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Friday
Feb052010

Fast, Free and Easy Way to Bulk Install Common Applications – Ninite.com

Based on a post from Gizmodo I learned of the website Ninite.com that allows you to build a customized installer for bulk loading many commonly used applications.  Now that I have had a chance to use it a few times I am happy to report that I give it a solid recommendation.

The free for personal use product is as simple as can be to use.  On the website’s home page just check off the the applications desired to be installed.  Most of the common browsers, messaging, social media, and utilities are represented.  Depending on your needs it may not be every free application you desire or need but it is many of the common and necessary programs that are just annoying to keep installing.

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Once you’ve made your choices. Click the “Get Installer” button.  This will create a small file with a very long name that you can download and run or just run from the browser.

The installer looks to be a small application that completes the downloads and silently installs all of the software on your list.  I can’t recall exactly if  all installs are silent, as in no dialog boxes with options, but most certainly are.  If for no other reason then not having to jump through all the hoops and crap-ware options when installing Adobe Reader this is worth the time.

In the free version the applications installer files are downloaded every time the installer is run.  For a larger deployment there is a Pro version, at $20/month, that will allow installers to be saved and reused such as from a USB drive.

Another plus to the Ninite installer is that it leaves no residue on your computer.  When you inspect your computers installed program list in the control panel all the programs Ninite installed are listed so that they can be uninstalled normally.  Additionally, there is no app from Ninite to uninstall.  Who ever designed this clearly was solving a pain they felt themselves.

Obviously there is a bit of trust because this would be an excellent vector for a Trojan.  In fact it is a Trojan but one you want.  So far no problems and no alarms from security and anti-virus software.

I don’t care for the pro version pricing.  I would give them money for a pro version on an annual basis but not at $20 per month.  $75 a year for a 100 computers and I’m in. {Just a suggestion if your listening Ninite.}

There were some other similar bulk loading sites that I tried and forgot, but Ninite is a keeper because it is just so simple and  works so well.

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