Free antivirus/spyware software? URGENT!

Just reinstalled after hard drive crash, system is already crawling with spyware etc.

Can anyone recommend a good, free blocker/antivirus package?


Has a clear out downloadable as well

For spyware

Avast and zonealarm seem to grab most stuff here.

Windows defender seems quite good as well

Adaware has removed 92 files so far

Registry Optimiser has found and repaired 220 problems! (the free version only fixes 20, but you can uninstall and reinstall ad infinitum!)

Windows defender is also filtering buckets of crap.

I really had no idea that a PC could get swamped within minutes of connecting to the net!

[QUOTE=Walter O’Reilly;371140]
I really had no idea that a PC could get swamped within minutes of connecting to the net![/QUOTE]

Oh yeah.

thats the reason I’ll donwload anti virues, firewall etc, stick the installers on disc, re install windows, then install the stuff from the USB driv whilst disconnected from the web. Much safer IMHO.
At least thats what I did when I used Windows. Now I use nix I just install :wink:

Was the system put directly on the net before updates were installed? There was a nasty bug going around which could take over windows boxes by simply being on the net, no dodgy website access required. Guess it is still around.

My installing habbits changed a long while ago before the quantity of machines multiplied.

A machine was litterally taken down on a fresh install within 2 minuits of connecting to the net.

2 Firewalls exist now before the PC’s and I use Avast anti Virus / Windows defender / Zone Alarm.

Viri free for a free years now.

Don’t forget Spybot Search and destroy: :slight_smile:

Here I run with an NAT firewall, McAfee security suite (subscription) and Spyware Doctor (subscription), but then this machine is also used for business use too. Really I should run it under Linux, but Mrs N would have a fit:catfight:

Anyway, I digress…To be honest since most AV apps are quite good against real time threats, most infections these days happen through social engineering…encouraging you to visit a specially infected website usually by means of suggestable emails.

Other nasties include the Spyaxe range of beasts. Smitrem usually takes care of those, but it’s not for the feint hearted.

Here’s some nice little stats for you to worry about:

18% of PC’s are at risk of direct hacking
9% have un-patched Windows vulnerabilities
4% have vulnerabilities to a direct injection of Trojan horse

(Source Symantec Security Check: 6366775 PC’s scanned via their on-line tool)
…and that’s even before the social engineering stuff:(

[QUOTE=Walter O’Reilly;371132]Just reinstalled after hard drive crash, system is already crawling with spyware etc.


Was that just with the Windows install on its own … or did you also reinstall some programs & apps from “saved” discs - by that I mean stuff you’d burnt to a disc yourself. Possibly you just tranfered the trojans that way ?

anyway, I’m another Avast user :slight_smile: seems to work fine (better than the Norton did) :lol:

A fresh windows install can be vulnerable just stuck on the net. There were a bunch of exploits which connect to your PC and take it over even without you having to do anything. So being patched up is pretty essential. The problem can be how do you patch if you can’t go on the net? I found it safe to connect from behind NAT, which effectively blocks unsolicited incoming connections. I’m not so sure on the safety of a software firewall on the same PC.

I use Microsofts one care, it’s not free but the fee is for 3 licences. It’s a one stop shop for av/firewall/spyware/registry tune ups/backups/phising filter , I like it, it’s shouts at you when things need doing, else it’s silent, doing it’s thing in the background.

Now for the best bit, 90, yes 90, day free trial, thats the best part of 3 months! You get that long to decide if you like it.

One of the perks of working for a large company is that they encourage you
to use “their approved home-use” software if you do any work-related
computing at home (which of course we all do!).

I’m using an enterprise version of McAfee.

My ISP has also licenced Webroot’s Spy Sweeper for all of its customers.

I thought that only versions of Windows XP before Service Pack 2 were
vulnerable to attacks during installation. --Is this still a valid rule of thumb?

we have a home use setup here too, but the only thing listed is MS Office 2007, I’m awaiting my copy at the mo seeing as it’s only £17 who can argue. Be nice if they had AV and stuff, but hey, I’m the guy that installs all the software for peoples machines at work…

take a look at i was pretty suprized with how well it works both avs and firewall full free verisons

…That’s a good find Steve. Thanks for sharing! :slight_smile:

if you were ever going to consider buying a product for spyware i would suggest xsoft every time…i have had all of the above running at one point on my machines, all saying there is nothing on my machine, untill i installed that one, it found so many different spyware it was shocking how the others didn’t see it. I thinkt hey do a free trial also.

I keep a USB stick for this very purpose… has XP SP2, AVG, and ad-aware on it… those get installed before I even put it on the network (behind a hardware firewall).

One tip that wyntrblue told me, is you can pop it on your LAN without a default gateway and then you can access shared drives etc to copy stuff across the local network without the machine being able to get on the internet. When it’s all safe, just fill out the default gateway :slight_smile: