Software download sites list

By i8DRM ยท 18 replies
Apr 17, 2014
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  1. Has anyone compiled a list of software download sites that do not employ foistware/adware installers? Or perhaps a list of sites that do this, so that they can be avoided? If so, I'd like to see either such list. If not, I would like to begin compiling a 'safe' list (and/or an 'avoid' list), and ask for suggestions to include on either. Thanks!
  2. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,585   +250

    Excellent suggestion.

    One to avoid like the plague has to be CNet. I'm not sure I've ever been able to do a straightforward download on it. There are download buttons everywhere and they seem to have no relation to the file you are after.

    I downloaded CCleaner yesterday from FileHippo and that went smoothly. On installation the offer of something else came up, probably AVG and a toolbar but it was easy to decline. No sneaky stuff.
    i8DRM likes this.
  3. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,182   +469

    For a download site have you tried TechSpot? Look at the very top of this page for TechSpot's download link. That doesn't mean that the downloads themselves don't contain options for toolbars and other "extras" but that's a software issue, not the download site issue.
  4. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,585   +250

    Good suggestion. I input several of my favourite utilities into the Search box and there were TechSpot links for them. Perhaps it's the place to start out from.
    learninmypc likes this.
  5. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,715   +3,696

    True but there are sites that add third party extra's to their downloads. I've heard CNET is one of them.
  6. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,182   +469

    The site I'm talking about is TechSpot not CNET or other sites.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  7. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,670   +413

  8. Kaj Hansen

    Kaj Hansen TS Rookie

    I also use filehippo first to see if they have it, because of no added bloatware.

    However when installing a computer for someone, I find invaluable. It does not circumvent all the bloatware the free software tries to hook you up with during the installing, but it can save you a lot of search time and install time.

    You do have to run the installed chosen software once, just to set it up and disarm the traps that some of the free softwares always come with. (especially when installing for your digitally challenged compadres/familia)
  9. i8DRM

    i8DRM TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Good to know. FileHippo has made it to my Whitelist, as Google research agrees with failed to dig up any dirt on this site!
  10. i8DRM

    i8DRM TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Techspot's downloads has made it to the whitelist, as Google failed to find anything bad, plus several sites:
    McAfee Site Advisor -
    Web of Trust -
    vouch for it!
    I'm currently focused on download sites that use installers that were obviously created by social engineering fraudsters, and protected from lawsuit by shyster legalese, with the sole intent to scam endusers into downloading malware. As for the "software issue", its on my 'to-do' list, after this project is completed.
  11. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,670   +413

    Does site advisor have a free addon that is like WOT?
  12. zombi3

    zombi3 TS Rookie

    I've used Softonic a few times with no problem and they seem to have a good rep. I fully trust any downloads from Majorgeeks, bleepingcomputer and, of course, Techspot. :cool:
  13. i8DRM

    i8DRM TS Rookie Topic Starter

    After further doublechecking, I would advise you to not put much faith into 'siteadvisor recommendations:

    All the above sites are known to use crapware downloaders, yet were vouched for by siteadvisor. I suspect Mcafee is playing games, and considering they coined the term PUPs:

    ...this is maybe to be expected.
    learninmypc likes this.
  14. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,670   +413

    Thank you very much. :)
  15. alio matt

    alio matt TS Rookie

    My experience with was great except you have to give them your email for them to give you the download link.
  16. Julio Franco

    Julio Franco TechSpot Editor Posts: 7,668   +988

    Indeed, TechSpot's downloads section is updated every day with app updates, similar software recommendations and we also host software titles on behalf of developers free of charge, so you'll see many devs linking to TechSpot for hosting their (usually free) apps.

    Now, our focus is on listing software that is useful to PC enthusiasts and that starts with the service itself. Unlike other sites that are using bundle installers for monetizing traffic, we don't and won't do that. We also blacklist software containing malware (obviously) or apps from dubious sources. If the software developer includes offers on their installers (many tier 1 developers are doing that these days), we cannot control that.

    However you will find that a majority of the time we accomplish our ultimate goal: to notify you of software updates, provide intelligence through aggregated user ratings and similar app lists, and provide you with fast downloads on a one-click process.
    learninmypc and cliffordcooley like this.
  17. zombi3

    zombi3 TS Rookie

    Ouch! I meant Softpedia, not Softonic :eek:
  18. i8DRM

    i8DRM TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I am currently researching the following:
    Google is not being forthcoming, so would like to ask if anyone here has had direct experience with any sites above, and can either vouch for them, or know for sure they are bad apples!
  19. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,670   +413

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