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Windows 8 PCs Still Throttled By Crapware

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the the-more-things-stay-the-same dept.

Microsoft 657

jfruh writes "Windows 8's Metro UI presents a clean and spiffy new interface for Microsoft's latest OS. But one of the operating system's oldest and most hated problems — crapware — still lurks below the surface. For instance, the Acer Aspire 7600U is an all-in-one that, at $1,900, is hardly a bargain-basement PC. And yet as shipped it includes over 50 pieces of OEM and third-party software pre-installed, much of which simply offer trials for paid services."

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Nothing new here (0)

Fellon (1525917) | about a year ago | (#42100739)

Fast machine!? Who needs that? We can make more money!

Re:Nothing new here (5, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about a year ago | (#42100921)

This is the OEM business model. Razor-thin manufacturing hardware margins mean that there's a HUGE department that does nothing but inbound deals for software product placement - this is how they get profitability. Don't expect much change. Even with a premium PC line, they won't turn down these dollars thrust upon them from Symantec, and the online-game-of-the-week. Be sure, all of this is instrumented with web-bugs and behavior-tracking galore.

Using a Windows machine will always be like this: Trapped face-up, under the urinal in Steve Ballmer's personal piss-dungeon.

Re:Nothing new here (4, Informative)

Gr8Apes (679165) | about a year ago | (#42101265)

This is the OEM business model. ... Even with a premium PC line, they won't turn down these dollars thrust upon them from Symantec, and the online-game-of-the-week.

This is a premium PC? Well, premium price anyways, when compared to an Apple iMac [apple.com] I see a higher res screen and better graphics for less. Of course, it'll also come sans all the fingerprints on the screen, since it's not a touch screen. I think that alone is worth several hundred $ in Apple's favor, or however much you value your finger should you ever try to touch my monitor. I kid, I kid... not.

Re:Nothing new here (4, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year ago | (#42101319)

The question is - why are people buying these computers? Newegg, TigerDirect, and others sell components, online, and cheap. In an afternoon, a guy can build an equivalent computer from components, install his favorite OS, and be ready to start installing all his required software in the morning.

Why pay 100 to 1000% extra, for a compromised system?

So, maybe some slashdotters really don't understand how to turn a screwdriver. I'm sure there's kid in the neighborhood who does. Maybe your own son, daughter, niece, nephew? Give the kid fifty bucks to assemble your machine, you're still money ahead.

Re:Nothing new here (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101413)

Huh? Building your own costs more. OEMs get huge volume discounts on hardware and software.

Re:Nothing new here (4, Insightful)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about a year ago | (#42101439)

And they mark up for it.

Building your own, if you know what you're doing and know what you want is usually cheaper. But it does require work on your part, and while most of building a computer is pretty trivial some stuff (like correctly wiring a case to a mobo, or properly applying contact paste for a cooling fan) can really hold people back. Also, time and space.

Re:Nothing new here (4, Insightful)

PCM2 (4486) | about a year ago | (#42101445)

The question is - why are people buying these computers? Newegg, TigerDirect, and others sell components, online, and cheap. In an afternoon, a guy can build an equivalent computer from components, install his favorite OS, and be ready to start installing all his required software in the morning.

Show me someone who can build a 1.37-inch-thick 27" touchscreen all-in-one PC "in an afternoon" and I'll show you someone who works for Acer.

With all the new system form factors coming out, I highly doubt you're going to see many classic, slapped-together tower PCs in people's homes in the near future.

Re:Nothing new here (1)

poetmatt (793785) | about a year ago | (#42101333)

the margins aren't even remotely razor thin. you're talking about buying at retail in the first place. The ads are just a double dip on the profits.

Re:Nothing new here (2)

AaronLS (1804210) | about a year ago | (#42101425)

I'm not sure what this has to do with Windows. There is nothing about Linux that prevents OEM's from loading software of their choosing.

Re:Nothing new here (1)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about a year ago | (#42101451)

If they started selling any serious number of linux machines they almost certainly would. Money is money.

Re:Nothing new here (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year ago | (#42101455)

less people write crippled trialware for linux and linux users would probably format their new system and install their distro of choice after their first boot to see if the computer runs

Re:Nothing new here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101435)

>

Using a Windows machine will always be like this: Trapped face-up, under the urinal in Steve Ballmer's personal piss-dungeon.

