Asus Armory Crate, what I believe & Feel to be the Truth!

LaCuNa

Weaksauce
Joined
Jun 3, 2014
Messages
122
Okay, so Armoury Crate is an application that is preinstalled by default on Asus laptops. This software has the ability to directly monitor and control hardware components in your laptop, because it is connected to them on a deep & direct level, also it is connected to the BIOS because it has the ability to directly update/change bios settings. Asus knows that the majority of people that buy their laptops are not computer literate. Therefore, they know that they can let armoury crate(and other "similar" programs) function in a way that is ultimately of benefit to themselves or other parties in which they have a mutually "beneficial" relationship, and not functioning in the best interest of the customer or owner of the laptop that paid money for it!

After noticing weird glitches on my gaming laptop, I decided to disable all of the Asus programs and services I could, at least the ones which were visible to me. And, what I noticed was a tremendous increase in the performance of my laptop and much more cooler temps. I'm talking noticeable decrease in CPU & GPU usage. My laptop is an i9 12900h & 3080ti.

I am very well versed in computers, because I have a Computer Science degree, and know how to program. I am also a computer hardware lover and have been building & tweaking my computers since I was like 9 years old.

What most people believe and don't realize, is that in this day and age, glitchy software and bugs simply is not a common thing that should be happening as often as it does. Infact, I can easily tell you in a heart beat that most of the glitches, bugs and errors are simply being done on purpose, because most users simply can't prove it, let alone recognize it or contemplate about it and use logical reasoning.

There was this specific update that armoury crate wanted to install yesterday, it was called throttlegear merge module 5.1.8.0 . It wanted to install this update like 2 hours after my laptop started Current/EDP Limit Throttling all the time. I believe that I was basically doing something on my laptop that they deem problematic. I had an MSI laptop and the exact same thing happened, the difference was that I installed all the updates when my gut feeling was telling me not to. In the end it didn't matter how many times I tried to reset windows, the hard drive and BIOS was infected and basically unrecoverable. It was compromised and I had to sell it. I tried searching for information regarding the throttle gear merge update and only found a few posts. In those posts people said that the performance of their machines was getting capped! I think there's more to it than just performace capping. So after that I decided to contact Asus customer support and ask them what this throttle gear merge update is. The video attached to this post is me talking to a CS rep, she/he or it told me that the update helps with gaming performance LOL 😂. They also told me that there is very little information about it. The reason why there is very little information about it, is because it isn't a common thing. Basically they will screw you if they wish. Beware. This isn't limited to just Asus either, as I have said, it happened with my MSI laptop too with the MSI software. I'm pretty sure all the vendors are the same.


 

cdabc123

2[H]4U
Joined
Jun 21, 2016
Messages
3,863
If you truly believe that is happening go grab some interesting hardware build a desktop, and avoid the oem venders.

Take a look at the talos 2 workstation. Go by a old server or stick with enterprise equipment. With those at least you know bugs and performance issues are truly unacceptable.

Also no windows. If you are trying to run a gaming rig with various drm infected games you are already at mercy to the dozens of entities that have compromising access on your device.
 

LaCuNa

Weaksauce
Joined
Jun 3, 2014
Messages
122
If you truly believe that is happening go grab some interesting hardware build a desktop, and avoid the oem venders.

Take a look at the talos 2 workstation. Go by a old server or stick with enterprise equipment. With those at least you know bugs and performance issues are truly unacceptable.

Also no windows. If you are trying to run a gaming rig with various drm infected games you are already at mercy to the dozens of entities that have compromising access on your device.

All I'm going to say is, asus crate is garbage.


I actually got some responses, wow wasn't expecting that! I respect you both for coming out of the dark and admitting what you guys know and feel.

So, the problem I see with this laptop is basically the following:

•The serial number/hardware ID is basically flagged by Microsoft and Asus, I'm positive of this. Probably other companies too but these 2 are the biggest hurdles/problems stopping me from being able to completely format(not reset, but complete wipe) the laptop and freshly install windows. The same shit will just happen all over again unless there was some way to like hexedit the serial numbers and ID of the hardware component(s) 🤔. Lol, I have no idea if such a thing is possible these days anymore...UEFI bios seems like a bitch to crack and I imagine most things are locked down and simply can't be edited because they are probably signed with encryption and also protected with some special type of dedicated hardware.

