What software to have in order to protect the computer

By Igor_Kirin
Nov 7, 2005
  1. That was my question. I bought a new computer, acctually i bought the parts and i put it together. Everithing runs perfect but i do not want to connect to web cause i do not know what softeware to put on, or what combination of software in order to protect me from stuff that might hurt my comp. Any advice is more than appriciated.
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    1. Common Sense (TM)
    It is rare and hard to get, but it is definently the best thing out there. Not an option for most people unfortunately.
    2. Firewall software
    XP SP2 comes with a very basic one builtin.
    3. Antivirus software
    This should be obsoleted by #1, but it is good to play safe.
    4. Anti-spyware

    There is no point in paying money for #2 and #4. If you can find a place that sells #1, tell me too :)

    Do not use anything Norton or Symantec. Better leave out McAfee too.
  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,156   +598

    if you have broadband connection, use a router EVEN IF you only have one system. Then NAT feature is like a hardware firewall and stops direct access to
    your system. Your software can access anything upon request.
  4. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    As far as anti-virus, download AVG.
  5. Igor_Kirin

    Igor_Kirin TS Rookie Topic Starter

    what about spyware? Which one to use.
  6. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Better use the free products. If the company behind the utility is set out to make money then they probably accept bribes from spyware makers too..

    Spybot S&D and Hijackthis make a good combination.
  7. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    And, of course, Lavasoft Ad-aware SE is free.
    Check out the products at
    Their Spyware Blaster will install blocks for hundreds of known-bad web sites. And their SpywareGuard runs in the background and watches for spyware. BUT, if you have XP I'd probably say go get Microsoft's Antispyware Beta. You can download it (free) right from their home page.

    So my top choices:

    [antivirus] - free option AVG Free. For-pay, I've had good luck with Panda's stuff.
    [firewall] - best option is hardware firewall/router. Free get Zonealarm.
    [antispyware] - you need a few tools. A real-time monitor get Microsoft Antispyware. For installing site blocks and advertiser blocks, get Spywareblaster. For a general scanner (manually run) get ad-aware and spybot.

    Then if you're really paranoid, get some of these extras as well:

    1) Most important, download and use a different browser, like Mozilla Firefox or Avant.
    2) Get an anti-trojan scanner like, I don't know, I can't think of mine right now.
    3) If you have to use IE, get the Google toolbar

    Note that while there are a lot of tools to install, only TWO are actually using your resources, which is the Antivirus and Antispyware active scanner. The other tools don't stay in memory, they are either a one-time setup, or you run them yourself manually.

    Lastly, get all your critical updates and Service Packs.

  8. Igor_Kirin

    Igor_Kirin TS Rookie Topic Starter

    thanks guy's. The help provided will be suficient to protect my comp. Thank's again. :bounce:
  9. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Avant is not a different browser. It's just an IE frontend and has exactly the same vulnerabilities.

    take a look in the "What software do you use" thread to to see what other people here are using.
  10. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    now you need protected from microsoft
    try oupost our sygate firewall softwares
    and I would def. get a good router
    I have noticed running MS apps, the xp firewall, did not tell me or prompt me to stop, a MS server link to port 80
    as outpost and sygate both did ,now MS does not know what I am watching.
    I just added a sniper program to another pc and MS tried to intercept browser setup
  11. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    Avant is totally different, it just using the IE engine. The web site says this:

    "Full IE Compatibility: Avant Browser comes with all Internet Explorer functions, including Cookies, ActiveX Controls, Java Script, Real player and Macromedia Flash. IE bookmarks are automatically imported into Avant Browser."

    "No security holes: Avant Browser doesn't contain any functions or codes to help other people or programs to access your computer."

    It blocks all the same stuff as FF, whatever you want, pictures, scripts, flash, popups, java, etc.. Plus the best tabbed browsing I've ever used. I've never had a breach. Better temps cleaning, better control of what you see, and tons of cool functions, built-in search bar, mouse gestures, yadda yadda.

    Not that I'm not debating anybody's opinion, but I've used it for a long long time, on all the PCs I use regularly, and it does not pass on IE's most annoying aspects. Not at all. It does it's job very well. The main thing is that by definition it supports any page written for IE, sans the crap I don't want. And it is noticeably faster. I like their constant work and frequent updates, always making minor adjustments for speed and reliability.

    Note I'd probably use FF full time if it had better tab control, and a few Avantish features I just can't live without.


    And no, I'm not an Avant salesman, lol. It just has a very good track record with me, using it for countless hours and countless pages, on many many PCs. I have no qualms. It is most definitely not just IE with some extra tool bars. And I'll have words with anyone who says otherwise. haha, just kidding guys, but seriously. No, I'm speaking from much experience.
  12. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    That's an oxymoron :p I can't believe they actually dare to say that a browser allowing ActiveX is secure :haha:

    Avant code itself may be 100% bulletproof but since it uses the IE core libraries as its backend it possesses exactly the ame vulnerabilities as IE. Indeed the default security settings in Avant may be tighter than in IE but that does not give you security.
  13. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    Perhaps it is an oxymoron, cause AX controls are 90% of the problem with IE. But they only use the very very core of IE's rendering engine, not all the fluff IE puts in edition to the core. I know like even for Java for example, Avant does not use the same java that IE is using. I checked at Java's web site. So it obviously picks and chooses only what parts of IE it really needs.
    Again, I've used it a long time, no breaches, it works great. What else can I say?

    In retrospect, whilst AX controls are nasty little buggers, I do use a few of them regularly, which would make using FF a bad choice for me. Such as download control, FilePlanet, and a few other controls. Or perhaps it's just cause I don't browse to sites that put nasty AX's on my PC? Nevertheless, Avant has better handling of everything then IE, and doesn't inherit most of its upper level garbage. Otherwise how could it claim to be faster, if in fact is renders exactly the same? And if Avant adds even more features then IE, you'd think it would be slower? And why is Avant like 1.4MB while the full install of IE is near 20mb? Obviously because Avant uses some of IE, but still, that is a huge difference. Even smaller then FF.

    And lastly, turning off the support of Activex controls is little more then clicking Tools-Disable AX.

    Nodsu, I will make you a believer if it's the first thing I never do :)
  14. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    I used to use Avant. You will never turn me back :p

    In case of java Avant has a choice. In case of AX there is no choice - IE is the only implementation there is. And even if there was a alternative AX available it would be just as insecure unless you build a full-blown Windows sandbox around it.

    Run Avant and use some process explorer thing on avant.exe to see all the libraries it uses ;) It's all IE. Do you think it would really be possible to put anything but a graphics engine inside 1.4 MB? Take a look inside the Avant libraries and see what functions they implement.. There is no beef there. It's just the GUI and the filters.
  15. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    True, but they can still use only the parts of the API they need. Just cause they use one IE function, doesn't mean it inherits another.

    And also, there is a choice for AX. Maybe not in the old versions you used to use, but I'm looking at the option to turn it off right now.

    The force is strong with this one....I see you have a sister.....well if you won't turn, perhaps she will............
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