Dell rejects spyware charge

Discussion in 'privacy general' started by ronjor, Jul 15, 2005.

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  1. ronjor

    ronjor Global Moderator

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    Story
     
  2. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    LOL @ Dell's explanation.
    Source: http://dell.myway.com/welcome/index.html

    So these are supposed to reflect my interests ? I'm not interested in one of them.
    Why do I need ANOTHER search bar anyway ?
    If I want to look for something, I use google. If I don't find it with google, I use another search engine.
    I don't need "MyWay Speedbar" to limit my search results to what other people WANT me to find.

    In this case I would rather believe Sunbelt, than Dell.
    Any additional search bar has a certain hidden goal otherwise they wouldn't create it.
    We have already more than enough search engines.
     
  3. bellgamin

    bellgamin Very Frequent Poster

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    Well said, Erik!
     
  4. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

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    DELL is an American based company, and as such many of these listings (sports scores, stock portfolio, news and entertainment) are items which many Americans would and do find interesting (including myself).

    This, however, I definitely DO agree with. DELL has taken the CHOICE away from the customer....and that is something that they are a bit notorious for.

    I have found DELL's customer service to be very accomodating, and very willing to please the customer. The problem is that they do not LISTEN to the customer in the first place!

    For example, when I purchased my machine through DELL, I asked for 512 MB of RAM....to be distributed in a way that would allow me to upgrade by adding additional memory later. DELL's solution to this? Install 2 "256 MB" chips on the two pre-installed memory module slots. Very deceptive...because when you want to add an "addtional" 512 MB memory chip later, you have to replace one of the existing 256 MB chips with another 512 MB chip! And they "EXPECT" you to pay for the upgrade (i.e. - pay for TWO 512 MB memory modules). I was able to talk to a DELL supervisor, and explain that this was shipped to me incorrectly, and that there should have been a vacant memory module slot for me to upgrade WITHOUT affecting what I had already purchased (which was 512 MB of memory). They shipped me 2 "512 MB" chips, and only charged me for one...so it ended well. But it was the initial headache that could have been avoided in the first place that caused me some outrage.

    Also, I asked that NO America On-Line products be pre-installed on my new machine. You can just imagine how that turned out (several months later, and I'm still deleting AOL entries like a damned rootkit!)

    But as for the "MyWay Search Assistant", it can be removed...but it's kind of difficult. Someone in this forum (Blackcat or Jaguar, I think...forgive me for not remembering right at this exact moment) provided a referrence and link for a freeware program called "Add-Remove Pro"...and I used it to remove ONE of the two "MyWay Search Assistant" listings in Windows Add-Remove Programs. Luckily, it removed the one WITHOUT the Windows removal feature....so I was able to use Windows Add-Remove to remove the other. I used the "search" function to see if it had been completely removed from my PC, and it came back clean. Maybe I'm the exception, or I'm very lucky...but so far, so good.
     
  5. richrf

    richrf Registered Member

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    I'm really tired of all of these computer companies that are trying to track my behavior. I'll just have to search for a vendor that sells systems clean of all this kind of software. It took me hours to clean my son's new Dell laptop of all the junk they installed on it. I'll not go through that exercise again.

    Rich
     
  6. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

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    I hear ya, Rich. I do like my DELL PC...and I've found their customer service to be very good as well. It's all the "initial" headaches where they either:

    A) don't listen, or
    B) don't care

    that have caused me my grief. I guess they figure they'll leave it up to customer service to satisfy the customer.....but they could certainly do a better job of listening within the sales department in the first place!
     
  7. mercurie

    mercurie A Friendly Creature

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    Wow. I have never purchased a Dell. A real eye opener JRCATES :eek: .

    Is Dell the only hardware offender in such matters?

