Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Worst Crapware Offenders - IMHO

If you are a customer of mine and if I have set-up your computer then you have an age old article about the gunk software on new PCs available; this article was first published in summer 2006. So far this old article was my only third party justification for offering my Set-Up job; finally here is more third party justification.

I really try hard not to rely on other people's writings for my blog posts. But sometimes I happen across something that comes right from my own heart. This is the case with Ed Bott's article on the ZDNet blog The Ed Bott Report. His articles  On consumer PCs, crapware is still a performance-sapping nuisance and  12 ways hardware makers screw up a perfectly good Windows PC tell the sad truth.  

Let's face it, there are many more than 12 ways how PC manufacturers mess up perfectly good computers! But alone the fact that someone of Ed Bott's stature and influence begins to write about this issue is not only new but almost sensational.

Another recent example of writing about the current "crapware" epidemic is in Michael Kassner's article Five Tips For Getting Rid Of Crapware on the TechRepublic web site. As interesting as this article is I do have to comment on his five tips because they are NOT AT ALL suitable for the non-technical home user. The author recommends in this sequence:
  1. Buy a computer free of crapware
    Well said but too late when you unpack the new machine, you have it already.
  2. Autoruns from Sysinternals
    IMHO a typical "tip" from a journalist lacking technical detail. Autoruns is an excellent utility in the hands of a knowledgeable technician to eliminate unwanted start-up programs but it is NOT a tool to remove, that is uninstall unwanted programs at all!
  3. CCleaner
    An excellent tool, I use it almost daily. BUT you still need to know what to make of the long list of installed programs you are presented with. Not a tool for the average non-technical home user at all!
  4. PC De-Crapifier
    This program costs money! It presents you with a list of third party (that is non Microsoft) programs and you have to make the decision if you want to remove it or not. Not a tool for the average non-technical home user at all!
  5. Win-Patrol
    Certainly a good program but just a tiny bit of googling gives the same and often even more information. And still the final yes/no decision is with the poor non-technical home user who generally just does not have the know-how needed to make these choices correctly.
Yes, we do have a problem with all the crappy software that comes pre-installed on brand new, brand name computers.

A significant part of what I do every week is cleaning crapware from new computers as part of my Set-Up Job. From the experience with this I venture to give my own, very individual and clearly opinionated version of a list of the IMHO worst crapware offenders; the worst being right up front.
  1. Samsung
  2. Sony
  3. Toshiba
  4. HP / Compaq
  5. Asus
  6. Dell
  7. Lenovo
  8. Acer / Gateway / eMachines
As usual I welcome comments and suggestions right here in the blog. Thank you in advance.

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Mike M. said...

I like the PC De-Crapifier. It worked wonders for my system.

Eike Heinze said...

Great that it works for you, Mike M.
This may well be a good example for the fact that most people's mileage will vary.