Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Software: De-junking your New PC (tip 1)

If you buy a new computer from Dell, HP, eMachines, etc., its probably going to come full of useless trial programs that try to entice you to spend money to get the full version of it. These demo programs have become lovingly nicknamed 'crapware'. I hate the nickname of the software, but I think its appropriate.

I recently bought a new consumer PC, and I could not believe all useless software that came pre-installed. When you see all this stuff on your new system you have two choices, one leave it alone, or two remove the useless programs from your computer.

For me, the first thing I want to do is purge it from my system once and for all. To begin this 'decrapifying' process, follow the instructions below:
  • Open the Control Panel from under the Start menu and select 'Programs and Features' (in Windows Vista) or 'Add/Remove Programs' (in Windows XP).
  • Search through the names of the installed programs, and uninstall the ones you know for sure that your want to remove.
    • Note: Use caution, and don't indiscriminately remove everything that you see. For example, there might be a DVD player, CD/DVD burning software that you may need to use later. Also if you don't know what it is, you might want to investigate it first before removing.
  • After you finish the first round of uninstalling programs, go under the Start menu and see if there are any others that you want to remove.
  • You should also open Internet Explorer, and see if they have any toolbars or add-ons that you want to remove as well. Some of these can only be removed from the uninstall control panel.
Some programs may not be listed in the uninstall control panel, and to remove them you might have go to that program's folder under the Start menu to see if there is an uninstall utility there.

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