Alternatives to Format Factory for all platforms with any license

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    • it not convert SWF to other video formats Guest • Nov 2015 Disagree   Agree
    • it only converts to and from mp4 and mkv, is not useful for other formats. Guest • Oct 2016 Disagree   Agree
    • I converted from .mpg to .mkv and it works perfectly. Took me a little time to find out how to queue a bunch of videos - but it turned out to be simple enough. Mp3 conversion is unavailable though - I used Format Factory for that when I worked in Windows. Still - for video it's really number 1! Guest • Jan 2016 Disagree   Agree
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    • Simple, fast and various popular formats of audio, video, images and documents. Guest • Jan 2017 Disagree   Agree
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Format Factory Comments

MalwareBytes flags "PUP.Optional.APNToolbar"

Negative Comment by awmoore
about Format Factory Oct 2015

From the Installer Terms:

The installation package contains Baidu.com(Only Chinese User)and Ask.com Toolbar, If you uncheck installation options. They will not affect your computer.

On running the installer, MalwareBytes flagged "PUP.Optional.APNToolbar"

APN is "Ask Partner Network." More details from their site:

Part of IAC's Search & Applications division and a sister company to Ask.com, APN has been a leader in distributed search for a decade, bringing monetization solutions to software developers and helping our partners grow and engage with their traffic. We bring the industry's deepest experience, providing custom search integrations and user engagement tools and offering creative custom solutions to meet our partners' needs. No matter how unique a search requirement, we make it happen. And our capabilities don't stop at the desktop—we provide unique, high monetizing mobile solutions, too.

[Edited by awmoore, October 01]

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Messes with Windows Explorer

Negative Comment by tadcampbell
about Format Factory Aug 2014

Other users have warned about the toolbars that the installer tries installing, but there seems to be other (possibly malicious?) things as well. After installing (and even after uninstalling) Format Factory, Windows Explorer (the file explorer for Windows) is extremely slow to respond and it seems to have noticeable effects on other Windows-related actions as well.

Some examples of what it does:

  • Opening Windows Explorer takes several (sometimes more than 15) seconds, this includes opening folders from someplace like the Desktop.
  • Navigation between folders takes 2-3 seconds.
  • Performing 'Open' or 'Save' from a browser will take very long for their respective windows to appear (sometimes more than 30 seconds) and will drastically increase CPU usage while it waits.
  • Right-clicking a file takes slightly longer for the context menu to appear.
  • Clicking 'Properties' in the right-click context menu will take several seconds for it to open.

Basically, anything to do with Windows Explorer will take several seconds to open, be slow to use, and will freeze a lot.

I've somewhat confirmed that this isn't a fluke by installing and uninstalling on two different computers computers (a Dell and a Gateway) with two different versions of Windows 7 (Home Premium and Professional). At first I wasn't exactly sure which program was causing it, so I did a clean Windows install and then slowly (over the matter of weeks) installed one program from my collection at a time. As soon as I installed Format Factory, it happened again.

It should be noted, however, that this seems to be profile-independent. If you have two profiles, for example, only the profile that you install Format Factory on is affected (even if you have "install for all users" selected). You can delete the affected profile, make a new one, and that new one won't have the problems. I used this knowledge and tested it a few more times by creating a new profile and installing just Format Factory on it; every time it would cause the problems to begin on that profile (further confirming that the program was the cause).

None of the antivirus and antimalware programs I've scanned with have ever detected anything, so I'm not exactly sure what to make of it. It seems that the program (perhaps unintentionally?) messes with a file/registry value/etc. related to Explorer.

It's unfortunate given that this is definitely my favorite media converter (since it does absolutely everything in one program), but I won't be installing this again unless I absolutely need it (and even then, I might do it in a VM to prevent messing up my computer again).

[Edited by tadcampbell, August 15]

[Edited by tadcampbell, October 07]

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didn't work for me

Comment by human
about Format Factory Oct 2012

I'm not sure what I was doing wrong but I was trying to convert some swf videos I made to a different format (I attempted several, not all at the same time) but the conversions kept failing.

Otherwise it seems to be a good program.

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overall opinion

Positive Comment by n78hendrix
about Format Factory Feb 2012

This program is only intended for the newbie, because the settings are limited, but overall this is very good, its an all in one companion for converting digital media, but remember this program is ' adware '

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Excellent to get mpg to mp4 for a Mac (iDVD).So convert on ...

Comment by pawelthegreat
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Excellent to get mpg to mp4 for a Mac (iDVD).
So convert on Windows and send through ethernet or USB to Mac.

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After trying Format Factory for a few days, it's clear that ...

Comment by OmgItsTheSmartGuy
about Format Factory Jun 2011

After trying Format Factory for a few days, it's clear that the DVD ripper needs work. I was trying to rip my old Star Wars discs onto my new computer, but Format Factory failed the operation on four of the six movies.

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I got Format Factory because I couldn't figure out how to u ...

Comment by OmgItsTheSmartGuy
about Format Factory Jun 2011

I got Format Factory because I couldn't figure out how to use Handbrake (yes, I suck). It did its job.

I rejected the Ask toolbar, and as far as I'm aware, no second, super duper secret virus malware trojan ninja assassin toolbar has been installed. So just don't install the Ask bar when you get Format Factory, and you should be fine.

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Mediacoder worries me after seeing Operation Aurora and it ...

Comment by wolvenmoon
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Mediacoder worries me after seeing Operation Aurora and it suddenly closing source. I don't suggest using it due to the risk the Chinese government has influenced its development ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Aurora )

It appears format factory is from China as well.

Don't use Chinese software, folks.

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Thanks klischee for telling us. I can't really remember, i ...

Comment by getfat
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Thanks klischee for telling us. I can't really remember, i always uncheck toolbar stuff.. i can't remember if it installed a toolbar anyway. If you know anything better, add the alternative =)
I've tried some, but this definatly worked the best for me so far.
I also like how the sound and video are still sync (other converters sometimes have like 3 seconds off)

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Warning! It trys to install the "Ask Toolbar", and also if ...

Comment by klischee
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Warning! It trys to install the "Ask Toolbar", and also if you decline, another toolbar will install without asking you to Firefox and IE. Even when you deinstall this toolbar a lot of files and registry entrys stay on your computer. Except of this shit, it wasn't able to encode files to XviD with the bitrate I configured, even when I set up 1600kbit, it only encoded with something around 1000. There are better converters out there, without being Ad- and possibly Spyware (the Setup connects to ask.com, and FormatFactory is calling home also with updates disabled).

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It also keeps a real good quality when i convert a video, u ...

Comment by getfat
about Format Factory Jun 2011

It also keeps a real good quality when i convert a video, unlike some other converters

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Ok, because my dvd rec/player is crap with USB and formats, ...

Comment by getfat
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Ok, because my dvd rec/player is crap with USB and formats, I needed a good converter. And this one was the best I've tried. Real easy to use, many supported formats and it's free!

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Most amazing converter ever! Supports tons of formats, love ...

Comment by Elmernite
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Most amazing converter ever! Supports tons of formats, lovely interface, and Free! Need I say more!

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Really complete converter application and freeware is the b ...

Comment by Aerialsky
about Format Factory Jun 2011

Really complete converter application and freeware is the best part of it

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