Bullshit. Just stop buying PCs and make them yourself. It's faster than fucking around with sales people and its A LOT cheaper. Also, you won't get crapware unless you put it on yourself.

OEMs get paid tons of money for preinstalls (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100757)

This is news? OEMs get paid a lot of money for preinstalled crapware. As the recession drags on, it's hardly surprising that they continue to load on as much as they can get away with.

Re:OEMs get paid tons of money for preinstalls (2, Insightful)

postbigbang (761081) | about a year ago | (#42101367)

The price of the machine wasn't jacked up because of the TrialWare, but the price seems unreasonably high, given so much competition at a lower price.

The extra software gives the machine perceived value, incorrect as that may be. Lots of trialware that won't last long and makes revenues for everyone not-the-retailer.

But then, the latest loads of Ubuntu have all sorts of crazyware, albeit not in the trial form. There are legacy Unix/Linux sillyness that most consumers will never, ever touch. No one pays an OEM to put it on a machine (oh, wait, Amazon placement for search???) when Linux is installed, but most every page you access these days has some sort of ad, or tracker, or link-to-a-good-buddy.

I think the crapware complaint is over-rated.

Get a signature PC (2, Interesting)

recoiledsnake (879048) | about a year ago | (#42100769)

http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msstore/html/pbPage.MicrosoftSignature [microsoftstore.com]

Vizio PCs dont have any crapware either.

What has this got to do with Windows 8?

If MS stopped OEMs from bundling Google toolbar, everyone here will be crying antitrust.

You want MS to make Windows a closed platform like iOS?

Freedom is not free.

Re:Get a signature PC (2)

Ksevio (865461) | about a year ago | (#42100829)

But according to TFA, that costs "a crazy $99"

Re:Get a signature PC (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101221)

That's the cost to fix a PC that the OEMs already messed up. All PCs bought from the Microsoft Store come crapware-free.

Wait, you read TFA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101249)

Who does that anymore?

Re:Get a signature PC (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101371)

Signature applies to all computers bought from the Microsoft Store, it's not an option ($99 or otherwise).

They used to have a $99/year upgrade option called "Signature Premium" which included training and extra support, I think that has more or less been replaced with "Assure" which is the extra support without the training.

Re:Get a signature PC (5, Interesting)

graphius (907855) | about a year ago | (#42100835)

I had to install some medical software on a new laptop* for a client. After dealing with many problems, I still had an amateur OS with skype, weather, stock quotes and other totally irrelevant crap. Forget about the third party crapware, Win8 is built around crapware...
Windows 8 is NOT designed for serious work.

*Yes they supplied the laptop, if I had my way, it would have been Win7.

Re:Get a signature PC (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101059)

After dealing with many problems, I still had an amateur OS with skype, weather, stock quotes and other totally irrelevant crap.

Skype doesn't come pre-installed, so you had to volitionally install it from the store. Moreover, even the pre-installed metro apps can be un-installed with two mouse clicks from the start screen, so if you were left with those you can't have been too worried about them.

Build Your Own PC. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101027)

I built my own from Tigerdirect with a copy of Windows 8. None of the crapware listed in the article was on my machine:

http://www.informationweek.com/byte/personal-tech/desktop-operating-systems/crapware-lives-on-windows-8-systems/240012719

However, there were thousands of registry links to Bing services, and the "Apps" that were listed on the desktop were simply HTML links back to Bing. Now that I have worked extensively in the registry, my BluRay actually works, UTC is recognised after using Linux on my other HDD.

A simple keystroke enables or disables UEFI. ClassicShell rescued the desktop. Services have been tweaked. Firewall settings too. Now I can honestly say, that the Windows 8 experience is tolerable (though still inferior to Mint 14).

Re:Get a signature PC (3, Insightful)

ad0gg (594412) | about a year ago | (#42101235)

I don't care if OEMs bundle stuff, MS should a single click button on their OS that returns it to a pristine state.

Windows 8? no, thanks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100775)

My next PC will have Windows 7 or Ubuntu, I'm still not sure...

