XYMer's Home away from Home

When http://bbs.xlr8yourmac.com is down (i.e. always)
It is currently Mon Sep 25, 2017 2:29 pm

All times are UTC - 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 11 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 9:12 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:21 pm
Posts: 1071
Location: Burblandia
For the last couple of years I've been routinely adding Microsoft Security Essentials to win 7 machines as a free antivirus program. It was light on resources and updated regularly and seemed fairly good overall. Now I read online that MS is advising users to use a third party antivirus software program. Hmmmm. Maybe they just don't want to keep working on MSSE. Anyway that prompts this post.

I'm really looking at free options, and it usually comes down to Norton's Security Suite (usually provided as part of the overwhelming Comcast Constant Guard package they provide for free) or lately it seems Avast is quite popular as a free alternative. I really want to hear opinions on these two (or others). The internet is very difficult to use when making these kinds of comparisons. First, try and create an appropriate search term out this kind of inquiry. If you search Google you may get several hits but once you start reading you realize it could just as likely be something from 2010 and while it once provided thoughtful up to date information, it is now totally out dated. This is a constantly changing landscape and at one point Norton's was considered a real resource hog. I have read that it is better in that regard lately. I've also read very good things about Avast and then others that really hate it. I really hate the sort of 'root for my team' approach these kind of internet forum discussions seem to take on times. That's why I really value opinions here. It is usually based simply on honest, objective personal experience with little in the way of personal bias.

My need is for a free, fairly light on resource, not too intrusive, updated routinely, effective antivirus program that I can suggest to friends and family members. On the Mac side I've been quite happy with Sophos. Is there a PC equivalent to that perhaps?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 9:55 am 
Offline
Benevolent Dictator
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 2:03 am
Posts: 14578
I've been happy with the free Avast, but no single one catches everything it appears, & then mostly closing the barn doors after the cows have left.

Might add these...

http://www.malwarebytes.org/free/

http://free.avg.com/us-en/free-antivirus-download

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/combofix/


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 7:12 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:13 pm
Posts: 9444
Location: Caught between the moon and NYC
My problem with AVG & Avast is they don't catch anything. They're almost worst than not having anything at all, because they build up a sense of false hope. What's really scary is the smug cheerleaders who insist they're not only viable antivirus products, but the best on the market.

If you have a netbook, a Pentium 2, or another CPU challenged system they're the best you can hope for since you won't be capable of running anything else (at least not without going to get a lot of cups of coffee while waiting for things to finish), but running them on anything faster is a waste.

Microsoft has been under extreme pressure to discontinue all forms of AV by third parties like McAfee and Symantec, who have built up massive cash cows by producing subpar products for decades. That Microsoft would publicly state that you should use third party software could be as simple as one or more of them providing Microsoft with requisite payment for their statement.

Still, it is true that you shouldn't rely on a single product. You should only rely on a single product to provide real-time scanning, but rely on additional products in a scan-only roles. Periodically running scans with the additional products (preferrably on a scheduled basis, but manual scans are fine) to verify nothing got through the first product.

However, if you engage in risky behavior, like downloading software from internet sources from non-publisher sources, or download "free" software from dubious companies, no AV product is going to help you. Much software on the internet has been modified from its original version and include malware payloads, and many "free" products include malware payloads. The problem is that AV is always behind the ball, they can't detect malware they don't know about, and many of these payloads are unique and never submitted for AV analysis.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 7:25 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:21 pm
Posts: 1071
Location: Burblandia
MonkeyBoy wrote:
My problem with AVG & Avast is they don't catch anything. They're almost worst than not having anything at all, because they build up a sense of false hope. What's really scary is the smug cheerleaders who insist they're not only viable antivirus products, but the best on the market.

If you have a netbook, a Pentium 2, or another CPU challenged system they're the best you can hope for since you won't be capable of running anything else (at least not without going to get a lot of cups of coffee while waiting for things to finish), but running them on anything faster is a waste.

Microsoft has been under extreme pressure to discontinue all forms of AV by third parties like McAfee and Symantec, who have built up massive cash cows by producing subpar products for decades. That Microsoft would publicly state that you should use third party software could be as simple as one or more of them providing Microsoft with requisite payment for their statement.

Still, it is true that you shouldn't rely on a single product. You should only rely on a single product to provide real-time scanning, but rely on additional products in a scan-only roles. Periodically running scans with the additional products (preferrably on a scheduled basis, but manual scans are fine) to verify nothing got through the first product.

