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Thread: Antivirus Software

  1. #1

    The main things to do in order to keep your computer secure are:
    1) Keep your software updated, new security flaws in windows are found all the time, new viruses and worms exploit these flaws on poorly maintained computers to spread. Microsoft update
    2) Have an up to date and good virus scanner (please see below for links and please visit the independent reviews)
    3) Have a good secure firewall and keep it updated (see below for information)
    4) Choose a good password for your computer, not anything in the dictionary or someones name as these are easily crackable and would leave your computer wide open Please see here for some help on choosing a password

    A forum post about how to secure your system (discusses some peer guardian, some anti virus stuff and more)
    Thread about securing xp Also has information about antiviruses and has some firewall comparisons and ways to keep your computer safe.


    If you are running any p2p program (especially kazaa) or download and use cracks then having a good antivirus program running and kept up to date is very important and even if u do not do any of the activities mentioned a virus checker is still a very useful item of software to have.


    What are viruses, worms and trojans
    General guide toviruses.
    Information on viruses that have been discovered from symantec


    There is no single 'best' antivirus product available they all have pros and cons. (ie thoroughness / resource usage / speed of checking)

    Judging by many, many previous votes on this topic the most popular in order are:
    (NB all links point to homepages, for 'free' illegal copies search the verified hashes section)

    1) Norton Antivirus This is the most popular and is definitely always among the front runners in tests of virus detection and removal. It is, however, considered by some to be a bit of a resource hog.
    2) AVG This is close behind in popularity probably because it is free and in reviews of % detection it is usually ever so slightly behind Norton. No need for an illegal copy unless u want the pro version.

    Lagging quite a way behind in popularity, though usually not in speed and thoroughness are

    NOD32 A very impressive 5 year run of 100% detection of 'wild' viruses (from virus bulletin) and apparently low resource usage.
    Kaspersky Lite / Pro
    Trend micro PC cillin
    Free Anti Virus Toolkit, on-demand anti-virus scanner Reviews
    Mcafee Virus scanner
    Free AV (free)
    Avast free and non free versions
    Fire AV free & non free antivirus packages (Note free version will find but not remove viruses, which sucks)
    EZ Antivirus low resource using virus scanner, for a fairly low price.
    Norman Antivirus


    If u prefer hard facts to popularity stats then the following independent reviewers have all conducted numerous tests of the above software and present their results and recommendations online:

    1) The Virus bulletin seen by some as the definitive independent virus checker
    2) Claymania presents an easy to view comparison of many of the top virus checkers
    3) AV test
    4) Even more


    Each antivirus programme has its own specific guide as to what u should do in the event that u detect a virus and the program will inevitably guide u through the steps. If a virus gets past your scanner or the scanner cannot remove the virus here then u should consult the manual/help for your software or the website of the manufacturer. A very basic general guide can be found here.
    Symantec provide tools to rid yourself of some of the common virii found on the web here


    EICAR antivirus test file This file will tell u if your antivirus software is working

    ONLINE VIRUS SCANS (Most if not all will require the download of a few files, but not a full antivirus program)

    Panda Active Scan Scans your computer without u having to install a virus scanner
    House Call Another online virus scanner
    GFI trojan scanner An online scanner for detecting trojan infection.
    BitDefender Free Online Virus Scan
    Symantec Security Scan & Virus Detection
    RAV AntiVirus Online Virus Scan!
    Danish Antivirus scan


    Paul started a topic on a sort of project to lower the amount of viruses on the fasttrack network and lists some of the infected files.


    A firewall protects your network from unwanted Internet traffic. The primary functions of a firewall are to let good traffic pass through while ?bad? traffic gets blocked. The most important part of a firewall is its access control features that distinguish between good and bad traffic.
    When installed, a firewall exists between your computer(s) and the Internet. The firewall lets you request web pages, download files, chat, etc. while making sure other people on the internet can not access services on your computer like file or print sharing. Some firewalls are pieces of software that run on your computer. Other firewalls are built into hardware and protect your whole network from attacks.
    Everyone connected to the Internet should be running some sort of firewall. Programs can be downloaded on the Internet that can scan huge ranges of IP address for vulnerabilities like file sharing services. These programs are easy to download and run. Almost no network knowledge is needed to use these programs to exploit or harm your computer. Any kind of firewall will keep you safe from these types of attacks. Read rest of this short article
    More info on what a firewall is


    Most of the following companies offer free and pro versions, usually the free versions are either limited in terms of effectiveness or have fairly poor customisability. The pro versions can usually be found with a quick search of the verifieds section

    Sygate, home of the highest rated firewall at the moment recommended)
    ZoneAlarm free and pro firewalls Pro version is good, but isn't free
    Kerio Personal Firewall
    Norton Personal Firewall
    Tiny Personal Firewall
    Black Ice
    Agnitum Personal firewall


    Free online scan Tests your firewall and set up for security holes.
    Shields Up free online scan of your ports (tests your firewall)
    Download a port scanner a program you download and run which tests your firewall setup for vulnerabilities.
    Sygate Stealthscan Tests how well your firewall is hiding your ports
    Sygate Trojanscan Tests your computer for trojans
    Another online port scanner from broadband reports
    Another trojan scanner
    Online security 'audit', basically tests firewall, port and browser settings
    List of Manual trojan checks you can do

  2. The following users thank ilw for this post:  
  3. Guides and Tutorials   -   #2
    BAZ_CELEBS's Avatar Poster
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Norfolk Coast
    Nice one! Good info.
    I had to verify my avg was working ok as a friend said it was no good, I did a full test using Panda software online virus scan
    And found no probs at all.
    I have been using avg for about two years and has worked very well.