Do both... (2)

macbeth66 (204889) | about a year ago | (#42100895)

Just don't do a dual boot. I found that it is easier and cleaner to install Ubuntu to a second hard drive and switch between the OSes from the BIOS. I don't need Windows 7 that often, but it has come in handy.

Re:Do both... (1)

graphius (907855) | about a year ago | (#42100971)

I have found grub to be pretty good, unless you hibernate windows and try to share drives. That would probably still be a problem with separate drives.

Re:Do both... (2)

nschubach (922175) | about a year ago | (#42101161)

If you aren't using Windows for 3D Gaming, but for productivity, I've found it best to just load up Virtualbox and install Windows on a VM. It's also nice to be able to snapshot the install and revert back to a sane state at any time.

Re:Windows 8? no, thanks (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101045)

If you're leaving Windows because of the Metro UI, you probably don't want to be a lab rat for Ubuntu's Unity experiment either.
Ubuntu used to be the go-to distro for newbies, but these days I tell the Li-curious to check out Kubuntu or Mint.

Come to think of it, if you don't like crapware, or indeed if you're a sane and decent human being, you probably won't like Amazon ads in your program launcher either, so Mint it is.
How far the kind-of-crappy-but-almost-user-friendly-enough-for-grandma has fallen. :(

Not on surface products though (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100803)

They are like just a clean install of windows.

money is addictive -duh! (0)

hguorbray (967940) | about a year ago | (#42100823)

I don't think there is a single mainstream PC vendor that DOESN'T do this -they have come to rely on the $ they get from the crapware vendors to reduce their costs just as they are reliant upon marketing $ from Intel and MS which keeps Linux and other 3rd party OSs out (although Android is definitely starting to break through).

Kind of reminds me of the early days of cable where a good deal of the selling point was no commercials....Now you have to go to the premium packages to get HBO and the others which are commercial free and generally the channels have MORE commercials than broadcast.

-I'm just sayin'

Re: money is addictive -duh! (1, Informative)

Relayman (1068986) | about a year ago | (#42100951)

True, if you think Macs are not PCs...

Re: money is addictive -duh! (4, Insightful)

Miseph (979059) | about a year ago | (#42101109)

One of the worst pieces of crapware I've ever encountered, with regards to hijacking functionality, trampling user-defined preferences, insinuating itself into unrelated software, hogging resources, being uncooperative with attempts to uninstall, and just generally causing anguish and frustration is QuickTime. Last I checked, that's an Apple product and a Mac staple.

Questionable List (4, Insightful)

rsmith-mac (639075) | about a year ago | (#42100833)

Am I the only one that finds this list somewhat questionable?

Of the 50 items, most of it definitely fits the definition of crapware: McAfee® Internet Security Suite, WeatherBug, Wild Tangent, etc

But then there are some other items in here that have me scratching my head. When was Solitaire or Minesweeper crapware?

They seem to just be listing all non-stock software (since MS doesn't include their Metro games in the box), which is not the same as crapware.

Re:Questionable List (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100975)

Then there's the double-counting. Spotify is listed twice, and so is Wild Tangent. There may be other dupes.

Someone didn't proofread very carefully at all.

Re:Questionable List (0)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | about a year ago | (#42101063)

It's just complete ignorance. Welcome to modern "journalism". Anyone with a clue knows this is a vendor issue, not an OS issue.

Re:Questionable List (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101101)

McAfee isn't crapware so much as it's crap. Anti-virus on Windows is there to serve a useful purpose--it's just that that suite isn't known for doing it well.

Re:Questionable List (5, Insightful)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year ago | (#42101271)

Sure, it's a lot of "crapwear". BUT, this is an OEM issue, not a MS / Win8 issue.

Secondly, is this news? Not really, it's been this way for a LONG TIME.

If you buy a system for which you don't intend on wiping and building up from zero, then you'll need to uninstall a lot of this crap. It's been this way for YEARS.

And if you DO intend on running windows, ditch the factory install and cripple-wear reinstall CD that comes with it, and buy Win8 Pro so you have the actual full CD.

None of this is news for OEM Windows systems.

Re:Questionable List (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101457)

But then there are some other items in here that have me scratching my head. When was Solitaire or Minesweeper crapware?

