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Bloatware Guide

Below is a list of Asus utilities/bloatware that may come with your new Asus notebook. If you're unsure about which utilities are useful or safe to uninstall, this list should give you some insight.

Wireless Console Utility - Also known as Wireless Console 2 or 3. A program that helps to toggle between wifi and bluetooth. Not essential for wifi and bluetooth to work but is possibly needed when you do not have dedicated WLAN or BT on/off buttons on your
notebook. In such a case, the only comfortable (w.r.t. number of keypresses) way to cycle through WLAN--BT on--off, on--on, off--on, off--off states is with this utility.

Virtual Camera Utility - Allows multi-Window Video Conferencing Live video conference with up to 4 contacts worldwide simultaneously. The ASUS virtual camera feature allows multi-window net meeting with customization of resolution, filter & frames according to personal preference. Not essential for webcam to work.

Splendid - The exclusive feature integrates different multimedia data sources to reduce noise and conversion rate for a sharp display. Users can enjoy vivid images with better contrast, brightness, skin tone and color saturation for all video applications. Click here to view flash intro of this feature. Personally, I'd uninstall it since Nvidia's control panel can pretty much do the same.

LifeFrame - Imaging software for recording/capturing audio and video. Serves as a security software with motion triggered image capture when set to the Monitor mode. Not essential for webcam to work.

Multi Frame- A utility which helps divide and organize opened windows. Potentially useful, but non-essential utility

Smart Logon - Substitute your windows login password with face recognition. A niffty but non-essential feature. This utility is actually not so smart, people can logon with a picture of you. Recommend not using and instead, use a strong password.

Direct Console/Direct Console 2 - A utility for controlling Direct Message on your OLED display and Direct Flash (flashing lights) for the ASUS G series notebooks. Depending on the notebook and software version you have, Direct Console also allows your Asus to run at different power states. I'd recommend keeping this utility installed.

ExpressGate - Based on Linux, this utility features a graphical user interface, web browser, Skype, and a chat client based on Pidgin. It allows users to fully utilize these features without having to boot into Windows. Using ExpressGate instead of Windows does not help conserve battery life. A fun feature, but not necessary.

NB Probe - A utility that shows your system information such as CPU and HDD temperatures and how many RPMs your notebook fan is spinning. This program is not pre-installed on most Asus notebooks, but is available on the Asus website and on your recovery disk. Useful for those whom likes to monitor their hardware.

Live Update - A utility that automatically downloads and installed the latest drivers and BIOS for your notebook. This program is known to be extremely buggy and rarely works. I'd highly recommend you to uninstall this.

WinFlash - A program that allows you to update/flash your notebook BIOS. Does not come pre-installed. For more detailed instructions using WinFlash, please see the following website:
I would recommend using the EasyFlash utility integrated in the BIOS to update the BIOS instead, rather than the Windows utility, which can be buggy -- or can be interrupted by an unrelated error in Windows. For more information regarding EasyFlash, please see EBE's Asus BIOS update Guide.

CopyProtect - A program that prevents the unauthorized reproduction of data in notebooks. When locked, the contents in the notebook will not be reproduced by burning a CD/DVD, transferred to a floppy disc, an external storage or network drive. A nice tool to have if you're carrying sensitive data on your notebook.

Data Security Manager - Designed to improve system security and productivity by consolidating your passwords and network accounts within a single data unit called User Identity. With multi-factor authentication, all private data is available only to its owner, ensuring end-to-end security built on consistent, solid and manageable ASUS platforms. Click here to view flash intro of this feature

Power4 Gear - A power management utility that allows you to toggle between different power settings. Can be user-customizable. This program is not essential, but I personally find it convenient to have.

Power4Phone - A telephone terminal emulation utility which can handle phone calls from Skype or through a modem in your notebook system. Must install ATK Driver, Modem and Voice function Driver and Skype program before using ASUS Power 4 Phone.

FancyStart - A utility that allows users to edit the the start-up/boot spash screen. This utility is not necessary for your notebook to fully function.

ControlDeck/Configuration Utility - A 3D application for adjusting screen brightness, speaker volume and other system settings. Uninstall optional.

