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Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 2' started by jamesk, Oct 31, 2013.
Is Antivirus necessary on an SP2?
I guess that depends on what your doing with it. I haven't used an anti-virus in 5 or 6 years on any of my computers, I just watch what I'm doing
and I don't open any emails if I don't know them.
I use Avast Free Anti-Virus as a precautionary measure. Light program that is not too instrusive and with good detection rates.
Avast Free Antivirus review | PC Pro
Windows 8.1 includes the free MS antivirus Windows Defender. If you add another AV, Defender automatically disables itself.
I recommend adding MBAM Pro ($24.95) regardless of which AV you have.
jamesk. As The Toy Man has already explained, Windows Defender (which is free) comes included with Windows 8.
As I want to keep my SP2 as clean as possible (that is from unnecessary program installations) I refuse to install any third-party anti-virus solutions.
At the end of the day, the protection you receive from antivirus solutions differs from month to month. That is, one month Microsoft Defender may stop more common threats than AVG. The next month, however, AVG, or Avast!, or any other solution you can think of, might top the list.
What you have to appreciate is that new threats are developed every day. And, it's only by chance (I say chance because there's a large number of variable factors that come into whether or not a threat is discovered) that whoever is updating the databases comes across these threats to be able to improve their software.
All these companies have good and bad months.
In fact, I've stopped worrying about whether an antivirus solution will stop everything coming through (because, as I've explained above, you can never guarantee that) and instead have focused on how the solution will impact the performance of my every day use of my SP2.
Just make sure you have some protection in place and be careful what you click on.
Windows Defender unfortunately gets the lowest possible test scores on at least one comparison metric. It doesn't even count as a real antivirus at this point.
Windows does come with a firewall, which is necessary to protect against worms, but it cannot protect against outgoing transmission, which means you still need to ensure Windows doesn't get infected. Installing a 2-way firewall (there are free ones) is another bonus to have, but I personally don't.
Depending on how much low/high maintenance you can tolerate, you can go either way (with/without one) like others suggest if you're savvy and know how to use the internats, but because you asked the question, I have to recommend that you do install an antivirus. I have a Surface 2 so the malware issue is rather moot, but I don't worry about performance impact on my desktop because it's fast enough, and the only other issue I can think of for a mobile Windows device is battery life since the AV application is likely always running (you can set it up so it doesn't). I personally use Eset NOD32 since I've used it for over a decade (a bit of inertia there, yes).
I too have only used Microsoft Security Essentials/Defender for years without problem. I run all new/experimental/potentially harmful programs/websites in a virtual machine first before running it on my host machine.
@OP: Just remember that his claim about using only the absolute minimum baseline "without problem" requires doing something else in overkill, so don't worry about his scenario.
Admittedly, I'll have to apologise for referring to Windows Defender while thinking of Microsoft Security Essentials (although you'd think they were the same product).
The reports I often look at can be found here ... Dennis Technology Labs
The reports are on the right hand side ...
Personally, I'm still unlikely to install any additional security products. But, having any of the well known solutions installed on your system will most likely provide a better protection experience. Check the link above for some ideas as to what products are available.
Name Taken. I'm not certain that's the solution the OP jamesk wants ...
They actually are the 'same' now. "In Windows 8, Windows Defender replaces Microsoft Security Essentials.": Windows 8 | Security Features
That's great, but I'm looking at this from the fact that the OP asked the question in the first place. Unless he supplies more background information, I'm inferring that (1) he's not a power user, and/or (2) he may not have another full Windows machine. Power users by default already know the answer to this question, ergo we can get by without protection if we take the necessary precautions and know what we're doing. Simply by asking the question, I think he should. The only worry I'd have is not performance related but how that might impact battery life; perhaps some products have a mobile mode.
Ah! Thanks for setting me straight ...
And, I totally agree with your suggestions and your reasoning! ... (I should have applied my answer more to the individual rather than my own requirements)
I'm a big fan of Webroot. It's a 4MB install and uses a cloud engine for scanning. None of that 800MB+ bloat like Symantec.