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AV for old laptop


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#1 greyowl2

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 12:53 PM

I have an old Dell Latitude D600 laptop with a 1.6GHz pentium processor, 1GB RAM, and 20GB hard drive.  I use Light Firefox or Firefox as a browser on a DSL internet connection.

 

I am wondering which AV to use so that it does not slow down my computer or surfing.  I am wanting something free, light, and high detection with few false positives.

 

I am currently using Avast Free, but concerned that in the Sept and March AV-Comparative False Positive tests it scored poorly with 120 and 77 false positives respectively.  Most others had less than 10.

 

I appreciate your experience and help.


Edited by greyowl2, 24 April 2015 - 12:55 PM.


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#2 quietman7

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:00 PM

What operating system are you using? Since you say your system is old, if you are running Windows XP that will be a factor as far as safety is concerned.

As far as avast and those testing results....there are several reputable labs which test the effectiveness of major anti-virus programs and security suites to include AV-Comparatives.org, Virus Bulletin Comparative Tests, AV-Test.org, NSS Labs Consumer Anti-Malware Products Group Test Report, etc.

These kinds of comparative testing results will vary depending on a variety of factors to include but not limited to who conducted the testing, what they were testing for (type of threats, attack vectors, exploits), what versions of anti-virus software was tested, what type of scanning engine was used, and the ability to clean or repair. There are no universally predefined set of standards or criteria for testing which means each test will yield different results. As such, you need to look for detailed information about how the tests were conducted, the procedures used, and data results.

Some of the testing criteria and standards may even be misleading.

...for some unknown reason...the renowned German test lab AV-TEST has quietly (there was no warning) modified its certification process. The changes mean that the certificates produced by the new rules are, to put it mildly, pretty useless for evaluating the merits of different AV products...With AV-TEST’s new certification standards, the onus is on the user to carefully investigate the actual results of each individual test…they may find that a product that blocked 99.9% of attacks has the same “certification” as a product that only blocked 55%.

Comparative testing: A bit of background for the uninitiated

Further, if you're dealing with zero-day malware it's unlikely the anti-virus testing is going to detect anything. It takes time for new malware to be reported, samples collected, analyzed, and tested by anti-virus researchers before they can add a new threat to database definitions.
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#3 Aura

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:00 PM

Hi greyowl2 :)

Sadly, with these resources, you won't be able to run any "heavy duty" Antivirus products if I can say it like that. Resources wise, the best solution for you would be a Cloud-based Antivirus, like Panda Antivirus Free. It's Cloud-based, really light-weight and take closes to no resources on your system. However, as soon as you go offline, you won't be protected in real-time anymore. It's a big risk if you ask me, but considering the limited specs you have to work with, there's nothing much that can be done about it.

Also, what version of Windows are you using?

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#4 r.a.d.

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:22 PM

I would venture to suggest you're  fine with Avast, I use it as well. As mentioned, different testing methods are employed in rating AV products. The below (very current) article reflects a rigorous testing of a few that focused on average user experience that you may find of interest and might quell your concern about Avast.

http://uk.pcmag.com/security-reviews/41244/feature/which-antivirus-is-best-tough-test-separates-winne
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#5 greyowl2

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:33 PM

I am using XP sp3.



#6 quietman7

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:38 PM

avast Free is not fine if the OS is Windows XP.

Forced to use Windows XP past April? 10 ways to make the best of a bad situation

...those XP users left out there are wondering what they can possibly do to mitigate their risks as much as possible. The best course of action without a doubt is moving to Windows 8.1 or Windows 7, but if you can't or won't make such a bold move, then here's the best of what's left on your plate of options.

#1: Ditch the Free AV - Get a Paid Solution


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#7 Aura

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:47 PM

Following what quietman said, you would need a light-weight Antivirus product for that system. To most light-weight I know are Emsisoft and ESET products. Luckily for you, there's no need to use a "full suite", the standard Antivirus package with the Windows Firewall should be good enough. There's also Webroot Secure Anywhere that is light-weight, but I'm not a fan of this product. However, I would be biaised to not include it in the possible choices you have.

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#8 greyowl2

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:50 PM

Thank you all for the information and suggestions.

 

What about Avira Free?  Would it be very light?  I see it has a good detection rate.



#9 quietman7

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 01:56 PM

I generally recommend ESET NOD32 Anti-Virus if choosing a paid for program as it leaves a small footprint...meaning it is not intrusive and does not utilize a lot of system resources. Emsisoft Anti-Malware is also a good choice for the same reason and so is Kaspersky Anti-virus.
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#10 quietman7

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 02:05 PM

What about Avira Free?  Would it be very light?  I see it has a good detection rate.

Yes Avira is an option but again, not the free version.
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#11 RolandJS

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 02:08 PM

quietman, what about Windows Firewall, MSE [Windows Defender] as the main horses; with a side-carriage of ESET Nod32?

 

Addendum:  I should not have mentioned MSE for XP; my bad  :)


Edited by RolandJS, 24 April 2015 - 03:36 PM.

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#12 Aura

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 02:12 PM

Under Windows XP, Microsoft Security Essentials isn't the same as Windows Defender. Windows Defender is "native", while Microsoft Security Essentials is "installed". Also, if you were to use MSE and ESET Nod32, it would be using two Antiviruses at once, which isn't recommended and shouldn't be done.

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#13 quietman7

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 02:14 PM

MSE shouldn't be used alongside another anti-virus. Further Antimalware support for XP has only be extended until July 14, 2015. As for the version of Defender in XP...there are much better alternatives like Malwarebytes.
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#14 r.a.d.

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 02:38 PM

I would also suggest Spywareblaster ( https://www.brightfort.com/spywareblaster.html ) as yet another layer. It's entirely passive and won't conflict with any other security programs. With the free version, you periodically update and then 'enable all protection' for your browsers. 

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/92857/how-does-spywareblaster-work/
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#15 quietman7

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Posted 24 April 2015 - 03:03 PM

In addition to Spywareblaster, there are a lot of good free security programs which can be used to supplement one's anti-virus. Since he only asked about his anti-virus program we did not go there.
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