One minute you are checking your email, the next your computer reboots itself. Then it reboots again. It continuously reboots over and over. It’s another virus. Computer viruses cannot be overlooked, so many people and companies purchase anti-virus software to prevent viruses from crashing their computers. Companies and even individuals spend at least $40 per year on anti-virus software programs such as Symantec and McAfee. However, Microsoft announced that they plan to come out with a new anti-virus software which they are offering for free. The abilities of this program are pretty basic. It includes spy-ware detection and removal of any programs that may slow down your computer, display pop-ups, change your Internet settings, or use your private information without your consent. On default, the program scans every night. Microsoft even has a team of researchers that continually browse to find new spy-ware and new ways to prevent and remove it.
What does this new free program mean for other anti-virus software? Both Symantec and McAfee have expressed confidence that this new program will not affect their sales. Microsoft even trued to secure Vista as to not allow these programs to run on those computers. Microsoft has even admitted that their new program is an attempt to rival products from Symantec and McAfee. However, these programs are security suites that come with features including encryption, firewalls, password protection, parental controls and data backup all features that the proposed Microsoft program will not include. Mixed thoughts on whether it will cause the end of the road for Symantec and McAfee, are being proclaimed.
Even with all the build up for this new program, CNET News did not give the program the best review. They said that although the program offers many advanced features, provides fast scans, is light on system resources, and includes two free technical support calls it also requires you to verify your Windows license before you can even download the app, missed half of the spy-ware on our test machine, and didn’t fully remove half of the spy-ware samples in our tests. They believe a second opinion is needed. Perhaps one of these other trustworthy paid-for programs.
Microsoft has not yet announced a release date for this new program other than soon. Only when the program is released and used will we the effect this new program has on Symantec and McAfee be seen.
There are already many free anti-virus programs like AVG and Panda Security which have not killed off their commercial rivals. So, is it possible that Microsoft’s product could do so? Some tech-savvy people believe free anti-virus software is worthless, while others swear by their free anti-virus programs. Will people trust Microsoft with keeping their computer safe? You can find more information about this new product at www. microsoft.com.