Bloatware, Junkware, Adware & the like

Posted Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011 at 9:56 pm by: JS No Comments  

Just a brief reminder for all of our readers: Free software doesn’t usually come without strings attached. It is very important to read all of the fine print when downloading and installing any software, especially free software. Far too often there will be what is known as Bloatware, Junkware or Adware attached to the application you want. Sometimes this Bloatware is just an annoyance, but a lot of times it can cause some real problems with other applications. A common tactic is to include some sort of unneeded toolbar that affixes itself to your Internet browser and can change certain settings or render your browser inoperable. Adware can collect some level of information about you which is then used by advertisers to market products to you and others, often without your knowledge. They claim you gave consent when you clicked “Agree” on the User Agreement. Again, read that fine print.

This has been an issue for quite some time, but was again brought to our attention most recently when a prominent software download site was accused of attaching Bloatware to their software and being dishonest about their reasons for doing so.

You can view articles related to that story here:
extremetech.com/computing/93504-download-com-wraps-downloads-in-bloatware-lies-about-motivations

ghacks.net/2011/08/17/the-cnet-download-com-installer

About JS

JS has grown up around computers and has developed a wealth of end-user experience. Technology interests include robotics, vintage video games, music gear, multimedia software, home security and Internet security.

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