WhiteSmoke Software Review

By Ali Hale

Editor’s Note: WhiteSmoke has been a sponsor of the blog for a while, and we often get emails from readers asking how good their software are. That is why we decided to review it. But keep in mind we did not get paid to do it. Ali Hale did the review for us, and I asked her to be completely transparent with it.

First Impressions

I found WhiteSmoke very easy to install and get started with. It checks the grammar, spelling and readability of everything that you write (it will do this whilst running in the background, or you can load up the program directly). It’s a bit like a very advanced and more intelligent version of Microsoft Word’s spelling and grammar checker.

I liked the way it automatically checked my typing in not only Microsoft Word but also in emails and when leaving comments using web forms. It caught a few potentially embarrassing typos before I had a chance to hit “send” or “submit”…

Testing WhiteSmoke

I tried running a few pieces of my regular writing through WhiteSmoke to see what it would say. This passage came from a piece I was writing for my blog The Office Diet:

Now you know what calories are and you know how to figure out how many are in your food … you just need to know how many you should be eating.

WhiteSmoke suggested putting a comma after the words “calories are”, and when I clicked to find out why, I was told:

Explanation: This sentence requires a comma to separate its clauses and improve clarity.
Definition: Two coordinated clauses should be divided by a comma.

So far so good: I agree that the sentence is improved when rewritten as:

Now you know what calories are, and you know how to figure out how many are in your food…

The next suggestion, however, was to put a full stop after “out” and before “how”, which would make the sentence:

Now you know what calories are and you know how to figure out. How many are in your food …

This time, when I asked why, WhiteSmoke explained “Two distinct sentences have to be divided by a full stop [period].” However, these were not two separate sentences, and putting a full stop here would lose meaning. I suspect the use of “figure out” (which is quite informal or colloquial) confused the software.

My frequent use of bullet points, rather than conventional paragraphs, also caused a few issues:

  • It suggested putting a period after the first bullet, but not after others. (Conventional advice is that you do not need to use periods for bullets consisting of short phrases, but if you do use periods, you should be consistent.)
  • WhiteSmoke believed that “Your weight” and “Your activity levels” should be “You’re weight” and “You’re activity levels” respectively. Again, I suspect the use of bullets and fragments rather than full sentences caused this confusion.

Sometimes, the software didn’t recognise what role a particular word was playing in a sentence. In the following example, the word “fast” is an adjective modifying “food”, but WhiteSmoke believed it was a verb:

They found that those who skipped breakfast tended to eat more fast food.

I was advised to “Change ‘more’ to ‘faster’”. I can understand where the confusion came – “more fast” would be poor grammar if the sentence was “I ran more fast than Billy.” But my sentence was correct as it stood.

Enrichment Suggestions

WhiteSmoke makes a number of enrichment suggestions which can help improve the flow or style of your writing. For example, one of these came up for me when it recommended changing “And” in:

And your muscle mass is also important

to “Furthermore”, “In addition”, or “Moreover”. I would probably have picked one of these if I’d been writing a more formal piece, but for a blog post, I don’t think starting with “And” is a problem.

Verdict

I enjoyed using the WhiteSmoke software, and found it was particularly good at spotting typos as I wrote. It could seem a little intrusive at times (a small window pops up in the right hand side of the screen as you type, when the software is running), so I usually turned it off when writing fiction or informal emails as I tended to get a lot of warnings about these!

There were a few occasional slips when the software didn’t understand the meaning of what I’d written, but so long as you don’t just accept every suggestion automatically, these infrequent mistakes shouldn’t cause too many problems.

I think it would be an excellent piece of software for:

  • People learning English as a foreign language
  • Students writing academic essays
  • Anyone producing a formal business-related piece (perhaps a report, or a job application)
  • Freelancers writing for print or traditional markets

You might find the WhiteSmoke software frustrating if:

  • You mainly write fiction or poetry (especially if you use a lot of dialogue or your style involves breaking grammatical rules)
  • Your emails and other non-fiction writing tend to be very informal
  • You use a lot of bullet points or other sentence fragments
  • You’re already very confident about your spelling and grammar

Overall, WhiteSmoke is a very easy to use, intuitive piece of software, and considerably cheaper than paying a proof-reader to check your work!

Click here to get access to 800+ interactive grammar exercises!


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126 Responses to “WhiteSmoke Software Review”

  • Ellen

    Thanks for the review. My office bought White Smoke in the latter part of 2007 and I used it for a while, but found it frustrating. I agree with Ali that the frustration resulted from the fact that I’m already confident about my spelling and grammar (and their enrichment suggestions were never helpful for me).

    This product, however, wasn’t written for me! It would be useful for ESL writers and students who have problems with constructing grammatical sentences on their own. Those people often ask good writers for help or suggestions, so we can recommend a trial of this product.

  • Lisa

    I particularly enjoyed reading about the WhiteSmoke Software Review. I guess that just goes to show – you can have all the gadgets along with grammar and spelling check softwares that can be found. Bottom line: you still have to know your grammar and spelling to decide if the rules apply or should be ignored.

  • Rick

    I agree with Ellen. I purchased WhiteSmoke several years ago when I had another computer. I thought then that the software was a bit pricey but expected it would be worth it. However, after months of frustration and annoyance I finally deleted it.

    This program , I believe, is more suited for individuals trying to learn English as a second language

  • Dubi Kaufmann

    I went to Whitesmoke page after reading this post. Nowhere on the site it says how much it costs. How much is the program?

  • Rick

    At the time that I purchased WhiteSmoke, it was approx $55(USD).
    But again, that was a few years back, so I would expect the price has increased.

  • Cassie

    Call me old-fashioned …. But I cannot see any benefit to WhiteSmoke or any other “proofreading/editing” software. When it comes to writing well, there is no substitute for the human brain and years of learning and using the English language. There are simply too many “rules,” exceptions to rules, and linguistic oddities.

    As far as Ali’s suggestion that such software would be excellent for people learning EFL, I must strongly disagree. I have tutored students of English as Second Language since 1999, and I believe this would be a nightmare for these people. Without a basic knowledge of English grammar (as native speakers have), how would a non-native speaker even know to question the software’s suggestion to put a “full stop” (a period) in a place it does not belong?

    Thanks, but no thanks. If you don’t trust your own skills, hire a proofreader or copyeditor.

  • Andi

    Hello there:
    English is my fourth language. When, I write research papers in english I need to reread several times- much more than the native speakers. If the software, known as WhiteSmoke save my time I willing to buy. I asked the company if they can send me the sofware for a trial. They do not want to send their software for a trail. They do not give a refund gurantee.

    I would like to hear the opinion of ESL teachers and students if the software worth buying.

  • Katherine Wood

    Good Afternoon,

    I’m going around to review websites to warn people about the 2009 version and the non-existent customer support. I purchased the Creative Writing version of this program on 10/5/2008. I was only able to access the General program. I contacted customer support and I got a form email that I would be contacted in within three days. No contact occurred. Then four days later, the program simply stopped working. Again, my requests for customer support were ignored. I requested my money back per their refund policy on 10/10/2008. I have received no response nor my money back. Beware! This program feels like a scam.

  • Kadir AYDIN

    Whitesmoke can be good software but if you cause any problem you will understand what really whitesmoke is.
    I send several e-mails to their support department. During this period, I received several advertisements but no answer.
    So If you want to buy this software think twice.

  • whitesmoke

    Whitesmoke do not suitable for everyone, but ESL users are very useful.

  • Casylius

    Whitesmoke is just another hypeware. It is a waste of money.

    Install an upgrade will automatically popup a promotion windows each time you boot the system. I never seen any company that so arrogant to do that to the customer. It check grammar and suggest word no better than MS Word – Hit Shft+F7 in word will get a much bigger list of word.

