I installed software from Nuance recently, and they surreptitiously installed a program called FlexNet Connect (even with a custom install). FlexNet Connect does not provide useful information on its site, like architecture or security architecture documents. Process Explorer shows its running as a service under NT AUTHORITY/SYSTEM and its image is hidden in C:\ProgramData. It also looks like its Adobe Air based, and Adobe is renowned for its insecure software. Finally, all it has done is served ads.

I think I would like to remove FlexNet Connect. There is no Uninstall option for the adware in Programs and Features | Uninstall. Additionally, it looks like its burrowed in like malware.

My question is, how do I completely remove FlexNet Connect software from this machine?

I still remember the days when Adobe used to distribute that Macrovision crap with its software. Macrovision would run as a driver, and it had a big security hole that went unpatched for years (as if Adboe needed help in making a machine insecure). As such, neither Adobe software nor Macrovision software are allowed on any machines under my control.

  • have you tried running third party uninstaller like Revo ? – pun Jul 5 '16 at 3:29
  • Thanks Pun. According to the linked article, Revo does not remove it. (Its not clear to me if its hidden, or there are other technical reasons). – jww Jul 5 '16 at 3:35
  • It is not showing in revo possibly because it is missing from program and features as well, happens when HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall key is missing this software entry. You could try my method of manually uninstalling such softwares – pun Jul 5 '16 at 3:46
  • Not that I like adware or condone intrusive software in the least, but FlexNet is a (quite annoying) component of some licensing services. If some installed software of yours uses it, it is technically possible that said software may revert to unlicensed/trial mode in some future if you completely remove FlexNet Connect software. – dxiv Jul 5 '16 at 3:47

My only experience is with FlexNet and Dragon Naturally Speaking. It seems that Flexnet connect is a third part updater Nuance uses. There isn't a supported way to uninstall it but blocking the service from running does not seem to keep DNS 12 from functioning so you may be able to try that. Blocking it using firewall rules seems to function as well.

  • Thanks Scott. Yes, the software is Dragon. I'm not impressed with it, epsecially loading up my machine with broken Adobe software. I'm going to take it back tomorrow and find an alternative. – jww Jul 5 '16 at 4:52
  • Try out CMU Sphinx, it's a FOSS speech to text program. It's a pain to get up and going but once you do it's great. – scottschlaefli Jul 5 '16 at 13:30

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