Best Antivirus Software and Apps (Archive)

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Paul Wagenseil

Senior Editor
Apr 11, 2014
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OK, thanks. That's good to know. Can I ask -- did you download the Avira installer from the Avira website, or from a third-party website?
 

Paul Wagenseil

Senior Editor
Apr 11, 2014
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We didn't review it because Norton doesn't call it that anymore. This is the current Norton lineup for Windows: http://www.tomsguide.com/us/norton,review-4114.html

 

Paul Wagenseil

Senior Editor
Apr 11, 2014
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Never heard of MalwareFox, but as long as it's legit, this is a solid strategy.
 

Paul Wagenseil

Senior Editor
Apr 11, 2014
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I've heard similar things from other people. We haven't tried to stress-test the AV vendors' customer-service lines, but maybe we will ....
 

Paul Wagenseil

Senior Editor
Apr 11, 2014
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AV is not a silver bullet, and any company that says its product will be is full of ... you know. A security-conscious user will rarely get infected even without AV software, and a security slob will probably get infected even with it. Again, some tips: http://www.tomsguide.com/us/pictures-story/982-avoid-being-hacked.html

 

Paul Wagenseil

Senior Editor
Apr 11, 2014
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Here you go: http://www.tomsguide.com/us/avast-free-antivirus,review-2208.html

 

Sergio_28

Prominent
Mar 18, 2017
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I have to say something about your best virus, I had it and virus got through, sending fing messages through Skype to all my colleagues. I sent thousand of porn links , so well done avira, it's absolutely the worst antivirus. Unless it's a paid ad.
 

USCanthony

Prominent
Mar 24, 2017
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Kaspersky used to be the best but then they released their 2017 versions of Total Security and Internet Security and it did not take long for Kaspersky to take a huge fall from its lofty position. They just released patch D of the 2017 versions and things have only been getting worse from patch to patch. I will list some of the better bugs below and you might be tempted to think I am exaggerating because this is not going to sound like Kaspersky but don't take me word for it. You just need to visit their forums at forums.kaspersky .com and you can read the many many long threads with very angry after very angry posting by users for yourself. Here is a quick small list/warning though....

From the very first 2017 version there has been a bug that they still have not fixed. The bug does not let you access your router's settings interface via any browser if your routers gateway is set to 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1 Unfortunately both of these are the most common out of the box settings for routers and you will need to access your routers settings with a smartphone or computer that is not running a 2017 version of Kaspersky and change it to something like 192.168.1.254 before your computer running the Kaspersky suite will load the routers settings page.

Their browser plugins have caused very slow browsing and while the speed has improved slightly with each new patch of 2017, it is still frustratingly slower than it should be even with the newest patch (patch D)

This next one is near and dear to my heart because I spent weeks supplying their tech support with trace logs to get it fixed. They finally got a good trace from me and figured out exactly what the problem was and then proceeded to inform me that they would have it fixed in their 2018 version but they were not going to release a patch to fix it. Hearing that that was their position on this bug you might think that it isn't all that serious. You would be wrong if you thought that though. This little puppy completely compromises the integrity of the suite's if you make any changes to the individual config settings that are downloaded from the cloud to your pc for each and every 3rd party app you have on your pc. These settings are the HIPS and firewall default setting for each of those apps. When they get pushed to your pc from their cloud they are optimized for a balance of security, speed and as little interaction from the user as possible (so you don't always have popups asking questions). If you are an experienced computer person who is more security aware than your average casual user, you will most likely find yourself making changes to some of these default settings for each of your apps though. I have always believed that if an app doesn't have any reason to access the Internet, it shouldn't be allowed too. By default they allow every app complete outgoing access to the Internet as long as the MD5 hash of the executables for that app match whet they have listed in their cloud (these are supplied to them by each manufacturer). In theory, that does provide security because as long as the md5 hash strings match, the executables have not been compromised. I still feel it is fundamentally wrong to allow apps that do not update via the internet or browse/call home for any reason to have that access though. It is almost as if your setting up your security to fail at some point. So I have always turned off the ability for those type of apps to go out through the firewall. It is just an extra piece of mind type of thing. It turns out that in the 2017 versions if you make any change to each apps individual HIPS or firewall settings, then those configuration files for each app that has been customized will simply disappear into thin air upon your systems next reboot. You won't even be aware that this happened because the page within their UI that manages this function is 3 pages deep within the UI and really isn't a page you visit all that much anyway once you are happy with how you have things set. I have no idea how long I was going through life thinking I had an ideal configuration for my needs until I was one day installing a new app and wanted to set a few settings for that app differently. I had rebooted since the apps installation required a reboot and then went to that settings page within the Kaspersky suite. I was very shocked to see that what was supposed to be 624 configuration files for every exe or com file on my computer was actually only 137 which meant that the majority of those exe or com files completely lost the configuration files within Kaspersky. It did not take long to discover that I could rebuild my configuration but all would be lost again at the next reboot. Their suites do have a feature that allows you to import and export all of your settings though so I figured I would rebuild again and immediately save my configuration (it saves to an XML file). This way I would simply need to remember to import that XML file back into the suite after each reboot. Kaspersky had a hellish surprise waiting for me upon the next reboot though. Sure enough most of my config settings for the apps were missing but this time it would only take me less than a minute to restore them. If only! Turns out that the problem also occurs when saving to the XML file and the XML file is just as butchered as the actual settings are (actually the XML file is slightly worse off). You can probably see how this is a very serious issue and their are a lot of Kaspersky users who are littering their forums with posts that are filled with many four letter and quite impolite words

