Desktop Products Support
Nine Mile Falls, WA 99026
WeatherBug Desktop Application Support
Below are answers to common questions about the current version of WeatherBug’s free desktop application. If you do not see your question here, please fill out a Support Request Form or visit the WeatherBug Forums.
- Who uses WeatherBug Products and Data?
WeatherBug was developed with the purpose of delivering live local weather conditions, forecasts and life saving severe weather alerts from its exclusive network of WeatherBug Tracking Stations. Today, the mission remains the same. WeatherBug data is used by…
- Consumers: 19 million unique at-home and at-work visitors* a month.
- Government: accessible to Homeland Security personnel for plume modeling in the event of a biological or chemical attack and by over 100 government agencies at the state and local level.
- Schools and School Districts: used in over 8,000 schools across the U.S. for teaching math, science and geography with real life data.
- Broadcasters: used by meteorologists at over 100 television broadcast stations like ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, WB and Telemundo, to bring “neighborhood” weather forecasts and conditions to communities every day.
Since its release nearly five years ago, WeatherBug is one of the top 10 Internet properties in daily reach* with millions looking to their WeatherBug desktop application for live local weather conditions, forecasts and severe weather alerts. The WeatherBug service is available at Weatherbug.com as well as via our partners — NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, WB and Telemundo television stations, Netscape, Logitech, HP/Compaq, and America Online — to name just a few.
*comScore Media Metrix, Feb. 2005
- Why a Desktop Application for WeatherBug?
For WeatherBug, back in 2000, a desktop application was the right solution. WeatherBug delivers life saving weather alerts to people in time for them to react, stay informed and stay safe. For all severe weather, the “chirp” has become a warning. For many, this warning gives them time to pull kids in from outside, or sometimes simply plants, call a loved one, or prepare for whatever severe weather is heading their way.
A desktop application allows you to build a relationship with your audience. All desktop applications serve a purpose of bringing valuable content to customers, pushing out pertinent information, and eliminating the time-consuming “search” aspect of the Web. In this way, people are better able to stay informed of the world around them.
- Are desktop applications Safe?
The frequency of Internet desktop applications has increased dramatically in the last five years in many categories, including instant messengers, weather applications, rich media players (e.g., Real Player and Windows Media Player), and so on. Many of these products are free, supported by advertising, and developed by trusted brands. Unfortunately, the frequency of Internet properties that are not trustworthy or forthright in their objectives has also increased in recent years. Because of this, protecting the rights and privacy of our consumer and business users has become a top priority at WeatherBug.
- Is WeatherBug Safe?
WeatherBug is a safe and secure desktop application that delivers live local weather and life saving alerts to millions of people a month. WeatherBug does not have, and never has had, the capability to track surfing habits or “spy” on its users.
- Why does WeatherBug have advertising?
It is the advertising sponsors that keep WeatherBug free. WeatherBug found a unique way to make an ad- supported application “relevant” to each user by allowing them to choose the type of advertising they see every day within the clearly specified limits of the WeatherBug advertising platform. In addition, an “ad-free” version of WeatherBug, called WeatherBug Plus, is available to users for only $19.95 a year. For this price, consumers get all the great features of the free application plus additional premium features in an ad-free environment.
- Isn't an application that serves ads “Adware?”
One of the big problems with the term “adware” is the lack of a standard definition. We believe that the proper definition of adware is any program that secretly gathers personal information through the Internet and relays it back to another computer, generally for advertising purposes. This is often accomplished by tracking information related to Internet browser usage or habits.
WeatherBug is not “Adware.” WeatherBug's is incapable of tracking the trends of its customers' Web use or deciphering anything on customers' local or hard drives. WeatherBug does not “snoop” on its users, nor does it have functionality to determine what users were doing, where they were before WeatherBug was opened or where they go after using WeatherBug.
- Does WeatherBug have constant “Open Access” to the Internet?