    Don’t buy into the “review” hypes.

  • dAN DEZUM

    Great to hear all those people giving insight to WHITE SMOKE. I believe it has potential to become one of the commercial big bang, but the guys there have to work very very hard. (1) it should not be internet dependant. (2) Instead, bring out better version with more punch periodically (3) must spend lot of man power (because it simply requires lot of sentenses and words and syntaxes to be cramed in the software. It is not like mathmatical formula. you are dealing with human language and you know what I mean. Also they have to – naturally – spend lot of money…. for the present it seems it is just good for the english learners…. I almost bought it…. no, not now…. thanks.

  • Yasser El-haddad

    Whitesmoke is the worst software i saw in my life. When i buy it they does not refer that you must be connected to the internet to be able to use it, It seems that i buy fish in a water. Plus their support is very bad, when you send to their support email you will receive their answer after week or more. When i ordered the software i received email indicating that i will receive the license for full software activation within 48 hours but this not happens at all, till now 15 days from my purchase and no feedback. I don’t recommend Whitesmoke to any one. I decided to buy another software that i can use it offline and their support is good.

  • Billy Porter

    Don’t buy this software unless you are ABSOLUTELY SURE you want it. I bought it from Babylon (love that product) and was told there was a 30 day money back guarantee but no trial was available.

    Trying to get a refund has been the worst experience an so far I haven’t seen a dime. The product is no more than OK, and the customer service is UNBELIEVABLY BAD.

  • sac

    I’m a writer and I have found that Whitesmoke is a good tool to have on board. I use it for all my reviewing. For a creative writer or a formal writer, this software is a plus, regardless of what others may say. I write in Word and between the two I feel confident. The best part about the software is the ability to check and select quickly. You can’t do that with Word alone.

  • Diane

    I have found Whitesmoke to be absolutely helpful. It’s been really great to have a tool that makes sure I catch grammatical errors before I make the embarrassing mistake of sending things written incorrectly to friends or people at work! I use version 2009, maybe the users with negative reviews had older versions, because the one I use is really an enormous help!

  • Jimmy

    I am very satisfied with WhiteSmoke’s ability to correct my writing and suggest ways to continuously improve. I’ve never heard of a better program that promises a grammar checker, in addition to spelling and style assistance. I am a highschool English teacher and this saves me countless hours of grading time.

    I’ve begun suggesting the program to students of mine to use at home. Great, great writing tool!

  • Roger

    After reading the commentaries, I must say I’m still skeptical. My mother tongue is french, but I sometimes need to write in english and I’m looking for something like “antidote”, which is an extraordinary french language corrector, useful for academics like myself and people whose french is not their mother tongue. Unfortunately, it seems that white smoke is a smoke screen! The website does not provide any substantial information on the software, and it looks like their customers service is really bad.

    I think I’m gonna have to write to Antidote people, asking them to come with something as awesome in english as they did in french.

  • Richard

    I have done a google search for WhiteSmoke and visited many of the “review” or “better writing” sites that recommend WhiteSmoke and they almost all seem to be sham sites set up solely to hype WhiteSmoke. You can use http://www.whois.com to look at who owns some of these sites and many are private. I would think any supposedly neutral site that has “buy WhiteSmoke” links all over the place is most likely not a valid review site. The ability to do this is an unfortunate side-effect of an open Internet.

  • Barnard

    Whitesmoke is a cleverly contrived scam. The website does not clearly inform that this is a web app, and there is no ‘free’ trial. The registration process is a ruse for e-mail harvesting, and people have been complaining about having received thousands of spam e-mails from them. And finally, the software nowhere near lives up to Whitesmoke’s claims.
    Caveat emptor.

  • Kenneth Wright

    I bought the general writing version in November and must say it has worked for me very well. I run all of my work e-mail through White Smoke and never worry about grammar or spelling errors anymore. The software is a huge help, I recommend it for other people with insecurities in writing.

  • James Kyles

    I’m a writer and was considering buying WhiteSmoke to check my most recent work. But after reading the reveiws on this sit I have changed my mind. Thanks!

  • Richard

    Another “feature” that is not mentioned anywhere in the WhiteSmoke literature is that you lose all Word formatting when you paste corrections back into your document. You have a nicely formatted Word document, copy text into WhiteSmoke to check it, and then you lose all formatting – italics, color, bolding, etc.

  • Barnard

    It becomes evidently clear that any positive testimonials are from the Whitesmoke spammers and scammers themselves. We and many others have had to suffer their spam on our language forums.They have also spammed the support forums of genuine language software publishers.

  • stanislava

    I did my research on writing tools and chose white smoke based on some comparisons I read on a bunch of websites. I needed something more than just what microsoft word does. I am taking a creative writing class at Florida State University to help with my book writing.

    I assure you I do not work for the company nor do I have any association with them. I am a real live customer who bought the product and am more than satisfied. It corrects your grammar and checks for awkward phrases and sentences that even a native speaker such as myself might miss.

    Also, the support was great the two times I called them (once with a billing question, once with an installation problem)

    I am happy with the product and will continue to tell others about it.

  • Ella

    I got the General Writing version a few months ago and its nice to be able to say I have already seen improvements. Since the program works via an internet connection, the lifetime license you purchase when you buy it really pays off- i’ve already noticed that some errors that were not caught before, are now fixed.

    The grammar check is a lot better than microsoft word, really no comparison. Thats what drove me to buy it in the first place.

  • lishaa

    Hello, my name is not james or steve but I.m glad to read all your comments. but why one cares about comma and or full stop.
    just do the full stop when u tire of writting. that is call full stop.
    Comma is called when u can,t get your idea immediately.

    I think, I,m tired of writtting but I need a ESL teacher.

    Thank u

  • Tom Roberts

    White Smoke is a an expensive scam. The program’s suggestions are more often wrong than right. It fails to pick out passive voice, end of sentence prepositions, adverbs ending in “ly”. I could just go on and on about what the program can’t do. Microsoft Word has a much better spell and grammar checker. Most people don’t realize that when they buy the program, it will only work if you are connected to the Internet. I purchased the upgrade in hopes that there had been some improvement but the only change that I could see was the user interface. New buttons won’t help my writting and are not worth what I stupidly paid for the upgrade.

    My suggestion, don’t buy this program. Look at RightWriter or Wizards for Words.

  • Ray Randall

    OK…quick thoughts and observations.

    Software programs have limitations; they don’t get the writing perfect. Perfect writing takes years and years of diligent editing. Whitesmoke does help the writer who lacks basic grammatical, syntax, and spelling knowledge. At times, we all do!

    Whitesmoke’s response to your first example deserves attention. A phrase is an incomplete sentence. A clause includes a noun and a verb to make a complete sentence. The comma before “and” separates two complete sentences.

    Your “fast food” example (Whitesmoke suggests “faster”) could be avoided by hyphenating: “fast-food”.

    If Whitesmoke catches glaring mistakes (we all make them), gives the writer reason to pause, then you get the value from the software. “It caught a few potentially embarrassing typos before I had a chance to hit “send” or “submit”. We all know about those mistakes that can’t be changed after we “hit ‘send’ or ‘submit'”.

    You wrote a helpful review.

  • Jose

    Hello,

    I must apologize to you all. I ignored your warnings, bought and installed WhiteSmoke. This is what happened:
    1. It fails to connect to Internet when the text to be checked exceeds two pages.
    2. It does not work offline, which a feature wan’t aware of.
    3. Except for the spell checker’s suggestions, the other ones don’t imply a real improvement.
    4. I have already sent to “support” two e-mails to request for a refund in compliance with WhiteSmoke’s refund policy and none of them have been answered yet.
    5. A piece of an advice: it is not really worth the money it costs.

    Overall, I would not recommend this software to anyone.

