The Windows firewall is only a one-way shield...it only filters what's incoming. Some feel that's acceptable, but it's something I won't settle for, since it's completely ignoring out-going communications. Thus, if you get a virus and it tries to 'phone home' (likely with information you don't want to share), Windows Firewall won't pay any attention. It's like having a security guard at your house that'll watch for anyone breaking in, but wish the burglar a good night if he decides to walk out the front gate with a bag full of valuables. Thus, I'd stick with ZoneAlarm...it's what you already know and offers better protection.
As to switching AV, Norton does have the standard uninstall option through Add/Remove in the Control Panel. After it's finished, restart your computer and clean out any Symantec/Norton files/folders left behind. (Check C:\Program Files, C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data, etc for files frequently left behind.) There are also complaints of the uninstaller not working, which are not that uncommon. (I've had problems with it, including the Corporate edition, in the past myself.) How to deal with that depends on the exact package and version of Norton you're running, so if you have a problem just post back with that info.
Hope this helps,
got new laptop with windows firewall. i have not been a service pack 2 user, so i dont know about windows firewall.
i have basic zone alarm installed on my desktop without any troubles to date.
is windows firewall good, or is zone alarm the best choice?
also, i want to remove my commercially provide virus software and install avast on the laptop. any tips about removing norton security. it doesnt have an uninstall option. i will have to use add/remove. anything else to be aware of with removing it?