    I suffered no such problems in 2001 with my Compaq or 2004 Emachine. I am sure I would remember...well may be there was AOL easily dumped however.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2005
  8. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

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    I think they all do this, mercurie, to a degree. Some are probably worse than others (DELL being a prime example). DELL offers the most reasonable prices...AND a good, quality machine.....but their junk "pre-installed" software can be overly frustrating (I have removed probably 8 "pre-installed" packages - including AOL, MyWay SA, Earthlink-which I asked for INSTEAD of AOL...but since I'm on DSL now, no need for, Intuit QuickBooks-a nice program, but only a 90 day trial and very expensive, among several others).

    The best thing to do if one wants a "pre-installed software free" computer is to buy from a local PC manufacturer that builds to YOUR specs. I did that with my last machine, but DELL had a really good promotion going on in March that was too good to pass up. Actually, for the price, I shouldn't really bitch about the software that I have had to remove :D
     
  9. mercurie

    mercurie A Friendly Creature

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    Agreed. My next machine built to my needs by a local shop and give me my MS OS disk too. Not a silly recovery disk. Which just flat out stopped working after a second time on the Compaq. Just kept telling me to call tech support. I solved it by upgrading to XP on same machine.

    I guess that is how they keep costs down maybe these companies pay to have their icon on the desktop. Like Advertisement it could be why you were ignored with your AOL request.
     
  10. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    I didn't expect that it was easy to remove either LOL. That's a part of the forced "MyWay Search Assistant" game : make it difficult to remove for ignorant users (the majority).
    Adware and Spyware are also hard to remove.

    Pre-installing adware/spyware on new computers, doesn't surprise me either.
    The adware/spyware makers paid Dell to do this. So it's too late for complaining users.
    Maybe hardware vendors should join the ASC club as well.

    What a comedy !!!
    If it's about money, you don't see the difference between the good and the bad guys anymore.
    They all want their share and are very willing to close their eyes.
    When something isn't logical, money will explain why it isn't logical. That's what I learned at my job.
     
  11. Tassie_Devils

    Tassie_Devils Global Moderator

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    One of the reasons why I've always had my PC's custom built.

    Parts, tower, HDD, MEMchips, etc. etc. even down to the darn keyboard, with JUST the OS installed and WU patches to the latest. Even when they offered to install free of charge, 'xyz' AV ~ "the best in the world" I have always emphatically insisted NO to.

    Paid slightly more in the long run [maybe $200] but worth EVERY cent.

    That way I "know" what's on it..... nothing..... until I put my stuff on. :)

    TAS
     
  12. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    Most of the PC's in my house I built myself because of reasons like this. I build them from scratch, install all the software myself and I've never had a problem with any of them.

    I do not like the idea of companies adding "Additional Software" that they feel helps improve my computing experience.

    We use Dell's throughout my place of business, but we load our own image so we don't have to deal with the pre-installed crap that nobody wants.
     
  13. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    And Dell is a member of ASC :D
    I guess clashes of interests will be warp and woof at ASC :D
     
  14. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

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    Check out these links, Erik:

    DELL and CounterSpy

    Dell and other AS,AV vendors

    I don't think that DELL purposely intends to install spyware with their machines, and has good intentions

    but like you said earlier....

     
  15. nadirah

    nadirah Registered Member

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    Buying a custom built PC is always the best, OEMs should learn not to pre-install all the unnecessary software at the factory.
    Just build our PCs that we ordered, and don't install any programs, let the customer install what they really need.

    They just want our $$$, they don't care what they do with the newly built comps at their factory, they just install what they think is ''good'' that can ''improve'' the customers computing experience. My relative ordered a brand new PC from DELL, and i helped to set the new PC up, and i found mcafee's security products( all anti's software) pre-installed on the new comp.
     
  16. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

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    I don't mind that, since I like and use McAfee products, and McAfee is a partner in the fight AGAINST malware. But for someone who doesn't like McAfee products for some reason, though, I can see where this might be a problem. McAfee has always been very good to me...but I've had problems with other, large AV/security type company's products in the past....so if THEIR products came pre-installed, I might be a little perturbed myself. Therefore, I understand what you mean. ;)
     
  17. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    I also think that DELL doesn't pre-install spyware. If that would be true DELL wouldn't live that long.
    But I do believe that DELL pre-installs additional questionable software together with legitimate software on their new computers.