Net4Switch/IP Switch Utility - A network management utility that provides different network auto detecting & configurations. This program is not needed for your network or wifi to work properly and can safely be uninstalled. You can find the Net4Switch user guide here.

FastBoot - A program that helps accelerate boot up times in Windows 7 64-bit operating systems by tuning the BIOS and delaying the time of specified startup programs. Uninstall is optional, but is I'd recommended keeping it.

InterVideo WinDVD 8 - A video playback software that allows your to watch DVDs and Bluray movies. This OEM version only supports 2 channel audio, so if you have a 5.1 or 7.1 audio setup, you'll need to purchase the retail version for full surround sound functionality. Recommend keeping unless you have other video playback software you prefer.

CyberLink Power2Go - This is an all-media disc burning software. Useful for burning CD/DVDs. Recommend keeping unless you have your favorite disc burning software you'd rather use instead.

Nero 8 Essentials - Replaced by CyberLink Power2Go, Nero 8 Essentials is also an all-media disc burning software and are found on older Asus notebooks. Recommended keeping unless you have your favorite disc burning software you'd rather use instead. Nero 8 Essentials is an OEM version with limited functionality.

Adobe Reader - A software that allows you to view, print and collaborate PDF files. I'd recommend keeping this unless you have Adobe Acrobat.

Norton Internet Security 2008 - Anti-virus/spyware software. Trial version. Best to uninstall since there are better alternatives to Norton. See Avast, AVG, or Avira.

Trend Micro Internet Security 2009 - Replacing the trial version of Norton 2008, Trend Micro (also trial version for 60 days) is found on the newer Asus laptops. It offers basic anti-virus/spyware, e-mail and website filter protection. Uninstall is optional.

Microsoft Office 2007 Trial - As the title suggested, this is a trial version of MS Office 2007 (30 or 60 days depending on country). Uninstall is optional.

Microsoft Works - Usually seen on Asus netbooks, MS Works is a watered-down version of MS Office. Programs included are a word processor, spreadsheet, and database. These are different from Word, Excel, or Access.

Asus WebStorage - Available only on Eee PCs. Users can enjoy free online storage. With an internet connection, you can access and share any files whenever you want and wherever you are.

Boingo Installer - This comes pre-loaded on recent Asus notebooks and is located on your desktop. If you have no intention on using Boingo, deleting the files is recommended. For more information on Boingo, please visit their website: Boingo Wireless | Wireless Internet. Wi-Fi Access. One Click Log On

Amazon Kindle App - In various new Asus notebooks and netbooks sold by Amazon, Asus has pre-installed the Kindle for PC application. This app is a stand-in Kindle e-reader, allowing users to sync pages and pick up where they left off on their Kindle, Kindle DX, Mac or PC. The app also offers users access to the more than 540,00 titles in Amazon’s online bookstore. It is recommended to uninstall this program if you do not use Kindle.

Asus App Store - Starting later this year (2010), Asus netbooks will come pre-loaded with the Asus App Store which is basically a rebranded Intel AppUp Center. The app shares similar aesthetics as Apple's App Store, but is tailored towards Windows netbook users. Removal of this app is optional.

Asus E-Driver - A utility that offers users to automatically install the stock drivers/utilities of your choice. If you already have all desired drivers/utilities installed then I'd recommend uninstalling this utility.

Trial Flash Games - In recent Asus notebooks, trial flash games are preloaded on your system. All these games appear to be aimed at children 10 years or younger. Each game offers 60 minutes of play. Uninstall all games is recommended if you do not intend to use them. Some users have reported problems with the windows registry after uninstalling Oberon games. Uninstall is no longer recommended. -ALLurGroceries

AI Recovery - A system restoring utility that allows you to create recovery disks. AI Recovery can only be used with notebooks that have a preinstalled OS and a hidden partition. I'd recommend keeping this program until restore disks are made.

ChkMail - A utility that checks your e-mail inbox for unread mail. The programs is linked to your e-mail LED status light. Not essential and can be uninstalled safely.

