When installing software one of the first things you need to do is agree to the EULA (End-User License Agreement)… you know, that 12,000 word small print included with virtually every software program you install. I am as guilty as the other 98% of PC users out there who do not read them, and just click “I Agree” and continue along. For all I know I might be agreeing to give away my first born!
Although it is never something that drastic, it would be nice to find the most important aspects of the agreement as some EULA’s included in software such as Microsoft, Google, Firefox and others can be quite confusing. Even fun and games software has a legal EULA such as World Of Warcraft. The team at JAVACOOL Software (developers of SpywareBlaster) have created an EULA analyzer which allows us to quickly check out the fine print and discover if there is undesirable behavior of the programs we install.
Installation is simple, just follow the wizard and you will be ready to roll. The main GUI is the place to begin to access different functions. You can perform manual updates, view statistics, review previous reports, and most importantly scan EULA’s. You can also purchase a Pro license ($19.99) which allows automatic EULA scanning and updates.
Scanning a User agreement is very easy and there are a couple of ways to go about it. First when installing the software and reaching the EULA screen simply drag and drop the + icon over the agreement text.
In some cases this will not work so you can just simply copy and past the text of the agreement into EULAlyzer. Then hit the Analyze button.
It only takes a few seconds to analyze the agreement. You then get results on a rating scale of interest. Depending upon the rating you might want to explore that section of the agreement closer.
Results can also be submitted online to the EULA Research Center if you want.
It only takes a moment to submit the agreement to the research center. As this will help improve the service I see no reason not to submit a few, especially if there are higher interest levels.
Here is an example of a more questionable EULA with the P2P client Bearshare.
- Published 10/29/08