WeatherBug does not have constant “open” access to the Internet. WeatherBug does not act like a server in any way and does not accept Internet connections. WeatherBug regularly “polls” for weather information using the http protocol (tcp/ip port 80). In this way, the WeatherBug acts just like a Web browser in that it queries a Web server for data that it displays.
- What sort of bandwidth does WeatherBug require and will it slow my computer down?
WeatherBug had an independent laboratory test the WeatherBug application with regard to adware and spyware, bandwidth usage, resource utilization, and the uninstall process. Click on the following link to read the entire report. http://www.testpros.com/weatherbugcertificate1.htm
The following is taken from the report mentioned above…
“Traffic was monitored for 48 hours. The system under test was running WeatherBug 6.0 in background mode. An analysis of the traffic showed the average network bandwidth to be 10.2 bytes/sec. Traffic consisted of http Gets and Responses which occurred every 300 seconds (5 min). As noted below, clicking on the WeatherBug temperature icon to bring it to the foreground entails network activity, but the traffic is comparable to a browser request to the Yahoo home page. When some of the browser like features are used, like radar animation or Sky & Telescope, the network usage is exactly like that of a browser.”
Avg. Bandwidth 10.2 Bytes/sec Avg. HTTP Request Size 349 Bytes Avg. HTTP Response Size 204 Bytes Burst Traffic — transition to foreground 61 Kbytes
- Does WeatherBug Have a Users Bill of Rights?
WeatherBug has defined one of the industry's first “Bill of Rights” for its millions of consumer and business users, and adheres to the strictest standards relating to clear and meaningful notice, informed consent and user control. The WeatherBug Bill of Rights can be found at: ( WeatherBug.com/BillofRights ).
- What does WeatherBug do to Protect User Rights?
WeatherBug works hard to protect the rights of consumer and business users and is a member of the Online Privacy Alliance (privacyalliance.org). In addition, checkyourcomputer.org, was launched earlier this year to help educate and protect consumers' online.
- How do I uninstall the program?
We are sorry to hear you wish to uninstall WeatherBug. Please read all the directions below to remove the program.
Please note that if you are a PLUS user, your account will remain active. If you are a PLUS user and wish to prevent future billing, please send an email to WeatherBug Support notifying us that you wish to prevent future billing.
To begin the WeatherBug uninstall process, you must MAKE SURE the program is not running. If there is a WeatherBug icon / temperature visible in the lower right corner of your screen, right click on it and select "Exit WeatherBug".
To permanently remove the WeatherBug from your system after you have exited the program:
- Click START (from lower left of computer screen)
- Select SETTINGS and CONTROL PANEL or just CONTROL PANEL depending upon your version of Windows.
- Double click ADD/REMOVE PROGRAMS
- Select "WeatherBug" from the list of applications
- Click ADD/REMOVE and follow the instructions
This should perform a full uninstall of the WeatherBug application.
When uninstalling older versions of WeatherBug a small file, MiniBug.dll was left behind. This is a download manager that is used in exactly the same way that Macromedia manages the download of Shockwave, and other software developers manage the downloading of their software. MiniBug.dll has absolutely no capabilities to display any advertisements and can be safely removed after WeatherBug is installed without affecting the WeatherBug application. In fact, in response to questions on this issue, we are making sure that this file gets removed automatically once the full WeatherBug has been installed so as to avoid user confusion.
All WeatherBug emails include an unsubscribe link. If you wish to unsubscribe your email address, you will need your WeatherBug Registration ID. Because there are several different categories of emails we send, you may need to unsubscribe from more than one category. Please make sure to unsubscribe from ALL categories if you do not wish to receive any emails from WeatherBug.
- Right click the WeatherBug icon in your System Tray (the bottom right hand corner of your screen)
- Select "About WeatherBug."
- Please Click Here and enter your Registration ID
- Click "Submit" and follow the directions
If you have uninstalled your WeatherBug and are unable to retrieve your Registration ID, please send us a Support Request Form and be sure to provide the email address to which you are receiving emails. A representative in our customer service department will process your request within 48 hours.
