Apparently, Sun has switched from bundling the Google Toolbar with their releases to bundling the MSN Toolbar. I'm kind of surprised they aren't using the Windows Live Toolbar, but at the same time, the MSN Toolbar has a much better experience. Whether this was sparked by Google dropping StarOffice like a bad habit or not, it's a win for Microsoft. The toolbar comes with Windows Live Search integration (duh) and, even better, uses Silverlight. There must have been some pretty high-level talks to get this approved because Silverlight is a competitor to the yet-to-be-released JavaFX, so I can't see this going thru just because Google pissed someone off. I have a feeling Sun was just trying to whore themselves out as much as possible. The MSN Toolbar deal only applies to Java downloaded by IE on Windows. Everyone else will keep the Google Toolbar based installer. I know Sun is hurting, so this probably just gives them a chance to pad their slowly declining product line.
Aside from all this, I have to say I hate these things. I wish there weren't deals like this. If you do feel the need to whore yourself out, make it disabled by default. I get aggravated when I see these things as opt-out inclusions. I don't want your crappy toolbar, I don't want an icon on my desktop, I don't want to change my homepage. Get off my freakin' back!!! Bad installer, bad!!!