  • sanchez

    I’m sorry to hear that the support wasn’t there because whitesmoke really is a good tool to have. You should try to email them one more time if its a support problem. If its a general dissatisfaction, I must say, I’m a professional writer and I consider the extra help to be welcomed.

    Whitesmoke catches things that I would otherwise miss (and so would Microsoft Word, which is disappointing.)

  • William Malone

    I have been trying to get WhiteSmoke to refund my purchase since April 3rd. Promises to refund the money by April 10 were ignored and I can not get anyone to take immediate action to refund the money.

    They offer a 30 day trial. I used it for 10 days before requesting a refund.

  • Karim Sal

    William, from personal experience of a purchase I made through the internet for a product that I didn’t receive, it took one month for the music company to process the refund. This may be the case with WhiteSmoke. From the little contact that I have had with them, they are very good when it comes to answering questions and sorting out problems. If I were in your shoes, I would try contacting them again.

    I am interested to hear what happens in the next while.

    In the meanwhile, if they have not refunded your money, make use of the software, for me it works.

  • Argas

    The program and the website no longer working at all, any one no about that please inform us to start the legaly progarses agints this company.

    ARGAS CO.

  • Martin Trokus

    This product is crap. What ever you do don’t buy it! It doesn’t come close to doing what they say it can do. I asked for a refund the same day I received it and I’m still waiting. If you own a mac, you have to run it on line, which is so inconvenient. You would have to be completely useless at writing to have this product provide any real help. DO NOT BUY THIS PRODUCT!

  • Armirah

    Not sure which product you downloaded. I downloaded WhiteSmoke over 6 months ago.
    Since then, the software has been working without any problems. It supports most of the things it is claims to do and, over and above all those, I am also enjoying the Tutorials and the templates that are in the software. They are an unusual feature and both easy and useful.

    I don’t have a Mac, but I imagine that once on the internet it should be a good option.
    I am sure that whoever purchases the WhiteSmoke is a happy customer.

  • Martin Trokus

    WhiteSmoke did refund in full my investment without a problem, I give them credit for that. My problem is with the Mac version only as I have not used the Windows version.

  • QiuGuiSu

    I use WhiteSmoke on MAC!!!!! What is the problem.?
    It works well and I think it is the same as the Windows version.

    I understand one has to be online for both versions, but why is that a problem.

    If this is how the software works, then does one really worry about being online? It doesn’t worry me in the least. The great functioning of the software is what concerns me….

  • den gal

    Whitesmoke works on all profiles. I am using it right now, and it has corrected a number of mistakes I made. It so one of the most user friendly, easy softwares to use.
    I discovered the Templates that are built in and they are wonderful and most useful. Just press and the chosen template and it is inserted.
    The explanations that are given why the software has chosen a particular word, is also a learning procedure and informative.
    I simply love the software and recommend anyone who is hesitant about downloading it,,,,, JUST DO IT. You will enjoy it as much as I am.

  • Mahdi

    Please do yourself a favor and don’t buy White Smoke. It’s a total waste of money.

    It doesn’t understand the meaning of “flour”, corrects it as floor.

    I wasted $ 150 on this software.

  • cindy

    I wished I had found this site before I wasted $164. After using the software, I discovered I had to put my material online. As an author that is a bit unsettling as these days people steal everything. I could not make corrections to the material I did paste in. Instead I had my Word window open with the document and the Whitesmoke window open. If you try to let whitesmoke make the corrections you could drink a pot coffee by the time it is done with three paragraphs. It is just barely more advanced than the spell checker on my computer.

    I must have the generic version because I do not see any difference between the “Creative Writing” Version and the “Business” Version and the “General” Version. Being fully disappointed with the product I asked for my money back.

    Now there’s a problem.

    First, I was decieved to believe I would be receiving a hard copy version of this. I have yet to see hide nor hair of this. From what I have read if I delete whitesmoke or need to download it for a computer rebuild I won’t be able to without repaying for it.

    Second, my total was suppose to be $99 dollars. The guy on the other end upgraded it for me without my knowledge and saw fit to give me an extra liscense supposedly to use on other computers that I did not need.

    When I called to complain I was put on hold for twenty minutes and hung up on. Called again and held on for ten minutes, got hold of a rep who had no clue how to handle my call, hung up on me, by “accident” of course. I called back and he apologized, but that took another ten minute hold. I was told to email someone else. I did and was offered thirty percent off $164 bill that should have been $99. After some debate I said fine, the program is useful on small documents and is a tad bit more advanced than microsoft. Well, I never saw the 30% off and I’m stuck with software that is really useless to me. When my computer needs updated Whitesmoke will be a puff of smoke.

    Word of advice, if you can’t get the disk and upload it yourself, don’t waste the money. They told me there would be a hard disk copy arriving in two weeks. That was four months ago. They lie- period.

    Do not buy this product. There is a reason why they call it “White Smoke”- PUFF! your money is gone!

    Is there anyone out there sueing this company yet?

  • Tom Bodett

    I had purchased WS. I was disappointed to such a degree that I asked for a refund. The software certainly can do some cool things but can’t compare to some of the other writing analysis programs (it’s only advantage is that it can be used outside of word unlike the WB program). I utterly annoyed by the the volume of emails WS was sending me after the refund request.

    Notice the amount of effort WS employees are putting into hyping their product? If you want a (very) prompt refund simply threaten to post a negative review.

  • Robert

    White Smoke is helpful for somethings, except it doesn’t work! I have a new version 2010 that they told me to install to fix some bugs. Now I have a pile of junk that will not do anything for me, except if I am typing in a webform like this one. The dictionary does not work at all. I uninstalled it and tried to get the old version back, but the old link now points to the new version. I have sent them repeated messages, yet they have not responded.
    Junk, pure junk.
    I have patiently worked with them for months to try and get it working better, but an upgrade that total breaks the software is unprofessional. Not responding, is stupid.

  • ONLY SMOKE? UP TO YOU!

    this is the worst thing I ever seen! I’ve put a serial on this thing and change the .exe register inside the main folder. This weird will spread one million parts on your machine and I gave another million clicks on Comodo firewall to get this installed. When you uninstall it Comodo prompt you with a treat related to your explorer.exe (Win) I’m going to dump it (2nd time, I couldn’t believe and install again) right now after these lines. They don’t give you a decent trial and don’t tell you the only on-line straitjacket. Reading some lines before I agree… scam!! I do regret my time on this and I regret even more for those who put money on this — the unhappy ones (there’s different taste for everything). Sorry my English here, that means I need a program “like that” and don’t think the mail is mine, btw, do not use ordinary names for your mail. And don’t reply me because I going to loose this url after cleaning my browser, what I do every day , sorry.

  • Ted

    I’m perfectly aware of the limited capability of Whitesmoke. I’ve been using 2009 and I recently purchased 2010 to spot the very obvious errors committed by our writers. Although we have an editor, but still it offers a lot of help to check for ‘blind spots’.

    The problem began when I upgraded my Vista to Windows 7. The program is now behaving erratically. Although it launches, but after a while it stops working. I can’t copy/paste or send anything to editor. I press the hot key and it does nothing. It’s just sitting in the taskbar.

    I tried to run compatibility with XP, Vista but all in vain. I don’t know if this is still usable. By the way, I purchased the 2010 version for $84.

  • Want WS don’tdo it

    I posted the message two above this one. The purpose for my post was to complain, but more so to hopefully get some warnings out that people can find. I searched and searched and every link took me to a white smoke ad.
    Ted, purchased 2010 for $84! Ouch. All I did was report every bug I found using 2009 under vista and their answer was to finally give me 2010 for free. It totally does not work. I had to find my 2009 download and install it back. As buggy as it is, it at least works some.
    Beware!!! Works with all e-mails and documents, is not true. They finally came right out and told me, they meant all webforms. It does not work with OpenOffice at all under 2010 and only some under 2009.
    Hope this saves somebody some money.
    It does help me catch mistakes sometimes, but it misses more than it catches.

