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Kirk W

Antivirus software?

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I have just upgraded to a new computer and it got me to thinking that I haven't seen any discussions on such programs in quite some time. I have recently been checking out reviews by Consumer Reports and several other sources. My question is, do you still run antivirus software and if so, free or purchased and what program?

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Kirk , 

I run no antivirus software other than any that might be built into my browser . And , haven't for a few years . No problems .

I use Vivaldi browser . Definitely worth researching . It's quick and has features that minimize problematic intrusions .

I also run Disconnect Basic ( free ) : https://disconnect.me . That , just for a bit of added 'protection .

And , I see no ads , as Vivaldi has a builtin blocker that works .

Edited by Pat & Pete

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5 hours ago, Pat & Pete said:

I run no antivirus software other than any that might be built into my browser .

With all due respect, your browser doesn't have any anti-virus software built in, but Windows does.  Windows has built-in security that many people feel is rather effective.  A couple of years ago I finally discontinued use of an add-on anti-virus program and just use what's built into Windows

However, I continue to use the premium version of MalwareBytes to protect against all sorts of malware.  There is a free version, but the paid subscription provides real-time protection, rather than just protection when you conduct a scan. I view malware as a greater real threat to most people than viruses.  

Joel (AKA docj)

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1 hour ago, docj said:

With all due respect, your browser doesn't have any anti-virus software built in, but Windows does.  Windows has built-in security that many people feel is rather effective.  A couple of years ago I finally discontinued use of an add-on anti-virus program and just use what's built into Windows

However, I continue to use the premium version of MalwareBytes to protect against all sorts of malware.  There is a free version, but the paid subscription provides real-time protection, rather than just protection when you conduct a scan. I view malware as a greater real threat to most people than viruses.  

Joel (AKA docj)

I use to run MalwareBytes , but haven't until this evening . Your post stoked my curiosity and I downloaded and ran MB .

It found half a dozen threats . None serious , but , I quarantined them anyway . 

I have to think that I must be real lucky or I'm doing something right to have only 6 possible threats . 

But , maybe I'm just dreaming . ;)

Oh , and , I don't let Windows do any updates . I'm running a basic version of W7 Home Premium . Seems it's a lot smaller than the original version . That's fine by me as it is a lot faster . And , I never seem to have any problems . 

Edited by Pat & Pete

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I run Norton 360 software, two Windows devices, and am quite happy.   I have purchased Norton (& Symantec) in a Professional capacity for many working years.   Never had a problem, Professional or private. 

Added Comment:   I would note, I also occasionally run the Free Version of Malwarebytes... just to crosscheck my Norton subscription.   Can't recall ever finding any differences, but just to be safe.   Malwarebytes is excellent also.

Edited by Jim & Alice

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I also use free Malwarebytes, works well. Also I started using vpn to keep my data safe. I found info about one reliable service here https://veepn.com/ and decided to give it a try. Nowadays it's the only way to protect your privacy online. 

Edited by kellyon

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Quote

I have just upgraded to a new computer and it got me to thinking that I haven't seen any discussions on such programs in quite some time. I have recently been checking out reviews by Consumer Reports and several other sources. My question is, do you still run anti-virus software and if so, free or purchased and what program?

I use "Windows Defender", which comes with Windows 10 and gets frequently updated for free.  It provides real-time protection (i.e. prevents installation of bad software) and scanning (i.e. verifies I've not been infected).  I also periodically back up an image of of the OS on each of my systems, because all systems are capable of becoming infected, and removing malware can be very expensive.  I also use MalwareBytes because of a positive experience I had with removing the last virus that infected one of my PCs on 2/2/2014.

For  MacOS or Linux users,  your odds of getting infected  is less than mine has been,  so I probably wouldn't worry about anti-virus software.

Kirk - what kind of new computer did you buy?

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In addition to what Dan said, I also use Windows Backup to back up the 'My Documents' folder to a thumb drive (every five days as prompted by the system). The thumb drive lives on my key ring, so that when I am away from my computer, I have 'off site' backup of my files.

