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#1 02-16-2012 15:24:15

mitch
Helper
Registered: 10-05-2008
Posts: 39

Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

Ok, so I'm quickly running out of my free trials on our new laptop for Norton Antivirus and the MS Office suite (word, excel, pp, etc).

The Norton is $49 bucks I think for a year - is it worth it? I've heard good things about the microsoft security suite (free), Avantis (free) and some others.

With regards to the MS Office I've got some .docs that I need to keep, can I just convert them to the Microsoft works processor? I really don't want to spend the $149 for MS Office 2007.

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02-16-2012 15:24:15

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Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

#2 02-16-2012 15:26:21

jack
Enthusiast
Registered: 10-05-2008
Posts: 149

Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

Avira Antivirus was recommended on here last time this came up. It's free and there are a couple of "hacks" that make the free version less annoying (dropping splash screens - nothing serious - no "stealing"). I haven't used it personally, but we are selling an old PC and I installed it (with hacks) so it had something on it after I wiped it.

For Office you can always get OpenOffice.org for free. It works okay. Getting used to the differences between years of MS product use can be annoying once in a while and I hate to say this but I don't find the spreadsheet app quite as good as Excel in a few user-friendly ways, but... The suite will open most MS document formats and isn't any more bloated or beastly than MS Office. Again, it's FREE. I always thought Works was poop, so I'd take OO.o over Works any day if I didn't have a business copy of MSO.

Having said that I've had a great experience with Norton Internet Security 2005, which has subsequently been upgraded yearly (2010's running right now). I seem to get lucky and get two year subs for the price of one. They run sales a few times a year, so it ends up being $25-30 a year with the full software upgrades. But I also run Spybot S&D and Spyware Blaster about once a month for extra help. Others are not so enamored with Norton's products, I seem to be an exception to the rule.

I don't know what the wisdom is on separate firewall utilities or if you're just better off letting Windows handle it. Since Norton is pretty much transparent I don't tinker with it much. I figure it can't be weaker than XP's built-in firewall.
I used to use Sygate Personal Firewall, but I think they dropped the Personal, free version. I really liked it though you had to be more interactive with it. It kept me informed and was a pretty simple, straightforward tool.

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#3 02-16-2012 15:56:44

trapper96
Rookie
Registered: 04-07-2010
Posts: 90

Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

As far as anti virus solutions, I like Norton better than Mcaffee or
some of the "free" solutions they all can be fooled now and then, but
Norton has ALWAYS worked better for me..... the big "Corporate" versions
and the "Home" versions. I would be pissed if the "free" av software I
was using was putting up nag screens on any regular basis - that means
its free advertising for the software maker, and annoyance for you... to
me THAT has a price tag.. As far as office suites, If you can pay, use
MSoffice, (even though I do not like it - or much else MS for that
matter). For free, you could use open office,( www.openoffice.org ) but
you will run into some compatibility issues now and then.

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#4 02-16-2012 15:57:19

acs88xj
Helper
Registered: 12-05-2009
Posts: 43

Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

i use avg free, http://free.avg.com/us-en/homepage and spybot s&d,
http://www.safer-networking.org/en/spybotsd/index.html
haven't been infected yet, but i'm pretty cautious too.

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02-16-2012 15:57:19

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Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

#5 02-16-2012 15:57:50

warman
Rookie
Registered: 08-03-2009
Posts: 81

Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

openoffice.org
its open source software so its free and it works well.

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#6 02-16-2012 15:58:32

Stein
Helper
Registered: 05-27-2009
Posts: 48

Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

I use avast antivirus, its free and based on kaspersky, one of the top rated anti virus programs in use

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#7 02-17-2012 17:39:32

james
Rookie
Registered: 10-05-2008
Posts: 90

Re: Computer Questions - Antivirus & Windows

The last time I used Norton was when my friend and I both bought it (like 6 years ago) at the same time from Staples, when they had a sale going. Brought it home (gee, got it marked down from $40 to $20, cool), installed it, and had to pay another $15 to UPDATE IT (damn, we JUST bought it). Used it for about 2 months, then got notices that our version was out of date, we could purchase the new version through their web site for like $60 (obviously marked up from retail store's prices). But the worse part, when my wife had virus issues on her computer back when we had the shop, Norton couldn't clean it all. On the advice (I believe someone on this list), I downloaded free AVG, and it cleaned everything right up. Been using it ever since, absolutely NO complaints...it has kept my PC clean for several years now. I also like the fact that it doesn't attempt to direct me to pay-version screens or other annoyances. I have also used the paid version, which does the same as free version, just has automatic options that the free version does not.

My combo on my PCs are: Zonealarm firewall, AVG anti-virus, Ad-Aware (hardly ever have to use it), and once in a great while I'll run a scan with Malwarebytes.

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