  • Kevin

    I plan to buy WS 2010, it seems helpful to me,as an ESL student,but some comments make me have too much frustration. I want to have a hard copy, told me they would mail it to me, and I will receive it in four weeks after I pay for it. But someone complain that they haven’t received the hard copies.
    Although it is only 90 bucks, I really don’t want to be deceived.

  • Robert

    Kevin,
    The hard copy I don’t think should be such an issue for you. In six months I have had at least four different downloads from them to install. So, a hard copy will be outdated very quickly.

    The install progam is only about 9MB and can be burned to a CD. With that and your license code you can install it and reinstall it. I’ve had to do the uninstall, reinstall thing so many times I lost count.

    If I was you, I would be more concerned with whether or not it does what you need. Remember, it has to have an internet connect or it is useless. The product is very slow when it does it’s corrections. It misses many errors and sometimes wipes out your text, leaving you with the letter cac. It also does not work the same from everywhere like their ads claim. In some cases it works better than others. I have had great struggles with them, but they do try to help when I have a problem.

    I expect they are over loaded with work because of all the issues with the product.

    It has potential, but many issues. Good luck.

  • Kevin

    Thank you, Robert.

    So another question is: Do I need to buy their “Extended License Service”? It seems that it is yet not necessary.

    Their promtion frustrates me, I received too much different prices on the same product.

    I am also not confident to their service model, if they shut down their servers, the software means nothing. I wish they could provide an offline version, like anti-virus software, they can update it weekly.

    How about those templet in that software?I am interested in those stuffs.

  • Robert

    You are correct, very frustrating. Their product is advertisted in thousands of places on the net. I searched and searched for a product, but every time I end up at one of their ads.

    I do not know about the extended license service. I had so much trouble in the begining that they gave me a discount and then gave me the 2010 version free. So, they are committed to keeping their customers.

    There are many many templets, but I have not used them yet.

    I simply use the software as an additional form of proof reading. Being able to shift right click on any word and get a dictionary is a useful feature.

    The comment about being able to work offline has been made by so many people, but I have not seen where they are working towards that. It’s very frustrating when their servers are slow or my internet is down. Can’t do anything.

    Try and find a demo version if that exists. The software helps, but you will not know if it’s worth the money until you try it. Good writers don’t need it.

    They are constantly working on it, so I hope it gets better soon.

  • Ted

    I have been emailing Whitesmoke for days telling them that it does not work on my windows 7 system.

    Am I the only one with this problem? Sits on the system tray, and nothing happen.

    After almost 2 weeks of waiting, finally, they answered and all they wanted to ask me is to create a detailed report? of the problem Watta!@#$@

    Are they not testing this crap on their systems?

    Hopefully they will fix it instead of investing too much on advertising and creating hype on their products.

  • James Moss

    Whitesmoke is slow! After an hour it is only halfway through a 4 page letter. By the time whitesmoke is done there will be no need for the letter.

  • Ted

    UPDATE: Still whitesmoke didn’t bother to reply to me. An auto generated email tells me that they’re having a problem with their support system and they cannot reply anytime soon.

    Anyway, I decided to uninstall Whitesmoke, find the email link during the time I paid for this product, and re download and re installed the product.

    Well, it worked! and I am now happily using it. I’m using Windows 7 and I’m not really sure if they updated the software or not.

  • sads

    well can anyone give me an alternative product to white smoke..anything thats superior to white smoke s/w is more than welcome

  • Mickey

    Can anyone tell me how to get this off my computer?

    Don’t buy it…
    They are crooks!

  • John Curley

    I purchased the electronic software and a key for activation was supposed to be sent via email. The only email I received was thanking me for my purchase but still no key. I tried to contact customer support but now found out they aren’t available on weekends and only limited time on weekdays. I sent several emails without a response. I was able to contact a Nathan via online chat customer support but when I brought up wanting my money back he never responded back. Several more attempts failed to get anyone again. Just like filling out this dispute, they didnt even answer here. The place steals peoples money and offers a product thats useless without a key which they wouldnt send when they said they would. I want my money returned to my account and for paypal to look into the credibility of these crooks as it only makes paypal look bad to support such fraud.

  • John Curley

    I put a claim in with Paypal and the cowards never responded. This place is a joke. Maybe they should change the name of their junk to “BlowingSmoke”.

  • Aundrae

    I have been debating many days if I should by this product, but after reading so many negative reviews, and thank god I read reviews, I am very skeptical about this software.

    Cnet has a trial download for seven days, I might try it out, but I am definitely not dropping a dime on this S#*t.

    Also, what are some other software alternative out there that actually work?

  • Rick

    White Smoke ripped me off. First they billed me twice for the software. Then i never received a CD. After using what i thought was my purchase i downloaded, i started getting notice that my license expired and i ahd to renew to use it.

    They don’t answer my e-mails and when i finally got through to them on the phone – a young lady said i would have to call back and talk to a technician. I asked her to have themcall me. That was a week ago and i still havn’t heard from them.

  • Himendra

    DONT BUY THIS WHITE SMOKE……
    They are spammers……

    They will keep sending unwanted pop-ups, every time you ON your computer. And there is no way to block these SPAMS.

  • John Curley

    It took a Paypal dispute to finally get my money back from these crooks. They never responded to the dispute because the losers couldn’t dispute the claim. I will highly recommend the Blowing Smoke product to everyone I dislike. I can’t believe folks are still falling for it.

  • Bob

    How come you advertise the 2010 Writer for $50.00, and then when I go to buy it, you chaerg $99.95.

  • Katherine Belle

    Jesus people are such babies
    First of all, if any of you tried the Writer 2010+ you’d know that their technology doesn’t exist anywhere else! But it’s still technology, it’ll never be absolutely perfect. And besides, their algorithms are based on NLP and artificial intelligence – the software actually learns you.

    Second – they do have a desktop Mac version now that works great.

    Third – yes, they are online and I’m a writer too so that freaked me out a bit at first but I worked it out with them, they don’t use your information! The reason the software has to be online is because they are updating their software DAILY on their servers and it updates automatically on your computer.

    So there, my 2 cents. Its the best software out there – NOT JUST FOR ENGLISH SPEAKERS AS A SECOND LANGUAGE but for everyone. Especially writers, because if you’re like me you type fast and NOT perfect. AND with their new features its wonderful for writers, they give you enrichment options and MORE IMPORTANTLY they let you know if you have style errors – like if you use the same word too many times in a paragraph. Seriously, find something better than them – I freakin’ dare you.

  • ripped off

    I used WS 2009 for just a few months before becoming frustrated with having to remain online to use it. Now, with a new netbook with mobile net access, I attempted to reinstall the software, only to be told by the WS customer support team that I had to upgrade to WS 2010. When I asked them to confirm the licensing was perpetual, I was told it was… but that the 2009 software was no longer available (remember, this is an online install!) In other words, you get a perpetual license, but no way to actually install the software. Needless to say, unless this is resolved in a better manner, I’ll not be upgrading or using this software any time in the future.

  • Roaring Fish

    A couple of things to say on this topic.

    My advice to everybody is to spend your money on Swann’s ‘Practical English Usage’ or something similar. The best grammar checker ever is nestling right inside your skull, but only if you make the effort to learn grammar and writing skills. Any software grammar or style checker is a waste of time and inherently flawed: how do you know if it has made the right choice if you don’t already know the answer yourself?

    This applies especially to those posters claiming to be writers or teachers. If you need WhiteSmoke or anything similar, then you are *not* a writer or a teacher.

