Antivirus programs for XP - best ones?

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Here is a post by Stefan Kanthak - the content of which seems
particularly good to me (although it has upset folk elsewhere!)

What views do the experts in *this* group have about Stefan's comments?


 >ALL Anti-somethings are more or less useless, especially since
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Re: Antivirus programs for XP - best ones?

I basically agree with everything he says except the first bit which
can be read as a categorical rejection of AV programs.  They're
definitely part of a risk management approach, and will catch some
things.  I wouldn't have a corporate desktop out there without one,
for instance.    

Some AV programs have heuristic based engines that do a "better than
nothing" job of detecting previously unknown malware doing malware
like things, so there is a place for them, but it's no silver bullet.

You do have to operate knowing that AV is relatively easy to evade
(via repacking, slightly tweaking existing nastyware, writing custom
nastyware, etc), and that having it doesn't mean you can just go
downloading whatever the hell ya want, or having your [insert any
major login site] web page open while surfing pr0n sites and hoping
there's not an CSRF or XSS issue with the pr0n site that might try to
have some fun with it.  

All the other things he mentioned are good practices.

NOD32 isn't a horrible anti-virus.  Symantec's corporate product isn't
all that annoying.  I haven't seen their Norton line stuff in some
years but boy it was annoying as hell last time I did.   Symantec's
engine does a decent job it seems, though. is a useful site.  They split
testing into on-demand scanning and proactive protection.  

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Todd H. /

Re: Antivirus programs for XP - best ones?

Many thanks for your views, Todd.

FYI, I was 'loaned' a copy of the Corporate Symantec product which
seemed to work flawlessly. It was just after I'd mentioned this on the
Aumha forum that 'they' became all funny with me - and shortly after
decided to ban me from their forum.

What if?  (No evidence!!) one were to visit their site to have ones
computer 'cleaned' - but, after downloading and running all manner of
software on instruction, one was pronounced 'clean' - but had, in fact,
been co-opted into a huge botnet. How would the average guy or gal know?

Always wondering! <smile>

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Re: Antivirus programs for XP - best ones?

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It's hard.  You'd have to have a baseline of network traffic and
perhaps anomalous traffic would give you a hint.  Essentially no one
has that.  

When in doubt, fdisk, format, and reinstall from original readonly

Re: Antivirus programs for XP - best ones?

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Agreed.   Totally!  :)

Consider those who have no clue, Todd.

I once thought I was sharp about 'protection' - yet I got burnt.

Many people I speak to in the real world have no clue about security
matters relating to 'computing' but, even worse, don't seem to care at

Most folk think I'm daft when I suggest that even swopping out a hard
disk for a brand new one might not 'clean' a compromised machine - I'm
still not certain about that! The Police advised me to scrap my PC after
it had been compromised. I did .......... eventually!

Thanks for discussing, Todd.


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