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Anti-virus What is the best kind?

#1 User is offline   Lostthyme 

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 04:55 PM

My free trial version of Norton Anti-Virus just officially disabled itself. My new computer is now unprotected against the cold, harsh world of internet. Since you all are some of the most technologically-minded people I know, I want opinions.

What should I use now? Should I go with a free program, or is this kind of thing the sort of thing you don't go cheap on? Any suggestions as to what I should use? It has to be compatible with Windows 7.
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#2 User is offline   luna 

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 05:13 PM

AVG and Avast are free and pretty good so far I know. Although it helps of course if you don't open weird mails and don't use IE XD. They both probably have windows 7 compatibility but I'm not sure.
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#3 User is offline   only_achenar_lover 

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 06:14 PM

I have McAfee, and I'm pretty sure you pay for it. But it works great and is totally compatible!
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#4 User is offline   GermanShepherd 

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 06:35 PM

View Postluna, on Feb 23 2010, 06:13 PM, said:

AVG and Avast are free and pretty good so far I know. Although it helps of course if you don't open weird mails and don't use IE XD. They both probably have windows 7 compatibility but I'm not sure.

Indeed, both AVG and Avast I've heard a lot of people like, and a lot of people use. I used to look up AV comparison charts back in the day and AVG in particular scored very well, even above a lot of subscription-based AVs. (However, for the record, Kaspersky and NOD32 have always been the absolute best AV apps on those charts, which is interesting. But you have to pay for those, so...)

I personally use Avira. (From free-av.com) Don't be fooled by its simplistic interface. It, too, fights for the lead right along with AVG and Avast. I used to have trouble with AVG being slow and generally inefficient, and the same with Avast. I don't know what's with AV software and their tendency to be big, slow and ugly, but Avira is lightning quick, doesn't mess around, and has always picked up the viruses I've downloaded. (It helps that I know they're already there, but Avira always picks them up.)

Avira does, however, pop up a single ad banner when you download subscription updates, but it's not spyware or in any way malicious like a lot of ad-supported apps are. It just pops up with some ad, usually for itself, and you can OK out of it while it's updating, and it doesn't actually harass you when you least expect it. For as good as it is with virus cleaning, I've been totally willing to overlook an ad whenever it updates definitions.

But yeah! AVG, Avast and Avira should be equally decent at scanning. It's just a matter of taste. Really, between these three, you shouldn't have to buy an AV program. Plus, and I know this sounds odd, Microsoft Windows Defender does a really nice job picking out malicious programs, too. There have been many times I've not scanned things because I assumed it came from a trust source and Defender yelled at me and made me feel like an idiot. So don't overlook what's already built into Windows 7. Seriously. It's really nice for being something installed by default! ;)
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#5 User is offline   Mystress 

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 08:10 PM

I run Webroot Anti-Virus and Anti-Spyware, 2010 edition. It scans very well and blocks most things pretty easily, but I wouldn't trust it for absolutely everything. I'd go with AVG or Avast. And yeah, trust Windows Defender, it's not a bad thing. Just annoying. Always use it as your second line of defense.
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#6 User is offline   aander91 

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 09:10 PM

First, purge your computer of all things Norton, second, AVG free or Kapersky.
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#7 User is offline   Lostthyme 

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Posted 24 February 2010 - 11:39 PM

Thanks for the suggestions. I think I'm going to go with Avast. That's what I had on my old computer, and out of the top three things listed here, it seems like the best.

Oh, and may AVG burn in the flaming pits of... Ederat. ;)
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#8 User is offline   ZangieF 

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Posted 05 June 2010 - 12:55 PM

As late of a reply as this may be, I recommend Avira over Avast and AVG—Avira has higher detection rates than both, and Avira's interface tends to be less confusing.

Oh, and if that's not enough, Avira's scanning engine has a name. Luke Filewalker.
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#9 User is offline   Ringobingo 

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Posted 06 June 2010 - 12:29 AM

My dad uses AVG on his Monsoon PC. 'Course it helps that they installed it when they built the silly thing, so... I should probably get Protection on the computer that is hooked up to our TV... It has an outdated version on Norton (which is annoying as all get out... Pops up with something every start-up...)

May the Grower guide you.

-Lunash
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#10 User is offline   ZangieF 

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Posted 06 June 2010 - 03:33 AM

Norton is an absolute RAM hog, can be annoying with all its various messages, and does not provide as good detection rates as many other solutions. Computer newbies like it because it pretty much holds your hand all the time, though. =\
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#11 User is offline   Ringobingo 

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Posted 06 June 2010 - 10:16 AM

Yea... And I had no choice in the matter as HP installed it when they made the comp, and when they fixed it a few months ago...

And on every start-up, it comes up with a message saying "Your Anti-virus definitions are out of date! Your computer is at risk! Do you want to: Buy and update Norton now? Or Remind me later?"

I always click the Remind me later one...

Oh well... May the Grower guide you.