  • Vicki Mongan

    Whitesmoke is a joke. I’m a professional writer with more than 25 years’ experience and I find it inane. It has consistently corrected grammar and punctuation incorrectly and is worse than Word at marking names and words spelled correctly as misspellings. I paid $84 for a completely useless piece of software AND now I am being unindated with constant popups trying to get me to buy an upgrade. Do not buy this product! I am going to uninstall it.

  • Katherine Belle

    For “geniuses” saying that if someone is a writer or teacher they don’t need writing correction programs – excuse me but you are an ignorant fool. Obviously when WhiteSmoke tells me where my errors are I understand them and I see my mistake, the problem is – when you scan your own writing, sometimes your brain fills in the blanks and you miss your own errors. So yes, I’m a writer – I just happen to be a HUMAN one so I make a mistake once in a while.

  • Mile

    I bought whitesmoke more than a year ago. And all I can say is that it is the biggest SCAM I have ever seen.

  • Brian

    Recently purchased Whitesmoke 2010. Had all manner of problems getting it to work on win 7. Sales people treated me in my opion with complete contempt (well they have made their sale). Technical team were not a lot better. Wasted my money…

  • Namdar

    Bought WS 2010 a week ago. The software is not nearly as powerful or functional as the ads claim. I am very disappointed. Worse yet there is constant ads popping out for the next version which is very bothersome.

  • Ann

    I tried to use a trial version 2 weeks ago. First it completely slowed my computer down then the computer ground to a halt (I have a Dell Vostro 1700 Laptop which is more than capable of running the software). Since then White Smoke spam me with emails up to three times a day. I’ve requested they take me off their list but to know avail. Don’t try it unlrss you have hours to waste and enjoy frustration

  • Artzy

    I can suggest Grammarian Pro X for Mac. A lot of grammar checks… they claim 200 as opposed to MSWord which has about 25. It works offline. doesn’t connect to the internet (although there’s a convenient drop-down list which has links to about 6-7 grammar-related sites.) You simply copy your text, and then go to ‘Options’ and select ‘Check Clipboard

  • Shannon

    I bought white smoke executive. I am so sorry I did not find this website first. I was supposed to have been charged 99 dollars. They charged me 120.00 and promised to refund the difference in 48 hours. I told Michael Kogeman, the salesman, that I was not going to download the program or license until the issue is resolved. I did not receive the refund and I am getting the automated emails described on this forum. I am confident my credit card company will remove the charges since I never used the software.

    Also, after the purchase I immediately requested to cancel the order. I received an email acknowledging the cancellation of my order. A few minutes later I received an email from the salesman confirming my order with download instructions. I know right then this was a desperate company with a skeleton crew. I am still in the process of fighting it. I am not going to use the software for one minute because I feel in not using it, along with the email acknowledging the order cancellation, I have a good leg to stand on with my credit card company.

  • Sarah

    Somehow they have my 11yo son’s email and are spamming continuously. I’ve unsubscribed and when I used their online chat I connected with “Michael” who disconnected when he found I wasn’t going to spend money.

    My son’s email is now going to go through gmail and I’ll be clicking the “spam” button on every single one.

  • me

    If you think you get refund back for this product — keep on dreaming! You may get a number of bogus emails instead of the one that you are waiting for! This company should be sued for being dishonest! When you ask for a phone number for a real person to talk to — you get the number and “Good Luck” answer…

  • me

    Do not buy it unless you want to waste 134 and get no where with this software …

  • Anthony Louis

    I tried testing Whitesmoke on Thanksgiving morning with a simple sentence, and the suggested “correction” was in error.

    The sentence that came to mind for testing its online grammar checker was “I think that this afternoon I will bake a turkey to have for Thanksgiving dinner.”

    The Whitesmoke program said that my sentence needed a comma or a period after the word “afternoon” but this suggestion is not grammatical.

    Based on a sampling of one trial sentence, I decided not to purchase the program.

  • Jay

    Hi There, WhiteSmoke is a very interesting site and i would appreciate it if anyone could give me the name and Professional-Email address for the CEO of WhiteSmoke??? Thanks

  • Touraj

    this is a piece of crap which constantly crashes on my Win-7 system. I have tried their customer service (!) and all i get is an automated email response. I am now trying to get my money back.

    don’t waste your time and money on this.

  • Tony

    DO NOT buy this junk! When the software works, it does a ok job. However, half the time when I try to use it it says their servers are down. Totally annoying.

    Furthermore, you will never get anything but automated responses from them.

    On top of all of that, why will email you promotional junk every day and you cannot unsubscribe!

    Was going to try to get a refund, but I suppose that will be a waste of time.

    Anyone know a good software that works?

  • Bill

    Someone asked if there was a better grammar checker and I finally decided on Grammarian X Pro for Mac. I’ve never tried WhiteSmoke since the reviews were quite negative. Grammarian seemed a better choice and after a trial period I did purchase it. I’m a graphic designer and am designing a book whose writer is really poor at punctuation. Grammarian is a big timesaver. But you have to already be good at grammar, sentence structure, punctuation in order to ignore some of the suggestions Grammarian makes

  • Touraj

    @tony: i returned the package and got my money back. you have to be persistent. i don’t know who these people are but their product is terrible and and their customer service nonexitent. contact the company that billed you (i think it was Plimus).

    i am now trying Grammarly, an online service, to see how they are. the great thing about them is that you can try it for 7 days before having to buy the service.

  • Tony

    Now you don’t even have to download it! It will download and install itself on your computer without your knowledge or consent!!

    I had never heard of this crap until about a week ago when I got a pop-up saying it was now going to install White Smoke Takeover on my computer. I was lucky enough to stop it, after it had crashed my browser of course.

    I ran MalWareBytes on my computer immediately afterward and it came up with 178 infections of Malware and Spyware.

    Now White Smoke has a huge ad on google saying they’re not a virus. If it’s not a virus or adware/malware/spyware, why does it install itself without ever asking permission?

    Oh, and all I did to get it was click on a link from someone I follow on Twitter.

    People like this spammer-scammers should be made to pay for each and every minute it takes to get rid of their garbage from a person’s computer.

  • Wanda

    I purchased the program Friday and in less than 48 hours I requested a refund. I tried to use the program on several writings with known discrepancies and it would not make corrections. More importantly, the program made my computer do strange things like, loss of control of the mouse. The mouse would start moving around my screen at random. The program made the computer much slower and computer activity was happening in a way that makes me very nervous. Like I said I asked for a refund, lets see if they honor money back guarantee.

  • Touraj

    @Wanda and all those who would like their money back!

    Plimus is under contract with WhiteSmoke to process orders and collect payments. If you don’t get result with Whitesmoke, contact Plimus’ supprt (http://www.plimus.com). They promptly refunded my money.

    I hope this helps.

  • WhiteSmoke Smoked Me

    Hello from the wilderness of BC. Several days ago I purchased the complete package from whitesmoke.com and I was online with their tech guy all afternoon one day and he was remotely controlling my computer the entire time to try and get the program to function. In the end, after trying everything including updates for my computer and reinstalling the program several times as well as giving me an entire new account and number…the program continued to shut down upon start up. And it also gave a 102 unknown server error. The tech guy told me he was sorry that it would not work and he said he didn’t understand why it wouldn’t but that I should ask for a refund and I would get one. So, I did. From that moment forward all they send me is generic ads trying to sell me more software and completely ignore all requests for a refund. I have tried every avenue of contact. When I call them on the phone they say sorry I can’t hear you and hang up. When I email them they reply with repeated almost robotic requests for me to tell them what kind of problem I am having. I tell them and they ignore me. I have tried talking to their live help in the live person chat window and as soon as I tell them the problem or that I want the refund they stop talking and leave the chat. I have told them I will contact visa and complain, and you guessed it, the don’t respond. I am very upset and live 200 miles from the nearest town with no access to help or resolution. Any advice on what I can do?

