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eHam Forums => Computers And Software => Topic started by: KA5IWO on July 03, 2013, 09:15:57 AM



Title: Virus sofware
Post by: KA5IWO on July 03, 2013, 09:15:57 AM
What FREE virus software is available on line and where can I download it from.
I am still using Windows XP, does what I need, but need to do a scan
of the hard drive to check it for any virus or other headaches.
My mouse seems to freeze sometimes for a few seconds. It
has not been doing this, it acts as if something is running in the background.
What is a good recommended safe FREE virus program that around today.
Do not need one that scans and then ask for your credit card. >:(

Thanks
Kevin
KA5IWO


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: G4IJE on July 03, 2013, 11:36:37 AM
Assuming you are looking for a "full blown" anti-virus package and not just something for a one-off scan, I would recommend Avast free edition. I've seen it find things that Norton can't and it regularly spots nasties in my email. It's also pretty good at protecting you from malicious websites. It seems much "lighter" resource-wise than many other AV programs. If you want to stick with the free edition you have to read all the program prompts carefully, as it will try to sell you the paid-for Internet Security version - which is fair enough in my opinion. Look out for the small buttons labelled "I want free protection" and avoid those offering a free TRIAL of the paid-for version.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: K2QB on July 03, 2013, 11:42:04 AM
AVG is in my opinion far and away the best free program you can get. I work for an IT distributor and we sell everyone there is out there but AVG is far and away the leader.

http://www.avg.com/us-en/homepage


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8JX on July 03, 2013, 11:54:24 AM
AVG is in my opinion far and away the best free program you can get. I work for an IT distributor and we sell everyone there is out there but AVG is far and away the leader.

http://www.avg.com/us-en/homepage


Actually you want "free.avg.com". I have used it for many years. No need to buy it for most uses.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: G4IJE on July 03, 2013, 11:55:40 AM
We used to sell AVG but it seems to have gotten a bit "heavy" recently. Avast is lighter for an old machine running XP in my opinion.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8JX on July 03, 2013, 12:00:16 PM
We used to sell AVG but it seems to have gotten a bit "heavy" recently. Avast is lighter for an old machine running XP in my opinion.

The free version of AVG is still lite.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: K1CJS on July 03, 2013, 12:45:47 PM
Who do you have for an internet supplier (connection)?  Both Comcast and Verizon have dedicated anti-virus software available, and I believe that most larger internet providers do also.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8JX on July 03, 2013, 02:15:48 PM
Who do you have for an internet supplier (connection)?  Both Comcast and Verizon have dedicated anti-virus software available, and I believe that most larger internet providers do also.

If they do it is usually Norton which is very resource hungry and not friendly to some apps too. Free AVG is pretty solid and has never let me down. On one machine it found things that Norton missed.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: AG6WT on July 03, 2013, 05:27:05 PM
Microsoft Security Essentials. I have been using it on several WinXP and Win7 computers at home and so far it's kept our computers clean for at least the past couple of years.

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security-essentials-download


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: K1CJS on July 04, 2013, 05:59:02 AM
If they do it is usually Norton which is very resource hungry and not friendly to some apps too. Free AVG is pretty solid and has never let me down. On one machine it found things that Norton missed.

Gee, W8JX, maybe you should follow your own advice and get a newer computer that can handle the load put on it.  

BTW, FYI, Comcast DOES use Norton, but Verizon uses McAfee.  I've used both and prefer Norton, simply because McAfee doesn't provide the control over itself that Norton does.  I'm using the latest Norton suite (complete) right now on an older IBM IntelliStation Z Pro server converted to a desktop unit, running a single 3.2 Ghz Xeon processor (the machine has provisions for a second) with 4 GB of memory--and Norton doesn't slow it down in the slightest.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: AA4PB on July 04, 2013, 06:03:11 AM
Personally, I try to keep Virus software off my computer. I do that by running anti-virus software.  :D


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: K1CJS on July 04, 2013, 06:04:28 AM
Oh, wow!  Good one, Bob!   :D


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8ATA on July 04, 2013, 06:52:30 AM
Been running free Microsoft Security Essentials on all machines for quite some time. Does a great job and doesn't bug me.  Note, "bug me" has a dual meaning.

73,
Russ


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8JX on July 04, 2013, 10:01:51 AM
If they do it is usually Norton which is very resource hungry and not friendly to some apps too. Free AVG is pretty solid and has never let me down. On one machine it found things that Norton missed.

Gee, W8JX, maybe you should follow your own advice and get a newer computer that can handle the load put on it.  

