2005/05/03 - I have been totally satisfied with Avast as a free product. Unless you have an unusual corporate environment I wouldn't spend too much time looking at other options. I've used Symantec Enterprise and it was outstanding, I've used McAfee ePO and it's not as good but still capable. I get ill hearing all these "religious" nuts rant about this topic. They were probably doing the same thing with Mac/Windows in college - and what did it change? Anyway, before I fall victim of my own preaching... http://www.avast.com/eng/programs.html - There, I said it.
2005/04/01 I am having a difficult time determining what is new on this page. I am going to make an educated guess the entries are in descending chronological order (i.e., most recent on top). Dating your entry would be nice. Anyway, is trend Micro still a top AV? If so, what would I look for from them for use on a home network? The network consists of a Win 2K Server, Win 2K3 server, a couple of WinXP Pro PCs, and a couple of Win 2K Pro PCs all connected to the internet through a LinkSys router/firewall and DSL modem. Currently I am using Norton Corporate Edition installed on one of my servers that manages all the NAV clients on my workstations. I have not had a problem with it since I installed it 4 years ago. The pattern files are always up to date, etc. I am concerned though when I eventually have to "rework" that server which is going to be sooner rather than later. Thanks for any insight. Mark McCasland
Here's feedback for 'ya, Symantec.
I swear, lord be my witness, I'll never buy another Symantec product again.
This is a company that embodies what's wrong with the Internet. Symantec uses the internet as a proxy for customer service. If you actually need real customer service, then be prepared to search a long time through their web site to find a number. When you dial that number you will wait forever, and when you finally get someone after spending excessive time listening to the worst Musak, you'll get a moron who won't listen to or try to understand your problem.
in other words if you're a real sucker, then Symantec is for you. It's not for me, and I hope as a reader you'll consider the same.
- If you believe that an incomplete FAQ on the Internet constitutes customer service,
- if you like companies like Symantek who's "feedback" and "Contact us" links lead to everything everywhere except a way to actually contact them,
- if you like companies like Symantec who provide incomplete information on their confirmation pages and subsequent confirmation emails after you've been suckered into purchasing something. "Subscription keys" as they call them, is what you're actually buying, and they don't deliver em,
- if you like companies like Symantec who's people can't support internet orders,
- if you like to pay department-level licensing fees for a single PC that happens to be running a Server version of Windows,
- if you like reading your credit card number as apparently the only means to look up an order (I swear I'm not making this up!),
- if the phrase "Thank you for calling Customer Service" after a ridiculously buried procedure to actually get what you paid for is what you want,
-- Steven Black
Hear! Hear! I have, for many years now, run Windows 2000 Advanced Server as the operating system for my desktop machine (originally mainly for testing reasons, latterly just habit). Symanetec's Norton 2000 product ran perfectly well on this operating system and I used it for Virus Protection. When Norton 2003 came out, I decided to upgrade only to find that the product will not even load, let alone run, on "Server Systems". So I went back to the 2000 version. The other day I received the 'Your subscription will expire in 30 days" notice but this time, NO option to renew on line - only a phone number where, after 37 minutes on hold (yes, my phone has a timer)I finally got to talk to a nice Indian Lady about renewing my NAV 2000 Virus definition subscription and was told that:
 NAV 2000 is no longer supported and I cannot even renew my Virus subscription for the Virus updates for this product (remember, it is all working just fine right now - and until it expires in a month's time I will continue to be able to get updates).
 That I can upgrade to NAV 2005. When I asked the support person if it would run on Win 2 K Advanced Server this nice lady told me "Of course. It runs real well on Windows 2000".
Fortunately for me, I insisted on speaking to a supervisor who told me what I already knew that, in fact, it DIDN'T run on the server versions of anything. He gave me the number of the Business Support Desk.
After another call, and another wait (less than 10 minutes this time) on hold I was told that:
The only thing I could do was to buy a "Small Business Pack" of Licenses for Norton Antivirus (remember, this is not a server, just a desktop machine that happens to be running a Server OS). Cost? Oh, only around $500 PER YEAR!!!! This to replace my $20-some per year virus subscription.
I could not buy it on line but had to go and find a retailer who would sell it to me. Did they have a list of people in my area? Of course not! I really felt I was interrupting this person's busy day with my stupid irrelevancies.
