Intel Software Manager in Compiler XE 2017

Intel Software Manager in Compiler XE 2017

This obnoxious piece of malware called Intel Software Manager is:

1. Still being installed without user's consent
2. Still has no option in setup not to install it at all

What is worse, it now also keeps adding itself to system startup (I remove the entry from the Run registry key but it adds itself back like a virus) even if you go to settings and configure it to only start manually.

So, when is Intel going to clean up their act and make that buggy, nagging, piece of crap optional or at least make it respect the user settings and stay disabled when I disable it???

Maybe I should submit ism.exe to all antivirus vendors to be classified as a PUP, maybe you fix it when they start blocking it.

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ISM stays disabled for me in Win8.1 Task Manager > Startup

I am able to run Windows 10 with it enabled.  As to whether it has any value, that is another question. 

Well for some reason it doesn't stay disabled for me unless I delete the Intel Software Manager folder after removing its startup entry.

In any case, bundling installer/downloader application which sits in the notification area wasting system resources on a task I am perfectly capable of doing myself (better and faster too), and not allowing me to opt-out of it is really annoying the hell out of me, regardless of who the software vendor is.

I accept the fact that we are licensing, not buying, the software, but the hardware it runs on is mine, and I want to have full control over what is running on it, when it is running, and how it is using the resources I put at its disposal. That is the reason I will never update to Windows 10 -- I hate it when a software vendor tries to shovel stuff down my throat. I want to choose my updates, I want to apply them when I want, I don't want nagging and disruption of my workflow. Computers and software should serve the user, not the other way around. Many vendors seem to have forgotten that simple rule.

 

Hi Igor,

Some feedback from our ISM Engineers:
ISM is not a standalone self-contained component so we don’t need to show it as component during the installation. Plus it make PH/ISIP piece which multiply products use.

As for your main concern – Yes, ISM adding itself into system startup. But ISM does not“sits in the notification area wasting system resources on a task I am perfectly capable of doing myself”. We are doing this to make sure that there are no unfinished tasks. For example user start downloading update and reboot the system after some time. If downloading wasn’t complete before rebooting ISM will start automatically and continue downloading. But if there are no uncompleted tasks ISM just close itself on startup to not “wasting system resources”.

Hope this helps clarify things. We are always happy to get feedback from our customers and are thriving to improve our products.

Regards,

Noga
Intel Developer Support
 

Hello and thanks for the response. Bear with me for a bit more...

>> ISM is not a standalone self-contained component so we don’t need to show it as component during the installation.

What I am saying is that you do need to show to the user during setup that you are installing such a component and allow them to opt-out.

>> Yes, ISM adding itself into system startup...

ANY SOFTWARE REPEATEDLY ADDING ITSELF TO STARTUP AFTER BEING TOLD NOT TO RUN IS MALWARE. PERIOD.

>> We are doing this to make sure that there are no unfinished tasks

That is not the right way to do it and it shows how little your software architects know about the platform they are designing for.

First, checking for updates and downloading large files is a background task which should not even require user interface most of the time.

Second, If you want to have such functionality you should write a Windows Service, and if the user even wants this functionality only then set it's startup type to Automatic (Delayed Start) so it has minimal impact on the startup time. Otherwise, leave the service disabled or don't install it.

Third, for user interaction there should be a client component which is launched by the service in user's logon session only when there is a need for user to interact with it (i.e. to notify about updates and ask whether to resume broken download).

>> For example user start downloading update and reboot the system after some time.
>> If downloading wasn’t complete before rebooting ISM will start automatically and continue downloading.

And what if the PC has crashed because of:

- issues with crappy Intel Wi-Fi drivers (STOP 0xDEAD039E)?
- bad sectors on HDD/SSD hit while writing out the download file?
- lack of space on system partition?
- ...

What then?

What if the user would prefer not to resume the download at that moment because it will most likely crash their PC again? Are you giving the user that choice? Or are you now too, just like Microsoft, writing software which behaves like it owns their computer?!?

What if they don't even know that the PC rebooted (i.e. they were not at home when power ran out or Windows 10 decided to reboot to update itself) and they come to their PC to play an online multiplayer game or watch NetFlix and ISM resumes the download? Not everyone has Gigabit fiber yet you know.

What if they had to put the computer to sleep to leave the office and when they open it on a train to check some email or read news they are on the metered connection and you resume 2 GB download? Does ISM even know about metered connections?

>> But if there are no uncompleted tasks ISM just close itself on startup...

And what exactly does ISM consider as an uncompleted task? I ask because I don't have any downloads started, yet ISM keeps running after startup instead of exiting like you say it should (not to mention that launching an application and placing an icon in the tray only to exit if there is nothing to do is a design WTF in itself).

To summarize -- the quality of software design, be it UI, UX, or functional, has gone down the drain because people doing it nowadays lack common sense, and any criticism from those who do have common sense is being hushed in the name of political correctness and safe spaces. The software industry trends on the rise during the last 3 years (buggy releases, users as alpha testers, software that monopolizes your PC, horrible and inconsistent UIs, poor accessibility, bad security practices, poorly thought out features, outright user-hostile behavior) really make me sick and wishing I could distance myself from it.

 

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