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Thu Jan 17, 2013, 03:51 PM

Anti virus protection

I am running System Mechanic per advice from Dell support. I've gotten a couple of viruses which they manage to get rid of but I have read that I might not have the best protection.

Could any of you that are much more informed on this stuff could give me some advice.

I Have used Avast in the past and was told that Microsoft Security Essentials was good but I really don't know what to do, never used to get viruses and now all of a sudden I am.

I don't download a lot and know where my mail is coming from so what is happening I don't know.

Any help would be appreciated.

29 replies, 2330 views

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Arrow 29 replies Author Time Post
Reply Anti virus protection (Original post)
Worried senior Jan 2013 OP
MannyGoldstein Jan 2013 #1
Phillip McCleod Jan 2013 #9
WhoIsNumberNone Jan 2013 #2
Phillip McCleod Jan 2013 #10
ManiacJoe Jan 2013 #3
RC Jan 2013 #4
lastlib Jan 2013 #5
ohheckyeah Jan 2013 #6
davepdx Jan 2013 #7
Earth Bound Misfit Jan 2013 #8
Phillip McCleod Jan 2013 #11
Phillip McCleod Jan 2013 #12
DryRain Jan 2013 #13
CountAllVotes Jan 2013 #14
DryRain Jan 2013 #15
Mnpaul Jan 2013 #17
DryRain Jan 2013 #18
Mnpaul Jan 2013 #20
DryRain Jan 2013 #22
CountAllVotes Jan 2013 #23
DryRain Jan 2013 #24
CountAllVotes Jan 2013 #29
Phillip McCleod Jan 2013 #16
Worried senior Jan 2013 #19
Earth Bound Misfit Jan 2013 #21
DryRain Jan 2013 #25
ManiacJoe Jan 2013 #26
DryRain Jan 2013 #27
ManiacJoe Jan 2013 #28

Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 03:58 PM

1. I use Avast and Malwarebytes

Last edited Thu Jan 17, 2013, 04:59 PM - Edit history (1)

Between the two, they do a great job.

My son's laptop was having all sorts of mysterious problems a few months ago. His Norton antivirus was up to date, and said that everything was fine. Just for fun, I tried Malwarebytes. It found some trojans, cleaned 'em, and all was well. Norton is now gone.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #1)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 12:03 AM

9. yep

 

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 05:12 PM

2. I use ESET and Spybot Search & Destroy

I don't know how well ESET is rated, but I like it better than Symantec, which I had before.

Spybot is freeware (Although they accept donations) and it's been pretty awesome. I have a second computer that I don't take online much which runs Microsoft Security Essentials. I ran a scan last week- Spybot turned up a whole gaggle of stuff after MSE said the system was clean. (although, to be fair, Spybot searches for different things than active virus protections like ESET and MSE)

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Response to WhoIsNumberNone (Reply #2)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 12:04 AM

10. and yep to spybot

 

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 06:30 PM

3. There is no "best".

No one product catches them all. Any of the big name products are a good place to start. Microsoft Security Essentials is good and free.

Running a standalone product like Malwarebytes or SpybotSearchAndDistroy every now and then can be a good thing, too.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 07:30 PM

4. What do you use for a firewall?

 

And is it set up properly? That could be your problem, too.

Anyway, on my computers, I use Malwarebytes, SUPERAntiSpyware, MS Security Essentials. Except for cookies, they very seldom find anything. However on other people's computers that I maintain, they do find malware fairly often.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 07:57 PM

5. My experience with System Mechanic was not happy.

It missed some really nasty malware, and when expiration date approached, it bogged my system down to near-death state. It also didn't live up to expectations as a system maintenance tool, and ultimately corrupted my registry. I dumped it for AVG, and have never been sorry. For the money, System Mechanic was a lemon, IMHO.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:35 AM

6. I use McAfee,

SuperAntiSpyware and Malwarebytes.

I buy my McAfee through buy.com where it's a lot cheaper.

