Virus Free For 5 Years -- Thanks Free Avira
Someone on a forum asked about trojans and viruses. I posted the following:
My 5 cents on anti-virus:
We needed a computer to act as a server in Nassau. We went to the Radio Shack. It was a Radio Shack in name only. The guy paid the franchise fee and sold whatever he wanted. He was selling a brand new Pentium knock-off complete with Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, Macromedia Director -- everything, The machine was just over $300, and with those software packages, it should have been over $2000.
I brought it back to the office, plugged it in, and every single machine on the network alarmed about spyware, trojans and viruses trying to get in. It turns out the software was crack software from China, embedded with viruses.
The machine was so virus laden, that the browser was hijacked. You couldn't physically go to many anti-virus sites. I download a virus killer onto a USB stick, and ran it from there. That gave me my browser back. But every single machine in the network was still alarming. I used a router to create a subnet to isolate the machine, and I went to work.
We had a bought copy of Norton and MacAfee. That didn't do the trick. We downloaded everything, and still couldn't get a clean machine. I removed all of the software -- Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, everything. Finally there was one free on that worked. It was the free version of Avira out of Germany. I have that on all of my machines today, and it performs wonderfully. It blocks even the most sophisticated attempts to get in.
And then on top of that, I started using Google Chrome exclusively. The infection rate went to zero.
Since I am a data privacy advocate (I quit Linked In and Facebook), I went to the free Google Chrome store and downloaded tracking cookie blockers. Some of them don't let me buy on Expedia, but when I have to use online shopping and it doesn't work, I temporarily turn them off from icons in the tool bar.
Since I have the free version of Avira, every day I get a huge pop-up with an ad from Avira. I can live with that because it lets me sleep nights. I earn my living with my computer, and I have to protect my digital assets. Speaking of which, you should go to the store, buy a cheap USB key and put your digital books on it. Then put the key in a safety deposit box or in another location other than your house.
I have been trojan and virus free for five years. Thanks Avira.