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I was looking to install Elsword (an F2P game) to try later; and discovered that it uses what is basically a customized bittorrent client, Pando Media Booster, to help with the installation download. After some searching, I've also found that

  • PMB is used in several other F2P games such as LoL, LotRO etc.
  • It does not show up in notification bar and silently continues to leech upload bandwidth, with many posts suggesting to uninstall it asap after game download is completed
  • It is safe to delete once the actual full installer has been downloaded. I read about some games reinstalling PMB to download updates, but presumably that would prompt you for permission again

I have decided to take a chance and install Elsword and LoL followed by uninstalling PMB asap. However, considering it seems to be borderline shady, I have a few questions:

  • Is there some way to download these games without using PMB? (could not find one in a quick search)
  • Are there any specifics to be aware of when uninstalling; in case it is really persistent about trying to hide
  • Where can I find a complete list of games using it; so that I can install any I'm interested in at one time before removing PMB (or ignore them).
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Huh, League of Legends installs this thing? Never knew that... Can I just uninstall it without breaking my game? –  Blindy Jul 12 '12 at 14:02
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@Blindy It's completely safe to uninstall it after downloading the game completely. The only thing it does is download your game and afterwards make you a seeder for it. –  Pherione Jul 12 '12 at 17:33
    
@Blindy: Good point, added that info to the question –  Alok Jul 12 '12 at 19:25
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@kotekzot: The main question was how to avoid PMB, but knowing what uses it also helps and is relevant imho. –  Alok Jul 12 '12 at 20:04
    
@Alok It's certainly relevant and useful, but since it's not the main thrust of your question, I've removed it from the subject line. It should clear up any issues people have with whether it's a suitable question for the site, as it's largely orthagonal to the real issue here. –  LessPop_MoreFizz Jul 13 '12 at 2:21
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1 Answer

up vote 5 down vote accepted

1) Download alternatives usually depend on whether or not the publisher desires to provide any, though a google search should usually return possible sources.

2) To make sure anything Pando related, after uninstalling, check the location you decided to install PMB (usually c:/program files) for any leftover files and remove them. Another thing you can do is do a complete drive search for 'pando' or the likes. As a third step, you should probably run a registry and drive cleaner to clear leftover registry and other references to PMB. Consider How to best manually uninstall a program in windows7/vista.

3) I checked Pando's site, but seeing as there's no complete list of their clients there, here are some of the more "popular" publishers using PMB. This means that most if not all of their games use PMB.

  • Turbine
  • NCSoft
  • Riot Games
  • Perfect World Entertainment
  • GPotato
  • GamersFirst

Most of these have an alternative in Steam or other download locations.

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+1 esp. for listing by publisher, that is a good way to check and even allows for future games. Re. install location, I don't recall being given any choice as it installed automatically. –  Alok Jul 12 '12 at 18:39
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