<CT> Re: V1#36 - Re: News for Opera users!

  • From: Paul Neubauer <vakko@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: calmira_tips@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 15 Dec 2000 20:46:20 -0500 (EST)

On Fri, 15 Dec 2000, Pete wrote:
> >Subject: <CT> Re: News for Opera users!
> >>Good News: Opera is no longer shareware! =20
> >The bad news is worse than you describe; the banner-adware setup comes =
> via=20
> >the Cydoor system, implicated in several spyware programs (nothing gets=20
> >alt.comp.freeware going more than a whiff of spyware...). These programs=
> =20
> >allegedly don't just phone home, but are capable of passing=20
> >demographic/system/site-visiting details, etc, to commercial sites -=20
> >something the developers always deny, however.

According to Tollof Fog Heen (Opera Programmer) there
is no Cydoor code in Opera.  Opera is almost entirely
internal code (they do use some public libraries for
some graphics handliing, as I recall).  Opera does use
the Cydoor servers, however.

 The Opera newsgroups have been full of suspicions, but
Opera seems to be telling the honest truth in their
statements (you can see how the ad system works on thier
site info).  No program has had its alarm go off about
Cydoor code from Opera, and folks running sniffers
report nothing happening that isn't what was said would
happen.  In short, no spyware.  The adware stuff does 
remain in the registered version, it simply no longer
shows the ads nor fetches them to a cache.  A weekly
adfetch at that - not a huge bandwidth hog.

> I like the caution - "implicated" & "allegedly" :o) I doubt these
> companies would even attempt to challenge anyone who gave a more
> definitive answer.
> >We'll see what happens. Opera's claim is that the adware is removed in=20
> >registered versions.
> I think the term 'spyware' is far more honest.

The only thing I would consider as spyware in Opera 5.0 is
the new search field (semi-configurable as to which search engine
is used, but not fully configurable) next to the URL field
(which can be turned off in the preferences).  This routes
search requests through bfast which could collect search info
in agregate .  And if they can, I expect they do...
thus I switched that off and go directly to my search engine
of choice.  Of course, THEY can collect the same info.

I'm NOT thrilled with Opera 5.0 but it still beats
the alternatives available for Windows, IMAO.

My reservations about Opera 5.0 are not all about adware, but
that it seems to be 4.02 with a minor patch or two and ads,
and left unfixed some real show-stopper class bugs.
And this after being told 4.03 would be out
"Real Soon Now".. just like the new 16 version.. RSN.

Vakkotaur vakko@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Paul Neubauer, N9IOG
Ned Flat: "Why are you acting like this?"
Yakko   : "We're not acting.  We really are like this."
Wakko   : "Aren't we lucky?"

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