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Discussion Starter #1
Good morning, everyone. I have weird questions about antivirus softwares. (
)

Some of them are completly free (like AVG), others are rather expensive (Norton). And I often heard that the most expensive are sometimes far from being the best available.

I wonder: why would a company develop free antivirus softwares? After all, creating them and keeping them up to date take much time and money. Still, some companies give them away for free. Others prefer to make us pay for their antivirus.
Usually, when one product is cheaper (or even free), the most expensive cannot last for long: no one would be interested in paying fo what he or she can get for free.

So my two questions are:
1) why give away something expensive to build up? What do these companies get in exchange? Could these free softwares be a trap (a clever means to collect information about us, unnoticed by antispywares, for instance)?

2) Why do some people and companies buy knowingly expensive antivirus softwares, when they can get other good ones for free? Would they know about a possible trap we would be unaware of (thus explaining my previous question)?


I have AVG on my computer. Free version, of course, and I wonder if I have not allowed in my computer a modern-styled spyware.

Well, gentlemen, any clue about it?
 

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i personally think that the guys who creat anti-virus programs, are the guys who also send out the virus's. they just causing problems for people, and then they selling them the solution. also why cant you save all your updates to disk, so in the event of a format, you wont have to waste your internet cap (in crap internet south africa) downloading the updates again when you could just update from a cd.. oh yes thats right the anti virus company's are probably getting a portion of the bandwidth used by people, from the internet companies, its a vicious cycle. makes me wonder.... anyone else with view on this?
 

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I seriously doubt that the AV guys are all that devious. First off, the independent audits of the functionality and operation would be sure to turn up the presence of any spyware.

stompiegsi, do you see black helicopters overhead a lot too? :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hey, guys, please, do not spoil this topic, this is is a serious question!

i personally think that the guys who creat anti-virus programs, are the guys who also send out the virus's. they just causing problems for people, and then they selling them the solution.
Looks logical, but then why give it away instead of asking us to pay? What do they get from that deal?
 

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I seriously doubt that is true. It's the old bait-n-switch, they give the free stuff away and add features and functionality to the pay product. If you like the free one well enough and want the extra features, they're betting you'll buy it. Since almost all of the vendors do that, it must be working.
 

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if what i said is true. they would give it away for free, then every so often, they release a virus which the free version is not able to fix, and this could con people into buying the full product. hmmmmm
 

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if what i said is true. they would give it away for free, then every so often, they release a virus which the free version is not able to fix, and this could con people into buying the full product. hmmmmm
No additional comment required. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So far, I never came across a virus that my free antivirus could not fight.

Maybe it is different for companies, but most individuals who need to protect their pc are unlikely to buy the expensive version. For instance, how many do you know who had to pay to get an efficient antivirus? I know none around me: most of my friends have free versions, and are very happy of it.
And even if some people choose to pay, do they pay enough to cover the cost of developping and upkeeping these softwares?

Maybre you're right, but i'm still wary.
 

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As matter of course I roll my eyes inside every single time I hear someone uses a free antivirus program. I do this not because they are not effective (a rare few like AVG are decent), but because people seem to have this self-dillusion that they are just as good as the effective paid ones, if not better (or even all supreme). The more self-dillusioned you are about them, the more bugged I get. It's like a pet peeve. And reasoning with some can be... shall I say... not possible. With some mind you, many will listen to reasoning which makes me smile.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a huge supporter of FOSS (Free and Open Source Software), but people if it ain't ClamAV (eg. AVG), it ain't FOSS! It's not the same! Don't get caught in the marketing! AV analysts need to be paid so they can eat. For example, looking at tests from AV Comparatives, the test results are based off of the paid version of AVG with all its additional bells and whistles.

All right forget what I said, it is a pet peeve. Get yourselves a good paid AV like Norton (2008 folks, I know first-hand how much the earlier versions clobbered the old trusted Norton battleship), or Kaspersky or NOD32 or some-such. The expense is worth the protection provided for a full-year.

And, just to let you know, it is very true that many home users and their PCs are just dandy without any infections, but that is highly dependent on how you use your PC, your surfing habits, and what-not. However my motto is you can't be too frugal with protection, especially these days when PCs can be turned into zombies and information stolen from you without your knowledge. For example, I've been personally burned on just that - several years ago my home PC was infected with a RAT (remote access trojan, ala backorrifice, subseven, etc) and was being used as a bot to attack and infect other computers for a while and the only way I ever noticed any problems or even just plain out knew was when my ISP had to phone me to tell me. I didn't notice any slowdowns or disruptions or peculiarities, and nothing came up McAfee at the time (this was back when McAfee was still very popular, before the CA break-away). And as another example, I saw a worm first-hand attempt to infect other computers on a LAN coming from a PC running AVG Free, and found out about it in real-time when the other PCs running Norton went off. Turns out that infected PC had not just the worm, but 3 other viruses and their assorted baggage. While I do believe AVG Free is fantastic as a free AV, it provided a cold splash in the face that that protection can be a little light in some areas.

Now don't get me wrong, going full-blitz paranoid on security is an inherent no-no, but if I was given a choice between a free bulletproof vest and a paid one... I'll take the paid one thanks. But if a user doesn't want to spend money on a paid one for their PC (common with students), then I will stick AVG or Avira on there so they have something adequate. However my personal belief says "Good is better than adequate", and I'll be darned if I have another one of my PCs go rogue on me and start hosting child pornography or attack other innocent users and their computers.
 

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Free virus software that is the most recommened is AVG.
For the answer to the question is why would they be crazy enough to put out a great FREE software and is it any good.
Recognition is why they did it. They were looking for and a name, in a market dominated by Norton and Macfree. Giving a free version is actually a great market sceam if the product works.
Well I believe it does! For the newbies and the average computer user it works great. This is if you are not completely malicious and download everything on the internet and downloading pirated software. Then you should be safe. But this does not mean you should buy the full version if you like it and are comfortable with it.
Norton is fine, but only if are not good with programs or running a network.
Norton has more options and many more toys for computer savvy people. But if you don't care then avg is low key and easy to use and you don't need a removal tool to uninstall the free trail version like Norton does.
 

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Why do some people and companies buy knowingly expensive antivirus softwares, when they can get other good ones for free?
Most of the free AV programs are only licensed for personal use on a home computer. They hope you will like their product enough to purchase a license key for You're business computer's
 

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I have used different antivirus and firewall software over the past 9yrs and have never had problems with AVG free Edition, infact at one stage I was using Norton antivirus with Black ICE FW which NA didn't detect a trojan backdoor virus with its realtime protection, when I disabled it and installed AVG and updated it, it detected it straight away. I have found though over the last few years that Symantec Corporate Internet Security has provided me with the best protection. I have only had to recovery my system a few times some of which was my own fault.
 
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