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Windows 7: Legal or not..? Unasked for software riding in on downloads.


30 Oct 2013   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64
 
 
Legal or not..? Unasked for software riding in on downloads.

I recently tried to download a word processor from CNET. Even though I was careful and read all the screens I ended up with 3 installed programs I did not ask for. It took forever to remove what I could find.

I will never use CNET again.

The question is, is this legal..?
Can it be stopped..?
Can it be avoided..?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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30 Oct 2013   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Legal....maybe.
Ethical...no.

Some thoughts on avoiding PUPs.

Never accept the default or quick install. If you do you don't get the chance to uncheck the install of this crap.
If there is a choice download directly from the author's site.
If there is a SourceForge download use it. It is generally clean.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Oct 2013   #3

Windows 8.1 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kado897 View Post
Never accept the default or quick install. If you do you don't get the chance to uncheck the install of this crap.

If there is a choice download directly from the author's site.
Agree, but even at that you still have to read very carefully as some programs, mainly java and flash sill try sneaking stuff in. The bottom line... pay very very close attention to what's happening on your installs, and yeah... custom, custom, custom install.

Yes, usually getting it from the author's site works, but note java and flash seems to be in bed with some of these crapware folks, so even getting it from the author's site isn't always a guarantee to be free of crapware.

As for the question of legality... I'm sure there's a slippery slope there, but you are getting free software so...
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.


30 Oct 2013   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

I don't use Java these days and I use the Chrome browser which has it's own version of flash updated along with chrome.
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30 Oct 2013   #5

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

CNET used to be a great source of bloatware free software but, anymore now, downloading from there is a crapshoot against house odds. It started when blocking their cookie would cause the site to essentially lockup because it went into an endless loop, repeatedly trying to put a cookie on my computer (I don't know if it was deliberate or their web designers merely flunked Error Trapping 101, something that is pretty common anymore), then escalated to bloatware being added to the downloads. For a while, they forced me (correction: tried to force me) to download a downloader which tripped alarms on all my anti-malware programs, then they dropped that abomination and added more bloatware.

Sadly, some software still uses CNET as their only download site but, fortunately, most of those downloads are clean or the bloatware (the polite term, btw, I have more accurate ones but Mama told me not to use those words) is easily avoided.

I understand these sites have to make an income somehow but underhandly sneaking in bloatware is despicably unacceptable. If advertising alone won't cut the mustard, then shareware, where you get to try before you buy, would be a far more acceptable alternative.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Oct 2013   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by jd50ae View Post
I recently tried to download a word processor from CNET. Even though I was careful and read all the screens I ended up with 3 installed programs I did not ask for. It took forever to remove what I could find.

I will never use CNET again.

The question is, is this legal..?
Can it be stopped..?
Can it be avoided..?
Just a tip, create a System Restore Point before you Download. Try to uncheck all of the crap in the download, but if you miss some, you can always do a System Restore to before you did the Download.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Oct 2013   #7

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bigmck View Post
...Just a tip, create a System Restore Point before you Download. Try to uncheck all of the crap in the download, but if you miss some, you can always do a System Restore to before you did the Download.
Or make an image of your System. I've found System Restore to be unreliable in the past and no longer use it; in fact, I've turned it off. I've never had a problem restoring an image.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Oct 2013   #8

Windows 7 Professional x64 Sp1
 
 

No offence, but its really easy to avoid cnets crap. I am still pissed they did this though.

Anything that states download now green button cnet installer enabled is going to install junk. If the green download button does not mention cnet installer enabled then its clean from their crapware. Although if the manufacturer offers stuff that will still be in there.

To avoid this, click the direct download link.
First shot is crapware, second is clean from it.
Always avoid big download buttons


Attached Images
  
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30 Oct 2013   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Thanks Andrew. I didn't know that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Oct 2013   #10

Windows 8.1 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kado897 View Post
I don't use Java these days and I use the Chrome browser which has it's own version of flash updated along with chrome.
That's not the point. The point was using it as an example of a software needing close scrutiny when installing.
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 Legal or not..? Unasked for software riding in on downloads.




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