-Lunash
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#12 User is offline   ZangieF 

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Posted 07 June 2010 - 03:12 PM

It always surprises me how ignorant tech companies are in the security field. The very reason they have many of their customers is because their computers were affected in some way by a virus / spyware / etc. Since they're being paid to remove the stuff and then, oftentimes, failing to secure it reasonably well, it almost makes me think that some of them do it on purpose, to ensure return visits.
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#13 User is offline   Mystress 

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Posted 07 June 2010 - 08:13 PM

There was that one case of the (creeper) friend who installed remote Webcam access software on several chicks' PCs and used it to grab the chicks undressing and stuff. Not professional, but yeah... Ew.
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#14 User is offline   ZangieF 

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Posted 07 June 2010 - 11:08 PM

Mhm, there are always the bad techs too, who do stuff like that, copy porn (or other files) off of your hard disk, and such. I'd like to ask one of them why they're too lazy to just save it themselves off the 'net, really. XD
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#15 User is offline   Mystress 

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 03:33 PM

View PostZangieF, on Jun 8 2010, 12:08 AM, said:

Mhm, there are always the bad techs too, who do stuff like that, copy porn (or other files) off of your hard disk, and such. I'd like to ask one of them why they're too lazy to just save it themselves off the 'net, really. XD


Question is, why would someone snap home-made porn of poor quality off of a webcam when there's actual porn movies in retail, AND porn bootlegs online? Not to mention the multitude of still-image porn... Come on, really? A *Webcam*? These people *really need* to install a *backdoor program* to watch girls get nekkid? Dude, there's a *whole lot of women out there* prepared to get naked for you, and probably would even let you film it. Your Average Jane college girl *isn't it*.

Also... what if the webcam snaps an image of some hot (married) chick's adorable four-year-old son or daughter running around the living room butt-naked like kids often do at that age? Say hello to being caught for having Child Pornography on your hard disk...
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#16 User is offline   Ringobingo 

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 04:13 PM

And that is why my entire family doesn't have webcams in our houses... 'Cept for my grandmother... But her's is built into her Acer computer...
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#17 User is offline   Mystress 

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 10:30 PM

Well, I have one, but it's built into my laptop. I couldn't find one without one, so I only use it with very close friends or else don't use it at all.
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#18 User is offline   The Stranger 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 01:49 PM

AVG and Avast are obsolete hogs and McAfee may as well be a virus itself. What you want is Panda Cloud it updates whenever you have an internet connection, takes reports of viruses from all users and uploads them to its data base to keep you secure from even new threats, and its free.
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#19 User is offline   ZangieF 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 04:15 PM

View PostThe Stranger, on Jun 9 2010, 12:49 PM, said:

AVG and Avast are obsolete hogs and McAfee may as well be a virus itself. What you want is Panda Cloud it updates whenever you have an internet connection, takes reports of viruses from all users and uploads them to its data base to keep you secure from even new threats, and its free.


Free as it may be, Panda's new Cloud AV is, with not so much as a single test from Virus Bulletin or another reputable IT security source to date, not something I would recommend at this point. I'd also like to add that none of Panda's products have even been submitted by the company for Virus Bulletin's VB100 tests since 2002 (testing is voluntary on the part of the AV company and requires submission); of the four times Panda has submitted their antivirus for testing, it's failed 3 times.

While the solution is an interesting, new concept, how well it actually performs remains to be seen, and with Panda's past performance in tests, I'd hesitate to recommend it even over AVG and Avast!, both of which have received a VB100 award for the June 2010 tests (along with Avira, who even entered their free AV this month and got a passing score).
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#20 User is offline   Menelmacar 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 05:06 PM

Being the rather un-software-hardware-savvy person I am - how does Symantec rank with the rest of these? (If the answer is "poorly", I'll probably switch to Avira...)

CM
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#21 User is offline   aander91 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 06:57 PM

Symantec=Norton?

:)
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#22 User is offline   300happy 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 07:20 PM

Late reply, but I've been using Comodo Antivirus/Firewall and occasionally scan with Malwarebytes. Both are free(though Comodo's website will try to sell you the better "full support" version, there is a free install under "free tools".)

Haven't had problems with either on Win7 64 bit. The "sandbox" mode of Comodo is also a much better alternitive to their old "pop up an alert every time a new program asks for keyboard access" they had in the older version of the software. It's really quite nice, and having firewall protection with antivirus in one program interface is very nice for my younger siblings who only have to learn to use a few buttons in one program, instead of two. :)
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#23 User is offline   aander91 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 07:28 PM

I've also heard only good things about Comodo.
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#24 User is offline   Mystress 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 08:22 PM

View Postaander91, on Jun 9 2010, 06:57 PM, said:

Symantec=Norton?

:)


Yes, and Norton's AV absolutely FAILS. I don't care what it says - it's annoying, hogs space, and doesn't even have that decent of a detection rate compared to other AV programs.

If you don't mind shelling out money for a professional AV program, go with Webroot Antivirus with SpySweeper. I use that one. The detection rates are excellent, it quarantines files instead of outright deleting them in case there's a mistake and a file needed for a program gets tagged as malicious, and it has continuous spyware and virus shields that have saved my rear end more than a few times. Coupled with Windows Defender, I truly believe it's the best all-around Vi-Spy program out there, and you can get it for about $40 I think, or close to that.

If you're going freeware, I'd suggest (as I and others already have) going with Avast. It scans on start-up and runs in the background under the DOS background commands, I think... but I'm not positive.
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#25 User is offline   Kaelri 

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 08:34 PM

I scan with Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware about once a week. Honestly, that's all I've ever needed. It consistently finds things that other apps don't. I use Windows' built-in firewall as my only active defense.

Unless I were dealing with especially sensitive files, or had some unique risk of infection - for example, if I were deliberately installing questionable software for testing purposes - I really wouldn't think it worth paying for maintenance software. I don't think there's enough benefit to justify the expense. But to each his own.
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