to get at is this: Most users of paint.net have the megalo plugins and say it works wonders ...

Not so. We've had enough users front up here BECAUSE this pack doesn't work. It is even worse now paint.net 4.0 is out because the virus-sharing pirates are still giving the old versions of the plugins. And many simply don't work.

 

I wrote this thread to help users, and try to warn them against the Megalo pack.  We've done all we can.

 

Megalo used the flawless versions of the plugins.

Incorrect. I can say this because they are redistributing some of my own work. They are simply redistributing very old stuff which used to work.

 

Please don't delete this.

On this forum we encourage discussion. We are not overbearing ogres who squash dissenting voices. Your points are not going to be deleted. Corrected - yes, but not deleted.

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One more thing I might mention. Whoever developed Megalo Plugins had a bright idea, and worked it out pretty good until you decided to update Paint.net and make them deprecated towards their installation paths. To make matters worse, you even made the program look different. It took me weeks to figure out what was where and why it was doing that, amoungst the loss of many program settings and such.

In general, programmers don't change things if there's no reason to. Updates generally broke plugins because the plugins relied on things that needed to change.

The visual update moved very little around, and the changes were recorded in the update logs on the forum here. There's no reason for it to take that long to figure out where things went... Besides, a simple question posted on the forum would have gotten your answer on fairly short notice. That's what we're here for!

As for the plugins in Megalo working better than the ones on the forum, I would like to point out that the plugins in the Megalo pack can only be either up-to-date or out-of-date. The only way for it to work better is if you are using an older version of Paint.net with outdated plugins.

By the way, the Megalo website was updated recently (around Sept. 8 this year). Has anyone done a check since then to see if the pack is still infected?

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Yes, the pack is still infected (Used sandbox to check)

 

I have removed megalo plugins by doing a system restore. Luckly, whatever was going on wrong with megalo never happened to me, and still, after the restore, nothing mal appeared for me.

Edited by gondracorn
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Just for the sake of the argument, leaving the virus issue aside, it may seem appealing to get all the plug-ins in one go. And for experienced and ambitious users it might be, always if it weren’t for the virus. But the ordinary user relies much on Paint.NET’s simplicity and friendly, uncluttered interface. Suddenly facing all that lot of puzzling effects and having to navigate thru them would be daunting, off-putting and confusing. Gone is the appeal of this simple yet powerful tool, the purpose has been defeated.

 

In my opinion, it would be more productive to start with the basic set of plug-ins and install more one at a time ad hoc, that is as the need for a special effect arises and after the user has given thought to it. He’d then be much more motivated to read and learn the proper use of the plug-in. It’s a classic case of adopting the logistically correct learning process, as we were taught at school.

 

Personally, though I’ve been using Paint.NET for some time now, I haven’t installed more plug-ins than I have needed, nor do I intend to.

 

And a relevant question. Wouldn’t installing a large number of plug-ins slow down the opening of Paint.NET, since it has to load them?

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