This is the result I get from ShieldsUp when it probes my computer:

Your system has achieved a perfect "TruStealth" rating. Not a single packet solicited or otherwise was received from your system as a result of our security probing tests. Your system ignored and refused to reply to repeated Pings (ICMP Echo Requests). From the standpoint of the passing probes of any hacker, this machine does not exist on the Internet. Some questionable personal security systems expose their users by attempting to "counter-probe the prober", thus revealing themselves. But your system wisely remained silent in every way. Very nice.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 09:47 AM

7. Here are a couple of independent A/V testing sites that may help...

This first site is new to me. I picked Windows 7 because that is what I am running. If you are running another OS then select it on the left.

http://www.av-test.org/en/tests/home-user/windows-7/novdec-2012/

This site provides results of a wide range of testing but they don't seem to be testing as frequently as they used to test.

http://www.av-comparatives.org/

I was alerted to the first site after reading the following article titled "Microsoft Security Essentials Fails Certification Again." This really surprised me. MSE has always trailed the better A/V products at detecting viruses by a small bit at the AV-Comparatives link but it was still had a fairly decent detection rate.

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/AV-TEST-Certification-Security-Essentials-Double-Failure-0-Day,20524.html

Whatever you do, don't run two antivirus programs at the same time. Doing so can cause the two programs to "fight" with each other and provoke false positives, slow down your computer or even hang your system. Only have one A/V product installed at a time.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 09:55 AM

8. MSE (Microsoft) is a "set it & forget it" AV that does one thing

give real-time Anti-Virus protection which is all I want in an AV. Two things, actually--It also adds "Microsoft Network Inspection Service". It is light on system resources and is easily configured. I use it on both my machines as well as a few Virtual machines.

I am a former long time Avast user which is "good" also...it just became too "busy" IMHO, YMMV.

I agree with Manny...a layered approach is always a good idea...MBAM in my experience plays "nice" with MSE (also Avast which I used before) not so much with McAfee & Norton from what I've read. An MBAM (PRO) lifetime license is money well spent @ $24.95, less if you look for sales/coupons. There are many good suggestions in the replies above.

I too saw & was surprised by the comparison davepdx referred to--I will continue to use MSE until it bites me in the a**

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 12:10 AM

11. the standard installation for windows os at my job (computer tech) is

 

avast OR stop sign (not both), advanced system care, and spybot. sometimes malwarebytes but it gets annoying. so does avast after a while but set settings > sounds to off and advanced > sandbox to off and the experience isn't too bad with the free version.

for external virus removal i use 'clamav' a free open-source linux-based antivirus program. just pop a live cd in or pull the hard drive and plug it into a linux box and voila' rootkit virus no more.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 12:13 AM

12. oh yeah - norton and mcafee are of the devil

 

they slow your machine down and sometimes just plain fuck it up. uninstall them today and cleanse, rinse, cleanse, rinse and reinstall a lightweight free antivirus app like avast or pay for something better like stop sign (but not norton or mcafee!)

delete the devil. they are as bad as the viruses they can't find.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 08:53 AM

13. Is Avast! renewal still free after one year?

 

I cannot find a way to get a renewal of their free home version after the one year.

Malwarebytes, also is telling me that my "trial" subscription has run out and I have to buy it.

This was not the case in previous years, but I'm sure everybody needs to make some money these days.

Or am I doing it wrong and can I still find a way to have free Avast and Malwarebytes?

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Response to DryRain (Reply #13)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 12:16 PM

14. new version of Avast! here:

http://download.cnet.com/1770-20_4-0.html?tag=pfindersrch&searchtype=downloads&query=avast&filter=platform=Windows|&filterName=platform=Windows|


I did a search ...

Went to download.com and typed in avast free ...

Personally I use Avira AV with no problems. It is great for older computer without a lot of RAM, etc.

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Response to CountAllVotes (Reply #14)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:07 PM

15. Thanks so much for your advice!!!

 

I have 5 computers in 3 homes, mine and relatives' who will also thank you for this if it works. But I doubt it will.

I'm afraid Avast! puts a little cookie on machines now, and detects if you have used over a year of free virus scans, and won't let you download the free version on that computer for another year again.

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Response to DryRain (Reply #15)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 04:34 PM

17. Avast doesn't work that way

After a year, you just have to renew your registration. I have been using it on one of my computers for at least 3 years free of charge.

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Response to Mnpaul (Reply #17)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 04:39 PM

18. Yes, so have I, up until this point but now

 

one of my relative's computers which I maintain would NOT allow me to renew without paying.

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Response to DryRain (Reply #18)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 04:52 PM

20. Is that computer running the paid version?

If someone upgraded it, you won't be able to upgrade it with the free version. You will need to uninstall the current version first.

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Response to Mnpaul (Reply #20)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 09:28 PM

22. No, I never PAID for a version, and never PAID a cent

 

I have had control of that computer's virus and other utilities for 5 years or so.

