Collaboration

Say NO! to Application Bundling: Microsoft, Google, AOL, Yahoo, Quit it!


I love the products that the “BIG FOUR” put out but I am sick and tired of their bundling tactics. If this continues, you will lose market share. If I want a search engine toolbar, I will download and install the toolbar. If I want an instant messenger client, I will download the instant messenger client. I do not need winzip, a phone software, Google Desktop Search, Plaxo, Windvd, Winrar, etc. It is enough and very aggravating.

These days toolbars and instant messenger clients are getting bundled with programs I do not want or need. You have to be very careful what you are installing these days. The uninstall of these products mysteriously fails as well. Interesting! To avoid this, simply do a custom install and read everything very carefully. And last but not least, STOP CHANGING MY DEFAULT HOME PAGE!

What do you think about the bundling of applications?

30 comments
jen7677
jen7677

wow, not surprising i am not the only one who is sooo tired of this! it seriously freakin annoys me that they do this! especially these ones cuz they r supposed to be the reputable guys the ones who shouldnt have practices like this, at least thats my opinion. alot of those small shareware software makers force stuff on ya and thats annoying as well but i imagine maybe they do it for some pay off but these guys dont need that, either way its totally uncool and i hate that i have to pay such close attn or i will end up getting some of this much unwanted software on my computer cuz sometimes they sneak it on ya, its like its not enuf that i spend hundreds of dollars of my hard earned money making these guys rich they have try and force me to use stuff that i dont care for, i will decide what i want when i want it and how i want to get it thank you very much i do not need or want anyone making that decision for me! what really annoys me is the people who dont pay attn to this stuff, the people who dont take the time to learn about this stuff and then come running to me cuz omg their computer isnt running right or is running slow, if they would pay attn to what they put on their computer this would not happen! anyways thats my opinion.

skipplummer
skipplummer

I got fed up with the bundling thing years ago and, although I hate to say it, started importing my Windows XP series of OS's from Russia. This resulted in an OS where the budled, unwanted software equaled zero which is the way that it always should have been to begin with. As an end user I can add that which I want to add. All of this Quicken, Norton and Wild Tangent bundled software assumes that the end user is an idiot.

Tig2
Tig2

I got to clean up four computers in the last 6 months. Partner's computer was first- HP lappie. His brother was next followed by my new lappie and one for his mom. Each computer took approximately 6 hours to completely clean of muck. I seriously considered sending a bill to M$ and HP for my time. My time saver is to keep a USB drive loaded with AVG, Zone Alarm, FireFox, and Cr@p Cleaner. I re-download AVG and Zone every 3 months. I have a list of the ca-ca I want to get rid of and can clean it out pretty quickly. Run CCleaner recursively and then load the software I want to use. Last step is to load Zone and visit www.grc.com to insure that everything is nice and stealthy on the net. Then I create a restore point. I'll likely have at least two more to do- urging everyone to replace their aging hardware while they can still get XP. At least I have a plan of attack now.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

I am sure that XP will be avail on new systems 4-6 months from now. I guess it all depends on how many people buy new systems with Vista vs. XP. But with Win2k-WinXP, the other versions were available still for some time.

stress junkie
stress junkie

Cleaning a system that has a vendor modified Windows installation is so much trouble and so complicated that you absolutely need to have a plan going in. It's just too big a job to try to do it on the fly and try to remember each task. It sounds like you are on staff so this sort of thing is likely to seem like a nuisance to you. I get paid by the hour so to me it looks like money. I still get tired of doing things that shouldn't need to be done in the first place, though. Oh. Wait. Things that shouldn't need to be done in the first place? That covers most of what I do. :D

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

as that is most of what I do too.

stress junkie
stress junkie

The philosophy expressed in the article exactly correlates with the philosophy of FOSS software developers. Hmmm. 2 + 2 = try Linux. (Specifically try PCLinuxOS. It has support for MP3 and WMV and AVI and all that stuff.) :)

Jaqui
Jaqui

PCLinux, the un-natural merging of Debian and Mandriva. that is just ........ wrong. a semi minimalist distro like debian merged with a bloatware distro like mandriva is like merging EL and the divorce threads. :0

stress junkie
stress junkie

I like mules. :)

Jaqui
Jaqui

jacka$$ ]:) actually, the biggest problem with pclinux is the sssslllloooooowwwwwnnnnneeeessssss from the un-natural parentage. :p actually, my real complaint is the debian induced dependancies for any desktop but gnome. sorry debian dev team, but you do not have to install 100% of a desktop's features as requirements.. unless you are really, really, stupid and can't figure out what the deps are. add to it the far less capable hardware detection than either of he parent distros and you get a display in the default runlevel 5 gui that is not usable.

