A red herring | Download Product Review - CNET Download.com

A red herring

You'd need a PI to find anything useful in this snoopware.

Investigator Report claims that it is "quickly becoming the standard" when it comes to software for private investigators. Although the program seems to have a lot of useful features, we find this a little hard to believe, given its clunky interface.

We were turned off by the program almost immediately when we opened it and the creepy Microsoft Sam text-to-speech voice announced, "Investigator Report." From there, it only got worse; the program announces the name of each module as it's opened, and there doesn't seem to be any way to turn this annoying and pointless feature off. The main menu is a mix of icons and tiny text-only options, and the latter are so small that it's extremely difficult to click on the correct one. The program's features seem useful; there are ways to track clients and to-do lists, manage staff, and more. The interface handles some of these options better than others, but overall, we can't say we were particularly impressed with anything about Investigator Report. For example, the program has menus items for both a Help file and a User Manual, yet neither of these actually do anything when you click on them. Overall, we feel that this program is poorly designed, and what little it supplies in investigator-specific features doesn't make up for its faults.

Investigator Report is free to try, but the trial version doesn't allow users to print. The program installs a desktop icon without asking but uninstalls cleanly. We do not recommend this program.

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