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From "Dennis E. Hamilton" <>
Subject Amazon Download of Apache OpenOffice 3.4
Date Sat, 15 Sep 2012 19:45:38 GMT

On learning that is offering downloads of Apache OpenOffice, I was curious enough
to go through the purchase ($0.00) and download process at <>.

Here's everything I noticed:

 1. OOPS #1: It says the product is for Vista / XP, with no other versions of Windows listed.

 2. It points to an Apache OpenOffice 3.4 for Mac [Open Souce Download} as also available.

 3. It has been offered since 2012-09-10 and was #352 in Software when I looked yesterday.
 Just now it is #188 in Software and #71 in Software > Business & Office.    There
are no reviews yet.

 4. The page is used for the Product Description.

 5. OOPS #2: What's not so thrilling is the Sponsored Links that are offered as being also
of potential interest.  These refer to,,
and  (That one is called OpenOffice 2012 Download.)

 6. Amazon has a Games and Software Library for users.  This can be used to re-download the
software and also get product keys (not applicable for this one).   Out of curiosity, I followed
that link and found that they are still holding tax-return software for the US 2008 tax year
that I purchased and downloaded in 2009.  Now the Apache OpenOffice 3.4 is there now too.

 7. Amazon has their own downloader.  It is needed to retrieve software from the Games and
Software Library.  I didn't install that, although it is needed to download from the library.

 8. Going through the one-click purchase of the $0.00 software, I was not sent the executable.
 Instead, I was sent an "Amazon OpenOffice 34 by Apache" downloader executable.  I ran it.
 It is a simple dialog with a progress bar, the gull button, and a message that the item can
be downloaded again from my software library. It downloads the software.  It doesn't say where.

 9. When the downloader has completed, there is only an "Install" button and also a little
pull-down button for viewing the download location.

 10. OOPS #3: I checked the download location.  The Windows download is to the User's desktop.

 11. OOPS #4: I used the option to open that folder.  The downloaded file is named "OpenOffice.exe".
 That's it.  It needs to have a more distinctive filename, seems to me.

 12. I closed the download dialog, and was given an "Are you sure you want to quit without
installing?" dialog.  I clicked the "Quit Now" button.

 13. I moved the "OpenOffice.exe" from my desktop to a shared-server folder where I keep all
of my AOOi downloads and screen shots.  The file is 135,933,721 bytes and I presume it is
the same as Apache_OpenOffice_incubating_3.4.1_Win_x86_install_en-US.exe that is the AOOi
3.4.1 release.  The gull-button download icon is shown with directory listings of the file.

 14. I checked my list of installed programs and the "Amazon OpenOffice 34 by Apache" downloader
is nowhere to be seen.  My only Amazon software consists of the Amazon MP3 Downloader, the
Amazon MP3 Uploader (the pair for transferring from/to Amazon Cloud Player) and Amazon Kindle.

 15. The next time I ran an e-mail check, I received an Order Confirmation for
my $0.00 purchase.  It also reminds me where I can go to download the software from my Games
and Software Library at

The use of the desktop for a temporary locations is pretty awful.  This is in addition to
the fact that the default installer location of the setup files folder is also on the desktop.
 I expected better of Amazon.  

Bonus Experiment

 16. I decided to go back to My Games and Software Library at and install the Amazon
Games & Software Downloader (for Windows XP/Vista/7), and see what that provides that
might be better.  I got the usual IE warning about this not being downloaded much and also
an administrative permission that indicated the code is not signed.  I got to name my PC (sort
of what happens with Kindle software too).
 This lets me set the download location.  The default on Windows 7 is "C:\Users\Public\Documents\Amazon
Games & Software".  I changed it to my user account Downloads folder.  It started my most-recent
purchase or download (AOOi 3.4.1) again, and I cancelled out of it.
 17. The Amazon Games & Software Downloader is now in my Control Panel programs
directory.  This strikes me as a superior solution to having the transient downloader that
uses the desktop without giving me any control or even knowing in advance what would happen.

 - Dennis

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