To answer the original posters question I always recommend that after loading your operating system you install an anti-virus program that you have burned to a CD then do the same with a firewall. The first thing you do when connecting to the net is to go to Windows Update and install all recommended updates, and update the anti-virus.
Leurgy, my new computer is coming with XP & SP 2 already installed.
I'd like to hear your thoughts on my strategy (as it currently exists):
1. Turn on the firewall that comes with XP
2. Have my brother burn the free version of Avast or AVG Anti-virus to a CD on his laptop and then install that on my new computer.
3. Go online
4. Go to Microsoft and download all the security patches I need.
5. Go to Computer Associates and download the eTrust Anti-virus, Firewall, and PestPatrol (that's anti-spyware.) I have the Computer Associates stuff now and I like it.
Once that's in place, I can relax a little as I download:
Do you see any major flaws in that strategy?