My next test was to see if the Tor software included on with the StealthSurfer software bundle actually would mask my true IP address. I will not provide a screen shot of my true IP address, as I don’t need the world seeing this, but take my word that when I checked my IP address in the host environment, it was not the same IP address when I checked in the SteathSurfer environment.
In the StealthSurfer environment with Tor software running using the Firefox browser, the IP address was 126.96.36.199 which gives an IP location of Beijing China. Trust me, I have never been to Beijing China and I do not live in Beijing China! This was enough evidence to me that the Tor Software on the StealthSurfer was doing the job.
In the way of super secret email, I’m not really interested in creating yet another web based email account or using some other email software. Hushmail and Thunderbird software packages are included in the StealthSurfer bundles and are there if you want to encrypt your email and create yet another email address.
Google’s Gmail is accessible anywhere in the world and is now offering something crazy like 4GB of storage space and growing. Why would you want another email that has less storage and one where you have to start paying after 4 years? I guess if you really really wanted to be completely stealth, then having the top secret email would complete the loop.
The other software that is included as a free download for purchasing the StealthSurfer is RoboForm Pro. RoboForm Pro is software that can manage all your passwords and user names for various websites and forms. My view on passwords and personal information is they should never be all written down in one place; especially the really important ones like your banking information. People need to remember the important ones, and for those not so important ones, like passwords to your favourite discussion forum, then maybe RoboForm would be ideal. If you want to use Roboform, you will always have to carry the StealthSurfer software with you everywhere you go. What happens if you lose it or it lands into the hands of someone that like to hack into things? Manually putting in your passwords and users names each time will keep your brain sharp.
The StealthSurfer does what it says it does. It works, but I feel there are some clear drawbacks and disadvantages to this product.
For starters, the StealthSurfer/MojoPac will only work with specific versions of Windows XP. This severely limits its portability in the wild. This is no problem if you are using your own computer, but what happens if you are traveling or using a public computer? There are lots of Vista machines out there now and what about the Mac and Linux machines out there?
Most public computers like the ones at Internet Cafés or libraries are not logged on as administrators, which is a requirement for this software to work. This is true of computers in most work places as well. At home this would be no problem and a non issue since its your PC, however, if you have multiple people in your family using your home computer and you don’t want them snooping around, the Stealthsurfer might help out there.
MojoPac claims there is a way around the “administrator access” requirement (sort of) with a plug in called MojoPac Usher. Once MojoPac Usher is installed on a host computer, it doesn’t matter if the host computer is logged on as an administrator. The catch? You need one time administrator access to install MojoPac Usher! Good luck with that!
Finally, for a price of $179 for the 2GB StealthSurfer, the StealthSurfer is a bit expensive. We all know that memory is cheap these days and a 2GB Flash Drive is less than $30 for a brand name 2GB Flash Drive. You have to remember that you are purchasing both hardware and software and not just a USB 2.0 Flash Drive.
If you were to purchase all these components separately you are looking at approximately $208. Here’s a breakdown:
- Hushmail Premium + desktop access (*2 years, MSRP $99.98)
- Roboform PRO (MSRP $29.95)
- MojoPac Deluxe (MSRP $49.99)
- Rally 2 USB drive – 2GB (MSRP $28.00)
In the end, you do save about $29.00 when you pay the $179.00 retail price.
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