•Functionality will partially be lost anyways without that Asus bloatware. The RGB keyboard and led strip have already stopped working. However, I can still load up games and play on steam there's no difference in that regard. TBH, everything else is working so far. I can live without the RGB.

•Ultimately I also am a gamer and no other O/S will suffice.

• I've since disconnected the internet and left it that way. Earlier on though I wanted to test something out, so briefly I plugged the internet back in, and guess what? Lo and behold Windows Update pops up within seconds wanting to install 3 different things. I search for what they are and basically, realize the general consensus about them is NOT good. Shit this feels like a ticking timebomb and I seriously do not want what happened to my MSI laptop to happen to this one. I just don't want to sell it, because it'll mean I lose money. I'm going to keep it offline as much as I can making sure it's basically sitting at idle performance until I can maybe find somebody, heck anybody that can maybe steer me in some kind of direction that is of some benefit. Fingers crossed 🤞🏽

Where are those Russian hackers when you need em' huh? I've heard over the years that they are so frickin good it's basically like practicing Vodoo Magick on a computer.

If anybody reads this and has any type of additional advice, don't hesitate because it is truly welcome here. I tried posting on Reddit, but I got blocked. I tried posting on Tom's hardware with the video attached, and it got blocked because of the video. Hardforum is without a doubt  Hard. It's like the last bastion where free speech can persist without being censored before posting. Now, whether the Admins & Mods here are trigger-happy with the bans is another story 💜. I'm trying to keep my chin up and be as positive as possible about this ATM.
 

cdabc123

2[H]4U
Joined
Jun 21, 2016
Messages
3,863
I actually got some responses, wow wasn't expecting that! I respect you both for coming out of the dark and admitting what you guys know and feel.

So, the problem I see with this laptop is basically the following:

•The serial number/hardware ID is basically flagged by Microsoft and Asus, I'm positive of this. Probably other companies too but these 2 are the biggest hurdles/problems stopping me from being able to completely format(not reset, but complete wipe) the laptop and freshly install windows. The same shit will just happen all over again unless there was some way to like hexedit the serial numbers and ID of the hardware component(s) 🤔. Lol, I have no idea if such a thing is possible these days anymore...UEFI bios seems like a bitch to crack and I imagine most things are locked down and simply can't be edited because they are probably signed with encryption and also protected with some special type of dedicated hardware.

•Functionality will partially be lost anyways without that Asus bloatware. The RGB keyboard and led strip have already stopped working. However, I can still load up games and play on steam there's no difference in that regard. TBH, everything else is working so far. I can live without the RGB.

•Ultimately I also am a gamer and no other O/S will suffice.

• I've since disconnected the internet and left it that way. Earlier on though I wanted to test something out, so briefly I plugged the internet back in, and guess what? Lo and behold Windows Update pops up within seconds wanting to install 3 different things. I search for what they are and basically, realize the general consensus about them is NOT good. Shit this feels like a ticking timebomb and I seriously do not want what happened to my MSI laptop to happen to this one. I just don't want to sell it, because it'll mean I lose money. I'm going to keep it offline as much as I can making sure it's basically sitting at idle performance until I can maybe find somebody, heck anybody that can maybe steer me in some kind of direction that is of some benefit. Fingers crossed 🤞🏽

Where are those Russian hackers when you need em' huh? I've heard over the years that they are so frickin good it's basically like practicing Vodoo Magick on a computer.

If anybody reads this and has any type of additional advice, don't hesitate because it is truly welcome here. I tried posting on Reddit, but I got blocked. I tried posting on Tom's hardware with the video attached, and it got blocked because of the video. Hardforum is without a doubt  Hard. It's like the last bastion where free speech can persist without being censored before posting. Now, whether the Admins & Mods here are trigger-happy with the bans is another story 💜. I'm trying to keep my chin up and be as positive as possible about this ATM.
Install a fresh install of windows 2022 server. None of the asus software, drivers are available from the direct manufacturer. Windows server will not automatically install updates. You can run the trial but understand this is still windows. They have control over whatever then want.

