What’s Yahoo Instant Messenger Doing?

I was doing some debug tracing on a Flex program, when I had to dig in deeper, and take a look at what was happening underneath the hood. Flex, Flash, for the debugger, they use the equivalent of the localConnection class. And that, in turn, uses shared memory. That shared memory is locked and handled by two processes (in Windows anyway), MacromediaMutexOmega, and MacromediaFMOmega. See this from OSFlash for a better explanation.  So, to view these processes’ activities, I launch ProcessExplorer, from SysInternals. And I run a search on “Omega”, and what do I find besides my Flex code running in IE? I see a couple of pairs of similar constructs owned by the Yahoo Instant Messenger program.

Yahoo - Processes

I was alright with Yahoo until… I wish I had marked the calendar. It was a few months ago. I had left my computer on, when I went to sleep. During the night, Yahoo launched an automatic update process. One of the steps in the process was to query me about my preferences *but* to give me only 5 minutes to make my selection known. Well, I was asleep at the time. So, I awoke to a rebooted computer, with the Internet Explorer preferences “customized” to Yahoo’s liking, among a few other things. If I had wanted it, I would have asked for it. This disturbed the state of my machine, which, I kind of consider an invasion of privacy. I felt a little violated. But, I walked out of the fantasy world I had been in, that any of these big companies could possibly be the “good guys.” That illusion has been dispelled.
Yahoo Process Omega
So, here’s Yahoo peeking its head in at me while I am debugging, and I wonder what it is up to. I know that Yahoo and Adobe have been working together on Flex stuff, and that Yahoo released an IM version built on Flex, but I didn’t think this was related.

Oh well, I am inclined to switch from Yahoo soon anyway, but I remain curious.


5 Responses to What’s Yahoo Instant Messenger Doing?

  1. Arul Prasad says:

    yahoo messenger uses flash activex internally for displaying audibles and stuff. It wont be surprising if they use LocalConnection in there?

  2. howardscholz says:

    Yes, that makes good sense. It’s likely they have to do communications between modules that requires localConnection.

  3. fox says:

    Why not use Gaim or Trillian? Much less of a resource hog and you don’t get spammy toolbars installed behind your back.

  4. howardscholz says:

    :-) Spammy. Hormel would never have dreamed they’d spawn a verb, let alone an adjective. Likely, I will switch to whatever Gaim has changed into, when I am sufficiently inspired.

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