KB Filter - Technically a driver, Asus lists this as a utility. KB filter is a driver that adds additional features to standard keyboard functions such as enabling multiple key combinations. This utility should be installed.
ATKOSD2 - ATKOSD2 is a a 3D onscreen display utility package used together with your notebook hotkeys. Uninstall optional.
ATK ACPI utility - Also known as Advanced Configuration and Power Interface, the ATK ACPI utility is actually a driver that allows the BIOS and OS to communicate with each other to manage the power configuration. This driver should be installed on your system.

ATK Media - A utility that opens Windows Media Center when the multimedia hotkeys are pressed. Uninstall optional.

ATK Hotkey - A utility that enables the Fn key shortcuts and should not be uninstalled.

ATK Generic Function Utility - A utility that allows for communication between the ACPI and all the shortcut keys. This utility should not be uninstalled (
Asus AP Bank - ASUS AP Bank offers various (trial) software applications and multimedia enjoyment online which are available for purchase. It's basically a link to an online website store. This is a "textbook" bloatware utility and should be deleted.

ASUS Screen Saver - It's exactly what it says it is. Uninstall optional and recommended for those who don't use screen savers.

Cyberlink LabelPrint - A program for creating CD/DVD labels. Uninstall optional.

ETDWare PS/2-x64 x.x.x.x_WHQL - This is your the touch pad driver, specifically for the Elantec touchpad. It's recommended to keep this if you require multi-gesture features for your touchpad. Uninstalling the driver will enable only the basic touchpad gestures.

Google Chrome - A web browser similar to Internet Explorer and Firefox. Uninstall optional. To remove this version of Chrome you may need to download the latest Chrome installer and run it as Administrator before you can uninstall it.
Google Toolbar for IE - This adds a Google toolbar to your Internet Explorer web browser. Uninstall optional but is recommended .

Microsoft Silverlight - This is a multi-media plug-in similar to Adobe Flash. Uninstall optional, especially if you already have Adobe Flash.

Microsoft Office Outlook Connector - Also known as Microsoft Outlook Hotmail Connector, this add-on allows users to access Windows Live Hotmail or Office Live Mail accounts through Microsoft Outlook. Uninstall recommended only if you do not use MS Outlook and Hotmail/Office Live Mail.

Microsoft Office Live Ad-in 1.3 - This add-in adds new menu options in the 2007 Microsoft Office Suite and a toolbar in Microsoft Office XP and Office 2003 such that documents located in Office Live Workspace can be opened and saved directly from Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Uninstall optional and recommended if you do not use Office Live Workspace.

Times Reader - A New York Times reader. Unless you are a NYT subsriber, uninstall is recommended.

Windows Live Essentials - A suite of applications which offers integrated and bundled e-mail, instant messaging, photo-sharing, blog publishing, security services and other Windows Live entities. Uninstall is optional.

Windows Live Sign-in Assistant - This is an add-in for Internet Explorer that allows you to see all hotmail user accounts on the login screen. Uninstall optional and recommended for those not using Window Live Essentials or Internet Explorer.

Windows Live Sync - This is an internet-based file synchronization application. Uninstall optional and recommend for those who do not need synchronization for multiple computers.

Syncables Desktop SE - Anothing program that enables you to sync and migrate content between PCs. Uninstall optional and recommend for those who do not need synchronization for multiple computers.

Windows Live Upload Tool - This is an ActiveX control tool to help upload files to your Windows Live SkyDrive. If you are not using Windows Live SkyDrive, uninstall is recommended.

ASUS Access - A link the Asus Access website which in my opinion has some pretty useless content. Delete recommended.

Ereader - Loads the correct user manual (PDF) for your language in Acrobat. Delete/uninstall recommended.

ebay - A desktop web link to Uninstall optional and recommended if you do not often browse ebay.

Welcome Kit - Desktop link to a Flash video introducing Asus notebooks.

ASUS Access - Desktop link This is a website for could software services. Delete recommended.

Nuance PDF - a PDF reader. Uninstall recommended if you are already using Adobe's PDF reader.

Syncable Desktop SE - Keeps all your data in sync and auto backups all computers, portable devices and mobile devices. This is a trial version (10 days). Uninstall if you already have other backup and syncing means.