Author Topic: Free Virus Scan?  (Read 1520 times)


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Free Virus Scan?
« on: October 22, 2010, 10:11:10 am »
I\'m currently trying to salvage an ancient laptop, trying to make it last to the end of the semester before the department will buy us some new ones. I uninstalled as much of the unnecessary software as possible, but it still needs to be a bit faster to be of any sort of use to me.

Can anybody recommend a free virus scan that I can download (even a 60-day trial would be fine)?

(That\'s legally free, for the record.)
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Free Virus Scan?
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2010, 10:31:38 am »
The IT guy at my job uses Avast Anti-virus on most of the computers at the school I work at.  Not the ones that are hooked into the mainframe but for the ones that the kids use in the computer lab and stuff.  He used to use AVG but just recently switched over in favor of this one.
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Free Virus Scan?
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2010, 10:50:23 am »
Brah I got 2 levels of advice for you. First, to directly answer your question, to clean up a Windows install as well as probably possible:

1. Make sure suspicious or obviously-not-what-you-want startup programs are disabled, so you prevent a lot of the spyware or trojans (which are usually .exe or .dll files with weird or scrambly names) won\'t start up on boot.

2. Go to and find a legit and highly rated Registry Clean program. Run that..

3. Not sure if these sites still offer online scans the way they did when I was working as a tech, but before you install an anti-virus program it\'s wise to try / (look for free online virus scan link somewhere) and also (look for the same kind of link). If these programs still let you, run them after booting up in "Safe Mode with Networking" so they can dig a little deeper into the system.

4. Download "Ad-Aware" and "Spybot Search & Destroy".. they both have free versions.. run them. Ad-Aware in "Safe Mode with Networking", and then Spybot Search & Destroy in normal mode (it will want to reboot and finish the scan in safe mode automatically anyway).

5. Now go get AVG Free, install that, and let it be your full-time antivirus program.


But my real advice is actually this. If you got an older computer it\'s going to crawl using Windows no matter what.

With Ubuntu 10.10, just released like last week, not only are you going to squeak out probably a good bit more performance out of your PC, but you\'re not stuck using an an operating system that\'s probably almost a decade old in your case, and isn\'t even supported by Microsoft anymore if it\'s Windows XP we\'re talking about. And newer versions of Windows (Vista, Win7) would probably be so slow they might not even be useable.

Linux is always free, and Ubuntu Linux is, in my opinion (as a part-time Linux technician and start-up Linux vender :P ) the best operating system out there for the average personal computer. You\'d be amazed just how elegant and feature packed a modern Linux distrobution is. Ubuntu, being a distrobution designed to be as feature packed and cutting-edge as most, probably takes about as much resources to run as the old Windows 2000 or maybe Windows XP, except that you\'ll be running an operating system that\'s actually updated automatically for you, like, most every day.

There is also just such a rediculous amount of quality free software available these days that paying for any software at all, unless you really are doing some kind of really specialized work in a niche I don\'t really have experience in myself. There is quality free software for pretty much everything now, though, and Linux ports for most of the free programs you\'re probably already familiar with anyway (if not something 100% compatible with that). You can download all programs for Linux and have them constantly update to newest version so easily just using one program that accesses the Ubuntu servers and other repositories... it really feels like you can get $5000.00 worth of software in like 5 minutes or less.

Anyway, that\'s what I\'d definitely do. But, I\'m the guy who just bought a quad-core 17.3" widescreen entertainment laptop last week and didn\'t even use it until I had burned Ubuntu 10.10 to a CD so I could immediately wipe Windows 7.

Last year I actually was running Windows 7 for about two weeks on a new computer, before I got a rootkit worm that totally paralyzed my system and deleted my files right under my fingertips. And yep I had it set up as securely as you can with Windows. Freakin rootkit worm was written in 1992!! So if an operating system released in 2008/2009 can\'t defend itself against a worm written in 1992... wtf?!

Anyway you\'ll never get another virus / spyware / any crap like that with Linux. Even a noobs Linux install with no extra security steps taken is just naturally locked down way more than the best Windows setup you can ever do.


If your laptop has a sort of small screen and is, like, less than 1.2ghz processor and 1gb ram or less, you might want to use the Ubuntu Netbook remix. It runs all the same software but has a more lightweight interface designed for smaller screens and use of less ram.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 10:56:38 am by bdfreetuna »
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Free Virus Scan?
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2010, 11:17:27 am »
step 6.  avoid the Pron...


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Free Virus Scan?
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2010, 03:18:27 pm »
If you are using any recent flavor of windows XP vista or 7 (I am not sure if it supports win2k) I cannot say enough great things about Microsoft Security Essentials. It is totally free, super small footprint and fast.

It is probably the 1 program that Microsoft got right. I use it on all of my personal machines. I used to use Avast, AVG, trend, etc etc etc.

but it is soo small and takes little to no resources and doesn\'t bog the PC down.
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Free Virus Scan?
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2010, 04:00:31 pm »
dont expect virus scans to cure any of your laptop speed issues. get ubuntu netbook operating system like tuna suggested and the laptop will be will be fine for internet and word processing and other  basic programs