It’s no wonder reports suggest that more than 80% of machines are infected with some form of software that makes your browser visit sites you never intended to visit. Applications with some of the tools we need are distributed with software that hijacks common functionality. This is one of the key reasons reading the End User License Agreement and every screen of the install process is vital to keeping your system junk free. A classic case is the Burn4Free CD burning application, which does work as described, but forces you to install the toolbar NavExcel on your system in order to use Burn4Free. On one hand, I see this as the prerogative of the developer of Burn4Free. He’s getting paid to include the software with his app and his app is free. The alternative for anyone who downloads Burns4Free is to cancel the installation upon learning that a browser hijacking application is being installed as a special bonus.
I find it necessary to issue a warning for everyone to steer clear of Burn4Free as a result of the developer’s need for funds. By installing Burn4Free you’ll end up having your browser redirected to sites you never intended to visit. There is no way to install Burn4Free without installing NavExcel too. Depending on which build of the NavExcel that gets installed on your system, it may make your browser fail to function completely because of an incompatibility with XP SP2. Fortunately, if you were one of the unlucky individuals looking for a decent burning solution only to be hit with the painful experience of browser hijacking as a result, getting rid of NavExcel is fairly straight forward. Going to Add/Remove Programs and uninstalling NavExcel gets rid of the browser bully. For other free alternatives for CD burning that don’t contain any nasty surprises, I recommend trying either CD Burner XP Pro or the free version of DeepBurner. Both apps handle most common burning tasks without the fear of having other applications impacted.