Please note that WeatherBug does NOT share, sell, rent or lease your email address to our sponsors. If, however, you clicked on a sponsor's ad or entered your email address at their site and wish to unsubscribe from sponsor emails, please contact the sponsor directly or click the Unsubscribe link that may be at the bottom of their emails.
The main reason a download won’t finish is due to security programs like firewalls, antivirus programs, etc. not allowing WeatherBug to finish.
To download the current version, please make sure all firewalls, adblocking and antivirus software are set to allow WeatherBug access. This will prevent problems in the download.
Next, please go to: http://www.weatherbug.com/download/currentVersion/download.asp where you will receive the newest version of WeatherBug.
(If you feel that you are experiencing an issue due to a firewall, adblocking or antivirus software, you may wish to visit your vendor's website for information on how to review and/or change your current settings).
Right click on the temperature icon in the system tray (bottom right corner of your screen) and choose "WeatherBug Update". This will tell you if you need to update your WeatherBug.
If WeatherBug is not showing UPDATED current conditions or is displaying an error message regarding internet activity, please make sure you are online
To keep WeatherBug from automatically opening to full screen when your computer boots up, click on the Preferences button and choose the Connection tab. Uncheck the box "If internet connection is active…." Click OK at the bottom of the window and reboot your computer and this should correct the issue.
If you wish to completely disable WeatherBug when your computer boots up, go into Preferences and uncheck "enable WeatherBug to receive NWS alerts at Windows startup". This means WeatherBug will NOT open at all when you boot up- you will have to manually open the program for it to run. We DO NOT recommend this as you will be unable to receive potentially life-saving weather alerts. If you disable it, anyone who wants to use WeatherBug must click the ladybug icon to open the program manually (thus you won’t get alerts until someone opens the program).
WeatherBug is 100% spyware and adware free. Click Here for more information.
Yes. WeatherBug is supported by the advertisers that appear on your WeatherBug. We also have a WeatherBug Plus version for a small annual subscription fee that is advertising-free and has extra features such as PlusCams, MyLocations, Historical Data and more! To subscribe to WeatherBug Plus and for pricing information go to the WeatherBug Store.
The background and color format of WeatherBug varies with the sponsor selected as each sponsor has their own 'theme'. Sponsors change at least every 2 weeks and you will be prompted at that time to select a new sponsor if you haven't changed sponsors before then.
Please click SITE MAP and then click on the "Select a new Sponsor" link at the bottom of the Weather Fun category.
WeatherBug refreshes the data it is receiving at different time intervals depending upon how you are viewing the WeatherBug application.
WeatherBug had an independent lab test our products for bandwidth, CPU usage, etc. To view the full report, please click here. Listed below are WeatherBug Refresh rates:
Foreground (when your WeatherBug display is fully opened on your screen):
- In the first minute: It updates weather data every 2 seconds.
- Ad rotates only if a mouse or a key is pressed.
Background (when your WeatherBug display is minimized to be next to the time in the bottom right hand of your computer screen):
- Makes weather data update every 1 hour.
For both background and foreground, WeatherBug makes alert information requests every 5 minutes with total data size (in/out) averaging 275Bytes each way, and makes forecast information requests every 2 hours, with data size of approx. 275Bytes each way.
- Each weather data request (in/out):approx. 375B.
- Each ad banner may consume approx. 10KB.
The bandwidth consumption is:
- Foreground first 1 minute: up to 10kb/sec
- Foreground after 1 minute or Background: 39bits/sec.
- All the background and branding images are cached. If the user clicks on a Tab, it will load tiny Web pages and ads may rotate, this may increase the bandwidth in the short term, but after that it will use the same bandwidth as described above.
- Since most of the users bring WeatherBug to the foreground for only a short time, it should not cause any bandwidth issues with the network.
To remove the WeatherBug Toolbar powered by MySearch, please click the arrow next to the word SEARCH on the toolbar and choose Uninstall WeatherBug Browser Bar.
