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antivirus

Posted on 2014-10-20
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Last Modified: 2014-10-22
I'm helping my Dad with his pc, he insists on keeping his old WinXP box. ( I have tried to explain the problems and potential security threats ) I have even given him an old pc I have with Linux on it ( can't afford a windows license ), and walked him through how to use it, but he is just not getting it.
so I was wondering, has anyone used a VERY small footprint antivirus program that is pretty good, and preferably free?
I need something that won't take up a lot of resources, since his pc pratically has none. I don't remember what the processor is, but it only have 512mb of ram. There is plenty of hard drive space.
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Question by:JeffBeall
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by:David Kroll
David Kroll earned 63 total points
ID: 40392081
Panda Cloud Antivirus is pretty good for this purpose.

http://www.cloudantivirus.com/en/
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by:Zaheer Iqbal
Zaheer Iqbal earned 63 total points
ID: 40392083
i would try avast free or AntiVir
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by:Thomas Zucker-Scharff
Thomas Zucker-Scharff earned 63 total points
ID: 40392094
Given your requirements, I second Avast! free.  I would also highly suggest puttin an alternate hosts file on the machine like this one from MVPS.  Or you could run XP in a virtual machine on a LINUX box.
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by:aadih
aadih earned 62 total points
ID: 40392124
Very low footprint (but not free): Webroot SecureAnywhere.  [Comment: the best cloud protection.]
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by:JeffBeall
ID: 40392192
wow, Thomas, I remember using that host file thing. I tried it awhile ago. it seemed to work well, I always wondered though if they would be able to keep up the ever changing virus world.
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Expert Comment

by:Thomas Zucker-Scharff
ID: 40392277
I still use it and it seems to have kept up.  I like WinPatrol Plus better though (if you wait for it, it sometimes comes up on sale from the website - I paid $.99 for my copy).
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by:garycase
garycase earned 62 total points
ID: 40392623
Avast free is what I suggest for those still on XP.    It provides excellent protection, and Avast has committed to providing XP support for at least 3 more years -- unlike the other popular choices [Microsoft has committed to providing definition support for MSE until next Spring;  Avira has said they'll support XP through summer 2015).

The only thing I don't like about Avast is the boot-time scan, which can add as much as a minute to the boot process  [You'll get a desktop, but it won't connect to the internet until Avast has completed its scan ... you'll know when this is done when the Avast icon appears.].    That's NOT a "bad" thing -- in fact it's probably a good thing, as it's ensuring there are no rootkit's or other serious malware issues before you start using the system.    But on an older system that extra minute can feel like a long time :-)     On the other hand, you only boot once a day (or even less in many cases).
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by:NVIT
NVIT earned 62 total points
ID: 40392692
Not antivirus, but related: Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit is a small, specialized shield designed to protect you against one of the most dangerous forms of malware attacks. And it’s free. https://www.malwarebytes.org/antiexploit/

AV-TEST tests how well security suites protect porous versions of XP: http://www.av-test.org/en/news/news-single-view/this-is-how-well-security-packages-protect-porous-xp-systems/
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by:Dave Baldwin
Dave Baldwin earned 62 total points
ID: 40392750
I use Avast on almost all of my Windows XP machines and I recommend it.  But the best thing you can do for that machine is increase the RAM to 2 GB to speed up the machine by lowering the amount of swapping to disk.  I have at least 2GB in all the machines I actually use.
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rindi earned 63 total points
ID: 40392780
As suggested in the first comment, Panda is the best and lowest footprint AV tool available. I've used it for years and never had a problem. Before that I used Avast!, but Avast! just can't compare with panda. Besides, With Avast! you have to renew your subscription annually. If you forget to do so in time, you aren't protected. With Panda you don't need any subscription. It just runs.

And as I said before, I never had any problems with it. Avast! sometimes causes BSOD's and other issues.

But of course Linux should still be an option.

I have installed Zorin 6.3 On my Parent's PC that previously was running XP. This has been running for almost 2 Years now, and there haven't been any major issues. The Advantage of Zorin, particularly the older 6.3 version, looks almost the same as XP (or you can make it look that way), so for XP users there really isn't much to learn.  The desktops of the newer versions lean more towards windows 8.x and that can be a problem, but you can still tweak those too, and the lite version runs fine on old hardware.
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by:JeffBeall
ID: 40396904
thank you for all the suggestions.
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