New Software Promises To Make Computers Crapware-Free

from the cut-it-out dept

The subject of “crapware” on new computers has been getting a lot of attention lately. Apple has even released a new ad pointing out the fact that its computers don’t come weighed down with the stuff. Some might say that all of these unwanted trial programs help subsidize the cost of new computers, which partly may account for Macs being more expensive than PCs. But, Macs continue to gain market share, which may suggest that consumers may find the trade-off worthwhile. Meanwhile, Brian Krebs notes that there’s a new program out with the fitting name of “PC Decrapifier”, which promises to make it easy to, well, decrapify your PC. So, if you want to take advantage of the subsidies, but don’t want to spend hours removing programs from your computer, then there may be a solution. Actually, this would seem to support the theory of some economists who see things like hidden fees being a boon to savvy customers. If you are shrewd enough to avoid the fees (or in this case cut out the clutter), you might actually be able to get a good deal.

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Comments on “New Software Promises To Make Computers Crapware-Free”

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Michael Long (user link) says:


The last notebook I purchased from Apple had, IIRC, fully-functional but out-of-date copies of OmniGraffle and OmniOutliner, the same for GraphicConverter, and a 30-day trial for MS Office Mac. I seem to remember another computer having demos of iWork and Clickbooks.

And, of course, there’s the infamous $29 “upgrade” needed to get Quicktime videos to play full-screen.

Much better than HP or Dell, I’ll admit, but it still brings to mind that old adage about those who live in glass houses…

Nick says:

Re: Apple

You’re either a Microsoft plant or you simply have no idea.

News Macs come with virtually no trial software. What there is doesn’t load on startup, slow the machine, and nag you. Moreover, it can be removed simply by dragging it to the bin. Try that on Windows.

This was already all explained when the subject was in the news and under discussion before now.


“Finally, an excellent way to avoid or minimize the craplet problem is to simply buy an Apple Macintosh computer. New Macs don’t have any craplets displayed on their desktops. On a new Mac, no third-party software is automatically launched when you start the computer, and you don’t need antivirus or antispyware programs because the Mac is essentially free from those menaces. So, even my year-old Mac laptop reboots roughly three times as fast as my three-week-old Sony.

“Apple does include a few third-party programs on Macs, including one that, oddly, is for drawing comic-strip effects on photos. But these are tucked away in the applications folder and most are full working versions, not trials or offers. The main exception is a trial version of Microsoft Office. With some Mac models, you get trials of two Apple programs, iWork and FileMaker Pro. But these trials can be deleted simply by dragging the icons to the trash can.”

Jonathan says:

Re: Re: Apple

Plant? What is it about hardcore Apple users that think anyone who sees both sides is Gate’s son? And, for that matter, hardcore PC users who think that Apple is as evil as Satan.

I own both and support both types of systems at work. True, the start up of such programs is more of an issue on PCs, but it is there on either system. I don’t care whether you are a PC or Mac type of guy, the companies ARE making money from the software they load.

(But yes, Nick, PCs are a bit more aggressive with how they present that type of software on startup)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Apple

I’ll second that. sorta.

My mbp came with office on it, and with quicktime “upgrade desired edition”. (and thats it for trials)

But theres a HUGE difference. Having office there is actually a convenience (30 day demo with ability to “upgrade to full”, and its presence is not even remotely intrusive. Dont like those pretty icons hogging your diskspace? delete one folder and its all gone.

As for quicktime. well, yeah, thats crap. But only once did I have to tell it “no”, and its not bothered me again since.

So even tho there is trial stuff there, its just not PURIFIED EVIL like it is on a new dell or toshiba or whatever.

Now if you really want to get me on a rant, ask me how I feel about the .mac experience. Nearly half the “neat” or “cool” things that OSX (Really the iLife product) can do are handicapped out of the box with half the features only working after you purchase a .mac account… Now that is just incredibly frustrating.

I was getting so annoyed by it that a friend of mine bought me a .mac account jsu tot get me to quit whining about the crap that didnt work. .mac is 100% customer alienation. If anything apple should have given everyone a free account. If nothing, apple should make their software work with other domain names.

Jonathan says:


Which one:
Man who lives in glass house should not throw stones.
Man who lives in glass house should change in basement.

Let’s face it all the junk they load on there is a kick back to the company. Doesn’t matter whether it is Dell or Apple HP or Sony…the companies want to put that junk on it for kick backs off the total sales.

I welcome this type of change, but Steve Jobs will do whatever to make headlines. In the end, the company will choose to stick with the preloaded apps in an effort to make another $$ off of each user around the world.

Chronno S. Trigger says:

What is it with you apple thumpers

You guys make it sound as if Microsoft is putting all this software on the PCs. Even the new apple commercials are implying that. THEY’RE NOT. its HP and Dell and Sony. CompUSA and Circuit City. I’m not saying that makes it any better, but I would respect apple users more if they would just stop lying to us.

FrankC says:


The most obvious reason that an Apple system doesn’t have any crapware on it is because
1- there is a heck of a lot of less competition among developers in the same space. For every developer for a MAC, there are a hundred developing for Windows.
2- market saturation isn’t worth what Jobs probably would want in return. Putting an app on a MAC is like sticking a for sale sign in my basement. Who the hell would see it? Yet Jobs probably wants a small fortune. Same reason why 9 out 10 people buy Windows in the first place: Apple overprices for ancient UNIX, and runs on only Apple manufactured hardware limiting choice and freedom.
And cry all you want, those are the facts. More developers. Lower cost. More choice.

Anonymous Coward says:

Dell gets a cookie when it comes to this subject. True to their recent promise of listening to what the customer wants, they now offer a $0 line-item that will opt out of any pre-installed trialware and freeware entertainment software on their Inspiron laptops. However, they fail to give you an opt-out option for either AOL or Earthlink ISP software. Still, it’s a step in the right direction.

Savvy says:

Easy, fast and clean install

I second what “Home Builder” said.

I recently bought a new Acer laptop. When it came out of the box I didn’t even bother booting it up with the pre-installed OS. I immediately popped in a new Vista DVD and within an hour had a fresh, clean installation.

On the other hand I can see how some consumers may *say* they don’t want their new PC loaded with “crap” but I think some of those same people would complain when their brand new computer couldn’t do anything but play Solitaire or browse the Internet right out of the box.

Inexperienced Girl says:

Bare Bones

Ok.. so in 1998 I went to a computer show, got a computer built – bare bones they called it. AT the time it was considered “faster” than anything I could get in any store. Then 4 years later it broke – it was just the fan. Didn’t know it so I ran out and got a new PC – Sony.. full of crapware you call it. Stupid Sony gives me trouble. My “bare bones” computer.. still works like a dream – been upgraded and I added programs as I needed them. Where’s that computer show? When I need a new computer I know where to go!

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