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Question about Norton Anti-virus Software

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
First, let me make this really clear----I am computer illiterate. It took me 2 days to figure out how to update my Adobe/Acrobat software.

I've purchased a new computer and want to put Norton in it. My old pc had it installed by a computer store, so I'm clueless about this. Do I need to buy the software cd or can I just download it from the Norton website?

I know---dumb question. Now all you computer people stop laughing!
post #2 of 11
If it doesn't have Norton you would probably have to purchase it. (ie... in a store) However there are free anti-virus software out there that work just as well...

AVG Free is decent, as is AntiVir.

You should couple those with something like AdAware or SpyBot (should couple these with Norton too, IMO.)

All of them are available on the internet for free (for the basic versions).

Personally I don't like Norton because of the cost and that removing it is like removing a virus (it won't leave! )

It's a thought.
post #3 of 11
Was Norton ever improved, anyways? Last I heard over the years it was full of holes and constantly being patched (a bit like windows ).

I used Avast for years, another free antivirus, and it did well. So well in fact that I only had one trojan, which it had problems removing but was easy enough for me to clean up manually.

As I mentioned in another thread. Turn off unwanted services - look up how to do this, it's very simple. This alone can keep viruses and trojans from exploiting services that XP runs on auto by default (anyone remember the sasser worm? that would restart your computer because of a service that by default was set to restart the whole system - I never had problems with it but had to help friends. ) It'll also make start up a little quicker. Remember to update everything as well.

The windows firewall isn't that good either, if you wish to look for a decent free one.
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Well, now I'm confused. I had McAfee on my first computer and I was still getting viruses. I switched to Norton with my present pc and haven't had any virus/trojan/worm trouble. There is a weekly update, and yes, you have to pay for it, but I'm wondering just how reliable the free virus protection is. As I've said, I have no idea how to remove any viruses, etc. that may invade my new pc. ( I do also use AdAware and Spybot ) For someone like me, who basically knows how to do next-to-nothing with a computer, would a program like Norton be a better choice? And, again, is it something I can download myself?
post #5 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by libby74 View Post
As I've said, I have no idea how to remove any viruses, etc. that may invade my new pc. ( I do also use AdAware and Spybot ) For someone like me, who basically knows how to do next-to-nothing with a computer, would a program like Norton be a better choice? And, again, is it something I can download myself?
Google is your friend. You look up the problem and hopefully will find an answer on how to fix it - if you don't, then you looked up the wrong words. If you have a computer and an internet connection you can learn to do anything, there's no excuse not to teach yourself.
And yes, it's very easy to download Avast and AVG. Both antivirus programs have free and commercial versions, so they are updated. With Avast they want you to register for a free activation code, there's instructions on their site on how to do all this.
One issue I did have is Avast thought that Spybot's ad definitions were something "suspicious".

And as for which is the better choice, no antivirus is perfect. No matter what one you go with you always have the chance that it will have problems removing a virus or trojan and that you'll have to figure out how to do it yourself. Your biggest defense against that is just to be a smart user and stay away from activity that puts you at risk.

I think most people just prefer free options because we have enough things to pay for already - I've switched to Debian so that should sum up how I feel about paying for software.
post #6 of 11
After using Norton and Mcafree antivirus for years I was tired of them slowing down my computer so I switched to Avast a free anti virus and it works great. before paying all that money downloading Norton why not go to downloads.com and try either advast or AVG which are free and great anti virus programs and see how they work for you. All you have to do is download them and follow the step by step directions they give you. Very simple!!!
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aileen06 View Post
After using Norton and Mcafree antivirus for years I was tired of them slowing down my computer so I switched to Avast a free anti virus and it works great.
That's the other complaint I kept forgetting about! It was many years ago that DH got a computer with Norton preinstalled - useless memory hog, others complain about that too.

Also Avast, and probably AVG too (been many many years since I used AVG's antivirus program), don't automatically do thorough scans. They do monitor some activity and will catch stuff coming in, but you actually have to run the scanner for a thorough scan. You can probably set either one to scan on some off hour, but I didn't like doing that since I always left several programs on.

And if you do get Avast and set it to scan in the AM, please turn the sound down on your speakers or turn off the alarm in the program. It will save you from a very rude awakening.
post #8 of 11
Look up "Stingray firewall" . It is a device that goes between your DSL/phone line (doesn't work with cable/sat hookups) and your computer. So, even if a virus comes through the line, it doesn't make it to the computer, because Stingray blocks it. You don't need software, the device is a firewall. Not in production anymore but you can find it places.

Norton is satan! If you like a very slow computer, go ahead and install Norton!
post #9 of 11
We use Avast and love it. All I know about Norton is anytime my husband is asked to help someone with their computer the first thing he askes is "Does it have Nortons installed?" If they say yes he uninstalls it and about half the time that fixes the problem.
post #10 of 11
I used to get stuck with the Avast warnings in the middle of the night waking me too!

To answer your question, you can buy online or from a store and download - not sure if Norton has a free version but my online banking and ISP both offer free downloads of paid virus software so check before paying for anything!
post #11 of 11
If you are getting your internet through cable, check with your cable company also. Our provides a free version of a commercial anti-virus.
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