Hotspot Shield 1.57 - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Hotspot Shield

CNET Editors' note: The Download Now link will download a small installer file to your desktop. Remain online and double-click the installer to proceed with the actual download.

CNET Editors' review

This freeware program promises to encrypt all your Internet connections, but since most public wi-fi access points in the U.S. are open, it's a bit hard to gauge Hotspot Shield's effectiveness. However, the connection itself is a bit wonky.

Once the program is installed, it creates an HTML link on your desktop. Double-clicking on it will open the application in your Web browser, and you'll be taken to a page detailing your Connection Status, IP Address, Server Address, Bytes sent and received, and the duration of the connection. Hotspot Shield is ad supported, so you'll get a big banner ad that lives at the top of every Web page, too. Closing the tab with the app's control panel doesn't disconnect the shield, though: for that, or to reload the control panel, you have to go through the green shield icon that gets loaded into your system tray. Also, there's a 5 GB transfer limit.

Overall, we can't give Hotspot Shield a strong recommendation, but as a last resort it might be worth trying out.

Hotspot Shield - Maintain and protect your privacy - Download Video Previews:

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    2.9 stars

    out of 617 votes

    • 5 star: 181
    • 4 star: 100
    • 3 star: 60
    • 2 star: 54
    • 1 star: 222
  • Current version:

    2.6 stars

    out of 8 votes

    • 5 star: 0
    • 4 star: 3
    • 3 star: 2
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 3
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-8 of 8

  • 1.0 stars

    "Doesn't work on Hushmail !!!"

    May 12, 2011  |   By MAQuinonez

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    Easy to use. Ads no problem with AdBlock

    Cons

    Downloaded program and all seemed well. Checked IP with several programs and it showed the proxy IP but, when I went to Hushmail, it showed my real IP in the Hushmail recent IPs. I tried this several times and still the same. This is NOT GOOD!

    Summary

    Can't trust it. Going to try Easy Hide IP.

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (1)

  • 4.0 stars

    "Works well as advertised."

    May 9, 2011  |   By butterflyinac

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    Easy install, simple to turn off and on.

    Cons

    Regularly reminds you if your not connected, but only as a icon in lower tray.

    Summary

    Ran this software on my laptop while I was in a hotel, had a 2nd monitor, ran packet sniffing software on the second screen.

    Once the program is running, I instantly saw they destination IP address for all my traffic change to their address. Didnt matter how many sites I brought up, anyone monitoring the network will only see your address and encrypted data packets to a single IP address containing no useful data.

    On one occasion though, I downloaded a large software update, I noticed some of the packets stopped being encrypted, my guess is your saturating their servers bandwidth so some data was by passing their connection. For normal browsing and utube type streaming, I saw only encrypted packets.

    One minor note, if you shut off your browser, it shuts off so for a short period afterward, ip addresses will remain in your in your buffer and attempt to continue to try and contact the site you were on. These are no longer encrypted and will show up.

    If your very paranoid, ie, trying to avoid being picked up by a dictator monitoring all foreign connections etc, close all tabs but leave the hotspot shield running for a few minutes. Alternately, kill your internet connection completely and wait a few minutes before reconnecting to access the internet without Hot Spot running.

    Reply to this review

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Works most of the time"

    March 29, 2011  |   By deenie

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    Free
    Not intrusive
    Works well

    Cons

    Switches to disconnect for no apparent reason, at times

    Summary

    Do check its status before going out on the internet.
    It does work. Check it at Shields Up at www.grc.com
    Also use Peer Guardian 2 if doing downloads via peer2peer torrents.

    Reply to this review

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Works great!"

    March 25, 2011  |   By MumCash

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    I can watch my tv shows and movies.

    Cons

    Too many ads. It's annoying because they are always popping up at random times and sometimes even after you have closed the ad it still plays the audio.

    Summary

    I love program being out of the country. We live in Germany because of the US military and don't get but ten channels and they are boring and mostly re-runs. So, having this program helps me because it gives me a US ip address to watch Hulu and such over here. When we go back to the states I will get rid of the program but it works awesome over here.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Use as a last resort"

    March 21, 2011  |   By mikey1975777

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    none that I've found

    Cons

    ad based (constant banner ads on top of every new webpage), slows browsing, says it's working when it isn't

    Summary

    I know it's free, but this really isn't a good product. Half the time when I was surfing, the program told me I was secure when I really wasn't, which I confirmed via checking my IP through various sites. I don't recommend this to anyone. For $5.99 a month, I'm using GoTrusted, which works perfectly.

    Reply to this review Read reply (1)

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  • 1.0 stars

    "DO NOT USE -- HORRIBLE COMPANY!"

    March 18, 2011  |   By H3710

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    No pros whatsoever!

    Cons

    WORST company ever! Hotspotvpn didn't work; they didn't respond to my detailed customer service request; neither Hotspot nor the outside billing company that they use has responded to numerous requests to stop billing my credit card!

    Summary

    This may be the WORST company I have ever dealt with! I installed hotspotvpn. The program didn't work. I immediately notified the company of that fact, and sent them the exact wording of the error message I received. No response other than an automated "we'll get back to you." I notified the outside company that billed my credit card (2Checkout.com) to cancel the charge. 2Checkout assigned a user name and password, but didn't issue credit for first month's charge and has now charged for a second month! I cannot log into their site using the original user name and password. Hotspotvpn has not responded (other than assigning a complaint number and sending a boilerplate "we're working on it" message to the two additional complaints I have filed.

    Reply to this review Read reply (1)

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  • 3.0 stars

    "great program for internet"

    March 13, 2011  |   By nanoo2012

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    great program for internet

    Cons

    great program for internet

    Reply to this review

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  • 3.0 stars

    "great program lousy commercials"

    March 11, 2011  |   By jonnywg

    Version: Hotspot Shield 1.57

    Pros

    does every thing promised

    Cons

    commercial comes on and interferes with sound card

    Summary

    rarely use it because of commercial

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (2) (1)

Results 1-8 of 8

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