Absolutely
Absolutely

We'll stop bundling when you stop buying apps which include bundles. Until then, suck it.

Jaqui
Jaqui

for running winders and using the apps for winders :p I don't see this problem with my open source software. though I also don't get 3/4 of the apps you mentioned, they don't run on linux, nor do I want them at all.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

bundle. :D The chance for some really good tool bars, or a DBMS, WEB server, development environments, video an image software editing and source control .... No contest really.

stress junkie
stress junkie

So are you for or against a fully populated Linux distro?

Jaqui
Jaqui

exactly why I have issues with most distros. they want to install stuff I'll never use. it's a "requirement" because of their choices in configurations, not because the software requires it.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

that the install cd should have these apps, but the install should ask what extras are wanted. There is no reason that I have to have 3 browsers preloaded, and other items. I do not mind having easy access to items, and easy install for them as well. But, I want to have only what I tell it, not what someone pre-dicided that I should have.

Jaqui
Jaqui

is LFS livecd and build everything from sources. with no wasted space from bloat like smbclient, firefox, kde, gnome, bluez-utils, laptop-utils... you know, the type of thing that is a complete waste of space on a desktop machine connecting to a linux only network and that is not a multimedia playstation.

stress junkie
stress junkie

... you could boot a live CD, untar the Linux binaries onto a hard disk, chroot into the mount point, and build the leanest system outside of a Linux development lab. Actually that is almost exactly how I installed Gentoo last year. Naturally I used the Gentoo tarballs instead of the Linux GNU component tarballs. The ONLY reason that I stopped using Gentoo is that it takes five hours for my machine to recompile KDE. Otherwise installing Linux by hand was fun. I learned about chroot and mount --bind. I prefer to have a machine that has the drivers already available for any card that I might want to use. I'm neutral about application bloat but I want my hardware drivers. If I were a Linux newbie I would also want to have lots of applications already available but for now I don't care either way. Disk drives are cheap. My "bloated" Linux installations still only take about 3 GB of disk space. The fact that there are five different MP3 players on the disk doesn't slow the machine down so no harm no foul. :) And, since distros often make drivers available as modules that are loaded on demand at boot time they don't make the running kernel any larger than it needs to be. This scheme does increase the amount of time that it takes for Linux to start from power off but that's the only down side to having lots of hardware driver modules already installed.

stress junkie
stress junkie

Yeah. A distro that comes with a lot of applications preinstalled is like a woman. You can be together for a long time and find that there are still a lot of wonderful features that you haven't discovered. These days it is getting difficult to find a distro that installs a minimum system. Even the granddaddy of Linux distros, Slackware, installs a lot of applications by default with their latest release (11). I recently installed this. The default installation includes KDE!!! Good grief. Not that I mind but it was unexpected. I like having a lot of features already installed when I start a Linux distro for the first time. I mostly like having loads of drivers already available when you try to do something like getting a wireless network card to work or play some podcast from a web site. Hence the expression "it just works". I like that. That is why my previously favorite distro, SuSE, is about to take a back seat to PCLinuxOS. I've been using PSLOS for several months and the more things that I do with it the more that I like it. PCLOS is able to play MP3s, WMVs, AVIs, and other multimedia file formats the first time that you run it after installing it. I just installed the latest SuSE. It won't play any of those file formats. I checked their web site. They have some sanctimonious essay about why they don't include these features with their operating system. It's the same "violates the GPL" crap that you hear in discussions. I don't care about that. The average person doesn't care about that either. They want a computer to do what it is intended to do, not to be a stage for legal theorists. So I cast my vote in favor of the fully functional distros. They work right out of the box, just like a computer should do.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

type manouvre, still missed out things I ended up needing and put a lot of stuff on I never used. There's so much available, you can spend a couple of months just trying stuff to see what you like. I played with a minimum install last time, more work than the default, but tidier.