If all of this wasn't enough their D patch that started rolling out in phases here in March introduced another nasty bug and this time around their tech support cannot figure out what is going on. If you have a VPN installed that is based upon openvpn, you will no longer be able to access the Internet through your VPN. Some users have said that you actually still can access the Internet but it takes between 10 to 15 minutes to access each and every webpage you try to load. If you completely shutdown the Kaspersky suite then the VPN will once again work like it had before the D patch was applied. So if you want the extra privacy and security that the VPN provides, you need to sacrifice the security the security suite provides.

Hopefully this has been a eye opening cautionary tale and you will not set yourself up for a lot of pain and frustration based upon the very good reputation but now not at all deserved that Kaspersky has had for many years.
 

Paul NZ

Admirable
Sep 15, 2014
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Wrong I havent used one for more than 10 yrs+ and have never been infected

 

Avast-Team

Estimable
Mar 3, 2017
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Hi everybody! Glad to see some fans and supporters here , we appreciate you very much.

The review that was linked to in an earlier post looks like it's dated 4/12/2016, and the screenshots are definitely from an older version.

We've brought tons of updates to Avast in 2017 -- namely Behavior Shield (intelligent process monitoring) and CyberCapture (stop and analyze zero-days before they can do any damage) all powered by AI and machine learning, plus other improvements across the board. So, truly next-gen protection, much improved over traditional AV or other "basic" solutions (even in our free version)

Ok! Sorry for the elevator pitch there. It's all great stuff though, and thanks for letting me share. If you haven't seen or tried the new version, I'd say give it a go!

Also, don't take my word for it, see the latest AV-comparatives results for Feb (just released): https://www.av-comparatives.org/dynamic-tests/
 

lao543

Prominent
Mar 29, 2017
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I wonder why AVG is not even mentioned, considering it's as good as Sophos according to av-test: https://www.av-test.org/en/news/news-single-view/strong-protection-for-macos-sierra-12-packages-put-to-the-test/
 

Robert_393

Prominent
Apr 3, 2017
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I just switched from Mac to PC and I'm so confused with all these antivirus reviews. It's annoying is that all these free products are trying to bait you into paying. Installed AVG and they keep finding registry issues and offering to clean them up by installing tune up. I installed it, one day free, and they jumped me to a page offering a discount if I buy in the next 10 minutes. That's total BS. I hate that crap and will now uninstall AVG. I'm tempted to just use defender and not download any programs via torrent to minimize my risk. I'll keep all my data in the cloud and if I need to rebuild the pc at some point I can do that without worrying about losing important files.
 

Paul NZ

Admirable
Sep 15, 2014
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The best AV software is common sense.

Use your head before you do something (like opening attachments in emails from people you dont know)

How many times do people have to be told before it sinks in. DON'T open anything if you dont know who sent it.

If you dont know, who sent an email, delete it

And well if you're into things like torrents / pirated software then you should install something. Because you'll probably get infected with something

And as above some of them install bloatware / crap. You'll have to use something else if you want to get rid of the rubbish it installed. To see anything

 

xenonhost

Prominent
Apr 7, 2017
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I'm using Endurance Antivirus a $9.99 app since November, helped me get rid of some Windows viruses mostly, cause I have a VmWare instance of Windows 7. I like it because it has lifetime updates, no subscription. I saw it has a free version on their site.
 

Link_4

Prominent
Apr 9, 2017
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Avast adds ads in your mail by default, I disabled that option and some days ago it started to sign my mails again, that's unacceptable.
 

Owen_16

Commendable
May 10, 2016
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Don't use Avast free anti-virus as it comes pre-installed with opencandy which is a malicious ad-ware file that causes issues with your system and installs a back door in your system to allow other applications to install, popups to pop up and extra adverts.
 

Avast-Team

Estimable
Mar 3, 2017
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Both Avast and AVG flag OpenCandy as a PUP. Example from Virus Total:

https://www.virustotal.com/en/file/91bdf317e50d349cd096b8daa7d5aabf85ef8e2288086073be9a7105070611fb/analysis/1472513272/
 

EdellReynes

Prominent
Apr 1, 2017
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Mine is just a free antivirus that can be downloaded easily over the net. I'm using Avast free anti-virus for windows 7. It says 100% protection against viruses, spyware, ransomware and all malware but still, there's so many limitations as to what it can do to your pc/laptop and the security against spam and viruses are not guaranteed safe unless you subscribe and upgrade your AV app with a monthly subscription. the Free Anti virus doesn't provide complete protection but I am still thankful for it though since It continuously warns me about unsafe web links.
 
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