Let us see where to begin;(been there too) first thing, what do you want/need? They are all good program which you will have to pay for. There are free programs out there as well as some Internet servers are including a virus control too. If you want to purchase then so should really follow the following. I have bought software and hardware based on two things:(first you should do your homework..A MUST!!) the Pros and Cons of each and feedback from actual people who use the product. I have not been burned yet! Because the system works, I want to be apart of it so hear goes.
I use Norton because of its features. It meets my needs...very important! The 2005 Premier version hits just about everything. I have the 2003 version and will purchase the 2005 version because of the upgrades. Every couple of years, some programs needed to been bought again to keep up with the times. Norton has alot of features which goes beyond just a virus scanner. I use Norton in place of some of the XP functions like optimizing my harddrive for example. My OS system is XP Home and I meet the requirements that the the company has for using their Program, Another important thing to follow!! It does alot so it takes alot of space on the harddrive and will run in the background using your workable memory too. That is fine in MY Case. I have had NO PROBLEMS to report. I email and have Road Runner which is always on which increases your risks for certain things. One feature that I love and I mean love is the feature of Norton Ghost. It backs up EVERYTHING!! If you have ever had to recover from a loss from a OS system crash: I had a harddrive go. This Ghost was amazing!!!! I had a system crash with Windows 98(which is prone to this...that is why I have XP). I lost everything! It took me 3 mths to get it back to about 95% of what it was. And I was very lucky!! Under the XP system crash due to hardware that I mendoned above; I was able to bring my system back to 100% in a matter of hours. Back up your system at least once a month for heavy users. Backing up is VERY IMPORTANT!!! Ghost makes it much more simpler. I now have a DVD burner which backs up my whole system(40GB drive) in less than 2hrs and on two DVD RW discs verses many hours and many (9)CD RW discs. But with my 9 CD discs, I got everything back though. It took much, much longer to burn and of course verify the data for errors than to bring it back. I plan to purchase the Norton program thru a well known site cutting the retail price to $61.00 Total and I will get a $30.00 Rebate so my final cost will be $31.00 for a program which sell for over $100.00 Retail. It Pays to Do Your Homework!!! Hope this lengthy reply helps you.