Digsby, a popular free instant messenger program, has had serious CPU and memory usage problems in the past. With newer versions, some of these problems have been fixed, but an option now utilizes your CPU and memory excessively.
Digsby was a favorite IM client for me when it came out, and I reviewed Digsby quite early. However, recent developments have made Digsby a bit less than the favorite for me. I continue to use Digsby when on Windows, but I no longer recommend it to friends.
Why Digsby uses excess CPU / memory
Digsby now has an option checked by default – “Help Digsby do research” (as noted by TechieBuzz). This is similar to the Folding@Home program which uses wasted CPU cycles on thousands of computers to do valuable research. The only difference is that Digsby’s option uses your CPU cycles for various companies that pay Digsby team for the CPU cycles.
In simple words, Digsby team now sells your CPU cycles to other companies for money, with an option that is checked by default. Now, I have nothing against Digsby for this – they need revenue to stay afloat. But most people are unaware of this option being checked by default, and hence this is slightly shady.ADVERTISEMENT
Update: At the Digsby forum, developer Aaron clears up the controversy saying that they forgot to publicize the new option. This might be a PR patch-up, but better have a patch-up than nothing.
Fix excess CPU/memory usage
Fortunately, turning off this mess is easy. Mike Dougherty, a Digsby developer (no less!) has suggested how to turn off the option in Digsby. Click Help menu> Support digsby. Click the Disable option near “Help Digsby conduct research”.