What Virus Protection Do You Use And Freebies?

koala

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 5, 2003
Messages
2,295
Location
Melbourne, Australia
I am sorry to those who swear by Norton but my last 8 years experience with them is nothing but nightmare. However they have a couple of utilities like ndd, diskedit, unerase which used to be good during the DOS days.

Symantec Norton is total Bloatware! Install, take up memory, cpu time, hdd space, slows down your system like no tommorow!

Network Associates Mcafee - maybe useful?

Choose one from below free for personal use!
Avast!
Grisoft AVG - free edition does not run on Windows *Server* NT/200x operating systems.
ClamAV - no live scanner but does schedulling scans.
ClamAV Win - same as above, windows executable, open source.
 

Leeoniya

Enlightened
Joined
Sep 27, 2002
Messages
376
Location
Northbrook, IL
alright, as long as we're on the topic i guess i wil divulge the full list of what i have compiled as being the best utilities for various things. i have tried many so this is pretty close to the truth.

defrag:
PerfectDisk 7.0, both in speed and efficiency.

Antivirus:
NOD32, uses almost no resources...(i also configure it to only scan files during creation, not read/open/execute operations...cause when the file's there and scanned after being created, it wont manifest itself into a virus upon opening. (NOD32 does scan archives...also *.jar packages) it also makes a good complement to microsoft's SP2 popup blocker. (which is very good indeed)...it blocks those annoying activeX installs. otherwise you have to use AdWatch or other spyware detection software in the background to do the same thing.

Imaging:
Acronis Trueimage is nice, i prefer Symantec Ghost Corporate v8.2. But norton Ghost is good as well.

Partition management:
Acronis Disk Director Suite / Partition Expert
Partition Magic <- i personally use this

Spyware detection:
Ad-Aware SE Pro, but i have to say it has not caught much after i switched to NOD32, only cookies.

cleaning up leftover garbage after Adaware:

HijackThis is free, and will show you all IE plugins that you can remove by hand....like extra buttons in your explorer or extra menus or useless search or navigation bars left over from spyware.

Startup CPL: free and shows you everything that autoruns from eveywhere during a computer start...registry, hardcoded, startup folder.

Autoruns: free and does the same as above, except on one screen and in more detail

Sysinternals in general makes a lot of free file monitors, registry monitors, TCP port monitors...and a prog called

Process Explorer: forget windows' task manager...thsi thing will tell you more...much, much more. for free.

Firewall:
I have used Winroute extensively in the past, so I would say Kerio Firewall is still very good. I, however, use Tiny PC Firewall. This prog is 3 megs, and you can configure ABSOLUTLEY EVERYTHING. very fast, has a good port and program monitor, good logs, top notch and very very configurable. I had good experiences with Zonealarm, but it was too dumbified down for me, i several screens full of options and settings rather than a choice between "yes" and "no"...which Tiny also gives...but with much more configuration options if you need them. windows firewall may work, but i dont ever use a firewall where i can't open a port range. (what kind of BS firewall is that? especially when you need to use an FTP server in passive mode or port mode where the server randomly selects a port to use)

for and FTP server i use G6 ftp server, basically Bulletproof FTP server, but with SSL.

HTTP server i use Apache...free, but configuring it can be intimidating at first through all the HTTP file settings. but when it runs, it does so flawlessly and with no resources.

for connecting remotly to my comp to control it I use RealVNC enterprise edition. Like Norton's PCAnywhere....except...thats right, FASTER, NOT BLOATED, and SMALLER. and there are free viewers available and the non enterprise version is free. (but it can't scale resolutions and has no encryption.

diagnostics (network):

Netscantools pro
Sniffer Pro
IP-tools

system info and diagnostics:

CPU-Z (free)
Sisoft Sandra Pro 2005: run diagnostic tests and stress tests on all your hardware
Prim95: runs math calculations to stress test your CPU and find errors and faults. also tests your CPU cooling since your proc is at 100% utilization for extended periods of time...or just go play Doom3 /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif. that'll test you vid card for damn sure.
MBM (motherboard monitor) shows temp sensor info and fan speeds and such

Winhex is the best hex editor i've used. followed by the dos-interface Hiew.

TweakUI is very useful in tuning windows, i mostly run a batch file that runs a ton of .reg files to tweak everything tho.

