WARNING: JUNK AHEAD
Darien Graham-smith puts the boot into tech villains, jargon-spouting companies and software stuffed with junk
Junk offender: Free Youtube Downloader
I could waste hours (and frequently have) on Youtube. There are literally billions of videos to discover and enjoy, from amusing shorts to fascinating documentaries. Unfortunately, it’s not great for keeping you chuckling/absorbed on long journeys, because it requires a constant internet connection.
Thankfully, there are tools that can ride to the rescue. One of the most popular is Free Youtube Downloader ( www.snipca. com/26052), a no-nonsense little program that can copy any Youtube video to your PC for your offline pleasure. Strictly speaking, you’re not supposed to do this, but no one’s going to haul you over the coals for downloading the odd (perhaps very odd) video for personal use.
There is, however, a darker side to Youtube Downloader. The installer walks you through three pages of agreements, but only the first one actually has anything to do with the downloader itself. The second is innocently titled ‘Search Offer’. It’s only once you plough through seven lines of small print that you realise you’re actually agreeing to install a whole new web browser (the ‘Yahoo powered Chromium’), replete with extensions, and that you commit to do all your online searches through Yahoo rather than Google (in my case).
On the third page you’re invited to install a video tool called GOM Player, which, should you accept said invite, will be set as your default player for video files. If you’re happily using Windows Media Player or VLC, for example, this change will annoy the heck out of you.
The moral, as usual, is to pay close attention when installing free software. In this case, all of the ‘I agree’ boxes are sneakily pre-ticked, so it’s easy to breezily click through the installation and end up with a browser and media player you didn’t want and don’t like. So give Free Youtube Downloader a miss. If you want to watch videos offline, use a free web-based download service such as y2mate ( http://y2mate.com) instead.
Ransomware Wannacry struck in May, forcing the NHS to cancel an estimated 19,500 appointments NHS England said no patient data had been compromised or stolen An investigation concluded that NHS trusts ignored warnings to upgrade out-of-date software