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roxz72
post Feb 8 2004, 04:33 AM
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We all know that we should be running antivirus software as a part of a suite of software to keep our computers safe, "clean" and secure (Auntie Virus's FAQ on Spyware & Firewalls and her list of free online antivirus scanners) . There are a few makers of free antivirus software. Any of which is better than nothing at all and some may not be the target (yet) of virus writers unlike the more popular commercial versions. The January issue of PCWorld has a comparison of the first four listed. MaximumPC is scheduled to have a comparison of Norton AntiVirus 2004 and Grisoft's AVG Anti-Virus System. Another good resource is Virus Bulletin? (thanks Indygo).

THere is a brief rundown and description (from PCWorld):

Grisoft's AVG Anti-Virus System : AVG passed Virus Bulletin's June 2003 VB100 Windows XP test (the most recent available at press time) after failing previous attempts; it also passed ICSA's June 2003 test. AVG includes memory-resident scanners, plus e-mail scanners for Outlook, Outlook Express, Eudora, and Exchange client.

Alwil's Avast 4 Home Edition: Avast likewise passed both the VB100 and ICSA tests, and it offers memory-resident scanning. But Avast surpasses AVG by scanning both Outlook and standard Internet (POP3/SMTP) mail, making it a good choice if you use a non-Microsoft mail client. Amazingly, Alwil also offers support via e-mail for its free product.

H+BEDV Datentechnik's AntiVir Personal Edition : This utility doesn't appear in Virus Bulletin's June 2003 tests; it did, however, pass ICSA's June 2003 tests. AntiVir includes a memory-resident scanner, but it lacks e-mail scanning (it watches only file read and write operations and looks for suspicious macros). You can use AntiVir's separate scheduler program to launch scheduled hard-disk scans, and virus-signature and program updates; but how to perform these tasks (or whether they're possible) is far from obvious.

Softwin's BitDefender Free Edition Version 7 : BitDefender Free Edition does not appear in the VB100 and ICSA test results, but the Standard Edition passes both tests using the same scanning engine as the free version. Like the other free AV tools, BitDefender employs a memory-resident scanner and is set to download updates automatically. But like AntiVir Personal Edition, it doesn't scan e-mail for viruses during send and receive operations.

In addtion to the ones from PCWorld there is:

F-Prot Antivirus for DOS, for personal use : The free version is supposed to be good terms of speed and effectiveness but is limited to DOS. Per F-Secure, F-Prot Antivirus for DOS will run under Windows 3.x, Windows 95, 98, or UNIX, LINUX or Macintosh workstation running a DOS or Windows emulator. It does seem to run OK for me under W2k (SP4) and is very fast. There may, however, be some things that cannot be fixed if not run in a purely DOS environment (i.e. a shell).

Some of the vendors do make some removal tools available for free:

F-Secure : Individual tools for specific virus strains

Symantec's removal tools : Individual tools for specific viruses.

McAfee AVERT Stinger : Good tool for specific list of viruses

Trend Micro System Cleaner: Another good free tool for cleaning systems. Make sure you download and unzip the current virus patterns to the directory where you save the system cleaner BEFORE running the system cleaner install.

BitDefender AntiVirus - Removal Tools : Individual tools for specific viruses.


Hopefully this will assist those who are on a budget (or just don't like the commercial verisons) find a good antivirus product.

Cheers!
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roxz72
post Aug 12 2004, 06:47 PM
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ClamWin (Also see http://sourceforge.net/projects/clamwin/)

From their site:
<

At the moment is it at v0.40 but may be worth checking out later on...
Edited by: roxz72 on Fri Nov 26 17:30:05 EST 2004.
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zocker
post Sep 15 2004, 03:47 PM
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Any thoughts or information on AntiVir http://www.free-av.com/ .....several local techs. claim that it's excellent!
All the best
Z
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roxz72
post Sep 15 2004, 11:54 PM
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See H+BEDV Datentechnik's AntiVir Personal Edition above for a little bit of info...
HTH
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zocker
post Nov 26 2004, 12:54 PM
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From: Bristol / Ipswich / Spain


My experience:
Ive now been using AntiVir for a few months. It downloads installs and installs initial latest updates quickly (5 -10 mins). The program is small and apart from a quick splash screen during the Windows loading sequence, is invisible.
The program appears to need a complete re-install to update the signature and other files...difficult for some of the company customers. Otherwise re-install/update is seamless and does not require restart.
On one particular Win98 comp: On AntiVir finding a virus, Win98 reverts to Dos, asks to delete the infected file but then crashes the comp completely.
WinXP All infected files (so far found) are deleted, there does not appear to be any effective file cleaning available......disastrous when system files are involved.
A 'computer expert' installed Norton onto a comp which had AntiVir installed. Result was extremely unstable system and error messages about wrong graphics card drivers.. clearly not an AntiVir prob, and I add this experience just for the information.
AntVir is Free and updates are free, the system is not (unlike Norton) clogged by endless AntiVir 'extras'.
I will recommend it to and install it for my domestic use customers.
Hope that informs!
Z
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