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How Do I Know If A Download Is Safe?


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#1 Lil-ly

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 02:35 PM

I want to find a free software program for a computerized daily planner/scheduler. I began a Google search, but I have no idea how to tell if a site is trustworthy.

I guess if I were to be specific in my question it would be Are there any sites that anyone could point me to where I could find such a program that is decent and not a trap?

I hope this post isn't vague and annoying, I am just new to the internet and not very "web smart"

Thank you!
Lily

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#2 Dialer

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 02:57 PM

Hi Lily,

Neither vague nor annoying, your question is a very smart one! :thumbsup:

Others here will probably give you lots of suggestions, so I'll just tell you about one site that I find totally trustworthy, which is CNet's http://www.download.com/. You'll find just about anything you could possibly want there. Be careful when downloading that the programs you select are supported by your OS (Windows XP, Windows Vista, etc.).

Here's a link to advice about searching the net (I think they call it Surfing 101):
http://websearch.about.com/od/searchingthe...daywebguide.htm

Happy surfing!

#3 TMacK

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 03:04 PM

You can always check BC's Freeware Replacements For Common Commercial Apps.

If you use Firefox, a great little extension to have is McAfee SiteAdvisor.
It adds safety ratings to search results and the sites you visit, to help protect you from malware.
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#4 tg1911

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 11:42 PM

If you can't find anything from the links already suggested, here's the ones I use most often:
snapfiles.com
download.com
softpedia.com
majorgeeks.com

Be sure to, ALWAYS scan anything you download from the internet, with your Antivirus, BEFORE opening it.
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#5 jgweed

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 02:15 PM

I use Mozilla's Sunbird as a planner/scheduler.

I wish more internet users would ask that question, since something like 90 percent of malware is the result of someone taking some kind of download action. Before downloading any application, a quick Google search will generally provide enough information to allow you to determine if it is what you need, and is safe (problems often surface quickly with software).
Whenever possible, download the file from the author's site, since this will assure that you get the latest authorised version and that the file is not corrupted, or their recommended mirror sites (such as CNET, for example).
Regards,
John

Here is a link to Sunbird for you to review:
http://www.mozilla.org/projects/calendar/sunbird/
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#6 Animal

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Posted 20 November 2007 - 12:16 PM

I use Chaos Manager v2.25 by Martin Breeson

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#7 Andrew

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Posted 20 November 2007 - 04:00 PM

A superb site that hasn't gotten a lot of press is Nonags. It's not nearly as large as other sites, but I've found that their standards are very stringent when it comes to freeware (they even turned down a little app that I wrote myself! :trumpet: )

Another interesting place to check is Sourceforge. It has thousands of open source programs available, plus you can also download the source code if you want :flowers: . Sourceforge is more than just a place to download cool programs, it's a hub for thousands of open source projects and I highly recommend it!

I wish more internet users would ask that question


You said it! :thumbsup:

Edited by Amazing Andrew, 20 November 2007 - 04:02 PM.


#8 Lil-ly

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 08:31 AM

UGGGGGH! :thumbsup:


I went to download.com and found a program that I wanted to try. I downloaded it, scanned it for viruses then went to run it. But then I got this screen that said that An external application must be launched to handle file :links.

If I wasnt expecting this I am suposed to cancel this in case it is malicious. Is this bad or is my Comodo blocking something it is not used to.

Any input?
Lily

#9 groovicus

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 08:49 AM

Comodo blocking something it is not used to


Probably.

Download.com is very reputable. Of course, nothing is ever guaranteed. :thumbsup:

#10 Lil-ly

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 10:58 AM

Do you think that its safe to try?

The name of the program is Anytime Organizer 11.1
Lily

#11 groovicus

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 11:03 AM

I think what everybody has been trying to say is that sites like download.com take great pains to make sure all of the applications that they host are clean. However, there is always the slight possibility that something escaped their notice, kind of like the slight possibility that you will be struck by lightening. But given that Bleeping Computer has members that are incredibly talented at malware removal, on the off chance that something should go wrong, there is plenty of help available to correct it.

#12 Lil-ly

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Posted 24 November 2007 - 11:12 AM

This is irritating!

I downloaded it and went to open it but it wont because something about


C:Documents and Settings\Jane Doe:)\Desktop\PROA11v1Trial.EXE is not a valid Win32 application


What does this mean? Did I do something wrong?
Lily

#13 tg1911

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Posted 24 November 2007 - 11:23 AM

See if anything here helps:
Not a valid Win32 application
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#14 Lil-ly

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Posted 25 November 2007 - 11:12 PM

Well I scanned it with AVG after I downloaded it, it said it was fine. I deleted it and I think that I'll try again. Either from the same place or somewhere else. I let you know how it goes....
Lily




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