  • steve

    I have used this software from Whitesmoke for a short time, I am a teacher and soon will be going to another Country to teach English, I am very disappointed in the fact that this is not a standalone software, internet access is required. Whitesmoke should be straight forward and say on there web page, in plain English, that internet access is required. Other than that it seems to work well.

  • Emanuele Santanche

    I bought whitesmoke because they said me it worked on Linux.
    I am having a lot of problems. The sw doesn’t work.
    And their representative proposed me also an English course saying that I can have my money back if I don’t like it. Reading your comments I got scared. I will write here about the following.

  • Podo

    I bought whitesmoke V10 and used it quite a bit. Then I had to rebuild my PC and lost the software. I still have me code for the program but when I went on the website, they wouldnt give me a link to download V10 again, no I had to buy V11. There customer seervice is absolutely terrible and every now and then I get a phone call from one of the robots trying to sell me yet another version. I like in the UK and they still keep phoning. Well they can stick it where the sundoesnt shine, i wont use it again ever.

  • Emanuele Santanche

    My problems with whitesmoke aren’t finished yet. It looks like I can get the refunds, but I have to wait yet.
    However, this whitesmoke so famous because it uses artificial intelligence algorithms, can’t find this mistake:
    “While writing this message my mail client, Thunderbird, find those two mistakes.”
    and if you simply cut away the clause, whitesmoke finds the mistake:
    “While writing this message my mail client find those two mistakes. ”
    So whitesmoke is knocked out by a simple clause.
    I have it yet but I think it is not worth the money.
    Sure their commercial attitude is awful and their service is awful as well.

  • Shane

    So, I went for it and got it. even though not all comments were good, I understood that they are the best in their field, so I said I will give it a try.

    and… I am happy to say it is exactly the software I was looking for.

    first, it works everywhere, it can be used with MS word, facebook (even the chat!), msn, outlook and any web browser. basically with any application that requires typing.

    second, it is an all in one writing tool. you can use it to correct your English, check papers, translate full text, look up in the dictionary and even ready templates (made my CV with that).

    and third, and most importantly, it works, not perfect, but very close to it. checks your text in a few seconds, shows you your mistakes and offers the corrections and suggestions to improve. I could not ask for more…

    i also had to install it on my office computer, so a live chat rep helped me with the installation and was very kind through the process.

    for me until now it is a great product and an amazing help to my work needs and my studies.

  • Allie

    I recently purchased WhiteSmoke, and when I read some of these comments, I have to admit that I got a bit nervous. But so far I am so happy with the product. I use it for all my business correspondence and I have to say that it has caught several potentially extremely embarrassing mistakes. I am quite pleased with my purchase and I highly recommend the product.

  • Sanjay

    I was in dire need of a tool to help proofread my papers for school, so despite the negative comments here I decided to try WhiteSmoke.
    To be honest, I love it. I use it not only for my papers, but for my emails and chats as well. The installation process was simple and quick, and I haven’t experienced any problems.

  • Camille

    English is my second language so sometimes I make mistakes in my writing. WhiteSmoke was simple for me to put on my computer and its really easy to use. I also love the translator which helps me find the right words to use.

  • Jim

    No help at all……..!!!! Sh%%$T

    did request information from White Smoke Tec support and I did receive a responds from them. HOWEVER, the response was one of a generic form and not much help. I needed help after I installed white smoke grammar; I kept getting an error code 102 when I use the program.
    I contacted Tec support three times with no help. I call the support phone and all I got was go back to the internet and check with support. I could not contact a human person to help. I did call sales and I did speak with a woman that told me the support department was out getting a coke and someone will call me back. After two days, no one call. I tried again with no luck to reach someone by phone to talk too.

    The other issue I have with white smoke, Is after I purchase the software on line a woman from white smoke called me at ten o’clock at night and work me up. The woman started saying she could save me money on the software I just bought. She wanted me to agree to pay a $195.00 for an unlimited addition of the software. The woman was hard to understand she talked fast and had an accent; at that point, I started too worried about my purchase with white smoke. The woman sounded like a crazy person on the phone telling me I needed to go to the web page and look at the renewal. I told her I was not on my computer at that time and I did not want to pay $195.00. what I purchase is all I needed. She kept on insisting I need to pay more, at this point, I told her no thank you and hung up

    I just found out after I had purchase white smoke. I paid for the backup CD. When I checked on the web page to see when I would be receiving it in the mail that I needed to complete a form when I tried to fill out the form, I could not get the form to print or to forward it to your company. (What can I do?)

    I guess my money is gone and there is no help. At this point, all I want is to get a refund on my money and purchase some other software. I have lost faith in white smoke and I feel that my money is lost and no one cares about his or her customers.

  • Patrick

    I made the mistake of buying WS. it will fix some errors but it’s only slightly better than Word. what’s annoying, however, is that the WS makers will spam you relentlessly with new offers and promotions. WS also only works after accessing its servers, which are often down so it won’t work. Sometimes WS crashes, crashing whatever software you were using with it in the process. very frusfrating sofware that I do not recommend to anyone (use word instead).

  • Dissatisfied WhiteSmoke Customer

    I have used WhiteSmoke for over a year now and I regret ever making the purchase. Not only does it make simply grammar checking errors, but the stability of the software is iffy at times. The latest version has caused real problems with my current set up. I have a dual monitor system and WhiteSmoke displays a large, non-closeable box on my second monitor. I’ve repeated contacted WhiteSmoke support for assistance and have been repeatedly ignored. Their only suggestion is a canned response of “reinstall the software.” I had high hopes for this product, but it has been nothing but frustration from the beginning. Their support borders on nonexistent.

  • Tony Butler

    I bought WhiteSmoke in February, 2011, and found it useful for correcting the odd typo. I’m sixty-nine, and my Grammar is fairly basic, but I have sold a few novels, as ebooks, and now two as paperbacks.

    Having installed the program, I was soon to learn that it was programmed by someone whose native language, was certainly not English. Some of its suggestions were ludricous, to put it bluntly.

    However, I received a telephone call from WhiteSmoke, telling me that for $99.00 dollars, I could have a life-time VIP licence, instead of yearly renewal.

    Non of the super, extra features, were contained in the new download, and what was worse, WhiteSmoke began devouring my text.

    I would edit a page, only to find, parts of text I had altered, had disappeared, as had complete paragraphs.

    Obviously I complained, try to delete a word, as per WhiteSmoke’s suggestion and you lost a whole sentence.

    Often WhiteSmoke ‘encountered a problem and has to close’, and with it went all the text I had loaded into the program.

    Meanwhile, I began being bombarded with more phone calls, asking me to buy the VIP package. Despite being told that I had already bought and installed the program, the calls continued.

    I emailed, WhiteSmoke and complained, and this was their actual reply:
    To: “tonyb@nottinghamshiretimes.co.uk”
    Subject: WhiteSmoke VIP Dep
    Part(s): Download All Attachments (in .zip file)

    [Description: Description: Description: Description: cid:1.2469320359@web113508.mail.gq1.yahoo.com]

    Dear Toni,
    I completely understand your frustration but you my friend, is not a VIP member. I have been double checking it in my system.
    I want you to know that I want to help you to become a full functional user who will be satisfied with his software.
    My advice to you is, think about what I said and try to trust me when I say that you DO NOT have a VIP membership.

    I wish you weren’t being so cynical about our calls and try to listen for a change.
    I hope you will reply to this E-mail, and we will be able to talk like civilized man.

    (As you will gather, he must have used WhiteSmoke, to create English grammar, this bad. I sent him their receipt, and:)

    From: “David Anderson”
    To: “tonyb@nottinghamshiretimes.co.uk”
    Subject: RE: WhiteSmoke VIP Dep
    Dear Tony,

    I stand corrected.
    You are right.