Jaqui
Jaqui

that's why linux from scratch, no bloatware. :D I do keep current versions of mainstream distros available, for simple hardware compatability tests, and to see what garbage is being foisted onto people, but I use linux from scratch to avoid all the garbage.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Took me about four hours a piece. The only 'nice' thing was they came with Norton bundled so I could safely connect to the net to download something decent to replace them. All the Yahoo and MSN crap went straight off, along with messenger, IE as my default browser etc. HP's stuff is REALLY annoying me at the moment, put .NET 3.0 on and broke it, it's got stuck in a do this, can't, try again loop for updating it's crap. so every time I logon I get PCHNotify.exe has failed sorry. No instructions on how to get rid of it altogther. Reminds me of those Games Compendiums where you used to get four cheap ass boards, a load of plastic pieces and four dice where the spots rubbed off before new years eve.

stress junkie
stress junkie

There have been a few occasions that I've done something to a computer and appeared to achieve the goal but ended up with some mysterious but apparently harmless error message during system startup. That's irritating. More importantly if the computer is used by someone else and if they notice the error then they get all theoretical about what it means and how to make it go away. I hate it when a client has plumbed the depth of my expertise. I consider that measurement to be a trade secret. :D

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

Now that I've taken my tongue out of my cheek. A few years ago I bought a HP laptop, it was all set up with the bundled software etc. It even had a copy of Nero on it (note - would only work on that model of HP). Only problem was the machine did NOT have a CD or DVD burner installed. The software was factory bundled like that as many people go for option with the burner. Then there was the Yahoo and Google stuff etc. Some months later I had to format c and rebuild from scratch, ended up with a noticeable performance increase in the clean install, and saved plenty of space on the hard drive. Now the laptop is dual boot, Win XP and Linux, I use mostly Linux but have the XP there for a few client related programs.

stress junkie
stress junkie

I mostly run across preinstalled Windows on my customers' computers. I usually build my computers a la carte myself. Last year I purchased a Toshiba Satellite notebook computer. Now I had to face "cleaning" the factory installed Windows at home. I had become my own tormentor!!!. Once I got it cleaned up I used a Linux live CD to make an image copy of the system onto an external USB drive. (dd if=/dev/hda1 ...) Then I shrank the Windows partition and installed Linux in the new free space. (Who really needs 40 GB of disk space on a notebook computer anyway? Might as well use half of that disk space for Linux.) Geez, I hate cleaning the trial version of MS Office, which doesn't work anyway, and the Disney Whatever software and at least a dozen other demo versions of things that you probably won't ever need anyway. I could have spent that time looking for more pictures of Cheryl Tiegs!!! (I love that woman!!!) Anyway, at least I have an image of my "cleaned" Windows software. I shouldn't have to go through that process a second time on that machine.

georgeou
georgeou

Application bundling and startup infection is a massive problem in the PC industry. New PCs are plagued with it and I NEVER trust factory installs; I just nuke the HDD and reinstall everything from scratch. Changing people's default search and home pages by default or not even asking for permission should be downright illegal. A default off but presenting the opportunity to change during installation is annoying enough.

Northlite
Northlite

These bloat/crap ware companies pay for placement of their offerings, this reduces the price you pay for the item. Although I agree this is a pain and am not a fan, I look at it as a rebate I don't need to mail in.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

I bought a new system not long ago, and I know crap is pre-installed, but to have the Yahoo toolbar AND Google toolbar and desktop organizer(not sure what its called) really pissed me off. So did 200 links to games, that I need to create an account to play, and can only play a few times. It took me more than 3 hours to remove crap, and determine what I had to put back to get things to work properly. If, during the install (setup) of the new system, IF it took you to a page that allowed you to choose what to install, it would have made sense, and I would have been happier, much happier. But the way the image is set from the factory is the only config that you can have, everything else is for you to remove or leave there. I always thought this was bad (just like omitting the USB cable for a USB printer).