I prefer the idea of backups on my thumb drive rather than in the cloud, as it cannot be hacked as it is always 'air gaped'  exctpt for the couple of minutes to update.

John

 

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3 hours ago, hiljoball said:

I prefer the idea of backups on my thumb drive rather than in the cloud, as it cannot be hacked as it is always 'air gaped'  exctpt for the couple of minutes to update.

To each his own.  I much prefer cloud backup of my documents, photos and everything else because I can access anything I want from my phone.  Recently my wife was explaining to a friend about something we had seen years ago. While she was talking I accessed the cloud and found the photo.

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2 hours ago, docj said:

 Recently my wife was explaining to a friend about something we had seen years ago. While she was talking I accessed the cloud and found the photo.

That's much better than sitting on your thumbs , waiting to get on . ;)

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We have been using windows Defender with good results. On both computers it has stopped threats several times. One of the kids is a system admin and he only uses Defender on all his computers.

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On 5/18/2020 at 6:53 PM, docj said:

With all due respect, your browser doesn't have any anti-virus software built in, but Windows does.  Windows has built-in security that many people feel is rather effective.  A couple of years ago I finally discontinued use of an add-on anti-virus program and just use what's built into Windows

However, I continue to use the premium version of MalwareBytes to protect against all sorts of malware.  There is a free version, but the paid subscription provides real-time protection, rather than just protection when you conduct a scan. I view malware as a greater real threat to most people than viruses.  

Joel (AKA docj)

Ditto Kirk. I use Windows Defender built into Windows, and Malwarebytes Premium. When I've had a glitch and want to double check I've downloaded and run the free Norton Power Eraser :https://support.norton.com/sp/en/us/home/current/solutions/v89340909

As well, during monthly updates Microsoft automatically runs the malicious software removal tool which removes/neutralizes the most annoying malware that is trending.

Control panel's still in Windows and I pin it to the Taskbar. Just click on Backup and Recovery (Windows 7) in control panel. Set up your external drive and click create a system image. Follow the prompts. Don't create a rescue disk. To restore an image made in Windows you'll want to make a USB Recovery Drive. You'll need a 16 GB USB Flask drive. Read here: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/17422/windows-8-create-usb-recovery-drive

To those who already have a handle on images don't forget to do a test re-image on a spare drive so you know how easy it can be, and how to do it.

So what new computer did you get?

 

Edited by RV_

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Hey RV

 

Are you all unpacked in the Springs?  Stay safe.

 

Dennis

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Yep Dennis,

Finally emptied the last of the boxes and decided what to donate and what to chuck. Thanks for asking.

 

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On 5/19/2020 at 12:25 PM, DanZemke said:

Kirk - what kind of new computer did you buy?

MS Surface pro 3, Core i5, 8G ram, 500 G SSD

I'm a little surprised by the number depending upon Windows Defender. Consumer Reports only gives it a 62 of 100 and there are 6 free programs which they rate better. PC Magazine has similar ratings. 

Edited by Kirk W

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Kirk,

I think the reason is that the default software that comes with Windows has become good enough for most.  What we're left with is reports that are basically advertisements for features that seldom provide a significant benefit for individual users (as opposed to business users).

 

 

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The least biased AV efficacy testing is done by AV test: They report monthly and the max score in any area is six when quantified. Here is December 2019. Windows Defender is as good as any you'd pay for. Used with Malwarebytes premium, the paid version for real time protection, is better IMO than the Norton, Kaspersky, McAffee etc. Spend some time reading here: https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/home-windows/ (Edited for bad link, thanks Dan.)

Dan, results for protection are not features with little benefit. Check out AVTest.

Edited by RV_

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18 hours ago, Kirk W said:

MS Surface pro 3, Core i5, 8G ram, 500 G SSD

I'm a little surprised by the number depending upon Windows Defender. Consumer Reports only gives it a 62 of 100 and there are 6 free programs which they rate better. PC Magazine has similar ratings. 

Kirk,

You might want to recheck your storage size as for the Pro 3 they only made the i5 version in two SSD configurations 128 & 256GB.