  4. Guides and Tutorials   -   #3
    Bluetack Mod
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Excellent post

    just have a few things you could add if you want

    Another free online virus scan

    Free online trojan scan

    Free antivirus program (the home edition)

    Free firewall software

    hope this gets pinned

  5. Guides and Tutorials   -   #4
    Do not overlook NOD32 AntiVirus. I just switched to this from using various versions of Norton Professional for years, and the first thing I noticed is how much less resources it uses.

    NOD32 won some very intense tests and claimed the awards over any other AV software. I has the best detection rate of any other AV. Trouble is, I can't remember exactly which test, but I do know it's a very prestigious award to win.

    I recommend it to anyone. It doesn't have such a flash interface as Norton but what it makes up for in less processor usage and detection is well worth it.

    I wouldn't look towards any other AV at the moment and trust it fully.

    I've heard/read terrible things about Kapersky, Panda and AVG by the way, in fact most of the AV software mentioned on this page so far. Don't be DUMB! Take the time out to find out what really is the best.

  6. Guides and Tutorials   -   #5
    zapjb's Avatar Computer Abuser BT Rep: +3
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Think it's a very good original post. Good on you ilw !

  7. Guides and Tutorials   -   #6
    keeps the links and info coming and thanks to everyone whos contributed already

    Edit: I was gonna bunch antivirus and firewalls together and some internet security stuff, but I couldn't be arsed after doing the virus stuff so i'm not going to add the firewall link for now hackattack. Maybe later

  8. Guides and Tutorials   -   #7
    Bluetack Mod
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    virus information and removal tools can be found here

    *upate* Another AV (free lite version *note* the lite version ONLY detects viruses and does not remove them) and some virus removal tools

    Paul started a topic on lowering the amount of viruses on the fasttrack network and lists some of the infected files.

    A forum post about how to secure your system (discusses some peer guardian, some anti virus stuff and more)

  9. Guides and Tutorials   -   #8
    I now prefer McAfee VirusScan Professional which comes with a Firewall to Norton which used to be my favorite earlier.

    McAfee is a lot faster than Norton Internet Security and more suited for Windows XP.

    This problem happened to both my PC as well as to a friend's PC. It is one of the most frequently asked questions on the Norton support website and the cause is not know. The PC is unprotected when it happens and you need to download a special program even to just uninstall it. I installed NIS on my friend's PC who is not a savvy computer user. He wasn't even aware about the problem and that his computer was now unprotected until I noticed that the NIS tray icons were not being displayed as usual.

    Norton Internet Security comes with an ad blocker that doesn't work very well. A better option is to install the Google Toolbar which is an IE Browser plug-in that has a much more effective pop up blocker.

    Norton also had some compatibility issue with some websites such as OddPost. I had problems creating a trial account at this site sometime ago and it was blamed on NIS. I'm not sure whether the problem still exists.

    I still like to use NortonSystemWorks boot CD as an emergency rescue CD because Norton Anti-Virus even though slower is supposed to have the ability to detect new viruses not yet discovered. I also run Norton Utilities directly from the NortonSystemWorks CD.

  10. Guides and Tutorials   -   #9
    Join Date
    May 2003
    I originally used Norton AV but really don't want to pay for the subscription so I installed AVG and was wondering if it was good enough to be able to uninstall norton. Also does having two AV's cancel eachother out?

    Edit: Also now that AVG is running its telling me that one of the self extractor rar files has a virus in it, but I've already opened and installed it and haven't had any problems with it since is there some other reason this may be happening like having two AV's installed for instance? Thx 4 ne help.

    Edit:I think its detecting cracks I have what can I do about this? Do I just have to know what its detecting is?

  11. Guides and Tutorials   -   #10
    It's very possible that those cracks do have viruses in, especially if they're executables (like self extracting zips) and especially if they're from kazaa as opposed to one of the bigger cracks websites. I'd recommend u try one of those online virus scanners and see what it says about those cracks. It might just be avg mis recognising some innocent files
    I dont think having 2 av's running necessarily causes problems, though I think most people are content with one or have one running permanently and the other as a back up.
    I use avg, but i'm thinking of giving nod32 a whirl cos the reviews say it has the best heuristic detection. (ie its the best at catching unknown viruses)

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