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MSE ending -- so what is next best free antivirus?


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11 replies to this topic

#1 akjudge1

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 03:44 PM

Since Microsoft Security Essentials is ending XP support in April, I have a few questions.  Assuming that I am staying with XP (personal/software reasons) and have been using MSE (plus firewall, plus Malwarebytes for weekly scans), here are my questions:

 

1.  What would be the best free antivirus to use that DOES NOT consume a lot of resources (have a Dell XPS410)?

2.  Best way to uninstall MSE before installing new antivirus (Revo?)

3.  Odds that the new antivirus will continue to support XP?

 

I know that the consensus is to upgrade...  But I have 5 networked computers running XP with some old programs (astronomy) that won't run on upgraded systems (including virtual xp windows), so I would like to stay with XP.  Yet, I need access to the Internet and don't want to do everything in a "sandbox".

 

Any help with a workable solution would be appreciated (probably by others also).


Edited by hamluis, 09 January 2014 - 04:51 PM.
Moved from XP to AV/AM Software - Hamluis.


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#2 quietman7

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 06:27 PM

Most of your questions are answered in this topic: Choosing an Anti-Virus Program

Sometimes removal via Add/Remove or Programs and Features does not work properly if you have not terminated msseces.exe in task manager and stopped and disabled the Microsoft Security Essentials service. You can run the Microsoft Security Essentials Removal Tool link 1
Microsoft Security Essentials Removal Tool link 2

Also see:
* Uninstalling Microsoft Security Essentials by Stephen Boots, MVP
* How to manually uninstall Microsoft Security Essentials if you cannot uninstall it by using the Add or Remove Programs item

As with previous outdated operating systems, major anti-virus and security vendors at some point will stop providing support to older Windows operating systems but I suspect they will support XP for a few more years.

BTW, unless you read something different...most Microsoft antimalware products are not OS specific...meaning they are designed to run on various operating systems besides XP. Therefore even with the end of Windows XP, MSE updates will still be available because they are needed for Vista and Windows 7. You can always manually download definitions for system (32-bit or 64-bit).

Manually update your Microsoft security software


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#3 valerian

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Posted 10 January 2014 - 08:58 PM

Avast free is highly rated and also very light on resourses.

 

Use add/remove programs to uninstall mse as third party uninstallers should only be used as a last resort.

 

Avast still gives sig updates for v5 for win 2k AFAIK so xp should be good for them for some time to come.

 

Just my tuppence worth.



#4 quietman7

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Posted 10 January 2014 - 09:07 PM

Revo Uninstaller provides a listing of all installed software by installation date and when removing a program, Revo does a more comprehensive job of searching for and removing related registry entries, files and folders.
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#5 valerian

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 06:22 PM

That`s the thing about Revo you have to be carefull about.

 

When it cant find the programs uninstaller it will still offer the option to remove all files and registry entries anyway.This can be a great thing or a dangerous thing

depending on the way the program needs to be uninstalled.

 

Backing up the registry via Erunt(thanks to Bleeping Computer) has saved my bacon when things did`nt work out as planned.



#6 quietman7

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 07:49 PM

Yes ERUNT is an excellent free tool that allows you to to take a snapshot (backup) of your registry before making changes and restore it when needed.

* How to Backup your registry with ERUNT

Note: The ERUNT and NTREGOPT FAQs advise these programs will only work correctly in Windows 7 and Vista if you turn off UAC (User Account Control).
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#7 Scoop8

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 10:15 AM

Good topic.

 

One thing I've learned over the years, this subject is very diverse.  Where one AV product works well for one user, it doesn't work as well for another.

 

I'm running Norton 360 on 2 Windows 7 x64 PC's with no issues encountered as yet.  I'm not seeing much of an impact with system resources usage from Norton.  That said, I'm not a PC gamer, just a basic user, 'net, etc, and I have what's probably considered an average system with an Intel i5-650 CPU (dual core) and 16 Gb Corsair RAM.

 

Norton is my 3rd AV product installed since I began home 'net PC use in 2004.  I've used "Trend Micro" and "ESET" before Norton, with ESET being the previous AV product used.

 

My experience with ESET wasn't satisfactory but that in no way should be considered a bad review of the product since this topic has a very wide range of recommendations and AV performance feedback results, and from what I've read during the past several years appears to be considerably individualized depending on one's particular PC setup and user activities.

 

I usually allow 2+ years to evaluate an AV's performance and it's always, for me, going to be graded on how many malicious intrusions breached the AV's defense mechanisms.

 

For example,. when I was using ESET,  I averaged about 1-2 intrusions in the 2.5 years I had it installed but I have no idea as to the details of why the malicious intrusions breached ESET's defenses.

 

What I do know is that in all cases, no e-mail attachments or questionable surfing practices were involved.  I was visiting one of my daily reputable 'net sites and got hit with one of those "FBI" malicious variants, complete with the intimidating-sounding FBI voice over the speakers :lol:.  Recovery was easy (cloned HDD install) but that had been the 3rd time that something had gotten past ESET's defenses.  So I decided to try Norton AV for a couple of years.

 

Regarding the XP question, I have to make that same decision with my Mom's HP Pavillion Slimline PC.  I installed Norton on her PC over a year ago and all's ok but I'm not sure what to do when April gets here when MS drops security patch support for XP.

 

Mom's also running Office 2003 as am I so that's another issue that will come up in April since MS is also dropping support for it at the same time as XP.

 



#8 quietman7

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 06:37 PM

...Regarding the XP question, I have to make that same decision with my Mom's HP Pavillion Slimline PC.  I installed Norton on her PC over a year ago and all's ok but I'm not sure what to do when April gets here when MS drops security patch support for XP.

End Of Support For Windows XP SP3 pinned topic
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#9 Scoop8

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 08:30 AM

defit.jpg for the link.  Good reading, some tools to run on my Mom's PC to see if a Win 7 install will work.



#10 quietman7

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 11:53 AM

You're welcome.
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#11 Didier Stevens

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:09 AM

Update: MSE support for XP is extended through July 14, 2015.

 

http://blogs.technet.com/b/mmpc/archive/2014/01/15/microsoft-antimalware-support-for-windows-xp.aspx

 

More discussion here:

End Of Support For Windows XP SP3 pinned topic


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#12 quietman7

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 06:21 AM

Yea, I updated the pinned topic yesterday but forgot about this one.
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