However, if you engage in risky behavior, like downloading software from internet sources from non-publisher sources, or download "free" software from dubious companies, no AV product is going to help you. Much software on the internet has been modified from its original version and include malware payloads, and many "free" products include malware payloads. The problem is that AV is always behind the ball, they can't detect malware they don't know about, and many of these payloads are unique and never submitted for AV analysis.

Thank you MonkeyBoy that was very illuminating!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 7:53 pm 
Offline
he who stacks pork
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:04 pm
Posts: 4254
Location: Uranus
I guess the solution is to NOT USE YOUR PC for anything involving internet or email. Period. Use a Mac instead. :fishsmack: :g5: PCs are for games and scientific computing stuff.

-he who stacks pork

_________________
Macintosh Powerbook 180, System 7.1, 100MB HD, 8MB Ram, external 20MB SCSI HD
2009 Surly 1x1 Anniversary Edition Rat Ride, 2016 9:zero:7 SS fatbike, 2014 Borealis Echo, 2013 SS PRC carbon 29er
I enjoy picnics on the beach and prefer my women crazy


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 3:23 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:13 pm
Posts: 9444
Location: Caught between the moon and NYC
There's plenty of trojans available for OSX. Just look at the Flashback worm. Years later it's still installed on tens of thousands of systems, at the least, and hundreds at the most. Engaging in patently risky behavior (e.g. pirating software using the internet) is simply not safe, no matter whether you're running Windows, Linux, BSD, or OSX. The OS isn't the problem in many situations, it's the user's behavior that's the problem. You can lock up a system tight as Fort Knox but it won't help if the guy in charge goes around after you leave and opening all the gates and doors.

That being said, nonsense like opening a web page and getting infected, or opening an email and getting infected, do occur more often with Microsoft products. You can mitigate this to a great extent by simply not using Microsoft products when using Microsoft OSes. There's also tools (like EMET) available which can limit the ability of exploits to cause damage, even when using Microsoft products, but YMMV. No tool or third party product can prevent you from making a bad decision though.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 6:15 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:17 pm
Posts: 187
It's not free, but it is very good.
I've used F-Secure Internet Security for the past 3 years & am extremely happy with it.

http://www.f-secure.com/en/web/home_us/home

It also gets very good ratings in anti-virus reviews.

http://www.av-comparatives.org/wp-conte ... 13b_en.pdf

It does block a lot of non-malicious stuff, so you have to know what you can safely unblock.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:43 pm 
Offline
Master

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 5:24 am
Posts: 9676
Location: North of the State of Jefferson
Vlad, how are you doing? Good to see you around here again.

- Anonymous


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:56 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:07 pm
Posts: 2408
Location: Inside Flatus Maximus
I would avoid AVG like the plague. I've seen it bring computers to their knees. I had to uninstall it from every one of my dentist's computers because of the intrusive nature of the software and the fact that it was just totally killing their scheduling software. We're talking like 10-20 seconds for even a contextual menu to appear. Granted all AV software will do this if you enable the realtime scanning, but AVG does it even without realtime scanning mode activated.

_________________
Official Mac Tech Support Forum Cookie™ (Mint Chocolate Chip)
Guaranteed tasty; Potentially volatile when dipped in WWIII Forum Syrup®
Caution: This cookie bites back.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 5:10 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:13 pm
Posts: 9444
Location: Caught between the moon and NYC
If the systems are older, Avast's realtime components are probably the best option. It's better than nothing, but I'd hate to solely rely on it. The only systems I have using Avast are some god-awful Windows XP Embedded "systems" that I can't replace/upgrade; a 300Mhz P2 with 4GB storage space is only capable of so much.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:28 pm 
Offline
he who stacks pork
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 8:04 pm
Posts: 4254
Location: Uranus
Interesting. :o After having uninstalled AVG on my three Hackintoshes (and one lowly PC which I haven’t been successful yet with installing OSX onto in addition to Windoze), the computers are more responsive. :roll: Guess I ought have figured that one out already.

-he who stacks pork

_________________
Macintosh Powerbook 180, System 7.1, 100MB HD, 8MB Ram, external 20MB SCSI HD
2009 Surly 1x1 Anniversary Edition Rat Ride, 2016 9:zero:7 SS fatbike, 2014 Borealis Echo, 2013 SS PRC carbon 29er
I enjoy picnics on the beach and prefer my women crazy


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 11 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group