Oracle Now Bundling Ask.com Adware With Java for Mac

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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For years, Oracle has been bundling an Ask.com search toolbar with Java for Windows, relying on what some call deceptive methods to get users to install the add-on to their browsers. Now, the company has extended its adware strategy to Java for Mac, according to ZDNet.

Image via ZDNet​
The unwelcome Ask extension shows up as part of the installer if a Mac user downloads Java 8 Update 40 for the Mac. In my tests on a Mac running that latest release of OS X, the installer added an app to the current browser, Chrome version 41. (In a separate test, I installed Java using the latest version of Safari, where it behaved in a similar fashion.)
The Java installer selects the option to install the Ask extension by default, which means that users casually clicking through the dialogue boxes would find the extension installed and enabled on their browser of choice. Oracle has also updated its installation instructions for Mac to account for the change.

As noted by ZDNet, Ask.com typically provides low-quality search results and numerous ads with little distinction between ads and organic results. Ask.com parent company IAC pays a commission to Oracle and other companies that bundle the Ask extension with its products.

Users who want to remove the Ask toolbar can do so from the Help menu for the Ask toolbar on Chrome. Alternatively, users can go to the Chrome menu bar, then Preferences, then the settings page, then Manage Search Engines to remove Ask, followed by removing the extension from the Extension tab. Safari users can do so by going to Extensions in the Safari preferences and turning it off.

Article Link: Oracle Now Bundling Ask.com Adware With Java for Mac
 

joshwenke

macrumors regular
Mar 26, 2011
209
813
I HATE it when installers do this. Like just let us install the dang software, nobody WANTS the toolbars or crapware.

And Java really isn't the best either so...
 

mathcolo

macrumors 6502a
Sep 14, 2008
860
16
Boston
Wow, this is disgusting. Are they really that desperate for revenue?!?!?!

Also, can someone tell me if this happening with the JDK as well?
 

Belmont31R

macrumors 6502
Nov 23, 2012
385
30
I HATE it when installers do this. Like just let us install the dang software, nobody WANTS the toolbars or crapware.

And Java really isn't the best either so...


They prey on non-techie people and such. I've had to 'fix' a few friends and relatives computers from stuff like this.
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,855
4,644
Huh. I installed Java 8 - 40 yesterday and it didn't pop up anything about ask.com for me. I also just checked and verified it's not installed anywhere.

I didn't like Java much when it was Sun's, but I feel like its gotten worse ever since Oracle got their hands on it.
 

tuslaw12

macrumors newbie
Sep 24, 2014
26
23
Akron Ohio
One of the many reasons I moved to Mac OS was to get away from extra bundled software especially when you first buy the computer. I'm glad Apple doesn't do this, except for iOS (Tips, podcasts, stocks, iBooks). I really hope other companies don't follow along with this and apple never includes useless software with the Mac.
 

Supermunki

macrumors member
Jul 10, 2008
40
0
New Zealand
I don't have any patience for this. Java uninstalled. It's not like I have much call to use it or write code with it these days anyhow.
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,855
4,644
Wow, this is disgusting. Are they really that desperate for revenue?!?!?!

Also, can someone tell me if this happening with the JDK as well?
Oh, this may be why I didn't get asked about ask.com when I installed the Java updated. I always get the JDK, never just the JRE by itself (I don't use Java in any of my personal projects, but you never know when I might have to do some work on my personal computer, so I just put the full JDK on it.)
 

MacGod

macrumors regular
Jul 2, 2008
157
260
Just another reason to shove JAVA into a drawer and never install it again. Wow - hate it when vendors include BS in their installation applications.
 

segfaultdotorg

macrumors 6502
Jan 25, 2007
298
26
I updated Java on both my Macs yesterday and I don't believe I saw a prompt (and Ask.com hasn't been installed). Perhaps the Ask.com malware is only included with the installer you get from Java.com and not the built in update function.

I remember back in the day, when Ask.com was Ask Jeeves (and when Google was in its infancy), it was a decent search engine for asking natural language questions.
 

Retired Cat

macrumors 65816
Jun 12, 2013
1,210
379
Do end-users still use Java? I can't remember the last time I even used an application or webpage that required my computer to have Java installed.
 

exizeo

macrumors regular
Mar 23, 2014
213
0
Here all start complaining!!!

http://bugreport.java.com/bugreport/main.jsp At the bottom under “Report an Issue” from the drop down select “Comments and/or Suggestions” and write away!

If thats not enough for you send the CEO’s an email as well!! mark.hurd@oracle.com and safra.catz@oracle.com they seem to hold a joint CEO positions.
QFT.

If there's enough backlash, and people start responding negatively or refuse to use this crap, then a response will be elicited.
 

Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
I updated Java earlier today and there was no mention of ask.com, no indication that it was being added to my machine. I looked in the applications folder and no sign of it there, either. I use Safari most of the time, only hop into Chrome once in a while.
 

troop231

macrumors 603
Jan 20, 2010
5,665
371
The other day I was asked to install a 'Helper' tool when the program finished installing but I declined. It was a Java update if I remember right.

Edit: here it is:

 

jlseattle

macrumors 6502
Jan 9, 2007
478
341
Seattle WA
Make a dollar

They have to make a dollar somehow. lol It like getting all that ad ware software free with a magazine subscription. Always low quality, buggy and often times machine disabling crap.
 

decksnap

macrumors 68040
Apr 11, 2003
3,068
70
Do end-users still use Java? I can't remember the last time I even used an application or webpage that required my computer to have Java installed.
I don't know why, but last time I installed Illustrator it required it.
 
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