PSPad is a very powerful and free syntax highlighting program...ever edit ini or .reg files? any source code? this thing will highlight and supports tabbing and code collapsing. Notepad2 is free and similar and is a good replacement for Notepad in windows.

wow, i've given away too many secrets.
time to go to work
Leon.
 

teststrips

Enlightened
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
317
Location
USA, Pennsylvania
I have a copy of win2k3 server that i got for going to a microsoft training class. None of the freebees would even install on it because it's a server OS. I did find an open source solution though, which is actually pretty nice. www.clamwin.net

As for the rest of my pc's, i really like the trend micro product. Pc-cillin is way better than norton's product which i used up until about 4 months ago.
 

loalight

Enlightened
Joined
Jul 27, 2004
Messages
225
Location
San Frandisco
Take it from me- I see a lot of virii here at UCSF, and trendmicro's free online scanner (housecall.trendmicro.com) is the best. No single solution gets all the badguys, though.
 

gadget_lover

Flashaholic
Joined
Oct 7, 2003
Messages
7,148
Location
Near Silicon Valley (too near)
You shoudl think twice about setting your virus scanner to check files only upon creation.
[ QUOTE ]
Antivirus:
NOD32, uses almost no resources...(i also configure it to only scan files during creation, not read/open/execute operations...cause when the file's there and scanned after being created, it wont manifest itself into a virus upon opening. (NOD32 does scan archives...also *.jar packages).

[/ QUOTE ]

While it seems like a good idea, it leaves you open to infection in several different instances. For example, if you accidently boot from an infected virus, or execute a program leaded from CD, flash memory, etc. You can also be infected by a virus for which there is no definition. If you don't scan on open you will not find that until the next time you scan your whole system.

My philosophy is simple; You can lose 1/2 second every time you open a file and never really notice it, or you can save that time and risk an infection. AN infection will cost you (and your friends) hours and possibly lost data and, in some cases, a complete re-install.

Daniel
 

Leeoniya

Enlightened
Joined
Sep 27, 2002
Messages
376
Location
Northbrook, IL
i do scan anything manually that i run off of external media, seeing as how it is not really ever created to be scanned automatically. and if i do have to run an exe off a non-oem, or non original CD. i end up copying it to my hd first anyhow. like i said, it just takes some precaution. and mostly the files i worry about are the ones i download since i dont have any major source of files that may contain viruses since everything thats not downloaded (and then burned onto CD) or anything that is off original discs will for sure not contain anything.

where else could u get viruses? unless you share software through means other than the internet (like non-original media). which i dont. and everything thats downloaded is scanned on creation.

Leon
 

idleprocess

Flashaholic
Joined
Feb 29, 2004
Messages
7,197
Location
decamped
[ QUOTE ]
gadget_lover said:
My philosophy is simple; You can lose 1/2 second every time you open a file and never really notice it, or you can save that time and risk an infection. AN infection will cost you (and your friends) hours and possibly lost data and, in some cases, a complete re-install.

[/ QUOTE ]

My philosophy is also simple: if you have good computing habits, you're so unlikely to pick up a virus that you can cut out the virus shield.

Good computing habits include:
1 not running known malware vectors like Internet Explorer, Outlook, dodgy screensavers, and almost all adware / "bannerware"
2 Running some sort of firewall on broadband connections - even something as simple as a NAT router
3 Being very careful about email attachments
4 Being skeptical about all things "free" in banner ads and browser security popups
5 Scanning for viruses and adware regularly

Point 1 is the most important: If the computing landscape is a monoculture with easily-exploited vulnerabilities, expect malware to be distributed with sickening efficiently. [insert snide comment about MS Windows here]. It's much easier to harden an OS than an application because OSs are designed for more ground-up tweakability.

Unlike the 30-year 5-pack a day smoker that's still healthy, it's not dumb luck that I've never caught a meaningful virus or worm.

As for the "1/2 second" - I've yet to see a virus shield that was anywhere near that efficient. The scan delay for most AV apps is quite noticable and effects almost all disk reads/writes.

I don't like paying protection money to the AV vendors. I question whether there would be such a big virus problem if there weren't so much money to be made "fighting" it.

I don't recommend that most people go without a virus shield. Most people are not power users and lack the inclination/aptitude to acquire the knowledge. Am I sending a mixed message? I suppose... most of what I'm saying applies to me and others with the experience.
 

