Bundled Software Evaluation
After going through the impressive manual and online support content, I was expecting great things from Soyo’s bundled software. But aside from the drivers, the software is very sad and a total waste of money and time. Soyo should be embarassed for bundling such software on their CDs and I hope this kind of feedback will encourage them to do better next time.
A complete suite of drivers are present on the disc ranging from chipset, to audio, to LAN. Unlike nVIDIA’s unified drivers, you will have to install many of the drivers seperately which some of you may find inconvenient.
Panda Titanium Antivirus 2004 Demo
Panda Antivirus is an anti-virus software popular in the Asian market. The interface is clean and uncluttered and for anyone who has ever used any similar software, it will feel familiar to you. The version is a Demo and only comes with 1 virus update. Sadly, though this software is an evaluation copy, it is also the best piece of software that comes on the Soyo CD.
Panda Titanium Antivirus interface.
This piece of software came bundled on the CD as one of the bonuses and in all honesty, I don’t understand why it’s here. ‘DPU’ stands for ‘Data Processing Unit’ which doesn’t help in understanding what this does. There’s ZERO documentation on the program. There are no help files, and playing around with the interface doesn’t even give you an idea of what this is capable of.
It’s up to the user to figure out what this software does.
Doing some searches on Google I gather that DPU is supposed to protect files on your system and allows you to restore different file states. I honestly don’t know much more about it as the documentation is essentially non-existant.
I suggest you not even bother with this software: it’s unsupported by Soyo, it’s undocumented, the interface is not intuitive and it’s not even clear what it’s supposed to do.
Continuing on the fine example set by DPU above, Wasay’s ImageIT also comes on the Soyo CDRom. Though there’s no description of what this software does (nor is there any documentation), the interface implies that it’s some sort of backup utility.
The primary interface is easy enough. Pick a drive to backup, select a location, and go. But it isn’t so easyâ€¦
Yup. That’s right. This software only supports backups onto FAT partitions. So it’s pretty much useless for anyone using only NTFS or other filesystems. Confused as to why I couldn’t use it, I decided to check out the documentation that comes with this software.
That’s all there is to the documentation and help for this software – all 115 bytes of it. Wasay’s ImageIt is woefully unmatched when you compare it to Symantec Ghost or even Microsoft’s built-in backup utility. The fact you are limited to using FAT partitions and have no documentation pretty much wastes your time and drive space.
Wasay ProMagic Plus
This software is so ‘special’, it goes into the Unexpected Issues section on the next page. How special is this software? Well if you think Wasay’s products shown above are bad, just wait until you hear my experiences with ProMagic Plus! 🙂
Soyo Hardware Monitor
Software monitor incorrectly reports the temperature.
The real temperature is in the 50C range. It was a hot day. 🙂
Normally I would overlook a program’s aesthetics if it actually did what it was supposed to do, but in the case of Soyo’s hardware monitoring tool, it doesn’t even work or look good! As you can see in the image above, the CPU temperate is reporting 16C but the BIOS (and my finger on the heatsink) tells me otherwise. The interface looks unprofessional and plain ugly. A basic grey windows interface would have been better.
Above is a screenshot that shows you one of the poorly labeled and designed configuration screens. There is no help file or tool tips to guide you along which is dangerous since a novice user may not know safe operating RPMs and temperatures of their particular hardware configuration.
As reviewed in more detail on the previous page, the fan control in this software is a little twitchy and you can only control chassis fans. Interface aside, it works as advertised: you can control the fan’s output by adjusting the sliders.