    (at least he got my name right, this time.)

    I have been busy the last couple of months, but now intend to deal
    with WhiteSmoke, and cut off their Paypal facillity. I will als be publishing a: WhiteSmoke – Software Writers Should Avoid, subdomain on my website. So, if any of you want to email me your
    bad, WhiteSmoke experiences, I will run them.

    Finally, I have found an editing program that is great. Ironically, it’s called, Editor, published by Serenity Software.

    Tonyb

  • Farhan

    I bought the software this week(29/04/11). I agree totally with TONYB. Mate is there anyway to het the money back? I actually asked for a refund. I am really annoyed on me, that I bought the software, but it was perfectly working on trial version for 3 days. Now asking me to buy the full version.

    Br
    Farhan

  • Stephen

    DO NOT BUY ANYTHING FROM THESE PEOPLE. Despite their guarantee 30 day refund, I have yet to receive anything despite requesting it less than 24hours after my download. My 30 day refund period expires in a few days and I am still waiting, I imagine they are ignoring my requests so as to let the date pass and then have a legal reason why not to refund. I asked for a refund after I found the software missed simple grammar errors that microsoft word picked up. I have filed a complaint with better business bureau in hopes to get my $120 back, but I am not confident that I will ever get this money.

    Check their better business burea reviews, they are terrible with customer service and never recognize refunds.

  • Ali A.

    thank you

  • Alec

    I purchased this software and it’s nothing! You can download a free software like this. They said “no questions ask” if filed a refund within 30 days, i filed mine in 2 days after purchased but they never replied! This is a scam! This would not help with your writing, better get the free software online, exactly how this software works! How does it help if you will end up constructing your sentences on your own!! But when they are trying to sell you this software, they will promise everything just to get you money! DO NOT BUY THIS!!!

  • Lightfoot

    I purchased this on July 21, 2011 . . . after ten seconds I wanted to return it. I even requested a return from the customer service person that I was chatting with at the time. The software couldn’t recognize the errors in a fourth grade sentence.
    I requested an refund via support@plimus.com and was form-emailed that due to “maintenance work” it may take a little longer to respond. Having read this review and the comments I decided on the next day (the 22nd) to cancel the Paypal transaction. When I logged onto Paypal I noticed that there was a customer service number: 866-312-7733 I called this number and a refund was immediately processed.

    Summary of my experience:
    – the software is crap, especially if you are writing fiction that involves prose beyond a second grade level.
    – customer service wasn’t as bad as I expected based on this comment stream.
    -call don’t email. and if you can, call before 10:30 AM EST

  • Joey

    This website is very dubious, it says “Offer ends: 07/25/2011”, just the day I visit it (07/24/2011). It also has fake links to review and recommendation sites like CNN, NBC; and security certification sites like Paypal, Mastercard (fake)… These are common signals of a fake site.

  • Hasab

    I had white smoke 2010, it was working fine. But I got this message to update to 2011 for only one dollar, so I did. I installed the new 2011 and used it for one day. The next day I get a message that my license expired. I removed it and tried to install the old one but they disable my old license because when you buy a new version you use the same activation number of the old one. I contacted white smoke and they gave me the run around. Don’t buy white smoke because it is a scam, I think now they start scamming their old customers, how pathetic?

  • Mike Rink

    I was about to purchase WhiteSmoke when I decided to check online for reviews. You guys saved me from making a bad mistake.
    Thank you for the comments you have made to this Blog. I look forward to passing along your comments and refering others to this site.

    Thank you all!

  • Venky

    Whitesmoke is a scam. I purchsed it and am finding that it is no better than Mircrosoft word. Since I am unhappy I sent email to their payments department to refund the money and so far there is no response to them. Don’t buy whitesmoke it is waste of money, and in my working place, we have proxy, and inspite of setting proxy, it doesnot work. Support is horrible,

  • Jan

    I appreciate all the reviews of WhiteSmoke and wish I had found this site before. I purchased W.S. Executive Version 2 days ago for $174. and spent most of last night installing it. Less than 5 minutes after talking with a rep. over the phone and placing my order over the phone, I received a call from some …manager?… a man with a thick accent, who tried to tough-talk me into getting an updated version that would let me take advantage of all the updates they had done. The price was almost $300 more. I told him I had not even had a chance to try it out yet and there was no way I could afford another program. However, today he called again and this time used very abusive language. I told him I had used it for less than an hour and was unimpressed. His answer was “I told you that you need an update!” MS Word and a grammar book work almost as well and with less mistakes. I would have given it a longer trial as some comments were very positive, but have stopped payment and uninstalled the program. I am a senior citizen and this man was frightening in his demands and manner of talking.

  • Venky

    I finally got my money back . When you approach their support you get the standard reply that their website is under repair and there would be delay. Don’t buy that story. I guess this is their standard way. If you want to get your money back, write to Primus Support, it would be quick

  • David

    Hey guys,

    To all of you out there who were disappointed with the Whitesmoke program, I’d like to share a good alternative. It’s called Ginger software and I find it to be much better than Whitesmoke. It’s not perfect but it did some amazing things to my text. After trying out Whitesmoke I moved on to trying Ginger and ended up buying it as it managed to catch many more mistakes than Whitesmoke. Hope this helps some of you. Cheers.

  • One Nut

    @Tony,

    Tony your one of the people I refer to a IT Dummies (IT meaning information technology, basically anything to do with computer technology). You think you know so much but what you write is so far from knowing exactly why Malware Bytes is giving you those results. First, you, yourself, stated what Malware Bytes “think’s” it has found. This being White Smoke Takeover. Since you’re computer illiterate, I will show you your mistake. The program we are reviewing is WhiteSmoke, notice no space or even Takeover added to the end? This is what is called a FALSE POSITIVE in a sense. Second, the reason MWB found so many is because it has flagged the WHOLE folder and registry node for ANYTHING that says WhiteSmoke, or White Smoke. You’ll also notice perfectly legit files in WhiteSmoke’s installed folder, but MWB is saying its dangerous. MWB hasn’t used a signature to make a 100% positive match, its using the heuristic scanning feature and believe me, these produce mass results of false positives.

    So now that we have cleared that up and also cleared up that you didn’t even have the program in question pop-up and had White Smoke Takeover installing itself which you say you stopped it. Now either you had the program in question installed before or afterwards and what I said above was showing in MWB then I have solved your confusion. If MWB didn’t just show the folder and regnode of WhiteSmoke, but instead other named malware, then its most likely that rogue you had that day did all the damage. WhiteSmoke itself, the program reviewed today, had no part with infection your machine.

    I suggest you do the following, take some classes on computers 101, read a book, do whatever you need to do so your not providing others with false information, as this is what damages a lot of companies. Try out Avast Internet Security, use Hitman Pro once a week and I also like to keep another scanner for weekly scans but doesn’t run all the time. This program I use is Emsisoft Anti-Malware, and again, no realtime scanning, only a weekly system scan with this. These are all good for set it and almost forget it for protecting your system, for people who are not educated in computer and software technology.

    So lets just be clear again, the program reviewed today, WhiteSmoke (notice the capital S too!) is virus/malware FREE as of this date today.

    Good luck Tony on your future cyber adventures.

  • Joe

    Don’t download this program !!! You will spend many hours trying to remove it from your system. It’s listed as Malware and I believe it. A friend suggested I try whitesmoke but I didn’t care for it because I didn’t feel it was accurate enough. When I tried to uninstall the program it was impossible. I still am working on a solution and may have to re-format my hard drive. Do now download it.

  • David

    It is not good! Many corrections are wrong! Get it if you want to embarrass yourself! The costumer service does not know how to deal with unusual questions… Advertisement of the software online is deceitful. Not trustworthy for serious writers.

