Grisoft AVG Antivirus and other antivirus alternatives



Okay, so we know that having an antivirus scanner on a windows desktop is VERY necessary. Especially if it’s a system that has any contact with the outside world. So, what to choose. Well, of course there’s Symantec Norton Antivirus, there’s McAfee and a few other less well known (Kaspersky, F-Prot, Innoculate-IT) I’m rather fond of Grisoft’s AVG Antivirus though. Here are a number of reasons.

For starters it’s possible to get and use AVG for free. For personal use it’s completely free to install and more importantly to keep updated. Some of the larger names require a yearly subscription to keep updated, AVG does as well for their pay version, but the Free Edition has free updates. So if you have a few machines at the house that you need antivirus protection on, this is a good choice. Grisoft Home Page

There is one that I would avoid like the plague, they used to be called Stop Sign. Now I think they’re using the name veloz, but I’ve seen slimey tactics by their product. An installer that magically appeared scanned and told a user they had a virus and that for $$$ it could be removed, you just needed to pay and download. I’ve had other bad experiences with Stop Sign before the name change, enough to really hold their product with great suspicion.

If you want a completely free antivirus solution (free as in speech as well as $0) you might look at Clamwin Clamantivirus is an open source virus scanning engine and I’ve found the updates to be very frequent (from 1 to several updates a day). The one problem with ClamWin in comparison to other Windows AV products is the lack of on-access scanning. On Access scanning is what happens when you browse to a file and double-click, most AV scanners will run and check that the file is ok before Windows opens the file, Clamwin currently lacks this feature. It does have scheduled scanning, automatic updates, integration with Microsoft Outlook and integration with the Explorer context menu (right-click, scan file). On Access scanning is one of those features that is, according to what I’ve read, coming soon. When that happens I may just have a new favorite Windows desktop antivirus product.

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