If you have an older version of the browser bar, please click START button at the bottom left corner of your screen, then click Settings or Control Panel. Open the Control Panel and click Add or Remove Programs and look for "WeatherBug Browser Bar powered by MyWebSearch", click it and uninstall it.
WeatherBug and the Browser Bar are NOT spyware or anything of this type. Click Here for more info. Both applications-WeatherBug and the WeatherBug Browser Bar never in any manner "snoop" on user behavior or in any way track, record or follow your movements when using the application, entering it or exiting it.
There are two main reasons you may not be getting live data. First, you may not have been connected to the internet at the time of the problem. Second, there was a firewall, adblocking or antivirus software causing a conflict with WeatherBug.
If you are having a problem with your Forecast, Alerts, Camera, Radar, and Travel pages not loading, please note the following solutions.
- Solution 1:
- Solution 2:
- Solution 3:
- Solution 4:
- Parental Control
- Content Advisor (Internet Explorer)
- Privacy Guard
**Several of these components are bundled together in the popular Internet Security programs.
If you have McAfee, please make sure to "allow ads" as this may also fix the issue.
Up to 4 times each day, the National Weather Service updates regional forecasts. Your WeatherBug 6.0 will alert you to these updates when they occur by displaying a small notice in the system tray. A double chime will sound to let you know the forecast has been updated in addition to the balloon notice as seen below:
You can turn off the audible alert or set it not to alert you during certain time periods, such as at night by clicking the Preferences button at the top of your WeatherBug. Click the Forecast Options tab, then CHECK the Active Notification Silence Time box- it should be empty when you first reach the page. You can then adjust the time that you want the sound to be off, or you can select "Off All Day" if you do not wish to have the forecast alert you when it updates. Click OK and your preferences will be set.
At present, the desktop application of WeatherBug is designated for U.S. ZIP Codes.You can, however, access thousands of international locations by visiting http://weather.weatherbug.com.
International users can also receive RSS global weather feeds via email or through their favorite RSS readers. Sign up by visiting http://rss.weatherbug.com/
We recently launched Mac and Firefox accessible versions of our popular desktop programs.
If you wish to download the Mac version of WeatherBug, please visit http://mac.weatherbug.com/
If you wish to download our version for Firefox, please visit http://firefox.weatherbug.com/firefox/
If any weather information is showing as "N/A", our team is already aware of the fact that this data is currently unavailable and has contacted the station owners. We will work with our station contacts to bring this data back online as soon as possible. If the weather station you are connecting to is from an airport, these stations do NOT update live and therefore we don’t show the wind conditions since they could be up to 1 hour old. All 8000 WeatherBug stations however should normally show LIVE wind conditions, so the N/A indicates a problem at that station’s wind sensor.
Please provide us with the following information so we can investigate the issue immediately:
- the ZIP Code of the station and the day you noticed the problem;
- the Weather station ID (the name of the location such as the school, airport, etc.);
- a short description of the problem you believe the station may be experiencing
For example: Jones Elementary School in Allentown, PA 18104 is displaying no rain even though it is raining on (today's date).
PLEASE NOTE: If any weather information is showing as "N/A", our team is already aware of the fact that this data is currently unavailable and has contacted the station owners. We will work with our station contacts to bring this data back online as soon as possible.
We appreciate you bringing this to our attention. With over 8000 stations in our network, we realize that occasionally a station may have reporting issues. We have a technical support team dedicated to addressing these as quickly as possible.
In the meantime, click the Change Location link at the top of the main screen and enter your ZIP Code and choose a different station and click OK or SET LOCATION to set your WeatherBug to a new station.
If WeatherBug is not showing UPDATED current conditions, it may not be connecting to the Internet for updates.
To get temperature for your location next to the date and time, simply access the Notification Area overflow box by clicking on the up arrowhead in the taskbar. Then, drag the WeatherBug temperature reading from within the overflow box into the Notification Area next to the date and time. ("Notification Area" - in earlier Windows operating systems this was known as the System Tray.)
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