    That "MyWay Speedbar" isn't cosher IMO, like any other special search bar.
    You don't offer a free search bar without a purpose and you certainly don't make it a bit difficult for users to remove it. Why is that necessary ?
    These special search bars don't always have the same search results as real search engines, like Google.
    This isn't malicious, certainly not spyware, won't hurt any user and is probably hard to prove, if you don't have the source program.
    Now Dell won't be the only one. Hardware is often sold with pre-installed software and usually appreciated by the ignorant users, who hardly know how to install a computer from scratch.
     
  18. trickyricky

    trickyricky Registered Member

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    What really gets me annoyed is the way these companies get so damn complacent and dogmatic in their defence of what they are doing. It's always "We don't install any spyware or adware, just software which tracks your usage habits and delivers adverts targetted to enhance your online computing experience" or other similar marketing drivel. Bloody semantics.

    It's like a gun manufacturer telling people that they "don't make guns, we merely make bullet delivering tools to enhance the discerning bullet deliverer's real-world experience". WE know they are guns, THEY know they are guns, so who the hell do they think they're fooling? GRR!
     
  19. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Someone said "Dell has good intentions". Nuts!. They are paid advertising dollars to install these trial packages. When I called them, at least they were honest and told me I couldn't order a PC without all this stuff. But it isn't just Dell. HP loads there machines up with an equal amount of "stuff".

    I buy my computers from VelocityMicro. Comes with the OS and that is all. I get full OS disks, plus a set of recovery disks. My notebook came with a great Ulead suite, but I had the option of rejecting it, if I didn't want it. Also came with Farstone's clone program, but they didn't install it. You can install it if you want it. This is my idea of "Myway"

    Pete

    PS there are other pluses from dealing with them, but I won't elaborate, since they are off topic.
     
  20. zcv

    zcv Registered Member

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    One way to short circut the pre-installed problems with Dell is to re-install the OS. The "recovery" disc from Dell is the full OS. All the software pre-loaded has seperate discs, just re-install the wanted apps.

    This can't be done with HP/Compaq - the "recovery disc" is back to "Factory" settings.

    Regards - Charles
     
  21. mercurie

    mercurie A Friendly Creature

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    My recovery disk from Compaq was junk failed to operate after just two uses. Very limited to start with and just junk.

    I did not know about Dell? full OS...really!
     
  22. mercurie

    mercurie A Friendly Creature

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    A wonderful way to go imho!! As most of you who know me for being a tight wad this where you would be penny wise and pound foolish.

    Same with CAP. Build it yourself or have it built by a trusted shop or friend and just start adding the programs and apps you want. Yes it will cost you more but take your time save your $$ it is worth it. But you will know the quality of your parts and exactly what you got. Assuming you do communicate with your shop or friend as to what you want. If you do not understand something ask. If your builder is put off go elsewhere. I have done it both ways so I do speak from experience. ;)

    Sorry for drifting off topic somewhat. :oops:
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2005
  23. SexIsGood4U

    SexIsGood4U Registered Member

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    Hi ya all :D

    I hear ya all well and clear. In ways you are all right. Most of you are suppposely Americans and speaking of Americian support. Try Australia. Afew years ago they moved the Dell support off shore.... to INDIA.
    Not being racist... cos i'm not. I'm a mixture of blood and speak afew different languages. But the tech support with Dell in Austrasia.... SUCK. They might know about PC's, but can they "communicate" with you..... NO. Hell, you don't want to repeat yourself 10 times just to query with matters. I used to work corporate finance and alot of Dell come through.

