Looking for your Opinion on anti-virus s/w

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Thread Starter
Sep 21, 2008
My Norton internet security 2005 subscription runs out in a few days. I’ve seen people on forums that don’t care for Norton. Since it’s time to pay up, I’m looking for opinions on AV S/W. I’ve been pretty satisfied with Norton, but have never used anything else. And what about those free anti-virus programs?
Sep 21, 2008
I'd recommend getting ESET Smart Security. Earlier also known as NOD32, been using it for a while now and had no issues with it, works like a charm. I've tried Kaspersky, Panda, BitDefender and all that jazz in the past, sticking with this one as of now. :)
Jun 1, 2008

I have tried AVG.......and got rid of it when it failed to pick up a virus that wiped out half my OS.

I now use Avast! which is also free for home users. I haven't had any problems with it and I find it has a really simple user interface.
It doesn't take up to much space either.

I am only a beginner? And this is only my opinion. Hope it is of some help.
Dec 8, 2006
I used F-Secure. Never had a problem with it. Instant performance increase after getting rid of NOrtON

Free = Tell you after infected

Paid = Prevent from infecting
Jan 10, 2005
It's just a matter of 1) What you're comfortable with, and 2) What "plays well" with the other stuff on your system. Nevertheless, all of them may exhibit some problems. Antivirus programs are notoriously cranky.

The most common bash on McAfee and Norton are that they are resource hogs.

AVG, Avast, and Avira's Antivir are three that have gained a reputation for not taking up much resources.

As far as virus detection itself, they are all pretty good, and the ratings that the trade magazines give them are all within a few percentage points, so I don't think any one is a whole lot better than the other (of course, there are a few slackers out there, but if you stay with the brand names and exercise good security best practices, you'll be pretty safe).

Bottom line: As I said, it's mostly a matter of personal preference and what you AND YOUR SYSTEM (Norton is notorious for not playing well with systems) are most comfortable with. No doubt, though, you'll find plenty of people that will bash individual products. (And I think I just bashed Norton there!)

And if you visit Manufacturer forums, just keep in mind that most people come to those forums to complain about problems they've had, so your information from them is going to be skewed. Very few people visit a forum just to say "Atta' boy".

And what ever you decide to pick, it's a good idea to run an on line scan now and then, because what your local protection misses (and they all miss some things), an on line scan may detect.

1. Panda ActiveScan 2.0 - http://www.pandasecurity.com/homeusers/solutions/activescan/

2. Kaspersky - http://www.kaspersky.com/virusscanner

3. Symantec Security check - http://security.symantec.com/sscv6/default.asp?langid=ie&venid=sym

4. Trend Micro Housecall - http://housecall.trendmicro.com/

5. McAfee - http://us.mcafee.com/root/mfs/default.asp

6. BitDefender - http://www.bitdefender.com/scan8/ie.html

7. VirScan - http://www.virscan.org/ NOTE: This is just for selected files, NOT the whole machine.

8. Virustotal - http://www.virustotal.com/ NOTE: This is just for selected files, NOT the whole machine.
Jun 22, 2007
i use avira on my xp and avg on my vista,i will admit that avira is more sensitive and thorough,it has saved my pc quite a few times...........
Jan 10, 2005
BTW, I used to have McAfee Enterprise 8.0i and Zone Alarm, but now I've switched to Avira's AntiVir and Comodo FW, and things are just fine (and start up is a lot faster, obviously, and resource availability is better). As I said, the main thing to me is how things get along with your system, and McAfee and ZA were starting to do their dance on my resources (but I have to admit that for years this combo played nice).


Jan 15, 2006
clamwin, windows defender and hotspot shield = very light on my p3 500 laptop
and returnil if i go to susp sites
Apr 11, 2006
Ferrija1's Canned Malware Removal Applications Post:

There are so many good antivirus applications on the internet, there is no "absolute best, hands-down, golden standard" application for virus or spyware removal. They are like cars. They all get you places (remove viruses), it's just that some look different and have certain features that others don't. The exact appliations you choose comes down to personal preference. You may find a certain lightweight anti-virus application to work well on your less powerful computer, or you may like the layout of an anti-spyware enough that you choose to use it. The detection difference between the below applications is for the most part insignificant.

Nomatter what anti-virus application you use, you can still be infected if you do not follow the following points:

1. You behavior while online is your first and best defense against malware.
While antivirus software is complex, malicious programs (malware) are created every day before antivirus applications have time to update to block that vulnerability, leaving the antivirus software useless. There are few security tips to follow while online; if these are followed, coupled with an antivirus application, your chances of being infected are next to none.

Adapted from Leo Laporte's Five Things To Do To Protect Yourself:

  1. Don't Open E-mail Attachments Even if an attachment looks like it's from a friend, don't open it, it could have been sent from a hacker and have a virus in it. Ask the sender if they really sent the attachment before opening it.
  2. Don't Click Links In E-mail Never click links in e-mail, type the address into your browser by hand. Since you can name links different than what they actually are (like this: http://www.google.com) and since links may look like they go somewhere they don't (like http://www.google.com@members.example.com/ may look like it goes to Google, but it truly goes to example.com).
  3. Don't Download Files From Places You Don't Know Are Safe / Don't Use BitTorrent or P2P Apps When you are downloading files, especially applications and .exe files, stick to the big sites. CNET, SourceForge, Microsoft, Apple, etc. Chances are, you can find that application on a large site. If you must download files from a smaller or less reputable site, scan it with your antivirus software right after you download it. BitTorrent and other P2P (person to person, a way of transmitting data) application may look great, but it can take only minutes using one to be infected. They often entice you with free music or software, but along with them are viruses.
  4. Update, Update, Update! Microsoft, Apple, and Linux development teams are always finding new holes in their operating systems then creating fixes, or patches, for them. To receive these patches, you should have the automatic update feature on and manually check every few days.
  5. Get a Firewall It is critical to have a firewall of some sort running while online, they block attacks on your computer. Routers are great hardware firewalls, since they block attacks before they reach your computer, cannot be disabled by viruses, and apply to any computer connected to that router -- it blocks attacks for more than just one machine. You should also run the simple built-in firewall on your operating system.

2. Only use one anti-virus application at a time. Running more than one anti-virus application with real-time protection at the same time can cause conflicts and make you vulnerable. It is, however, safe and a very good idea to scan with more than one anti-virus application.

3. Only use well known applications, like the ones on this list, because of the prevalence of rogue anti-malware applications.

4. If you believe you are infected, do not attempt to remove it with an anti-virus application, go to the Malware Removal forum and post an HJT log, noting any strange behavior you have seen.

5. Ensure your anti-virus application is set to update constantly, and once-in-a-while check to make sure it does update. Additionally, do not ignore warnings that are given to you by your security and anti-malware applications.

Below is a list of recommended anti-malware applications in no particular order.

Anti-virus Applications

Most free antivirus applications have the same virus engine (virus detecting and removal component) as their paid counterparts, but lack features like real-time protection, e-mail scanning, and scheduling.

The price is for a one year subscription.

Anti-spyware Applications

PM me if you want to add something.
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