Latest RealPlayer crashing PCs

All to do with Comet Cursor software apparently

We've had several complaints that the latest version of RealPlayer is interfering with systems, causing them to crash and throwing up all sorts of errors.

It looks as though the problems are caused by a small program called Comet Cursor which is automatically downloaded with the player and takes a disliking to various graphics cards. The Cursor software doesn't appear to do much but if you visit a Web site that contains some Comet Javascript, the site will be able to turn your cursor from the plain old arrow to any kind of pic or animation.

There is some upset that Real doesn't tell you about Comet's impending download, but the situation isn't clear, with some users reporting they had the option to download it and others claiming they didn't. Equally, for most the software appears in the Add/Remove section of Control Panel in Windows 9x but others (mostly Win2k) have said they can't find it and have to trawl through directories to delete the bugger.

We spoke with Comet, which told us it hadn't heard anything about any problems. "It has been tested extensively on several thousands machines, on different OSes," a spokesman told us. "And nearly 60 million people are using it."

We've sent the company the URLs of various newsgroups complaining about the situation and it has promised to get back as soon it knows anything. Of course if any of you have any interesting info, we'd like to hear from you too. ®

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