Avoid Calibre’s free ebook management program—even if it is offered through CNET. In fact, I suggest you avoid anything from Calibre.
Here’s why: a few weeks ago I was looking for software that would allow me to convert a Microsoft Word File into the three major e-book formats. I already had software to convert a Word file into PDF and EPUB but not for Mobi.
I learned too late that Kindle makes it easy for an author to convert a copy of a novel to the Mobi format. But by then it was too late because Calibre had hijacked my Google Chrome opening page.
I log onto the Internet through Google Chrome, Firefox Mozilla and Microsoft Explorer. I keep buttons for all three of these web browsers on my bottom tool bar so I may click and log on.
And if one browser is having a bad day, I may use one or both of the others. Check the embedded screen shot that shows the opening page that Calibre—a cyber-crook—slipped into my system without my permission, and you will see what I mean.
Anyway, I wanted to buy the software on a CD—less risk of hitchhiker viruses or Trojans hijacking the computer. I went to Fry’s, Best Buy, Office Depot, Office Max and Staples. No one sold software on a CD that would do the conversions I wanted. I then checked Amazon and e-bay.
The only program I found that claimed it would do what I wanted was Calibre.
Calibre is a free and open source e-book computer software application suite—with surprises you may not want—that organizes, saves and manages e-books, supporting a variety of formats. It also supports e-book syncing with a variety of popular e-book readers and will, within DRM restrictions, convert e-books between differing formats.
To be safe, I went to CNET where I hoped to find a free download of Caliber without those unwanted hitchhikers. No luck. During the download process, my Kaspersky Internet Security went crazy so I cancelled the download but not before the damage had been done.
After I discovered what Calibre had planted on my computer, I ran the Uninstall Program—the one that comes with the Microsoft system software—and discovered that Caliber had stored junk in more than two dozen locations on my hard disk—all were deleted.
But not the one that remains hidden to this day.
I then did a complete system restore but no dice. Calibre had somehow hijacked Google Chrome on my desktop. And I can’t get rid of it. Even after calling two technicians and spending hours on the phone struggling to get rid of what Calibre planted somewhere on my hard drive.
By the way, does Bing (aka Microsoft) own Caliber? Is Caliber a Trojan horse for Microsoft that hijacks computers so Microsoft’s Bing search engine appears first when a victim—like me—logs on to the internet through Google Chrome?
Any ideas on how to get rid of this unwanted pest?
UPDATE: February 6, 2014:
Recently, while updating my computer through Microsoft, html code that wasn’t part of Google Chrome was detected, and I was asked if I wanted it deleted. I clicked yes and that seems to have done the trick to rid my computer of the unwanted Caliber/Bing Trojan horse.
Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine, Vietnam Veteran and English-journalism teacher.
His latest novel is the award winning Running with the Enemy that started life as a memoir and then became a fictional suspense thriller. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.
And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to hate and kill Americans.
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