Excerpt:

"No matter which configuration you order, you'll have to wait a while to get it (if you're looking just after Microsoft's announcement, which came on May 21, 2014). The two Intel Core i5 models, with 128GB ($999, £849) or 256GB ($1,299, £1,109) of SSD storage are listed as shipping in late June. The Core i3/64GB version ($799, £639) and the two Core i7 versions with 256GB ($1,549, £1,339) and 512GB ($1,949, £1,649) of SSD storage are all listed as shipping at the end of August."

Source: https://www.cnet.com/reviews/microsoft-surface-pro-3-review/

I just sold my Surface Pro 3 i5/8GB/128GB a few months ago. Loved it! You'll like it. I still have my Surface Pro 4 i7/8GB/256GB (shows as 232GB in Speccy), and my newest Pro 7/16GB/256GB.

It's easy to get specs mixed up and a free program by Piriform, the same folks who do CCleaner checks all your specs and it's free, and when you click on an item it opens everything about it which makes searching for new drivers a breeze. Speccy free is here: https://www.ccleaner.com/speccy/download

Here's a snip of my Speccy report summary for this Pro7:

fE62p7el.jpg

The Pro 3 has a 4th gen dual core CPU, the Surface Pro 6 & 7 have quad core CPUs. Mine, the Pro 7, has a quad core and Intel's 10th gen processors which are faster and cooler, mine's the Intel Core i7-1065G7 CPU.
Family

Along with the Pro 7 I picked up the Surface Go last December with type cover which only came in two configurations. I got the loaded version with the Pentium Gold 4415Y/8GB/128GB, no LTE on any of my Surface devices.

I had to go get the Surface Go and open Speccy because it's a low ranked processor. I can't seem to remember it so I just open Speccy on it. Same with my desktop AIOs, mini PCs (another mini on the way) and my one mid size tower. So don't feel alone in mixing up specs.

Even today in the Surface Pro 7 line, when selecting the i5 processor, only the 128/256GB options are available. To get the 512GB or 1TB SSDs you have to get the i7 processor. https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/configure/Surface-Pro-7/8N17J0M5ZZQS?crosssellid=drawer1&selectedColor=86888a&preview=&previewModes=

The Pro 3 is a solid system, you'll like it.

[Written on the virtual keyboard of my Surface Pro 7]

Edited by RV_

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2 hours ago, 2gypsies said:

Any thoughts on Avast and/or Malware Premium?

I have no complaints about Malware Premium.  It's unobtrusive.  You don't know it's there until you see a popup about a site being blocked. 

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18 hours ago, RV_ said:

Dan, results for protection are not features with little benefit. Check out AVTest.

RV,

It's unclear to me what you mean in the quote.

The Feb 20 2020 version of the AVTest lists both Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium as below average.  I wasn't able to find anything on that site (which I've visited many times before) that changes my recommendation for individual Windows 10 owners.  Windows Defender is good enough for most.

I also use MalwareBytes Premium, but I bought licenses when they were much less expensive (one-time payment for lifetime license).  Malwarebytes has blocked a few websites which I have appreciated.  It's also disabled progams on my PC several times, all of which were false positives.

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I bought 5 lifetime licenses for Malwarebytes as well.

Dan, the AVTest.org efficacy results for all of the AV tested is dynamic, not static wouldn't you agree? You can't pick out one month because when a new piece of malware is discovered the ratings for that month can change for all of them. If you click on the right facing arrow in the home Windows ratings, in the Microsoft or any of the results you get to the overall rating for each page. Here is Windows Defender's page: https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/home-windows/windows-10/february-2020/microsoft-defender-4.18-200515/

My bad for the bad link above. I'll correct that now. It should have been this page Where it is rated as a top product: https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/home-windows/

There was a time 10 years back in 2010 years back before the new Defender when it was indeed a bit less than the paid for AV. However today it is rated as good as the rest and a "Top Product for Jan-Feb 2020.  But like a car race, the leaders change up regularly.

I'd have been confused at that link too, I was in a hurry and forgot to check my link, sorry about that.