BTW, FYI, Comcast DOES use Norton, but Verizon uses McAfee.  I've used both and prefer Norton, simply because McAfee doesn't provide the control over itself that Norton does.  I'm using the latest Norton suite (complete) right now on an older IBM IntelliStation Z Pro server converted to a desktop unit, running a single 3.2 Ghz Xeon processor (the machine has provisions for a second) with 4 GB of memory--and Norton doesn't slow it down in the slightest.

No it is not about needing a newer machine it is about the un-needed bloat Norton puts in code and registry changes it makes to WinSock too.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: K1CJS on July 05, 2013, 06:23:52 AM
Gee, it's funny how some people will do an abrupt 'about-face' and contradict themselves when presented with a situation that goes against their personal thoughts. 


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: KG8JF on July 05, 2013, 06:26:00 AM
I can understand how you cheapskates would like to get free stuff.  I am a firm believer in the old adage that you get what you pay for.  And, what you had better be looking for is, "internet security".  Virus protection will not help against malware and phishing.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: K1CJS on July 05, 2013, 07:50:57 AM
Just FYI, 'virus protection' has come to mean (in some cases) a complete protection suite.  Semantics rears its ugly head again.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8JX on July 05, 2013, 07:30:17 PM
I can understand how you cheapskates would like to get free stuff.  I am a firm believer in the old adage that you get what you pay for.  And, what you had better be looking for is, "internet security".  Virus protection will not help against malware and phishing.

It is not about being a cheap skate as it is about using what works too. Malware and plishing is not a insurmountable problem either.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W5ZL on July 06, 2013, 02:39:16 PM
I used "AVG" for several years on 3 PCs here at the House, two of them being XP machines and one being a VISTA machine.  About 6 months after Microsoft came out with "MS Security Essentials" a friend of mine that is in the PC Software business suggested to me that I try "Security Essentials" on my machines at home.  He had been running it for about 6 months and was very happy with it; so, I installed it on all three of my machines here at the house over about a 2 month time period.

I have had no problems with "Security Essentials" and I like the "Agent" that runs in the background that "checks" files being downloaded and pages coming in over the internet.  Just earlier today, MS Security Essentials advised me to not open an URL that was in an article I was reading because it had been deemed to be "Unsafe" to open.

Give "Microsoft Security Essentials" a try, I think you will be very pleased with its results.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: KD4LLA on July 07, 2013, 04:42:35 PM

Give "Microsoft Security Essentials" a try, I think you will be very pleased with its results.
I have two WxP machines.  They both have MSE on them , plus Malwarebytes and once every six months I run Micro Trend "Housecall".  All three programs are free.  The easiest way to stay away from a virus is never, ever open an email or a "forwarded" email that looks suspicious or from someone you do not know.

You might be having problems w/ WxP computer resources.  I have found by going to the "Local Services"  that I can shutdown Computer Browser, Server, Secondary Logon, Routing and Remote Access, Task Scheduler, Automatic Updates and Help and Support.  The first four items are only used on a "network" (maybe you have one at home).  I don't use the Task Scheduler at all.  "Help and Support"?  Yeah like MS is really going to help me find out something!  MS only updates once a month, usually on a first Tuesday or Wednesday of every month.  There is no reason for this service to continue to operate and use resources.

I also use Google Earth and Skype.  Every time I start my computer both of those programs want to look for updates.  I look for updates myself once a month.

If only MS would have "fixed" Win 95, we would have had a secure operating system by now...

Mike


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: W8JX on July 07, 2013, 05:47:40 PM

If only MS would have "fixed" Win 95, we would have had a secure operating system by now...


When you are the main player you have a lot of hackers trying to bring you down. You are more venerable with XP than 7 or 8 because XP is no longer being updated and only some security issues will be fixed and only till 2014 too. 


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: N0MKC on July 15, 2013, 02:04:35 PM
I'm a bit late coming in, but have a suggestion not yet mentioned...

First of all, download one of the "rescue disk" ISOs available - Kaspersky, AVG, F-Secure, BitDefender, etc. - burn it to a CD and run it. They're all free for personal use.

Boot to the CD; they load Linux from it, then run an anti-virus / anti-malware scan against the hard disk.  Since Windows isn't loading, it's a lot harder for the malware to hide itself from the AV scan.  This way, you're more certain that your hard disk is indeed clean.

I was NetAdmin & Head Electron Wrangler for a small school district for a number of years; I'd be cleaning out a couple of computers a month (sometimes a couple a week), and always started with a rescue disk; this approach served me quite well.

