I was writing Steven a thank-you note for his suggestion when I diverged into a peeve of mine from a few weeks ago. Then I decided, oh what the hell, it’s a rant, post it, why let only one person enjoy? So here I am, putting an unpolished rant up instead of going to bed like a sensible person.
I was discussing the idea of using a packet sniffer to check the network out and make sure there wasn’t any funny traffic going out that shouldn’t be, like from a trojan jacking with my system. That possibility has been bugging me for a few weeks, but I installed McAfee and ran a scan. It claimed the computer was clear. Then I promptly deleted it from my system.
Why? Because it was the antithesis of no-hassle. First, it wouldn’t play nice with Zone Alarm. If you install the anti-virus software, you have to install the firewall. No choice. So I had to remove the firewall I had, and with which I am happy. Strike one.
Then it’s unclear whether or not it downloaded an updated virus definition file. Supposedly it did, but the system locked up. Ok, I reboot and fire it up. It prompts me through the setup proceedure… and “suggests” that I upgrade to the full version with all the bells and whistles and email/spam/personal data security/popup blocking, etc etc. features. Several times. As in anytime I looked to confirm what features I did have and options I could set, I’d get a message telling me how much better the more expensive version was, and how much I really, really needed it. Thank you, no, I already made that decision at Best Buy, now I’d like to run a simple virus scan, thank you! Strike two.
Then after I ran the scan and dealt with the minor items I found, I checked the summary screen one last time to make sure everything was ok, and rebooted for some reason. On boot up, I got the splash screen and a warning message telling me that there was a problem with the settings. I opened the panel to see what the problem was…and I got a popup.
The problem was that I hadn’t bought the full version with all the bells and whistles, so my protection was substandard! Yes, for only 79.99, I could upgrade to McAfee Pro and know that my personal data was secure, I’d be protected against spyware, and manna would rain from the heavens, blah, blah blah; blah, blah, blah. I can see where this is going. I’m going to be bombarded by sales pitches disguised as warning messages every time I boot up and every time I run a scan, and every time I look at the computer crossways…. and I’m not going to know the difference between the two unless and until I open the message and get a popup.
So what’s the point in protecting the user against bad behavior if you’re going to turn around and do the same objectionable thing yourself?
START } SETTINGS } CONTROL PANEL } ADD/REMOVE PROGRAMS } MCAFEE 2007 } UNINSTALL.
Strike three, four, five, and what the hell, all nine for the inning. Game over, thank you, don’t come again.
I should have stuck with Norton.