Bloatware: Thanks, I Hate It

Bloatware: Thanks, I Hate It

While there are certainly bigger problems in the world today, one that is uniquely suited to annoy a great number of people is bloatware. It’s sneaky, unnecessary, potentially unsafe, and difficult to remove. It’s like a drunk wedding crasher, except they’re inside your computer.

For those unfamiliar, bloatware is a catch-all term for software that’s bundled with phones, tablets, or computers by the OEM. It is often reframed as a benefit to the customer, as it comes with free trials and ostensibly lowers the price, though this claim is dubious at best. Rather, it appears to be a way to increase company profits at the expense of customer satisfaction. Some companies even charge you to remove it, which is like the groom slipping that drunk stranger a fifty for eating all the hors d'oeuvres.

But the customer can just remove it, right? Well, that’s the thing. By design, bloatware is notoriously difficult to remove. One thing that’s particularly annoying is the fact that performing a fresh install of the operating system won’t even work, as bloatware is usually prebaked into the OS that comes with your device, and vendors rarely allow you to purchase an OS separately. In that case, your best course of action is to install software-removing software which, on top of sounding ridiculous, offers mixed results.

Not only does it clutter up your system with unnecessary apps, it can affect overall performance in the form of hidden background processes that love to eat up valuable resources—much like an uninvited guest scarfing your finger foods. Manually ending these tasks in Windows is sometimes not enough, as they like to pop back up later all on their own. Some can even change settings without the user knowing. Additionally, there are privacy and security concerns. Some unwanted apps can leave a device open to vulnerabilities, and can include telemetry services that track you and send your data off to whomever they please.1

For now, here’s a couple tips to reduce the amount of bloatware on your current system. First, when installing new software that you actually want, don’t keep clicking “next” without reading the prompts. There are very often pre-checked boxes that are used to sneak in something extra you don’t need—a toolbar, for example. Sometimes these extras are instead hidden in “advanced” tabs, which seem to be named so as to discourage the average user from finding them.

If you’re looking to purchase a new workstation, odds are the idea is for it to be a solution to a problem, not the cause of one. In that case, you need a system that is the best it can possibly be, stripped of the unnecessary fluff you get from some of the other companies. BOXX is committed to providing workstations, servers, and laptops with unparalleled performance for professional workloads, which is why we do not add bloatware to our products.

Consult with a BOXX performance specialist today to know more about how we can help you and your business maximize your creative potential. For now, know that you can buy a BOXX with the peace of mind that your workstation, and your hors d'oeuvres, are safe.

1 The drunk wedding crasher analogy doesn’t quite fit here. Maybe he’s a spy?