I've used the AVG rescue disk for a long time, but have recently started using the Kaspersky version - both work quite well.  AVG is text-based, while Kaspersky has a GUI interface - use whichever one you're most comfortable with.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: KK6GNP on August 13, 2013, 09:06:20 AM
As a tech consultant, I run ESET (Endpoint) products on the corporate systems of my clients.  Most of them also have firewalls with additional security features.  At home, I simply run Microsoft Security Essentials (free).  It updates with Windows, doesn't nag, and works great for my needs.  I've been working online for so long that I know what not to click on, and which sites to avoid.

The modern software these days covers a wider rage of malware.  Viruses and worms are just a subset of malware.  Some "Internet Security" products can be a nightmare for average users to deal with as far as being complicated, and some of them interfere with legit programs running on your computer.  Some of them are pure bloatware and slow your computer down.  ESET is a good light program with lots of features and many tweaks to be made if you are so inclined.

The thing about pure AV software, is that even the best only stop a small percentage of viruses out in the wild.  Something like 10-15% depending on who you listen to.  In my consulting business I see computers with all different kinds of AV software still get infected, and some of the malware is capable of disabling or uninstalling your AV software.  The point of malware is that they are pretty good at exploiting security holes in operating systems and browsers, bypassing AV software.

In my opinion, everyone should have a copy of Malwarebytes Antimalware installed as a cleaner program *in addition to* their AV or Internet Security software. They have a free or paid version, and it's the best cleaner out there if you find yourself infected or suspect you are.  Nine times out of ten, booting your machine into Safe Mode and running a full scan will take care of the problem for you.  Some viruses are smarter than that, including rootkits, but I come across those much less frequently these days thanks to advances in the operating systems.

Most modern viruses come in via email attachment or from downloading illegal stuff from P2P / Torrent these days.  Email users gets tricked into opening an attachment based on the email content looking somewhat legit, and boom, they are infected.  Some websites can exploit browsers, java, flash, etc. security holes, but if you use a smart browser such as Google Chrome, it will warn you about a lot of these sites before you even get to them.

Use a good email service.  The best webmail services out there are Gmail and Outlook.com, IMO.  For my clients who have email servers, I pre-filter their emails through dedicated anti-spam appliances, or a cloud service such as Barracuda.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: KK6GNP on August 13, 2013, 09:34:01 AM
BACKUPS:  I cannot stress enough the importance of making sure your data is backed up.  I've seen more people lose important data than I care to think about.  It's a sad thing.

If you have a decent internet connection, a cloud service such as Carbonite is a great way to go. It's cheap and easy to setup.  If something catastrophic happens to your computer or home, you know your important data is being stored on your cloud backup service.

I have my clients do both local and off-site/cloud backups so they have two layers of protection.  If you don't want to use cloud backup, consider getting two external drives and some backup software.  Keep one of the drives at a different location (such as your bank), and rotate them out weekly or monthly.

A word on hardware: Hard drives fail.  I can honestly say that 95% of the hardware issues I have to repair with computers, are failed hard drives.  I rarely see a motherboard, nic card, power supply or other component die.  When hard drives fail, they usually do so with zero warning.



Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: AA4PB on August 13, 2013, 09:56:47 AM
I started out using a network drive (dual drive with raid) for backups but it takes so long to do a full backup over the network.

I now use two hard drives in each computer. Backup software creates an image of the C drive on the internal backup drive. If the C drive ever fails, I just install a new drive and then run the restore program from a CD in order to re-create the C drive from the image on the backup drive. If the backup drive ever fails I just replace the drive and create a new image from the C drive. As long as I don't have both drives fail at the same time then I have the data.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: KK6GNP on August 13, 2013, 10:05:29 AM
I started out using a network drive (dual drive with raid) for backups but it takes so long to do a full backup over the network.

I now use two hard drives in each computer. Backup software creates an image of the C drive on the internal backup drive. If the C drive ever fails, I just install a new drive and then run the restore program from a CD in order to re-create the C drive from the image on the backup drive. If the backup drive ever fails I just replace the drive and create a new image from the C drive. As long as I don't have both drives fail at the same time then I have the data.


This is a good way to handle your local backup, assuming you have tested it to make sure it all works as planned.  However, I still recommend an offsite backup as well.  If something happens to the computer (stolen, fire, earthquake, lightening, etc.) then both of your local hard drives may be destroyed.

Just food for thought.  I've learned in my career that having both local and offsite backups is the way to go.  What I like about cloud services, is that for most people it's a good single solution that doesn't cost much and is easy to implement.  With the failure rate of cheap external hard drives, I would recommend cloud first to most home users.


Title: RE: Virus sofware
Post by: KE7TMA on August 16, 2013, 11:56:58 PM
ClamWin is free and catches some viruses that the big ticket anti-virus software will not.

The best anti-virus software, though, can be had from Ubuntu.org.