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Microsoft Security Essentials

 
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Mullet
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Joined: Dec 12, 2005
Posts: 1051

PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2010 4:34 am    Post subject: Microsoft Security Essentials Reply with quote

I have been using Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) since my payware subscription ended about ten weeks ago so I thought it may be time to comment with a quick review.

When my security subscription expired I decided to read the reviews and see what was on offer. I tried demo versions of all the usual line up Eset, Kaspersky, Vipre, BitDefender and a couple of others. Then the penny dropped realising it was going to cost in the order of £70 to protect the five notebooks in the household. Time to look at the freeware.
Things change I know but having been unimpressed with AVG, Avast and the likes in the past I dismissed these and read up on the new Microsoft offering.

Code named Morro after a lump of rock on the Californian coastline, this antivirus and spyware protection package made it to prime time out of beta testing at the end of September ’09 to a mixed reaction from anti-virus vendors. This freeware now supersedes the Windows Live OneCare which was paid subscription and is now being phased out.

Installation:
A 4-5MB Setup file is downloaded from the site. Double clicking starts the installation process. After the Windows operating system has bee verified as genuine the full suite and definitions is downloaded and installed.

Interface:
A basic layout with few user options. There are tabs for manual scans, manual update, setting for schedules etc and the history tab.

Updates:
Although it works, I must say this area is a bit wooly. Users can set updates to occur prior to a scheduled scan but if that scan is missed the update does not happen. But the updates will come through eventually, probably the next day. For this reason I update manually. New definitions seem to be available several times per day.

Scans:
These can be started manually from within the application or from the context menu to scan individual files and folders. A quick scan takes about 5 minutes and a full scan takes a tardy 2 hours on my system. As said earlier scheduled scans can be set but to protect the update servers they do not start exactly on time. If a schedule is missed a catch up scan will be started sometime later. Again this can be a bit wooly so I again make use of the manual option.

Detection rate:
I won’t bang on here as I do not profess to be an expert or have enough information. Web sources find that MSE is very capable.
Hedging on the side of caution, several times I have used online scanners such as BitDefender to double check my system and nothing has been found to have got through.
When a virus is encountered an automated action takes care of it whilst giving the user clear notification.

Pros:
Free realtime protection from virus and malware.
Easy to install
Does not slow my notebook or increase the boot time.
Frequent definition updates.

Cons:
The wooly bits mentioned earlier.
Slow full scanning.

For me it works well enough although I have always hit manual updates and scan whichever protection I was using. I cannot realy find anything bad about it.

Although the big names offer features that MSE does not, to me these features are not worth the £70 per annum cost to me and so until proven otherwise, this fills the hole.
Don't jump ship from your paid subscription, but it is worth considering when that runs out.
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john877
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Joined: Mar 16, 2007
Posts: 468

PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2010 9:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Mullet for your review !!

I have been considering Microsoft security essentials as it seems to be getting some decent reviews
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Pocketgps
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Joined: Nov 16, 2004
Posts: 2145
Location: Midlands, UK

PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have used McAfee for a couple of years now. But they changed the way subs are taken in the last year. My sub is due to end at the end of this month, Jan 2010. BUT, they have just charged my card with £54.99 for the new sub. As I did not want this I rang and they refunded the total cost, then I received an email confirming this, to my amazement, it contained a link for returning customers. Clicking on this link it offered me the very same sub for just £19.99 - £30.00 cheaper Evil or Very Mad
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Duddy
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Joined: Dec 09, 2006
Posts: 219
Location: Manchester UK

PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="Pocketgps"]I have used McAfee for a couple of years now...

Yes I was using McAfee for 3 years and got fed up with the tricks they play with renewals like yours, so I changed to Kaspersky thats when I found out how much useless debris McAfee leaves behind in the computer. I thought Microsoft Word was bad enough
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richard345
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Joined: Mar 09, 2008
Posts: 463
Location: Rainhill, Lancashire Not Merseyside!

PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I switched from Norton which came with my pc to McAfee, because we use it at work. After the subscription went up yet again a couple of years ago, I tried AVG Free, which was fine and now I use Avast!, which is also free on the four machines we have at home.

I have never, ever had a virus or malware on any of the machines, so I can recommend it highly.

Of course, I have a Firewall on each machine, plus one in the Router and I scan everything regularly with SpyBot and AdAware.
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Darren
Pocket GPS Staff
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
Posts: 23848
Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been using MSE on our Netbook with no complaints for some time. I used to use McAfee on my business kit and AVG on the home PC's but AVG has become bloated and ineffective of late.

Thankfully I now use Macs and have yet to need worry about AV on them.
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exportman
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Joined: Mar 26, 2006
Posts: 261
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

I agree the MS offering is pretty good not to intrusive and appears to find the nasties. Had been using AVG both the paid and the free ( work/personal) but the last two offerings are very poort gone they way of norton trying to do far too much and being far too processor hungry.
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