Antivirus Software

Updating your AV software

To keep your system virus-free requires a little more effort than just installing the antivirus program once then forgetting about it. New viruses are released into the wild every day, and in recent years the propagation of worm-building kits available to malcontents over the Internet has led to an increase in the rate of virus creation. This, combined with an increase in public knowledge of security problems regularly found in major software and operating systems, has led to an even higher rate of new virus discovery. No longer does a virus have to be skillfully crafted, but slightly different viruses can be created by almost anyone and re-released into the wild. This means that in addition to the product out of the box, regular updates are required.

The good news is the vendors know this and include automatic updating tools in their new products. For the PC user, this means updating your AV is usually as simple as selecting "Update definitions" from the software menu. Some also include scheduling applications that allow background automatic updates of the virus definitions and scan engines that offer helpful reminders when definitions are out of date. A common approach is for the antivirus program to check the latest version available via the Internet and to prompt the user to press a button if their definitions need updating (as can be seen here). Updating is quick and painless and usually requires no more than clicking "Yes" a couple of times.

The bad news is that out of the box products usually only include updates for a specified time period and then require a subscription to their signatures service to continue the updates. Generally they provide a year's worth of free updates with the purchase of a commercial product but will require an ongoing annual fee to keep the definitions up to date after that time. The antivirus vendors now have teams of experts working around the globe 24/7 to respond to new viruses and charge a premium for the service. Vendors provide updates for each product version for several years until they officially end-of-life a release. Some offer updating to this year's release along with another 12 months of updates for only a few dollars more than signing up for another year of signatures.

Over the last three years the time taken to release new signatures has dropped so significantly it is reasonable to expect your antivirus package to keep you protected from any virus you come across no matter how new, as long as you always make sure to update your signatures before downloading your e-mail or running any new executables.

Bottom line: If you have IM/email integration then you won't be able to download any infected file to run.

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PC World Staff

PC World




k7 antivirus

i had regular virus problems on my pc like yours. after seeing your comment i purchased this product and used it. I am happy too.

Kevin Linden


I stongly recommend not to buy Norton Antivirus2010, I have had two serious viruses in one month. And forget the free 24/7 customer service, infact forget any customer service! You will past onto a Yogi technician in India, usually they cannot speak coherent English!
They will mess around with your computer for a bout three hours and try to charge you$139 to have a microsoft technician fix the problem. My computer was still under guarantee, so thankfully I had the presence of mind to tell them to get lost!
Hewlett Packard Helped but once again there is that fast speaking Indian Accent problem. Why do these corporations pay fortotally substandard help desk personnel in other countries? It is an insult to their customers!



Often one standalone program is not enough and many experts recommend a teired approach to malware.

I use and recommend Norton Internet Security 2010 and Counterspy. I have never had a problem with malware.
These programs offer top shelf protection. Kaspersky also is good at detecting malware but not my preferred choice.

There were some complaints regarding Norton in the past but the program has matured in recent years and is now one of the best programs available offering solid defence against internet threats. Norton also uses minimal recourses.

I am online almost 24/7 and game, chat, research and shop and never have any issues relating to malware.
I run a second on demand scanner from time to time to check
that my system is clean. And have not found any infections.
Friends that I have recommended Norton to have also been very happy with Norton Internet Security and there systems remain clean and funtioning properly.

Norton is now a great product and highly recommended.



I like Ur Briefing about Virus.
But I don't know that in which way i clear my PC from Virus.
I installed Antivrus.But no working.



id just like to say that working in IT... i think you guys need to understand that a good anti v program will tell you you have viruses. a useless one will say you've got none. 9 times outta 10 theyre lying or don't detect it... if u are regularly being told uv git a virus uv got a good anti virus.... guarenteed plug ur "infection free hdd" upto a norton internet security protected pc... norton will find somethin ur av has missed

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