Being a Good Windows Citizen

Filed under Installations, Rants, VB Feng Shui

I’m constantly amazed by some of the goofy things that application installations do to my system without even giving me the option.

Obviously, there’s the whole spyware/adware problem, but that’s just blatant.

There’s an entirely other, more subtle, level to the problem, where applications do little things that are difficult to undo, are annoying and that you aren’t given the option of not “doing” in the first place.

Here’s one example. Now, I like the CodeJock products, and I’m not really picking on them here, it’s just that they give me a good example:


This is the “Right Click – New” menu that you get from Explorer when you right click in a folder and select “New”.

Now, I’m a pretty busy developer, and I like a nice shortcut just as much as the next guy, but honestly, I can’t imagine EVER creating so many “Command Bars Designer Documents” that I’d want an entry for it on my New Items menu like this. As you can see, there’s already enough junk on this menu. I wonder how many people out there create a new contact, bitmap image or briefcase so regularly that it belongs on this menu. Hell, I’ve always created new Word docs by opening Word, starting my document and then “File-Save”-ing them wherever, never by the “New Office Word Document” menu, but then, maybe that’s just me.

A few others:

  • Unrequested shortcuts on the QuickLaunch space or the Desktop.
  • Unrequested Tray Icons.
  • Adding Vista Sidebar gadgets without permission.
  • Stealing file extension associations without asking and not restoring them on uninstall.

Any other bits of application rudeness out there anyone has run into?

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