When it is metrofied and ad supported??? Not that I have a problem playing and downloading ad-supported games which I do on my Android, but it ought not come with the system (yes, Google is an offender too).

This is the price you pay if you want it cheap. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100839)

If you don't want it, don't buy crapware from crapstores, simple.

Crapware Is Good (5, Funny)

sk999 (846068) | about a year ago | (#42100843)

I figure the crapware vendors pay enough to balance out the cost of MS Windows 8. Thus, when I wipe the hard disk and install Linux, I'm still breaking even.

Crapware comes from crap business models (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100847)

Guys, and gals. There are a few MBAs out there I presume. If your business model is based on razor thin margins, the pressure to allow crapware to invade your environment is to great to expect crapware not to thrive.

Buy a Mac. The Apple business margins are fat, so you won't have deal with crapware.

Here's a hint. Figure out what your time is worth. Knowing the business fact of the cost of your time, will provide the correct answer.

Re:Crapware comes from crap business models (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101389)

Buy a Mac. The Apple business margins are fat

It's true. Locally I can buy a Win8 (ugh) laptop with:

24GB SSD / 750 GB HDD / 6 GB RAM / 15" screen / DVD drive for $650.

Same processor Apple laptop with:

500 GB HDD / 4 GB RAM / 13" screen / no optical drive for $999.

Windows beats Android on crapware (5, Insightful)

Sussurros (2457406) | about a year ago | (#42100851)

My clean Android is full of crapware that I can't remove. Windows crapware is removeable.

Windows beats Android on crapware.

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (3, Informative)

nurb432 (527695) | about a year ago | (#42100889)

Root then install a 3rd party ROM. Get a direct from china device that doesn't have it in the first place.

Problem solved.

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (2)

Sussurros (2457406) | about a year ago | (#42101051)

If I root my HTC One X and don't get it right then I've got myself a doorstop. If I do it after I get my HTC DNA then it has no meaning. I'm right back in 1985 when I wanted to upgrade from an 8bit XT mobo to a 16bit 286 and I cooked a $600 mobo ($2000 in today's dollars - a bank loan was involved).

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (3, Informative)

lexman098 (1983842) | about a year ago | (#42101345)

I think your making some big assumptions. Rooting the one x is very easy [xda-developers.com]. Worst case scenerio most of the time is you have to reflash.

Or just deal with a locked phone full of crapware...

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100913)

So how exactly do you remove Internet Explorer, then?

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100939)

You can remove it, you just need to spend 10 minutes learning how to root and flash. Or you could have bought a Nexus device.

Windows beats Android on n00bs.

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (3, Informative)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about a year ago | (#42100995)

That's why I bought a Galaxy Nexus from Google. No blood sucking crapware, plus I don't have a contract with the Devil.

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101175)

That's why I bought a Galaxy Nexus from Google

I don't have a contract with the Devil.

Really... This is just too easy...

Disable it (5, Informative)

Namarrgon (105036) | about a year ago | (#42101169)

As of Ice Cream Sandwich:

- Settings / Apps / All
- Select the unwanted app/service
- Click Disable.

It's still in ROM of course, but it won't show up in the App Draw, it won't be started on boot, and it won't consume any memory or CPU time.

Re:Disable it (1)

Sussurros (2457406) | about a year ago | (#42101379)

The apps I want to remove mostly don't appear and the ones that do have neither the uninstall nor disable options when I select them. They do have the uninstall updates option which is a worry because I have never updated them. No, Windows still wins the crapware war.

Re:Windows beats Android on crapware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101363)

su
mount -o remount,rw /system
cd /system/app
rm StupidBloatware.apk
reboot

What, your `su` comes back "Permission denied"? Should have gone with something rootable then...

whose fault ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100861)

I do not believe this is Microsoft's fault. The other vendors subsidize the cost to the manufacturer. So you clean it out, delete the bloatware.

Re:whose fault ? (1)

Sussurros (2457406) | about a year ago | (#42100915)

If you cultivate rhinoberries you'll get rhinos. If you cultivate catnip you'll get zonked out cats. Change the ambit and you change the ambience

Re:whose fault ? (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about a year ago | (#42101009)

All mimsy were the borogoves and the mome raths outgrabe.

