Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    136
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Checking suggested software

    How do I check on software?

    This is a general question, not about a specific software. On this forum or other Woody's forums, freeware or shareware is often recommended. How can I be (reasonably) sure the software isn't malware? While I trust the regular contributors here, I really want some authoritative assurance that XYZ software is ok. What I normally do is to look at the homepage of XYZ and see how long its been around and if it has a forum for user feedback. And I check to see if XYZ is available on reputable sites like Snapfiles http://webattack.com/ or C-Net download.com. And I google XYZ to see if any authorittative sounding sites have reviewed it. So is this too much? too little? on the wrong track? What's a prudent plan? Edited...Yeah I'm running a firewall and antivirus software, but I still am careful. J. Till

  2. #2
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Silicon Valley, USA
    Posts
    23,112
    Thanks
    5
    Thanked 93 Times in 89 Posts

    Re: Checking suggested software

    This is a serious problem. As you may know from reading the recent thread entitled Caveat emptor, download site ratings may be completely meaninglessness. And what does "spyware free" mean on a vendor's site? Probably something different to everyone.

    Besides running it up the flagpole here in the Lounge, you could try searching for reviews or comments or bad news on reputable software and anti-spyware sites. Also you could try running it in a virtual machine (e.g., BufferZone) to see what it does. If the software does anything suspicious, you can submit it to some of the antivirus companies for analysis.

  3. #3
    Plutonium Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Lexington, Kentucky, USA
    Posts
    12,107
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Checking suggested software

    I don't have anything to add to what Jefferson and Alan have said except that it looks like you've got a pretty good plan going there already and I think that many of us do things very similar to what you've pointed out. It IS a risky world out there, so keep the faith.

  4. #4
    Platinum Lounger
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    5,016
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Re: Checking suggested software

    With regard to freeware, the usenet newsgroup Discussions - alt.comp.freeware | Google Groups is a good place to search for a software title. Despite the usual dose of usenet lunatics, public groups like this do tend to represent the "peer review" process better than anything else on the interthingo. If there's been the slightest whiff of malware you'd hear about it there.

    Alan

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •