Spyware, Viruses, & Security

General discussion

Which is best AVG or Avast?

by gsgsgsgs / January 18, 2008 7:36 PM PST

Following a previous post and advice not to run 2 av's at the same time I have decided to run Avast as my main av running at start-up. I have installed AVG to use as a back up, i.e. once a month run a scan with it but not running all the time, my question is which is better to have running as the main av or is it down to personal preference as there seems to be little to chose between the 2, to add 3rd contender into the pot how does Avira compare?

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It's personal preference.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / January 18, 2008 7:49 PM PST

Although I use AVG exclusively I understand that Avast is also a very good anti-virus.

They all have their strengths and quirks, so what you decide to use all the time is down to you and your own choice.

I haven't heard of Avira myself so I can't comment, but you're not likely to need 3.

Mark

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Avira/AntiVir is also good and as Mark
by roddy32 / January 18, 2008 8:23 PM PST

said it is a personal choice as to which one you use.

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Ford or Chevy.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 19, 2008 1:18 AM PST

Both can get you there.

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Which is best...
by Larry38 / January 19, 2008 2:03 AM PST

Having tried both AVG Free and Avast Free, I like the Free Version of Avast. I am using the AVG Pro Version, but if I went back to a free one, it would be Avast. This is just my opinion, but as others have said it is up to you, which one you prefer.

Good Luck.
Larry

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If you just want a good AV to run
by JonathanCase / January 19, 2008 5:38 AM PST
In reply to: Which is best...

monthly, or as a back up, or second opinion, have a look at Dr Web Cureit.
Standalone scanner, good detection rate, runs from the download location (no install).
Only drawback is you have to re-download the entire application (5~Mb) every time you want it updated.

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Avast or AVG
by taurus5621 / January 19, 2008 10:35 AM PST

I've read that although AVG is very, very poplular and well liked, Avast is supposed to be better. Don't know if it's true, but I do a lot of reading and just reporting what I read.

Good luck either way.

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I have a spyware question of my own
by taurus5621 / January 19, 2008 10:51 AM PST
In reply to: Avast or AVG

I use ESET Smart Security Suite - also known as NOD32 - which is a total package and I have a serious question to pose. It's supposed to be a very good product. (I used to use Trend Micro on my XP. Liked it but after 3 years that computer crashed and died. So, I don't know if the Trend Micro let something in or not. Water under the bridge now.)

I keep reading that one should never, ever use more than one spyware program on thier computer because sometimes, unbeknownst to them, the same drivers could be used and end up causing mucho problems. On the other hand, I've also read that NOD32 users have used other programs with no problem at all. So, I am very confused to say the least.

I have a brand new PC (Vista Premium Home Ed.) and it comes with good old useless Windows Defender but the Windows Defender has a program in it called Software Explorer that I wouldn't mind using; but I don't want to do anything to mess up my new computer. Don't want to be under-protected if I don't have to be either.

I'm wondering if anybody here is up on this sort of thing and can advise me on what to do. I'd be most grateful.

Thanks and y'all have a great day!

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I have MANY anti-spyware programs
by roddy32 / January 19, 2008 11:03 AM PST

installed and running. You should have only one Anti-virus running but most any-sypware programs get along with each other. Not sure where you got your info from but it was incorrect.

There is NO one program that will catch EVERYTHING.

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There is NO one program that will catch EVERYTHING.
by taurus5621 / January 19, 2008 11:42 AM PST

So true and that's why I don't want to be under-protected. But the part about having several and them possibly using the same drivers and wreaking havoc kind of makes sense and gives me pause.

I just wonder if that is true or not. How could one have more than one up and running at the same time anyway? You see what I mean now?

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I already told you that the
by roddy32 / January 19, 2008 11:55 AM PST

information you read was wrong.

I have NAV, BOClean, TrojanHunter, SpywareGuard, SUPERAntiSpyware, Windows Defender and a couple of other running at the same time have have NO conflicts whatsoever.

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That's a lot!
by taurus5621 / January 19, 2008 12:31 PM PST

Wow. I'm impressed. Do you have Windows XP, Vista or do you run something else?

Very interested in this now and might summon up the courage to stick my toe in the water.

How do you know what I read in all those other forums and newsletters is wrong? You must have a technical background or are you just going on your own experiences? Just curious.

I've also read a million times all over the Internet not to run a registry cleaner. What is your opinion on that? I used to use Reg. Mech. on my XP. Don't know what to do now.

Too much information can be a bad thing sometimes, heh.

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As Rod says,
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / January 19, 2008 7:17 PM PST
In reply to: That's a lot!

having more than one anti-spyware utility does no harm.

There's a difference between anti-virus and anti-spyware. It is not wise to have more than one anti-virus running at the same time because anti-virus utilities check every bit of data coming into your computer, from the internet, or from emails, or CD/DVD's, etc for any data that exhibit virus like qualities, and so if more than one were running at the same time they would 'fight' for the right to check the data first. However, you can have more than one anti-virus and keep the other as an occasional manual checker. Personally I don't.