Leeoniya

Enlightened
Joined
Sep 27, 2002
Messages
376
Location
Northbrook, IL
i'll agree with the newly re-logo'fied idleprocess. mostly it's pressing "no" on those annoying installation boxes (which nod32 blocks anyhow) (unless it's javaVM, flash or shockwave player, or the 3d VRML viewer). and making sure to install only software that has no banners or adware in it.

viruses are not the problem. the problem is people's browsing habits and the lack of knowledge on things like those dumb banners that say "Your computer is about to melt down!! CLICK HERE NOW AND INSTALL THIS CRAP TO PROTECT IT!! YOU HAVE 5 SECONDS!!!"

the user who has never seen one will obviously follow whatever the machine tells them, after all, who wants his/her computer to melt down? think of the expenses and the casualties...

some words of advice: close and dont click on anything that says your computer is about to go down the tubes, or that you are in some severe danger of infiltration unless you click somewhere and do something....especially if they pop up in a fricken IE window!!!

dont install any of the internet search assistant crap or any search bars...they're all adware.

dont run anything attached to an email from an unkonwn user...ever. and have your AV scan all your email automatically.

keep your defs up to date.

run ad-aware, spybot...or similar once a week and clean up stupid internet BHOs (browser helper objects)..like bars, buttons and menus. (use HijackThis...free)

watch for suspicious new background processes and see whats in your system tray icon.

if you use AIM, switch to trillian. AOL is a complete craphole of a company and has to be the biggest bloatware EVER. older versions of AIM are ok too, all they have is a banner. the new versions give you the option not to install weather bug, BUT IT INSTALLS IT ANYHOW...and just hides it. it still f*cking runs as a background process.

you guys have no idea how many computers i have had to upgrade the ram on just because they were forced to switched to AOL 9.0 BLOATWARE....their pc started yelling at them that they didnt have enough system resources....well no sh*t!!

a lot of it is knowing when to click NO. and the answer is: 97% of the time it's NO.

the only time you really have a problem is when things DONT work or STOP working. like your PC freezes, or doesnt start, or you get blue screens, or something that used to work had stopped. dont believe any messages that clearly do not correlate to the computer's behavior.

Leon
 

gadget_lover

Flashaholic
Joined
Oct 7, 2003
Messages
7,148
Location
Near Silicon Valley (too near)
[ QUOTE ]
where else could u get viruses? unless you share software through means other than the internet (like non-original media). which i dont. and everything thats downloaded is scanned on creation.


[/ QUOTE ]

Well, there are several ways. First, yoh ave to keep in mind that there have been instances of infected commercial CDs. Not a lot, but enough to be chilling. Then there's the trojan pop-ups that display button for "no" that actually is coded to be "yes". That gets by all the MS security, since you "asked for it". And we have worms that attack via new and old networking weaknesses. Some crash the network stack as they install, bypassing the firewall and working upon the OS directly.

[ QUOTE ]
As for the "1/2 second" - I've yet to see a virus shield that was anywhere near that efficient. The scan delay for

[/ QUOTE ] most AV apps is quite noticable and effects almost all disk reads/writes.

I must have mine configured differently. I only have it scan programs and data files known to be infectable. I've never measured the difference, but then again I've never been able to tell if it was turned off without looking. That tells me that it's not that bad.

I do turn it off my virus scanner while playing certain games, but that's a risk I choose to take.

BTW, most of this is academic to me since I use a non privleged account on a Unix system, which makes it much harder to get an infection in the first place. I only use a windows box to play games. My wife uses MS, so I have to support her system.

Daniel
 

Darkcobra

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 12, 2003
Messages
389
Location
Pittsburg, California
I just want to thank all you guys for the AV information in this thread! I'm sure my computer loves you guys for it!
/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/buttrock.gif
 

asdalton

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Dec 12, 2002
Messages
1,722
Location
Northeast Oklahoma
[ QUOTE ]
idleprocess said:

As for the "1/2 second" - I've yet to see a virus shield that was anywhere near that efficient. The scan delay for most AV apps is quite noticable and effects almost all disk reads/writes.


[/ QUOTE ]

The speed of many on-the-fly scanners can be greatly improved by turning off the heuristics portion of the scanner. (This is the part that looks for virus-like activity from viruses that might not be in the database yet.) I know that McAfee can greatly slow down your computer if you don't turn off heuristics.
 

Spacemarine

Enlightened
Joined
Jan 6, 2004
Messages
323
Location
Germany, Karlsruhe
I use no extra protection at all and I never got any viruses , trojans or spyware.

The reason for this might be that I'm using Gentoo Linux /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif
 
Top