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Anyone got an opinion on DVDVideoSoft?

marko's Photo marko 28 Nov 2011
We've came across a few new listings for DVDVideoSoft software recently and we're actually struggling to work these guys out.

We had a couple of there titles on the site but we removed our support for them after multiple negative ratings in WOT yet looking at ratings from all the site advisory sites it would appear the vast majority of people disagree with the negative comments, take a look:

A lot of people are talking about the "Ask!" toolbar in particular, although the arguments there are that this is optional, which we've always said is a requirement for any listing to make it on the site, but I'm looking for anyone else's take on this just now - have you installed any of their software and found it to be misleading or suspicious in any way?.

I've just downloaded and installed Free Audio Dub myself and found nothing out of place - so I'm wondering, what other issues are we looking at with these guys?

FreeWareFan's Photo FreeWareFan 28 Nov 2011
I'm using "Free Youtube Download" and never has any problems with unwanted third-party software like Ask-toolbar in it.

marko's Photo marko 28 Nov 2011
Cheers FF, hopefully we'll get more positive comments - let's see how it pans out :)

jjj's Photo jjj 28 Nov 2011
In DVDvideosoft's FAQ section there is a list of removal instructions for various toolbars - so they must be in the install somewhere- one being the PLASMOO toolbar- never came across this one - however googled and found it is a version of CONDUIT which is a pain to get rid of.
However this conversation I came across could also sway your decision at http://www.commentcamarche.net/forum/affich-14321759-le-temps-d-ajout-d-un-logiciel-sur-ccm where copied software is not acknowledged correctly.

marko's Photo marko 28 Nov 2011
Unfortunately, I have to translate that page jjj and the context is a little out of whack so I'm not really able to get a true grip on what's being said and how but it appears the developers are arguing about the acceptance of their software with others who have obviously done their homework. I can't find a great deal more information regarding their practices or included software so I guess I may just have to begin going through their free software to see what I can find manually.

jjj's Photo jjj 29 Nov 2011
Sorry Marco for the site being in French- sometimes I forget not everyone is using Chrome ! -
To me DVDvideosoft is a company manipulating the system to appear to remain legitimate with enough instances of trouble free software - as you found with ' Free Audio Dub ' only being a teaser to get you to let the barriers down.
As with the deceptive advertising I encountered the other day - https://freewarebb.com/topic/60840-misleading-and-dodgy-installers-that-trick-you-into-installing-additional-software/page__pid__76256__st__10#entry76256 it seems that the scammers have found that this area - media converters - to be a lucrative field.

marko's Photo marko 29 Nov 2011
I would have to agree jjj, DVDVideoSoft are a company that make me a little nervous - they have many negative ratings in WOT yet these ratings have been voted down multiple times from other users - you know what they say, no smoke without fire, there are usually always reasons why people will rate a site negatively. Having said that, on the face of it it appears they are now trusted but as I say I'll keep an eye on things and see how it pans out :)

Bala7's Photo Bala7 29 Nov 2011
I use a VM such as VirtualBox without networking then install many DVDVideoSoft programs in one Box.
Never worry about intrusive spyware again. Works best to run modern hardware with ample memory.

James (Jim) Hillier's Photo James (Jim) Hillier 29 Nov 2011
The French discussion page (linked to earlier) goes to show just how many people totally misunderstand the issues involved. One representative of the site referred to the software 'installing OpenCandy'. OpenCandy is NOT installed - yet another popular misconception.

I believe this is one of the worst aspects of services such as WOT which rely heavily on user input. People can, and will, rate a site poorly for many reasons - not the least of which can be based on ignorance, misinformation or even downright stupidity.

All these types of reporting services/sites are a guide only, in order to be absolutely certain one must do the homework themselves. Even the results from VirusTotal need to be dissected and evaluated properly. If a file is scanned through VirusTotal and 4 out of 42 AV engines flag for malware, does that mean the file is infected? No, not necessarily - after all, 38 have reported the file as being 100% clean. One would need to; (a) assess the reputations of the AVs involved in the flagging - are they among the better known, most reputable names or are they little known products devoid of any established reputation. (b ) Assess whether or not the flags might be false positives.

Take the reputable range of freeware from NirSoft for example - universally recommended and known to be 100% safe. Yet, the vast majority of AVs will flag many NirSoft tools as malware - in particular those tools which can be used to recover passwords, licensing details, etc. The AVs do not have the ability to discern between malicious use and somebody harmlessly utilizing the software simply to recover their own forgotten passwords/details. The same is true of many other types of software, AVs are unable to differentiate between legitimate utilization and malicious intent so they tend to lump them all under the one banner - malware. Common sense is key.

In the case of DVDVideoSoft - there is certainly enough negative input to raise suspicions. I scanned 10 of their most popular titles through VirusTotal, the results were mixed. Four out of the ten were flagged for malware, but not by any of the more reputable AVs and only by a very small proportion of the total 42. The other six scanned 100% clean. Again, these results certainly raise some doubts but are overall inconclusive and should not be employed for a definitive judgment - further investigation would be required.

I can't really see any way to be 100% certain, short of downloading and installing every title available on the DVDVideoSoft site and checking each one personally and thoroughly. I have installed some of their freeware in the past, never had any sort of problem and it has always worked pretty much as advertised. Mind you that was some time back now and these situations are definitely subject to change.

Cheers all...Jim

Apokalipsys's Photo Apokalipsys 01 Dec 2011
DVDVideoSoft makes me nervous :unknown: because of my experience with previous software from them. They tend to install suspicious software without the user knowledge and permission. Also, their software does not install in one shot but in a series of downloads that are triggered depending on the app that is going to be used, at least that was the case with other versions of this software, and with each download came the installation of "hidden stuff". Because of that experience, I downloaded the full installer of the latest version directly from their site and ran the installer in a virtual machine with limited network access and its own security utilities, and tightened the host security (a little paranoid... :crazy:).

I ran a few malware scans with different utilities with the heuristics to the max (even look for hijackers) and they came clean. This does not mean that I trust them, but they are apparently making a huge effort, I have to give them that. The installation proceeded with no issues, although it took a while, and their toolbar recommendation (which I declined... I hate most toolbars :dash2: and this one is no exception). Then I ran many of the "apps" listed on their main menu and (surprisingly) no unexpected downloads or installations came out, although I did noticed that the apps were a little slow including the splash screen and the main menu (I did not take any empirical data regarding this except a higher CPU and memory usage than the expected) and that DVDVideoSoft tried to make their interfaces look somewhat consistent, modern, professional and intuitive :unsure:. Besides, I did not detected any unauthorized TCP port activity, also no suspicious registry modifications and no unexpected file access or changes. Personally I use other transcoders, but this is a good set to try. They seem to be improving.

I am going to play and test a little more with this apps on the host PC to experiment with some features and to have access to the full resources of my system. :music:

I'll report back any outcome...