(your turn)

Re:whose fault ? (2)

Sussurros (2457406) | about a year ago | (#42101223)

'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

My father was in the Japanese Occupation Force and detested the Japanese til the day he died. I went to Japan to see what he was talking about, saw it, and fell in love with the place nonetheless. I learned Japanese poetry. I talked my sister through cancer with it - she said to me "my oncologist saved me but you brought light to a dark place." The finest Japanese poetry was written by Irishman, Yeats:

Climbing, falling she knew not where,
Hiding amid the cargo of a steamship,
Her knee-cap broken, that girl I declare
A beautiful lofty thing, or a thing
Heroically lost, heroically found.

No matter what disaster occurred
She stood in desperate music wound,
Wound, wound, and she made in her triumph
Where the bales and the baskets lay
No common intelligible sound
But sang, O sea-starved, hungry sea.'

That is like Windows. I took a day off work to line up and buy Windows 98SE but when Windows ME cme out I knew iit was a dead seagull. Nowadays they who stuck with Windows sit on coils of rope, their kneecaps broken, and sing a song of freedom.

why Norton Internet Security or McAfee Internet S (3, Insightful)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year ago | (#42100867)

why Norton Internet Security or McAfee Internet when MS own tools are better.

Re:why Norton Internet Security or McAfee Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100893)

The OEM doesn't get a cut of the sales of MS tools.

Reinstall the OS? (1)

macbeth66 (204889) | about a year ago | (#42100869)

I know it is a pain. But I recently did just that on an older HP laptop with Vista ( shudder ) and it did not re-install any of the crapware. I even created a DVD full of software I wanted using a fully protected machine. I installed everything on the Vista laptop and it is actually quite sprite. I even did a 'dd' with an Ubuntu to another, larger drive. I swapped drives and rebooted. Six months, so far, and no issues.

Clean Operating System CD? (3, Insightful)

pwizard2 (920421) | about a year ago | (#42100973)

Awhile ago I remember hearing that you could download a clean iso of Windows x directly from Microsoft if you have a valid serial number for whatever version x is. IIRC it was supposed to be an alternative to those shitty reimage discs that OEMS used to give you (or force you to burn at your own cost) but better because they were crapware-free. Can you still do that? (I haven't bought a PC in ages and I'm still using Windows 7 so I'm not sure) The best course of action would be to reload a clean crapware-free version of Windows as soon as you get the iso burned to disc.

Re:Reinstall the OS? (1)

LinuxIsGarbage (1658307) | about a year ago | (#42101199)

Yes a nuke and reload is always best. However given the lack of included installation media (though you can create restore discs, those include the junk, and most users are incapable of even getting that far), it isn't that hard, but it's out of reach of a lot of amateurs, and it still proves the system, and the experience is broken.

Interestingly, I see reports of users with Windows 8 OEM computers that are having a bitch of a time getting Windows 8 to reinstall off plain Windows 8 discs.

My time is worth more.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100891)

Back in the days when I would build my own computer, I'd chalk that off as a "soft expense" for being so bare-bones. Now that I'm older and have a job, I'd much rather spend my time with my wife whenever I have those rare moments of free time. I used to snark about Mac people, but now I'm seeing the benefit of something that "just works." I already pay premium for several things in life because I can afford to - and again - my time is more valuable, even for $500 uninstalling crapware && reinstall OS + updates for 4 hours. It's despicable that Acer is pulling this crap at a premium price-point. It's the same reason I left Sony Vaio's and Lenovos before I finally succumbed to Macbook Pros. Yes, even the Mac has some lame software built-in, but they don't shove it in your face or clutter your desktop/ taskbar/ shortcuts. Nor do I have to worry about them popping up and complaining about their existence (except for iTunes updates). Most importantly, I don't have to worry about those 3rd-party apps phoning home god-knows-why.

Am I a mac fanboi? No. I have a rooted Android phone (because I had to remove the crapware). I'm getting a Nexus 4 if possible.

But the point it is, I'm willing to pay a premium to have something that just "works." For work.

The only thing useful in that list for me is the Webster dictionary. And I bet it's a paid-subscription.

Re:My time is worth more.. (0)

cheekyboy (598084) | about a year ago | (#42101287)

Jeez your a lazy sob.