To me it sounds a portion in your mind and a portion of annoying intrusive software. Ease your mind, connect to the internet, install 2022 server and you should have less of an issue pretending the device is completely in your control.

If you want a device that is 100% assuredly under your control your not achieving it by easy means. Your not playing games on it. Your not running windows or for the most part Linux.

Maybe a arduino running "hello world" would be close to this but that probably doesnt meet your compute needs.
 

LaCuNa

Weaksauce
Joined
Jun 3, 2014
Messages
122
Install a fresh install of windows 2022 server. None of the asus software, drivers are available from the direct manufacturer. Windows server will not automatically install updates. You can run the trial but understand this is still windows. They have control over whatever then want.

To me it sounds a portion in your mind and a portion of annoying intrusive software. Ease your mind, connect to the internet, install 2022 server and you should have less of an issue pretending the device is completely in your control.

If you want a device that is 100% assuredly under your control your not achieving it by easy means. Your not playing games on it. Your not running windows or for the most part Linux.

Maybe a arduino running "hello world" would be close to this but that probably doesnt meet your compute needs.

I really wish it was in my mind, as a matter of fact the thing that happened to my MSI GT75, I eventually became completely in denial of the truth. I did believe that it was in my head, and I thought that if I kept it that way things would be alright this time around. It's been 3 years of me not having a PC because of what happened the last time. As much as I try and ignore everything that happens, these things which start out small continue to become more intrusive and more apparent in time until it is simply ridiculous to believe anything else. But yes you are totally on point about me never truly having control over it. Maybe I'm missing something big, but what exactly would be the benefit of installing Windows Server 2022? The way I see it installing any version of windows even if I do a complete wipe will still get messed up because there is no such thing as being able to completely wipe these OEM laptops. You can probably replace the NVMe, but even then, you still have the UEFI bios which will always have some coded junk on it that will reinstate the whole putrid process.
 

LaCuNa

Weaksauce
Joined
Jun 3, 2014
Messages
122
Windows installed updates magically, even though I set them to pause and turned off auto updates. It actually did this while offline without any notifications. Everything else is also trying to update itself as soon as I connect to the internet and run the program. Like Steam. Man O Man.
 

cdabc123

2[H]4U
Joined
Jun 21, 2016
Messages
3,863
You cannot tell windows 10 or 11 not to update. It will continue to do it whenever it has internet access.

Windows server will not update without your permission. That sounds like what you are looking for. You also get no targeted adds and less appearance of a intrusive os collecting data.

The trial is 180 days and you can extend it 180 days 5 times. I will mention once the trial expires after 180 days the PC will spontaneously shut down after a hour with no warning. (You can then extend it another 180) I wanted to share that as I believe you would associate it to the same intrusive issue.

The uefi issue cannot be fixed and it would technically be possible to hold that degree of control over a computer using it.

Heed my advice. Install 2022 server, only the minimum drivers, recognize that some programs will continue to be annoying (steam will always update), free your mind and enjoy utilizing your computational needs. If you still actively notice non subtile disruptions or oem intrusiveness after doing this then I would recommend committing to a good Linux distro.
 

cdabc123

2[H]4U
Joined
Jun 21, 2016
Messages
3,863
So, Linux is also problematic, with backdoor access and the same shitty problems Windows has?
No some of your shitty problems are exclusive to Windows 10 and 11 as well as intrusive software.

As far as backdoors and security issue allowing the remote possibility of a system being compromised, I would say Linux is also susceptible. You can be abit more careful and observant of the os if you dive in pretty deep but I can't say that would be a total solution.


Thats why I like the windows server os. You get rid of the annoyingness of windows 10 and 11 but can still run games and all the garbage software you want
 

GoldenTiger

Fully [H]
Joined
Dec 2, 2004
Messages
24,053
I've read about the asus armory thing before on desktops where there's a bios setting to disable the auto download of it. I have no idea if there's one on your notebook or not though. I think other than that software (which is known to be buggy and consume resources) that you're way over thinking this.
 
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