Saturday, August 03, 2013

Netgear is Stoopid

This is not my NIC, but it sure looks like it.
I needed drivers for my Netgear USB wireless network thingy. I know I can easily get the driver from any number of 3rd party sites, but I figure, hey, what the heck, let's give the manufacturer a try, shall we? Because I'm motherfucking optimistic.

I hit Netgear's site and I find the device driver download page quickly and easily enough. I think, "Good for you, Netgear. Have a biscuit."

But Netgear isn't about to let me  have my file so easily. No, no. Netgear want's something in return. Netgear wants to trade. Netgear's website informs me that I can have the driver, but first I have to register on their website, giving my name and address and email address and stuff.

And I think, "Really Netgear? Ya gotta get all up in my grill and require a login when like, a bazillion other sites have your drivers just sitting there, no registration needed?" Is this customer service? I ask you! No really, I do.

So now I'm like, great, I wasted my time and tried Netgear when I should have just visited a reliable 3rd party drivers site. Fuck you, optimism.

But then I think, "Hey, maybe I can lift the driver download url directly from the page's source code." I figured it was highly unlikely that a multimillion dollar company would be foolish enough not to hide the link.

But, as established earlier, I am an motherfucking optimist, so I looked at the source code. Did a search for ".zip" and lo and behold, there was the direct download url for my driver.

So to sum up:
  1. Netgear makes it easy to find drivers on their site.
  2. Netgear demands your personal info in return.
  3. About a BAZILLION third-party websites have the drivers without demanding your personal info.
Conclusion: Fuck you Netgear.