Buy a cheapass laptop, boot of bootable USB (loaded with Win7Ult), a few clicks later, boom, 30 mins, install done (dvd installers make me laugh)

Fresh windows, no crap ware. Your getting old dude.

By your rationale, why dont you sleep 1 hr a day, and take coke to stay away, since you know time asleep equals money equals wasted money.

Work 21hrs/day.

I've always been baffled (1)

atari2600a (1892574) | about a year ago | (#42100897)

Why microsoft never put something in the volume licensing agreement like the ability to give users a one-click option that removes all the bloatware whenever they want.

$1900? (1, Flamebait)

cashman73 (855518) | about a year ago | (#42100909)

For $1900 you could get a decent MacBook Pro, no crapware installed! Don't waste that kind of money on Windows (any version),...

Re:$1900? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100999)

Or just build 3x$600 computers and put your O/S of choice on it and then avoid installing the extra horseshit.

A $2000 Apple was cool when there were only just a hand full of personal computers out there to buy.

Re:$1900? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101181)

no, it still comes with MacOS (crapware in-and-of-itself), but it comes with plenty of crap on top:

Addressbook, app store, chess, dropbox, DVDPlayer, FaceTime, Font Book, GarageBand, iCal, iChat, Image Capture, iMovie, iPhoto, iTunes, Launchpad, Mail, Quicktime, Safari, Stickies, TextEdit, AirPort Utility, AppleScript Editor, Bluetooth File Exchange, Boot Camp Assistant, DigitalColor Meter, Podcast Capture, Podcast Publisher, VoiceOver Utility, Photo Booth

Crapware by design (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100933)

Windows 8 arguably comes with crapware by default, even on a clean install. The Microsoft Store, Bing toolbars, weather and financial tiles, and the abomination that is TIFKAM (the interface formerly known as Metro). Clean and spiffy? I don't think so.

Windows RT is progress (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100941)

Its worth pointing out that in the RT environment (aka modern apps, aka apps with live tiles), those apps are sandboxed by the OS. So they don't drain resources if you don't use them, and they can easily be completely uninstalled. There is still the legacy app issue, but it is a degree of progress.

Bogged down (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42100963)

My neighbour recently bought a new laptop which came with Windows 8. First she couldn't figure out how to use it because of the lock screen and Start page. Then she had trouble launching installed apps because there wasn't any Start button. But mostly the big issue was all the crapware. It was a nice piece of hardware, but it was completely bogged down with dozens of trialware and crappy apps. The CPU was constantly running at 95% just to keep up with it all, which made performing any action painfully slow.

Granted, this neighbour isn't particularly tech savvy, but she's not completely lost when it comes to technology. Windows 8, as shipped by the OEM, was a terrible experience for her and I don't think it's one she's likely to repeat. I suspect she'll move to Mac or Linux in the near future.

Re:Bogged down (2)

OldSport (2677879) | about a year ago | (#42101365)

Christ, the crapware isn't Microsoft's fault, it's the makers of that particular computer. This is a problem on the maker side, not on the OS side. Shit, if third party makers were able to produce Macs commercially you can bet your britches they would be loaded up with crapware, too. This whole debate is moot.

We all understand the problem well (4, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | about a year ago | (#42101015)

This is one of those "it's good to remind people of a pervasive problem" stories. Some people accept this as "status quo" and others see it as a serious problem.

We get it. The business of PCs is stupidly tight with slim margins. The easiest way to supplement profit is to sell software installation services to software vendors. It doesn't bother the OEMs that they are doing this at the expense of the PC customer or even at their own reputation.

Commenter Sussurros above states another obvious problem. Crapware on phones... android phones. And I heartily agree. I think we will see a bit less of it soon though.

Turns out Google is changing the game. I find it FASCINATING that the Google Nexus 4 phones cost between $300 and $350 and yet T-Mobile says it costs a LOT more and will sell it cheaper if you buy two years of obligated service with expensive data plan. What surprises me the most is that T-Mobile thinks they can get away with this... worse! They *are* getting away with it. Google sold out of inventory in minutes. T-Mobile sold out in hours. There are no Nexus 4 phones.

The phone you get from Google is bloatware free and carrier unlocked. I don't know if that's the case with the T-Mobile version... anyone know?

