Archive for the ‘Antivirus’ Category

About Nod32 v.3 and Eset Smart Security

Friday, November 30th, 2007

I have not fully tested the new 3.0 version of Nod32. I looked pretty extensively at Eset Smart Security (ESS) in late beta, and I didn’t think much of the firewall at all. Plus I have no use for Eset’s antispam solution. So I am definitely recommending *against* the new $60 ESS.

However, my preliminary impression of Nod32 3.0, also contained in ESS, was quite positive. That product is available as a standalone upgrade to Nod32 2.7 for $40 (one user, one year).

I have not had a chance to fully test the 3.0 standalone product yet. I’ve been focused on the firewalls. But testing Nod32 3.0 is very high on my list. From my look at the ESS beta, I don’t anticipate any serious criticism of Nod32 3.0. I like the UI a little better. I didn’t see anything I didn’t like. I didn’t have any problems with it. But I still have to test it fully to be sure. I’ll be looking at it on both Vista and XP.

I don’t write final security reviews before I’m sure about a product. So depending on the complexities I encounter when I test Nod32 v.3, it could be four to eight weeks before I give you a definitive answer.

If you’re forced to make a decision before that, I would currently characterize Nod32 3.0 as a good bet. And, again, I would recommend separate firewall and antispam solutions instead of ESS.

If you’re using Nod32 3.0, I would be interested in your experiences with and impressions of it. Please send your thoughts to me. Thanks!

Alternatively, you can also post your experiences as a comment to this post if you prefer.

Down to One: Windows Software Firewall Evaluation

Saturday, September 29th, 2007

It’s taking forever to kick the door closed on the long-term Windows software firewall evaluation. In the last installment of the series, Windows Software Firewalls Evaluation Rolls On, I wrote about issues with Comodo 2.4 that Scot’s Newsletter readers have reported — and which the Comodo folks graciously owned up to. With a rearchitected version of the firewall on the way, I decided to hold out to see whether the new product would get the job done with fewer issues.

A couple of days ago, Comodo released what some have dubbed Comodo 3.0 Beta 3 (version 3.0.9.229). With this new rendition of the code, for the first time you get the sense of what the company expects the user experience to be. The product relies heavily on user prompts to warn you of possible threatening actions, but you can tell it to remember your answers and make specific programs “trusted applications,” which effectively silences future prompts. The user experience is pretty good, overall, but it’s way too early to determine whether the product will perform without bugginess on some desktops.

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Eset’s Nod32 2.7: Best Antivirus Product of 2007

Sunday, February 4th, 2007

A number of people criticized my selection last year of F-Secure’s Anti-Virus 2006 as the Best Antivirus Product of 2006 for Windows. And now I’m going to have to eat crow, because in 2007, those people are right.

Eset’s Nod32 2.5 came in second last year, despite the fact that I had several criticisms of it. My assessment last year was based on a series of factors. But the most important criterion was that the utility run without bogging down the system and, basically, do no harm to your computer. Of course, catching the bad stuff was very important too.

Even though F-Secure’s 2006 product skirted the primary requirement pretty finely, the user interface and the included anti-spyware module combined, in my mind, to make it a great value. What’s more, F-Secure took me through a real-world test — one that I didn’t plan — with flying colors. (Nod32 got other people through the exact same real-world test, by the way.)

But F-Secure has an Achilles’ heel. It doesn’t play nicely with other security apps. It has a tendency to create a mess if other security products are present — even if they’re not running. It has a tendency to pop up dialogs informing you that it can’t install unless you uninstall this or that specific program. This was something I came across with F-Secure Anti-Virus 2006 only when I purposely installed it while AVG was running. And the process of uninstalling AVG worked so well in my test, that I felt comfortable recommending F-Secure.

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