|"Alright - let's wait & see how this offering stacks up against other free AV choices out there."|
Most AV programs are based on good engines, but that alone means nothing if the virus definition aspects are overlooked since that is where the actual protection lies. So far, MSE has surpassed my expectations. I thought I was going to try it & dump it shortly thereafter.
IMHO, it stacks up pretty darn good & can go head-to-head even with some paid AV programs out there. It comes with a highly efficient on-access scanner, the installer is less than 5MB & the footprint -- after install -- is rather conservative, which is consistent with the top free AV tools out there. It protects against trojans & scumware & it also auto-updates everyday ... I believe it runs a check for newer updates once every 8 hours. Now, as far as Jack Frost46's statement that Windows Updates must be turned on to auto for MSE to update, that isn't quite the case.
Yes, MSE does turn ON Automatic Updates, but my understanding is: MSE only does this if Automatic Updates is completely turned OFF on the applicable machine. In the event that Automatic Updates is already ON & pre-configured to any other setting, MSE will retain that setting.
Under Vista/Windows 7, I do not have a third-party firewall. I use a hardware firewall & combine that with Windows firewall & it is adequate enough when properly configured. On the XP machine, I currently have Online Armor, but have used Comodo & Kerio in the past & those are good.
Any of the three from above will do the job, Comodo will probably overdo it & lock too much & that's why I moved away from it & Kerio is good & I had it for a while too, but went with Online Armor because I liked it better as far as configuration options & the fact that it is not as overly agressive as Comodo.
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