But just as in the PC market, the phone market cannot resist the extra money (even if they are making insane profits already) they make by including crapware.

I decided long ago when my contract is up, I will do this no more. I will have my Nexus 4 when it becomes available again. I'm definitely not buying from those scalpers... sheesh... $500, $600 each?! I know there's a sucker every minute, but I'm not one of them. I'll wait a bit longer... I've got time.

Android has enabled the game to be changed. This is something that ONLY open source software could do. It's not just free software. It's FREEDOM software. I know I'm not alone in my intention. I'll spend a little more up front and save a LOT more in the long run.

I'm done with your games, carriers. Are you listening? Done!

Great Specs! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101041)

Did anyone notice the specs on the $1900 Acer?

Its an all-in-one unit, with a 27" touch screen, 8 GB of RAM, and a 2 GB Nvidia graphics card.

I'll be happy to take that from anyone who doesn't want it. Despite the "crapware".

Fast.... Finally! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101065)

Obviously what's needed here is a visit to finallyfast dot com.

Seriously, all computers/devices are throttled by crapware if they come with preloaded software. How is this news/why would you expect something different this time?

Need more corez! (4, Funny)

DigiShaman (671371) | about a year ago | (#42101081)

How else are you going to justify that i7 CPU? Crapware needs to run on something. Oh, and a little extra left over just for you. Enjoy.

Nah, this is misleading (3, Informative)

sideslash (1865434) | about a year ago | (#42101093)

Everything that Windows 8 brings to the table works against bloatware -- for example, Windows 8 Store apps can't monopolize CPU and memory unless the user deliberately launches and is actively running them, generally speaking. Store apps (aka Metro) are very well behaved due to intentional OS constraints. Desktop apps can still be poorly behaved and set themselves to run on startup, phone home, etc., but that's just because Windows 8 is compatible with poorly behaved apps written for previous Windows versions. Microsoft's Windows 8 software logo requirements for desktop apps mandate that apps _not_ add themselves to the "run on startup" registry keys. But that part is not enforced, which was the right call on Microsoft's part. If they made Windows desktop software a walled garden, everybody here would be screaming bloody murder.

tl;dr version: basically Windows 8 brings a substantial improvement against bloatware in that the RT/Metro/Store side protects your CPU/memory resources from being consumed by it; but the legacy desktop side is still an unlocked experience, and vendors can install junk on there if they want to.

Dare I say it, as I duck my head down, Apple (0)

Grayhand (2610049) | about a year ago | (#42101095)

All my Apple preinstalled software is fully functional. On my windows machines if I click on a text file it defaults to Word informing me I need to purchase the software. There's been a reader installed forever but it isn't the default anymore the non functional preview install of Word is the default. It's one of many reasons I weaned myself off Windows and I'm almost exclusively Mac now.

Re:Dare I say it, as I duck my head down, Apple (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101211)

These people are the reason that slashdot sucks now. Can't even set a file association using the simple 'open with...' interface for doing so.

Re:Dare I say it, as I duck my head down, Apple (3, Informative)

OldSport (2677879) | about a year ago | (#42101349)

Right click > open with > select program and check "always use this program for this kind of file." Just so you know. And you could always, like, uninstall the Word preview if you weren't planning on using it, which would solve the problem as well.

I had a similar problem on my Mac. Fucking iTunes used to try to open every movie I made in iMovie, so then a clicked the mouse a few times and told it not to. Problem solved.

Windows 8 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101143)

is the crapware.

It's Windows (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101203)

It's made for people who can't tell their ass from a hole in the ground. If you're stupid enough to buy it then you're stupid enough to bend over and let all passersby stick their dicks in.

You asked for it, you moron. You got it. What's your complaint?

WINDOWS USERS SHOULD BE TAKEN OUT AND KILLED. STUPID FUCKING CUNTS!!!

Ahh, that felt good!

Don't blame Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101225)

Blame greedy OEMs.

Just uninstall it (3, Insightful)

OldSport (2677879) | about a year ago | (#42101311)

Is it annoying? I guess so... I don't really get my panties in a bunch about it; I just uninstall it and then I never have to deal with it again. Basic computer literacy, really.