I visit it monthy, or more often, do scans, fix problems. NEVER a problem until now.

Always Avast! for virus scan, user just visits his AOL account once a day or so, vews mail, responds, does crossword puzzles, plays a few games, Prints a few ictures.

NEVER did he pay for anything, 80 years od, calls me whe he gets in trouble by clicking the wrong thing, I fix over phone or drive there next day.

This is the typical old user, AOL should protect these guys, give them free access for life, and fix their problems daily.

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Response to DryRain (Reply #15)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:59 PM

23. similar boat here

I've got 5 of them, the oldest is a ThinkPad made in 1998 with a 6 gb hard drive! You cannot run an anti-virus on it easily but I'm able to run Avira on it. You might give it a try. I have it on all of these computers and I've never been asked for any money.

You can download this at download.com too.

That sucks about Avast! being not really free!

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Response to CountAllVotes (Reply #23)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:47 PM

24. Thank you, I will investigate and try Avira on mine first.

 

See what it does.

My two relatives with their 3 computers between them, they know nothing of what I do to make their computers safe, and they both click to open AOL spam mail that says stuff like, "your secret sexy pictures are available here.."

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Response to DryRain (Reply #24)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:44 PM

29. Avira has a pretty good rating on download.com

"Happy enough could be better"

April 26, 2012 | By andeyejah

Version: Avira Free Security 1.0

Pros

Doesn't take much ram when running in the background.Ive noticed no slow down on my system with normal usage.

Cons

Takes good bit of ram on a full scan around 2.50 gbs according to activity monitor.A lot better than avast which took all 12 gigs on same full system scan

Summary

Viruses/Malware on a mac are hard to come by so of course the scan came up with nothing.I will update if i do get infected and avira misses it.

Read more: Avira Free Security for Mac - CNET Download.com http://download.cnet.com/Avira-Free-Security/3000-2239_4-75703190.html#ixzz2IZtZG8k1

I'd say this sums it up esp. the part about the amount of RAM required to run it. for that reason alone w/me (I'd be using no anti-virus on the old ThinkPad as I cannot find one that uses this small amount of RAM that will actually install and run).

Best of luck w/it.


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Response to CountAllVotes (Reply #14)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:31 PM

16. i am looking at avira av now as an alternative to avast

 

when i install avast for people then in no time it will start nagging them for money now. so i started looking for open source solutions too. i need to look at both avg and avira from a noob point of view and see what the experience is like. i am also going to try in combo with Immunet which can run alongside other av and is based on clamav open source http://www.clamav.net/lang/en/about/win32/.

ideally i want to find antivirus software that is completely free and works well to install on customer computers.

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 04:46 PM

19. Thanks everyone

Now I have to some research I guess, just not happy with System Mechanic. We were running Avast and the Dell tech told me it wasn't good enough.

I also spoke with a young computer tech up here and he said all he uses is Winows security essentials.

I was told not to use Malware Bytes because I could remove something that I shouldn't Do have CC cleaner on the computer and have used that.

Now we are having the nightmare of installing a printer with wireless capabilities. The HP we had finally went back to the store after a wk of HP tech support and no solutioons. Got a cannon this time, not fun.

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Response to Worried senior (Reply #19)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 05:31 PM

21. System Mechanic = Snake oil IMHO.

Didn't want to say so before but now that you've soured on it...

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Response to Worried senior (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:51 PM

25. Here's a radical idea: how about having computer manufacturers ...

 

give you a FREE FOR FIVE YEARS, anti virus software?

Then, if you still use your same computer after 5 years, they can sell you something for years 6-10 for $20 a computer. After that, you are on your own, but who has a computer they bought for less than $1500 be used for more than 10 years? If you paid more than $15oo, (like a few Apples), then you get free lifetime virus protection software until the thing becomes a doorstop. By the way, I have a 1999 MAC computer, it still runs, but I don't use it more than twice a year to store my pictures as a backup drive.

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Response to DryRain (Reply #25)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 04:57 PM

26. As opposed to using free AV software from the start?

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Response to ManiacJoe (Reply #26)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:15 PM

27. Misunderstood my post. They choose and make that softward part of..

 

the operating system in their computers. As often as needed, they update the software to keep their product safe.

You buy the computer, you buy the softwaret that makes it work right.

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Response to DryRain (Reply #27)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:57 PM

28. Yes, I see what you are getting at.

The few times I ordered computers from Dell/HP/etc, I specificially ordered them without all the crap software on them.

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