    Me .... Never owned a Dell...... NEVER WILL :D

    As to search engine and knowing your way about your own PC is doing it the hard way. What most of it comes down to is "commmon sense". If your lazy... you ought to be a dumb ass. There is more than one way to find what you want on the net. And the good thing you might come across something more interesting, better and general knowledge if more than money can buy.

    Just say you own a Dell and your not on your PC, but at a freinds place surfing the net. You don't have your Dell friendly bar. o_O

    These days I own me own computer business (custom build PC only) and I have recently started an internet cafe. Everyone that uses my PC luv them and say it's the best I've used in Australia. They are custome built by me (& a friend). They are good looking from the inside - out.

    Go Antec, Abit, AMD, nVidia, Corsair and Pioneer. Build a PC around those guys and you will be a happy, proud user for many years ahead. ;)

    Recovery CD's from branded PC... is a rotting scam. You have not too much flexibility. Who cares about Dell. Dell might be American based, but their gear is made (assembled in Malaysia !!). (not a racist remark, but alot of you think based in your own country means you buy from them and you are supporting your own country, but if they are made / assembled else where. Majority of the money actually goes offshore. :(

    Custom build your PC and the user will custom build the interface to their own needs.... That is the way to go. We are not animals, (so stop treating use like herds)

    Kind Regards
    :D
     
  24. SexIsGood4U

    SexIsGood4U Registered Member

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    Truthfully.... It will not cost you more. Either one of two issues;
    You are either getting ripped off by the person you are buying your pc from.
    OR / AND
    You look at this way... You pay for what you want. Not a combo package full of BULL**** !!

    And the options for upgrading are left in the owner / user :D

    What happens when Microsoft have a new OS out and you wish to upgrade the OS. Most of the time, Branded gear (including Dell), won't allow you, unless you know more than general knowledge of PC's.

    Kind Regards
    :ninja: :D
     
  25. JRCATES

    JRCATES Registered Member

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    I think this thread may be getting a little off track.

    When I referred to DELL as an "American based" company, that's a fact, not an opinion. Toyota Motor Company and Honda Motor Company are Japanese based automobile manufacturers who have plants that build their products primarily in the United States....but most people still recognize that these are Japanese based companies.

    I was referring to the fact that many items recognized within the MyWay Search Assistant (and primarily to Erik's posted "company remarks") deal with things that many Americans will find interesting. Note that I was and did NOT endorse the policy or practice....simply that I understand the MARKETING behind it.

    Same for Pete's comments about DELL's intentions. I believe he misunderstood or did not bother to read all of what I wrote and/or the links that I had provided. Honestly, I should retract my statement about believing that they have good intentions...because I DO NOT KNOW what their true intentions are. Anyone who lays claim to that other than DELL'S CEO, CFO and upper management should have their credibility checked at the door! I was referring to the fact that they include SECURITY software (McAfee, Norton/Symantec, Sunbelt Software, etc.) bundled with their product...and as someone else pointed out, DELL is also a member of this newly created "anti-spyware coalition". Besides, I don't think that the MyWay Search Assistant has ever been clearly defined and categorized officially as "spyware". I know that the 10 or so anti-virus/anti-trojan/anti-spyware scannners on my machine NEVER ONCE flagged this item as "malicious" or a possible spyware object. It is right there in everyone's face...and can be removed through Windows Add-Remove (for the most part).....so lighten up a little. Sheesh....you'd think they were pre-installing keyloggers, trojan rootkits and viruses from the (over) reaction of some.

    I'm not ready to throw DELL under the bus because I dislike some of their pre-installed software and pre-shipment practices. They still offer a high quality machine at VERY reasonable prices. And as zcv was good enough to point out a few posts earlier, this pre-installed software can be eliminated....perhaps not easily, but eliminated none the less. So lighten up....the "pre-installed, in your face, able to remove through Windows Add-Remove programs function that has never officially been classified by a reputable organization as spyware" known as MyWay Search Assistant isn't worth trashing a company to death over!
     
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