Basic Psychology (5, Insightful)

high_rolla (1068540) | about a year ago | (#42101313)

The thing is, when they sell to a corporate this doesn't matter. The corporation just creates their own image and drops that on every machine as standard.

The next largest market is not us techies but Joe average. Now yes, they do make money by pre installing this crapware but it also gives them an advantage. On the packaging they can show off that their machine comes preinstalled with this large list of software (highlighting various well known names). Joe average will tend to make his purchasing decision based on which machine has the largest list of features and the biggest numbers (works the same for stereos, TV's, etc). That's why all this tech comes packed with useless features that more often than not reduce the experience and performance. If you want to outsell the competition, sadly, this approach works.

This is why this trend is not going to change anytime soon.

You can win by not taking this approach (and Apple is probably the best example of this) but your product has to be well polished and typically you will be aiming for the upper market who more often than not doesn't fall for these marketing tricks.

Re:Basic Psychology (1)

couchslug (175151) | about a year ago | (#42101423)

"The corporation just creates their own image and drops that on every machine as standard."

That's also basic preparedness for many techies and there are plenty of tools to help. Load it, tweak it, image it, and when it breaks you can swiftly reload and be back to work.

So "Nuke and Pave", this (was) a geek site. (4, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | about a year ago | (#42101317)

I expect crapware. Blow away the OS and install from clean .isos using appropriate tools. I'll not detail it here, the internet is your friend.

OS replacement should be trivial for nearly every Slashdotter. Back in 1999 they even discussed such things in these very forums. (Now get off my lawn, though given continental drift it's probably somewhere in the Marianas Trench...)

If you don't know how, MANY nice folks on many forums offer their expertise for the reading. (Google "My Digital Life forums")

If you don't WANT to know how, Fark is that >>>> way.

Complain about crapware (1)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#42101325)

But I bet if they offered you a more expensive version with no crapware, you'd take the crapware, and clean it yourself, and be happy you saved the money.

The crapware makers subsidize the PC makers; without those extra marketing deals from all those companies, the new Windows 8 PC would be about as expensive as an Apple.

FUD (3, Interesting)

mug funky (910186) | about a year ago | (#42101357)

anyone read that list?

spotify was mentioned twice. minesweeper and solitaire were included.

also, all crapware from all territories appears to have been added to the same list and presented as "this is what you'll get".

consider what comes out-of-the-box on an ubuntu installation.

i'm not defending crapware at all - i hate it. but a strong case against it is not made by misrepresentation or outright lying.

Not all OEM installed software is crap (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42101385)

Most of it is, I'll give you that. OTOH, my ThinkPad came with some unusual processes running. When I checked into them I found one that checks for shocks and moves the hard drive r/w head to a safe place. Just removing everything that's "not Windows" might not be such a good idea. BTW, I never thought about that little service until I tried to play MP3s through the laptop while driving. It wouldn't work because bumps on the road were enough to throttle the drive and mess up playback. I was annoyed that I had to have another device for MP3s, but glad to know that software was doing its job.

there's big money in crapware (3, Informative)

sdnoob (917382) | about a year ago | (#42101411)

the big PC makers make a ton of money off those crapware distribution deals.. they make money on windows in the end, which is why you won't find a no-OS or linux PC from any of them for the same price as a windows one of the same model and specs...

i suspect windows 8 will be *worse* than earlier versions, due to having two separate user interfaces to pollute instead of just one.

(un)Hol Crap(ware) BatMensch!!!! (1)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | about a year ago | (#42101465)

"The crapware issue is so bad that Microsoft even has "Signature"-branded PCs whose biggest selling point is the lack of trialware. An upgrade that costs a crazy $99."

Yes folks, for a measly hundred bux we'll be slightly less offensive.

Crapware on PCs is kinda like The Shouty Man in advertisements. Sure they're so in-yer-face that we notice them, but our *only* reaction is "screw that!".

Seriously folks, for the price of a cheap-n-nasty USB stick you could make ALL this "crapware" infinitely less abusive-relationship by having your default browser homepage be a "here's all the stuff we *gave* you, clicky linky to install what you like".

(a) not in your face offensive
(b) easy to hit the "tell someone who cares" button
(c) doesn't by-default bloat your machine (especially good for business users)
(d) Free USB Stick (!!!)

All That AND not pissing off your customers.
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