I used MSE Microsoft Security Essentials with Malwarebytes free inkitially with my XP then my Windows 7  and then bought three lifetime licenses from Malwarebytes directly, and then two more from online sales that sent just the card with the licenses. Windows 8 came out in December 2012, after our 18 months or so of public testing of the developer's versions 2011/12.

Good article about MSE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Security_Essentials

I was very leery of Windows Defender because initially it was an adjunct to MSE that only dealt with spyware! I t took me a bit to accept it and is one of the reasons I bought lifetime Malwarebytes licenses.

Malwarebytes discontinued the lifetime licenses in 2014 I believe. I never thought I'd have more than five Windows systems. I have three AIO desktops, two Surface Pros and a Surface Go, two mini PCs attached to the two big screen TVs, and one HP 6305T with the AMD A8. I could use four more lifetime licenses. For those I use Defender and Malwarebytes free.

That cleared up Dan?

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RV,

Kirk's original question was: "do you still run anti-virus software and if so, free or purchased and what program?"

It's clear that you, I, docj and several others use Windows Defender and/or Malware bytes as our primary anti-virus software.   

To me, that's our clear and simple answer.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

P.S. My earlier statement about Windows Defender "for individuals" was not intended to disparage it.  I retired from IBM after 32 years.  No Fortune 500 business is primarily relying on Window Defender as it's primary protection against virus or malware attacks.  Big targets have multiple layers of defense.  But virtually all Escapees users aren't big targets.  So,  as I previously stated, I use and recommend Windows Defender (preferably Window 10) as the my primary defense .  I recommend it for all  Escapees that use Windows PCs..  Malware Bytes Premium for PCs provides an extra layer of protection that I also chose to use.

Edited by DanZemke
added P.S.

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Dan,

I said Defender is a top product, if not the top product overall month to month because it is top rated for free, against the paid for expensive commercial products.

Is that clear and simple enough for you?

I use Defender and you do too.

I claim Defender is as good or better than the commercial paid for products.

Below is for any folks that want to qualify my impressions of Defender with empirical testing by the  top source of AV efficacy ratings.

You said above:

"I think the reason is that the default software that comes with Windows has become good enough for most.  What we're left with is reports that are basically advertisements for features that seldom provide a significant benefit for individual users (as opposed to business users)."

(Underline mine)

I objected to the "good enough for most" part in referring to most users. Then that "features don't provide significant benefit for individual users (as opposed to business users.)"

Here's my clear statement of what you are avoiding Dan. You are damning Microsoft Defender with faint praise. Good enough, or implying there are protection features in AV that business needs as opposed to "individuals."

Nobody wants a defense of data that is merely good enough. I believe, and AV test bears out, that Defender is top notch

Once again I will refer you to the industry accepted standard AV Test report on Microsoft Defender as being certified by them for business as a "Top Product."

They did not say "good enough" for business, they awarded them praise as a top product. Here in the current report on Microsoft Defender for business use: https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/business-windows-client/windows-10/february-2020/microsoft-windows-defender-antivirus-4.18-200614/

Here is the full current report for the top business AV: https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/business-windows-client/

Defender is not merely "good enough." it is a top product for home AND business.

Why would you denigrate it when you use it? Beats me. But for Kirk and others on the fence, or those who want to cut through the BS ads, AV Tests is the place to go.

So I repeat, clearly, and empirically, Defender is tops for home or business.

Defender is one of the best if not the best. Why? Because it is free, yet still is rated "Top Product" against the paid for AV programs. It is consistently above average in industry accepted top test labs for AV, AVTest.org. Defender provides top security for home and business for free. Hope that helps.

c74StlQl.png

Edited by RV_

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I have been using Defender as long as I have been using Windows 10. Recently, I installed Adguard Home on my network and found some blocked sites that I don't think the PC should have tried to access. I thought it might be some sort of adware or spyware that got on the PC.

I downloaded the free version of Malwarebytes and scanned the computer. The only thing it found was a program that I had written. I assume it's because there was nothing in the database about it.

We practice safe computing. The only protection I use is Windows defender and Windows firewall. While Adguard Home claims to prevent malware/phishing sites, that's not its primary purpose.

image.thumb.png.c005003a6d0ce61822e7417244ec13ca.png

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