by MarkFlax - 12/18/11 5:23 AM
In Reply to: Download.com wraps in their own installer? ads spyware by DADSGETNDOWN
1] Is Cnet using a wrapper ? - Yes, but not on all software. The Download.com team decides which software to offer via the installer and software developers themselves can 'opt-out' of Download.com using the installer for their files.
2] Does it contain ANY kind of spyware or other maybe even tracking stuff ? or malware etc. ? - No.
But that's not the full picture. CNET's installer will offer 'one' software title as an extra, usually a browser toolbar or some such thing, and it is this that may be caught by some anti-virus scanners. These are false positives and if the installer file is uploaded to Jotti or some other online resource which scans the file with all the known and recognised anti-virus scanners while you watch, you will generally find that one of the scanners mark it as spam, or none do. Also, if you send the file to your anti-virus developer they will check and confirm the result is a false positive.
That said, some browser toolbars, search toolbars, etc do track the user as part of their service and function.
Finally, although the option to download the additional software title is checked by default, (I would wish it was 'unchecked' by default), and when the installer is run, the user can watch the process and opt-out if they wish.
3] Is there a difference between downloads when Logged in and not logged in ? - Yes
If the installer is wrapped around the software a non-member selects, there is no option but to use the installer. However, members who log in will be offered a "Direct download" link, (just underneath the green Download Now button), to use if they so wish. If there is no 'direct download' link showing for members, I assume that the software selected is not wrapped in the installer.
I hope that helps.