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Author Topic: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award  (Read 4787 times)

Eóin

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Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« on: April 17, 2007, 11:25:39 AM »
Hey all just curious about Softpedia's 100% Award

softpedia_free_award_f.gif

I've always been fairly trusting of this reward and it's only occurred to me recently that I don't necessarily have a basis for that trust. Now don't get me wrong, I've never heard anything to make me mistrust it, but I'm curious how others here view it.

dk70

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2007, 12:12:01 PM »
Not worth 10 cents. May be 1 year ago I got into a little argument with a dude who always linked to Softpedia. Took me few minutes to find a nice screensaver with crap in it, I believe it was featuring Paris Hilton. Was not even labeled ADware which they also have - just dont get the Award. There is good and bad Adware. Up to 1 year ago Softpedia did not have many deep thoughts on what they offered - numbers before quality. Possible they have improved. Not really a major effort to declare something certified - what does it mean and include? Do they analyze installation of each program or what?

app103

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2007, 01:11:25 PM »
Technically it's an ad banner.

They expect developers to put it on their website with a link back to their site, which raises their search engine ranking and brings in more visitors.

But this much I can tell you:

They do run every program on their site at least once, if only to make their own screenshots* of it.



*Except in the case of one of my programs that had no window and they used the screenshot of my shortcut properties box from my site, that I had made to demonstrate how to use the program.

Incidentally, I never submitted this program to them and I don't have a PAD file for it. They took it right from my site without asking and botched the description by leaving out the important half. I never submitted anything to them yet they have almost all my software on their site with the descriptions being a copy & paste from my pages. And except for 1 item there isn't any PAD files for anything. I never made any. They are hotlinking to my files for downloads and using my bandwidth. Does this qualify as both content and bandwidth theft?

Hirudin

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2007, 02:04:06 PM »
Ah another Futurama fan! I'm diehard myself!

I guess it would depend on where I saw it. If I was looking at the software on the Softpedia site I'd trust it, but when I see that logo on a software site I rarely verify it. I would trust the logo about 15% more than if the developer just wrote the same message "No Spyware..." on their homepage.



...sounds like it to me app103

cthorpe

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2007, 03:12:16 PM »
Of course, they put that 100% banner on the software description on their site, then rarely host the file itself, so who knows what you are getting.  I only trust it if I see it on the softpedia site, and they are hosting the program on one of their servers.

Even then, I rely on my security programs to verify that it is safe.

Eóin

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2007, 06:08:33 PM »
I tend to agree with you guys that unless they are hosting the 'tested' binary themselves then their claim about it's safety are largely meaningless.

In the past I always checked the user comments on download.com. You could filter them to only show the negative comments and then I'd fly down through them looking for mentions of spyware. Hardly fool proof I admit but it at least gave you an overall impression of the software.

These days I find myself relying on recommendations from reputable sources (Zaine you qualify as one of those :) ) or I try to stick to opensource apps which is perhaps a bit naive but you have to let your guard down at some stage.

Recently though I've seen a number of programs mentioned on Softpedia which I would trust in of themselves, as such I've found their association with Softpedia and it's 100% FREE award to improve Softpedia's rep.

app103- I see your point about bandwidth theft, it is quite irresponsible of them to provide direct links to your downloads, they really should instead refer people to your webpage. Perhaps you should look into some anti-leeching trickery?

app103

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2007, 09:14:47 PM »
app103- I see your point about bandwidth theft, it is quite irresponsible of them to provide direct links to your downloads, they really should instead refer people to your webpage. Perhaps you should look into some anti-leeching trickery?

Setting up anti-leech would be really easy but would harm my ability to hotlink my own stuff when I want to. I was thinking about some other php trickery that would work more to my advantage. ;-)

What bothers me most is how botched the descriptions on some of the software is...and the fact they are using my content without even asking. They have stuff of mine I would never submit to a download site, for obvious reasons.

cthorpe

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2007, 10:35:02 PM »
Could you do some kind of anti-leech that was only triggered when softpedia was the referrer?

dk70

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2007, 03:29:17 AM »
Just to show how weak their testing is check out SpyShield http://www.softpedia...kers/SpyShield.shtml - then go to rouge list http://www.spywarewa...gue_anti-spyware.htm Different kind of crapware but should not be listed if they had concern for users - site dont bother with content of incomings. 1 user rating whatever excellent then excellent it is - Softpedia is a circus but may be some use if acting like a storage for hard to obtain programs.

app103

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2007, 05:31:38 AM »
Softpedia is a circus but may be some use if acting like a storage for hard to obtain programs.

But they don't host the files....they only link to them. They store nothing. If the developer's site goes away, so does Softpedia's source for the files.

Could you do some kind of anti-leech that was only triggered when softpedia was the referrer?

That was sort of my thinking.  ;)

dhuser

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2007, 07:17:17 AM »
Could it be done this way...:?
Move the file Softpedia is linking to and place it in another folder, while only updating the link on your website. It results in the link at Softpedia, giving a 404 Page Not found or Page not displayed error.

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app103

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2007, 07:46:49 AM »
Could it be done this way...:?
Move the file Softpedia is linking to and place it in another folder, while only updating the link on your website. It results in the link at Softpedia, giving a 404 Page Not found or Page not displayed error.

dhuser

That wouldn't stop them from coming back and doing it again. What I planned on doing was moving the files, replacing the links and letting a script handle handing out the files.

If Softpedia is the referrer, opening the page the application can be found on, instead of just handing out the file.

Also, if I can, redirect any other old links to files to the script and let it handle it too. Which would not break the current links to my files from approved sites and result in 404's. It would still allow the older links to work, and all of Softpedia's current links just redirect visitors to correct page.

I'll have to take a good look at what Joto's SendFileAndLog script allows, and maybe ask him if he could mod it for this, if it can't do it.

Although I don't think visitors would mind my 404 page as much as some others site's 404 pages.  ;)

f0dder

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2007, 08:02:39 AM »
Do NOT do a 404 error, that'll just make users think your website is b0rked.

Instead, detect if the referrer is softpedia - if it is, put up a page informing the user that softpedia hotlinking and stealing bandwidth etc., but offer a link where they can download the software.
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dk70

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2007, 12:09:12 PM »
I dont know how the procentages are but they do store files on own servers. What I get out of entries like this http://www.softpedia...t-Download-2155.html - and

Quote
Download links marked with the text "Softpedia Secure Download" depict download sources located on servers owned and controlled by Softpedia. All files available from those mirrors have been thoroughly tested for viruses and other malware. Moreover, these files will always be available, you will not encounter errors such as "bandwidth exceeded" or "file not found", our servers are reliable and secure.

app103

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2007, 12:44:59 PM »
That probably for people that actually pay for file hosting & premium listing. And that is probably only as long as they keep paying.

app103

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2007, 12:52:10 PM »
Do NOT do a 404 error, that'll just make users think your website is b0rked.

Instead, detect if the referrer is softpedia - if it is, put up a page informing the user that softpedia hotlinking and stealing bandwidth etc., but offer a link where they can download the software.


I would really prefer to avoid 404's if I can...that is the plan. I am just no good at php and don't know how to go about doing this.

The only php I know is <?php include('whatever.php'); ?>  (and it's quite useful, I must say)

f0dder

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Re: Softpedia's 100% FREE Award
« Reply #16 on: April 18, 2007, 05:04:12 PM »
*grin*, I'm not a PHP wiz either, but I know it's doable and don't think it's too difficult, unless they have a zillion different sites they redirect from.
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