> Windows Live™ OneCare™ , Norton 360? or ???
> Any thoughts or comparisons welcome.
You'll get nearly as many differing opinions as you will responses.
I'll start by saying that I don't think any security "suite" is a
good choice. It'd be better to use smaller, less-resource-draining
stand-alone products. And, having had personal experience with
Verizon's business practices, I certainly wouldn't trust anything they
offer. Even if the product/service itself is fine, there'll be hidden
costs and "unadvertised" conditions and limitations associated with it.
I had used, and recommended, Norton Antivirus and then Norton
Internet Security, for many years, on Win98, WinNT, Win2K, and WinXP,
all without any significant problems. I had used McAfee prior to that.
But it's been several years since I've been tempted to try McAfee
products. Their quality seemed to take a steep nose-dive after they were
acquired by Network Associates.
However, when my subscription to Symantec's updates for Norton
Internet Security 2002 came up for renewal (at a cost substantially
higher than the preceding year's subscription), I decided to try less
expensive solutions. I downloaded and installed the free version of
GriSoft's AVG (http://www.grisoft.com/us/us_dwnl_free.php
). It proved
to be easily installed, easy to use, and quite effective. Additionally,
I was pleasantly surprised to see a small but very noticeable
improvement in my PC's performance, once I'd replaced the Symantec
product. Another free (for personal use) anti-virus product is AVAST! 4
Home Edition (http://www.avast.com/eng/avast_4_home.html
), which is what
I've used without problems on both WinXP Pro and Vista Business.
For a recent comparison of anti-virus products:
Retrospective / ProActive Test
Vista's built-in firewall is perfectly adequate for most people.
While it's not quite up to the ease-of-use standards of Kerio or
ZoneAlarm, it has been noticeably improved over WinXP's version.
There are two interfaces for Vistas built-in firewall:
1) A simplified one accessed through the Control Panel that is the only
one most people see. To further supplement this view, Sphinx's Vista
Firewall Control http://sphinx-soft.com/Vista/
) is a piece of freeware
that makes the Vista Firewall much more easily manageable to the average
2) And the more advanced "Windows Firewall with Advanced Security
(WF.msc), accessed via the Start Menu's Administrative Tools folder, for
the experienced user who wants more granular control.
To find and/or deal with issues caused by any sort of "adware"
and/or "spyware," two products that are quite effective (at finding and
removing this type of scumware) are Ad-Aware SE from www.lavasoft.de
SpyBot Search & Destroy from www.safer-networking.org/
. Both have free
versions. It's even possible to use SpyBot Search & Destroy to
"immunize" your system against most future intrusions.
Help us help you:
They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. ~Benjamin Franklin
Many people would rather die than think; in fact, most do. ~Bertrand Russell
The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has
killed a great many philosophers.
~ Denis Diderot