As my subscription on my current anti-virus software is coming to an end soonish on my laptop, I wanted to ask you if there are any reliable and free anti-virus programs out there. I've been mixing it up with F-Secure and Norton so far but I'm looking for other free options. Common sense would tell me that the ones you pay for should be the best, but there are exceptions to everything.
What I require:
*Free anti-virus software.
*Reliablility, e.g. I don't want to believe that I'm installing anti-virus software, when I'm actually installing some TrojanAzzHandler-virus.
*The ability to detect and remove harmful programs (cookies, virus etc..)
Q: How come I'm unable to have two anti-virus programs on my computer simultaneously? F-Secure and Norton always want to uninstall eachother, why is that, are they afraid I won't have enough cr*p on my computer for both of them? ^^
Q: A complete scan of my computer is about 120.000 files using F-secure, while Norton looks through well over 1.000.000 files. Why is this?
Thank you for reading!
Microsoft Security Essentiels is best free antivirus by miles and miles.
MS doesn't do much advertising for it, but i've been using it for 1 year now and i never had any virus problems or permissions problems like most other AV create.
the AV scans your RAM memory to find programs running on your PC that might be harmful. Because of this, having two antiviruses on the same computer at the same time will create Access Violation errors in windows and blue screens. On top of that, most AV come with their own firewalls, and having a port open in one FW and closed in another will cause problems.
Having two antivirus programs won't make your computer twice as protected.
It depends what kind of scans you perform. Some of them will, for example, skip windows files, as these are highly unlikely to be infected. Others will skip programs in RAM, as these are scanned permanently by the real time protection.
Some types of scan will ignore registry entries, others might ignore archives or image (.ISO etc) files.
F-secure is a monkey of an antivirus. You really shouldn't get that one, unless you have no choice.
I don't know how good these tests are but I found a website that compared a lot of anti viruses:
Here's the latest summary (December 2011): http://www.av-comparatives.org/images/docs/avc_sum_201112_en.pdf
It's too long for me to go through but if you're interested maybe this is a good place to find out which would suit you the best.
Edited by SORRYFORCAPS on 22/07/12 14:34 (BST)
How come people are so against F-Secure?
According to my link to a summary of tests it is better than Microsoft's antivirus (I'm assuming Microsoft Security Essentials).
Edit: The only thing Microsoft did better compared to F-secure was on the "Removal test". I don't know what the tests are or if they are to be trusted but it's better than nothing I guess.
These claims are nothing without something to back it up.
Edit2: Arguably this test also points to F-secure being better than MSE: http://www.av-test.org/en/tests/home-user/marapr-2012/
It's worse on the "repair" part but on the rest it's better.
Edited by Moonshadow on 22/07/12 14:40 (BST)
The tests websites do are quite inconclusive. Just as benchmarks for hardware for that matter.
Everything happens in a controlled environment, nothing can "go wrong".
An antivirus does so much more than catching viruses and removing them. It can seriously affect your ability to control your computer, it can take away your administrator privileges at random time, because antiviruses can't make the difference between human action and those initiated by malicious software. While you can work around these situation, i find it tiresome and annoying sometimes, and best to avoid them.
So far, MSE has been the best, i repeat, the best antivirus when it comes to the overall services it provides.
It never, ever, interferes with your commands as long as you run them as administrator, there are no peculiar situations with firewalls, it is seamlessly integrated in windows, has a very easy to use but powerful interface, does not slow down your system at all, you can even run scans in background while you do your job, it won't affect your performance (the scan does go slower though).
IMO, there is literally no reason to get a paid antivirus over MSE. Unless you pirated your windows, or you want to have some other functionalists like auto defrag and error check, file vault, etc, which you can get for free from other programs anyway.
There has been a lot of cases where antivirus would prevent individuals from playing/installing/patching/removing starcraft 2, as well as other games.
hell, my paid bit defender quarantined the entire OS once because it got a wrong update back in 2009.
MSSE does _not_ protect you from the BKA Trojan,
which can be caught via faulty pages who then install it as EXE,VB, or simply Firefox popup.
There is a windows update that fixes that.
U've got the KB #ID so I can look it up?
I'm fighting this nasty little one with Administrator accounts and shell commands for now,
there seems to be no service that can stop it from spread, expect deactivating js in webbrowsers under win7/vista.
WinXP aint a issue though