The solution? I just had to spend a whole (wasted) day re-formatting and re-installing my desktop to run Win2k Professional because Symantec won't continue to allow me to renew my virus subscription. I am currently running NAV 2003 (which is from my old, no longer extant, laptop) that when I bought it came with a year's complimentary Virus service (did I notice that the new version only gives three months free service?). When that expires I will NOT be renewing with Symantec! -- Andy Kramek
When my subscription was up last year, I had just been hit with Nimda and didn't have time to evaluate the market, so I upgraded over the Internet, but I couldn't successfully download the upgrade. I was able to contact someone after several days and I was told that I had to get a copy of Netscape to do the update. My subscription is about up this year and I am going to switch to Trend Micro. I know several folks who have had good experiences with it besides Ed. -- Pamela Thalacker
Pamela, you won't regret it - http://www.antivirus.com - among other things, they have a freely accessible on-line virus scanner in case you get to a point on a client site where you think you might have been infected and can't load a current AV product. -- Ed Rauh
FWIW, I've been using Trend Micros products in preference to Symantec's, and haven't regretted it to date. Among other things, they uninstall cleanly... - Ed Rauh
I've seen the previous comments, let me add my two cents.
Basic situation: customer asks for Win Fax 10 application, "we need to fax direct from Win Fax SDK" ... cool!! On XP, the Win Fax 10.3 version ids preferred, based on all available info. In fact, Symantec's (Sym) web site suggests you request it. More FACT, after two hours on "hold" (you can compose code fairly easy while listening to Montovani's string version of "April Showers") I get a Hindu that can't understand me, but eventually, I'm transferred back to the US, same call (this is important), supposedly Customer Service. Call transferred three more times, finally, told to pay $X for 10.03 upgrade. Argued them down to merely shipping costs for a CD. shipped after 10 days. I can walk to Seattle faster. CD, arrives, install, I'm NOT a computer dummy, and "Voila'" I now have 10.03 BASIC WINPRO, no features and certainly not the SDK repairs I expected. This is long enough, so cutting to the quick. More calls to Sym, and I get a $90 phone bill. That's outrageous, but the worst is "Who do you call to find satisfaction. I wasted three days, all told, on hold, waited ten for a CD, and it busts my system, and they "Hide" behind that rat maze of a web site. JMO
Yeah, I can believe it - never been a fan of Symantec. I hate that I must have PC Anywhere installed on my work PC for a particular client. That's the only piece of symantec you'll find on any of my systems. The fact that millions of people buy and use Norton everythingbutthekitchensink software is crazy - and these are usually naive home PC users - I can't tell you how many acquantances have jacked their PC's loading that crap. (anonymous)
Not to mention that Symantec claims that Win Fax Pro is multi-user fax server software. In fact, it can't function as a server at all if more than two or three workstations connect to it at once, no matter how much processor speed or memory you throw at it. It doesn't seem to be able to run more than two processes (such as sending, receiving, or printing) at once. It either hangs or just leaves faxes sitting in the send queue. And it constantly "forgets" configuration settings. What a piece of junk. (I ended up going with ZetaFax, which, while it has its problems, is a pretty functional LAN fax server.) -- Ken Dibble
Whilst among angry men and women, let me ask a question about Norton Antivirus. I find its LiveUpdate process slow and annoying regardless of the settings. Sometimes it runs two updates during a day. Sometimes it asks to reboot my computer.
I understand that's the price one has to pay to stay safe in the e-jungle. How about other antiviruses? Are they same slow? -- Anatoliy Mogylevets
I use Free avast! Home Edition from http://www.avast.com/eng/avast_4_home.html. The virus definition and program updates are totaly transparent. -- Sergey Berezniker
I can testify about avast! - Been using it on 3 home PC's for about 2 years now. Best part, free for home use.
The company I work for pays for McAfee, so that's what's on my main development PC there. -- Randy Jean
AVG Free is very nice too.
I use AVG in all boxes at home and it works very well. Updates are frequent and fast. No reboot required. -- Alex Feldstein
Pamela, and Ed Rauh mention Trend-Micro above: http://www.antivirus.com
We use NOD32 for anti-virus which is also excellent. Updates are frequent (up to several times a day during busy periods) and they have a very good track record. Best thing is that I can buy a two year subscription. http://www.nod32usa.com/ -- Rob Spencer
I whole-heartedly agree with Rob, we use NOD32 at my company and I recommend it to all my clients. I've used a lot of different products in the past and NOD32 stands above them all for my money. -- Craig SBoyd
Category Rants Category Antivirus
( Topic last updated: 2005.05.03 10:16:17 PM )