Saturday, November 28, 2009

Turning off the Lightspeed LsSaAlerter in OSX

We were having an issue with LsSaAlerter application which is part of the Lightspeed systems Security Agent for OSX.  the LsSaAlter application is responsible for the menu bar icon that shows you the status of the security agent and what it is currently doing.  There is also a shortcut to get to the Lightspeed Preferences Pane by clicking on the menu icon.

There does not appear to be any current way via filtering policies to disable that menu and even if you MANUALLY go into the com.lightspeedsystems.securityagent.plist and set the "Enable Manger" key to false, it resets on next logout/login.

So, to manually force that option we look to Apple's MCX system that we use to manage our laptops via group policy.  Using the Workgroup Manager application, we select the computer group and click on PREFERENCES, then click on the DETAILS tab.  Click the little + symbol at the bottom and find the Lightspeed preference file and load it in making sure you are loading it into the ALWAYS category.  The preference file is found at

/Library/Preferences/com.lightspeedsystems.securityagent.preferences.plist

Once loaded, click on the EDIT symbol (little pencil) next to the + and - buttons, and expand the ALWAYS selection.  Click on each entry and hit DELETE to remove it.  The only entry you wish to remain is "Enable Manager" which should be set to boolean and false.  This allows the other items to still be controlled by the filtering policy.

Now, next time your clients in that computer list refresh their preferences, the menu item will no longer be present.

BTW, this is a good way to force preferences for many third party programs that support PLIST preference files.  Of course, it is good to test, and you may have to use OFTEN or ALWAYS.  Always means that the preference can NOT be changed...OFTEN means it sets the preference on login, and can be changed, but on next login the preferences will be reset to what you want them.