CNET Downloads 5 star award
CNET Downloads bases its ratings on five factors, each weighted according to importance. For software trials, we base all calculations on the trial's effectiveness as a demonstration of the software's full version, and not on the full version's functionality.
Interface (25 percent):
Is the software intuitive and logical? Is its interface attractive and compelling?
Features (25 percent):
What does the program do? Does it provide valuable features? What are the limitations of the trial version, if there are any?
Functionality (25 percent):
How well does a trial or freeware do what it says it will do? Does it fulfill its promise?
Stability (15 percent):
How does the software perform? Does it crash often? Does it use too many resources?
Download (10 percent):
How big is the installer? Does the software install and uninstall easily?
CNET Downloads editors calculate the scores from each of these categories to yield a five-star rating. A five-star product gets perfect scores in each category.
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