  • JND

    BEWARE! This is the worst hyped software program ever. It will not do what it says it will do. It is supposed to automatically show up in MS Word and Outlook – sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes it checks the whole document and sometimes only a paragraph in the document. It works half the time and the other half is junk. It misses misspelled words regularly. It is a nuisance to work with. Truly, it is a piece of garbage. BEWARE!

  • Mike

    Whitesmoke is a piece of crap program that installed on my computer even after I clicked “Skip”.

    Now I cannot get rid of it no matter what I try: Remove programs, system restore, malware removers, nothing has worked. I contacted their online chat who told me they are only their for sales and they recommended I use their support email which I did. No reply.

    Google “Whitesmoke malware” if you don’t believe me. And I find it incredibly ironic that some of you paid for something I got for “free” that I do not want.

  • Chris

    DO NOT TOUCH WHITESMOKE WITH A TEN-FOOT POLE!! Whatever it may once have been, it is now pure scam. My experience is like Mike’s. It was bundled with another program and installed itself even though I unchecked it in the installer. It took over most of my file associations so that no matter what I tried to open, all I got was Whitesmoke. It made itself my Homepage and default search engine in three different browsers. Took me several days to root it out, and I still find traces.

    Hint: to get XP to recognize .exe files again, in any folder click Tools/Folder Options/File Types/New, type in “exe”, click “Advanced”, choose “Application”, “OK”, “OK”. For .lnk shortcuts do the same but choose “Shortcut.” Good luck!

  • Tim

    I wouldn’t recommend even trying the trial version! Something strange is going on with this company.

    If downloaded the trial version to use for a few days, it comes with advertisements to purchase the software. After the trial expired it would send an advertisement dropping the price. It finally hit 50% off the software so I purchased it.

    The new software instructions tell you to un-install the trial version, but you cannot. I have spent 3 days attempting to un-install and their support department will not respond.

    I purchased the One Time Payment option, and today I received a phone call from Whitesmoke asking if I would like to purchase the lifetime version (I thought I had since there are no options for a lifetime version) On their One Time Payment option there is a little icon, when you click it then it will tell you their One Time Payment is only good for six years. The salesman pointed this out. I told them that was deceptive advertising and he immediately hung up on me. Now their sales department will not answer my phone calls. Great Company!

  • Cheryl Jones

    I bought WhiteSmoke for the 50% off price of $39.99, yet they charged me $79.99 on my credit card. I have e-mailed them 5 times over the last month, talked to a rep (who told me to e-mail them) and tried to call them. After a ten minute wait, I was told that all mailboxes were full.

    In addition, their product is NOT quality – It suggested that I use the word “doing’t” at one point. Now, I am out $80 bucks with no way to contact these people. DON’T FALL FOR IT!

  • Abe

    Just curious: Have the people at this website made any apology or concession to the commentators, who overwhelmingly dislike this software? I am beginning to suspect that the positive reviews here and on other review sites are plants by the company. Yet the editors here say nothing. Loss of credibility for sure.

  • Alex

    @ One Nut,

    You are an idiot and a scammer. I cannot believe you have the balls to call Tony an IT dummie because he does not like your little malware. To anyone out there just google whitesmoke virus or malware and you will see that the program is impossible to uninstall using normal means.

  • SDC in Vancouver

    I’m surprised that the comments end in May of 2012 because WhiteSmoke is still going strong.

    I’m embarrassed to say that I too was ‘smoked’ by them. I purchased their full package for $99.95 in 2008 (transaction ID: 65L2280xxxxxxxx) and my problems began….
    1) I paid an extra $19.99 for this English training course. I thought would be useful for my students (in ESL) but upon review, it was a terrible and poorly constructed on-line course, seemingly created by someone new to English. It took several emails but I did get my refund via PayPal.

    2) WS was barely functional and crashed a lot! It mangled text (echoing what others have said) and eventually I dumped it after buying a new computer a few months later.

    3) Sometime in late 2009, I attempted to re-install it and discovered that my license had expired! What? I was assured that I was purchasing a perpetual (forever) license.

    4) When I wrote WS about this, I received two really odd phone calls from them,…implying that I lied that I was told that my license was supposed to be perpetual… the calls bordered on abusive or the very least, unprofessional.

    5) Jumping ahead to 2013, I still receive WhiteSmoke emails (totally 293 – not including the deleted ones). TBF, some are useful – i.e. grammar and writing tips. Anyhow, I was considering an upgrade, thinking the product has improved after five years. For $99, I can purchase a real perpetual license (as stated on their website). Question is, can I trust them, is their product any use? I am a writer looking for a tool to catch errors before I proof read.

    After reading the comments here, I am now doubtful. Thank you!

  • Kevin

    I purchased a lifetime license for v2012 (full package) and it was invaluable. I upgraded and purchased their new V8, also a life time license which was supposed to launch mid 2013, I only got it 3rd month of 2014.
    Six months later September 2014, BOTH versions of WhiteSmoke stopped working after they revoked the licenses with the popup message saying my licenses have expired and I must purchase again.
    Their support is NON EXISTENT, they do not answer their phone support, they do not respond to their online support and their online chat support is dead with the error message that it cannot be connected on ‘this’ server. (whatever that means)

    DO NOT PURCHASE this software, is my warning to ALL. I am highly disappointed !!!

  • Doug Baker

    Whitesmoke language/grammar software provides terrible customer service, offers less than adequately functional versions of its software, and fails to keep supporting its “one-time” purchased licenses. Do not trust this company or buy its software. For example, it sold unending registrations for Version 2012, then canceled services after 12-24 months. After that it tried to force the purchase of a new version, perhaps again as another “one-time” endless agreement that will also will not be honored. The recent Version #8 was loaded with countless usage difficulties when released, including reporting of many non-errors that still continue after a year. While this software does a good job of catching many or even most mistakes in general, in practice V8 is almost more trouble than it’s worth in the final analysis. In reality, the company’s technical department can only be reached about problems by email. The sales department—the sole number that can be readily found – will almost never transfer calls to customer support. Initial messages to tech support are then auto-answered by email, promising that the company’s staff will get back to the customer soon. Nothing ever happens, and a few days later a second email arrives saying that, since the company has not heard from the customer again, “the case will be closed” unless the customer contacts the company within 48 or 72 hours. Replies to these auto emails are thereafter unanswered. Since there is no way to call tech-support directly, this “circle jerk” never ends, and is a tremendous waste of customer’s time, as well as incredibly frustrating and therefore, infuriating.

  • Ganesh

    Dangerous software. STAY AWAY. Lifetime subscriptions works less than 6 months, no response to support tickets, malware warnings, very complicated to remove, a good firewall shows more than 20 warnings just to uninstall the software. A very serious scam. BE CAREFUL…

  • Louise

    Two days ago I purchased the upgrade to my ‘Basic Lifetime’ subscription. Uncertain as to the actual cost when already running the program, I received no response to my emails and ph messages for over a week. and thenI finally got ‘Ariela’ on Live Chat. It seemed a bit suspicious when ‘she’ took another $50 off the ‘today only’ special when I said I’d have to wait a day. I kept her on the line while I followed her links to the download >> and then to the Mac version. The moment I asked if there’s an upgrade for the latest Yosemite Mac update — she disappeared. No response — no way, no how — from anyone, phones not answering, ‘live chat’ not responding. I’m calling my bank to cancel this payment. Argh!

  • Ivan

    Do not waste your time and money with WhiteSmoke. It is a scam.
    The company is going to bankrupt. They cancel user accounts much earlier. You will find so many negative comments and reviews on Internet about scamming with user subscriptions.

    I suggest you to use Grammarly or LanguageTool. The second one is free and really woks well.

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