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.NET Hobbyist Programmer Staying Confused in a Busy World

If you are running some form of Symantec Antivirus and a ZoneAlarm firewall, you may have a problem that is not your fault.  I am running Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition 9.0.2.1000 with ZoneAlarm Pro 5.5.062.  I am in this situation and I do not like the result.  The proximate cause of my problem is that a portion of the Symantec software will suddenly go to full CPU utilization and my computer acts like a sleepy dog.  (Well, it is a dog by today’s standards (P3, 1.1GHz), but it is a working dog.)  This is an issue that Symantec and ZoneAlarm need to fix.

The culprit is a Symantec executable that exists on your disk named ccApp.exe.  For me, it lives in the “C:\Program Files\Common Files\Symantec Shared” directory.  Formally, it is the Symantec Common Client User Session, version 2.2.1.4, dated 06/09/2004.  This program does not like it when I send email.  When I do, it goes to full CPU utilization.

ZoneAlarm is aware of the problem and tells you to disable email scanning.  I could not relocate their bulletin, but there are many posts about the issue in their forums.

Symantec is aware of the problem and has this to say:

  • Situation: When you send email and email scanning is enabled in Norton AntiVirus 2004, the PC slows down. Windows Task Manager shows that ccApp.exe is using 99 percent of the CPU resources.  Solution: This problem is typically caused when a firewall is preventing ccApp.exe from accessing the Internet. To solve the problem, follow the steps in these solutions in the order shown.

Their advice is to basically disable email scanning,

My personal solution was to have both program scanners off and rely on file system protection.  If ccApp.exe goes crazy, I bring up the Task Manager and set ccApp.exe to the lowest possible thread priority.  This lets me get things done since the rest of the machine will run at a higher priority.  I hope they fix this soon.

Update 1: This problem appeared when I upgraded the Symantec software, so I think it is their issue.  Symantec added “Outbound Worm Heuristic“ scanning, which basically acts as a firewall.  Turning that off individually did not seem to work.  I had to disable all email scanning.  Opening firewall ports per Symantec's instructions (see link above), did not work either.

Update 2: Symantec has issued Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition 9.0.3.1000 that changed ccApp.exe to version 2.2.2.8 dated 10 December 2004.  The behavior is unchanged, however.

Posted on Sunday, January 9, 2005 12:10 AM Software | Back to top


Comments on this post: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
I have Symantec Norton's Antivirus and Zone Alarm Pro.

Recently when I updated my Zone Alarm Pro, I have no access to the Internet unless I turn it off.

Does anyone else have this same issue?

madhavi.sethna@gmail.com
Left by Madhavi Sethna on Aug 28, 2005 6:30 AM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
Randomly when opening my email client (Thunderbird), NIS 2005 will display an error message: "Symantec User Session has encountered an error and must shut down". The NIS 2005 icon then dissappears from the system tray, and I believe I am no longer being protected by NIS 2005. This NEVER happened in NIS 2004.

Has anyone else seen this problem, and has anyone gooten any help from Symantec on how to resolve it?
Left by Blue Meanie on Oct 08, 2005 3:27 PM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
I have a AMD Athlon XP, and Run both Zonealarm (the latest version) and Norton Antivirus 2004 Pro.

this ccApp.exe asked for permission to connect, should i allow Zonealarm to give it?

Please help.
Left by Plusthought on Dec 10, 2005 7:46 AM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
i suspect these probs have something to do with the auto-config of certain processes (namely symantec processes) when running symantec's firewall, which obv won't happen with zonealarm.
Left by . on Dec 24, 2005 8:45 PM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
I have been running zone alarm pro/norton antivirius for 4/5 years and pest patrol for 4 years on a Dell Inspiron laptop (326 M RAM 500 MHz, W98SE. About a year ago I added shareware (Spybot Search and Destroy and Spyware Blaster). I realize d this was overkill but it pretty much stopped spyware and all of third party evaluations I have seen indicate that one set of software will not pick up everything. However, since Zone Alarm has been bought out and Norton has decided to add Norton Security features to Norton Antivirus, I have experienced similar simptoms. In my case, Norton is constantly warning me that my virus/spyware definitions are out of date (although liveupdate is set for weekly) and Zone Alarm keeps telling me that I need to upgrade my version even though the version appears to be identical in version number and size. Looks to me as if the two companies are deliberately attempting to sabotage each others software to gain market share. I suspect that one will need to choose one or the other. Comments?
Left by Ralph on Jan 25, 2006 10:28 AM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
I just upgraded my Norton Antivirus and am no longer able to send/receive email in Outlook because ZoneAlarm is blocking ccappl.exe from accessing both the POP and SMTP mail servers. I cannot unblock it by unblocking the particular IP addresses nor by allowing ccapp.exe as a program
Left by KM on Apr 19, 2006 3:21 AM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
I notice theres people complaining about zone alarm blocking access to programs. Go to the program control option in zone alarm and you get the option to tick the programs that zone alarm will allow access to. Its as easy as that. Once you have set up the program control you shouldn't have any more problems! this program works good for me. Norton is definately my 2nd favorite!
Left by adam on May 13, 2006 6:47 AM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
I have NAV2006 and ZA-Pro on my XP SP2 patched etc etc 1.5GHz machine.

After upgrading to the latest version of ZA-Pro I was prompted that "Symantec User Session" (program CCAPP.EXE) was trying to send via port 25 (SMTP). Needless to say I blocked it because I don't see why an AV program should be "phoning home". I also found that the User Session program had opened port 1030.

E-mails to Symantec have proved fruitless, getting results from poorly trained techs thinking I am unable to run LiveUpdate or saying I cannot have 2 AV or FW programs running. (I only have one of each)

Needless to say, given that NAV2006 has around 13 processes running - and that's with nothing else open, it's going in the trash!
Left by Eddie Chandler on Jul 24, 2006 2:49 PM

# re: Symantec Antivirus vs. ZoneAlarm Firewall: The User Loses
Requesting Gravatar...
There are a ziilion posts about problems with Norton involving ccApp errors, sucking-up huge amount of CPU on some machines, delaying shutdown on others, and a host of other problems. There could be some tie-in to ZoneAlarm, but even for folks w/o ZA, the Norton ccApp is extremely problematic.

There is a posted fix, which works for some people, but many many people can't fix it no matter what they try. This Norton problem is compounded by another non-Norton file with the same ccApp name that also causes problems (the way to determine is by the location of the file; the non-Norton file should be removed).

check out:
http://www.neuber.com/taskmanager/process/ccapp.exe.html
Left by uurpp on Feb 15, 2007 5:01 PM

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