Anti-spyware is different. Like Rod I have more than one anti-spyware utility although I only have one running in the background continuously. But it does no harm to have more than one running. I use the others regularly for manual scans. Neither the anti-virus nor anti-spyware utilities have drivers because they are just software based and they do not run hardware.

Viruses are software that either do direct damage to your system or they drop other software that does other things, like spyware, trojans, etc. Spyware does what it says, they 'spy' on your computer usage. They can take many forms, and some are useful. For example, cookies can either be helpful or not. A cookie is a small text file that is installed on your computer by many web sites when you visit them. CNET drops cookies onto your system and these help you when you re-visit CNET. However some cookies spy on you to target you to display appropriate adverts on the web site, etc.

Other spyware is more serious. They can cause pop-up advert windows, or can spy on your passwords, credit card details or other personal details, and 'phone home'.

Registry cleaners are not anti-virus or anti-spyware and I would say that their usefulness is on the wane. With older Windows Operating Systems like Win 95, 98, ME they were handy to keep the registry mean and clean, because those systems tended to 'fall over' if the registry became corrupt. But newer OSs like XP and Vista are much more robust and can handle their registry's better. Registry Cleaners nowadays will only usefully clean out orphan registry entries, those entries that are not deleted when a program is uninstalled. but if a registry is badly damaged, by a virus, etc, then Registry Cleaners can do more damage than good. It is best to use backups, or to remove the damage with professional virus cleaners and/or specialists, as can be found when using specialist HiJackThis, (HJT), forum experts who will step users through which entries to delete/modify, etc. Registry Cleaners can be very dangerous to a user if he does not understand what he is clicking to remove, and I no longer use them on my XP machine except for a general purpose cleaner like CCleaner, which cleans out all my temp files and temporary internet files, and also looks for orphan registry entries.

Sorry, but the advice that anti-spyware uses drivers is wrong, drivers may be affected by spyware or viruses, but the anti-spyware and anti-virus utilities do not use drivers.

I hope that helps.

Mark

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Thank you for all the advice
by gsgsgsgs / January 19, 2008 7:26 PM PST
In reply to: That's a lot!

To partly answer my own original post, I tried Avira yesterday and ran a scan, no issues except annoying pop up boxes telling me Avast was dodgy when I restarted my pc even though I had stopped Avira from running at start-up. I uninstalled it, not saying it is no good but just didn't like it myself. To add my opinion into the mix on running multi antispyware apps, I run Spybot, Ad-Aware, Windows Defender, and Advanced Widows Care none of these are running all the time I just use them daily/weekly to carry out scans as far as I am aware I have had no conflicts doing so.

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Glad we could help, and that Windows Defender
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / January 19, 2008 8:23 PM PST

I think you'll find Windows Defender is running in the background. Happy

Like many such Microsoft tools, there's no option to not run it. If you have Automatic Updates turned on in your Control Panel > Security Center, and if it downloads Windows Updates automatically, you will find that Windows Defender definition updates are also downloaded automatically.

Mark

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There is an option to not to run it :)
by Donna Buenaventura / January 19, 2008 8:49 PM PST
To turn off real-time protection:

Click Tools, and then click Options.
Under Real-time protection options, select the Use real-time protection (recommended) check box, and then click Save.

To permanently turn off Windows Defender without uninstalling in XP:
To permanently turn off Windows Defender in Vista:

Click Tools, and then click Options.
Under Administrator options, clear the Use Windows Defender check box, and then click Save.
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Ahh, but of course!
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / January 19, 2008 8:53 PM PST

I feel really silly now, Happy

Especially since I have used that section myself to make custom selections.

Ohh well. I'm tired, and old.

Mark

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@Mark
by Donna Buenaventura / January 19, 2008 10:59 PM PST

Can't reply to your post anymore.. Grin

Like you.. I also forget things sometimes and I have to open the options earlier to confirm that it can be done. Grin

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(NT) It is called old age, I have the same problem :)
by roddy32 / January 19, 2008 11:17 PM PST
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Doh!
by gsgsgsgs / January 19, 2008 9:39 PM PST

So it is, I hadn't scrolled down doh? Can you or can anyone recommend a free spyware app that will run quietly in the background.

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WD
by Donna Buenaventura / January 19, 2008 10:34 PM PST
In reply to: Doh!

Windows Defender runs quietly in the background while real-time protection is 'enabled'. The default settings will just run it in the background. Will only appear IF update & user action is needed.

SpywareBlaster and SpywareGuard are another good addiition.
http://www.javacoolsoftware.com

Spyware Doctor Starter edition is another freeware and it offer real-time protection. Not so light though and it has limited feature:
http://www.pctools.com/spyware-doctor/google_pack/

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There are a number of them. This
by roddy32 / January 19, 2008 10:36 PM PST
In reply to: Doh!
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