Safe software download sites – Beware of deceptive download links & PUPs

I download and use freeware. My primary freeware source is I also use other sources.

Two software sources, and, have similar-sounding names but different reputations, and I can’t easily remember which is which, so when I find some software available via one of them I have to find if it’s the site I want to trust, using the Google search [softpedia softonic].

A few items down in my first page of Google results I found this article which was originally published January 14, 2014. It includes this list of software sites the author considered safe: — See this.

Read the full article at

A little farther down my Google results page I found this article, dated November 22, 2012. In it, Martin Brinkmann says : “Before we take a look at software download portals that use web installers to bundle third party offers, I’d like to take a moment to list a few portals that do not: Softpedia, File Hippo, Freeware Files and Major Geeks. If you need to download something, I’d suggest you check out those portals first.”

Be sure to also read the comments to that article, comments.

Whatever site you choose to download from, please try be as smartly safe as you can. Don’t quickly accept the biggest DOWNLOAD button they show you.

Why You Should Care About The Supreme Court Case On Toner Cartridges

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“A corporate squabble over printer toner cartridges doesn’t sound particularly glamorous, and the phrase “patent exhaustion” is probably already causing your eyes to glaze over. However, these otherwise boring topics are the crux of a Supreme Court case that will answer a question with far-reaching impact for all consumers: Can a company that sold you something use its patent on that product to control how you choose to use after you buy it?”

Here’s Consumerist’s TL;DR summary of the article:

• In order to stop customers from using third-party companies that refill printer toner cartridges, Lexmark began asserting patent control over its cartridges.
• One those third-party companies sued Lexmark, contending that this an abuse of patent protection, and that consumers have the right to do what they want with a product after they buy it.
• If the Supreme Court sides with Lexmark, it could have far-reaching implications, allowing companies to further limit consumers’ ability to use, reuse, or resell the things they purchase.
• A ruling is not expected in this matter until later in the spring or summer.

Workrave — take breaks to prevent RSI

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“Workrave is a program that can assist you in the recovery and prevention of Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). It monitors your computer activity and frequently reminds you to take short micro-breaks and, less frequently, longer rest breaks.

The micro-breaks are designed to let you relax your hands for about 30 seconds, while the rest breaks provide a set of exercises that you can follow to heal existing injuries or prevent future ones.”

Read more:,

ClickMonitorDCC: control your monitor’s brightness and contrast

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“ClickMonitorDCC is an excellent program when it comes to configuring the brightness, contrast, volume and RGB values of connected displays. It works well with single monitor systems but also with multi-monitor setups.

While it is designed to make things faster for all users, it is especially useful if one or multiple displays don’t support options to change these parameters easily, or at all.”