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Ron I have avoided asking this question but your comment has sparked my interest
I have a Windows 7 Pro 64 bit and I have been using windows defender with support no longer an option
I continue to get Security Updates daily for Windows Defender
Are these updates doing anything or is MS just sending nothing ?
I use Kaspersky, partly because it's never given me a problem, and partly because it works on Android and PC so I don't have to think about it. It doesn't catch much, but I'm reasonably careful about what I get from where so mostly it doesn't have to.
"I have no idea what I did, but I'm taking full credit for it." - ThisOldTony
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I use the built in Windows defender and once a week run a scan using the free version of Malwarebytes.
I haven't had any viruses detected for a good few years now, but I think that's because the scammers have moved their efforts more towards phishing and phone call scams(you know, where "Michael" from Microsoft rings up and somehow you just know that his name is not Michael...).
“That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.”
Just in case something gets through: Leave your C: drive to Windows, installed programs that can easily be reinstalled, temporary and log file. Keep all your user data on separate disks. Reinstalling Windows from scratch, with reformatting of the drive, has become very simple nowadays (at least compared to the days when Windows was delivered on 23 floppy disks ). A utility to reinstall all you application - or rather: your selected applications - gets it all back, without all the crapware that creeps in more or less continously. Registry is cleaned up. Debris after old no longer used software disappears.
I've been fortunate and have never experinced neither ransomware nor destructive virus. I don't know which malware will attack all your disk, but I suspect that most of them go for your C: drive only. In any case: Keeping all your working files on a separate disk makes if far easier to set up a daily incremental backup, so that even if if D++ disks are attacked, they can be easily restored.
Yet, my best virus protection is not using the world'd best virus protection, but the way I use the PC. If I need a tool for a job, I never consider pirated software as an alternative to paying for an official version from a recognized vendor. When I receive dubious email offers, I delete it without opening it. When I receive email that appears to be legitimate: If the message was the slightest "unexpected", I verify all the links in the message before considering clicking it. On web pages on sites that I do not know for 100% sure to be reliable, before clicking any link, I verify that the link under the blue underlined text seems reasonable. I must admit that I am outright bored by triple X movies; I never search up that kind of stuff from any site. Of course I have switched on display of known file extensions; over the years I have seen a couple cases of files in disguise. If I am referred to some new tool, some new resource, I make a quick search on the net for other's evaluation of the resource, and if I decide to try out something, I always find the true home site of the tool; I never download anything from any site that has collected tools from all over "to give you all in one place" - you never know what has bee added.
In brief: I use my PC for a specific set of tasks. I have proper tools for those tasks. I use a recognized set of web sites as information resources.
This is probably why the last time I had a virus issue was with a boot sector virus on a 5.25" floppy.
what is an anti-virus application, just another virus. Years ago a man that had a business supporting different companies said that anti-virus programs are more trouble than they are worth. The one advantage that defender has over any other software is that it can have better hooks into the OS, so should have less harmful side effects. Personally I have only used defender for years, and it seems to do a good job. Occasionally have hit a virus that will disable defender, but nothing recently.
It was nothing personal. If that is the way it came across, I sincerely apologize.
Earlier posts were talking about being careful about what they click, verifying email links, etc. I was so wrapped up in what I was reading, I almost clicked it without thinking. That made me wonder how many other people did that too.
A modern Windows doesn't need a security suite tucked onto. I'm using the Defender (and then the usual shizz like SmartScreen) with an active brain.exe running on top of all of it. Not a single security incident since '96 (mIRC worm on Windows 98 back then).
As had been echoed by many in the replies, I simply use the built-in Windows Defender and have been since circa the Windows 7 days. It just works, stays out of the way, and has no (or very very little) noticeable impact on performance.
I have been recommending it to users for many years, and have had zero complaints from those that took my advice. I wish I could say the same for the variety of paid for AV software on the market
Like many here I had given up on other AV solutions when reviewers started saying that Windows Defender/Security was just as good as other products. However in recent months I have seen various nasties getting round Defender (notably browser home page and search re-directions) for some of my club of users (generally the most hopeless ones).
In parallel I have noted a rising wave of "extra goodies" being offered or installed by many AV products (Avast I'm looking at you!) that once combined can bring a slower computer to its knees.
In reply I have started installing the SEP stand-alone client (without network protection) which served me & my "club" so well in past years. The client appears to be free, requiring no serial number or central server - however it is not directly available for download (COUGH).
So old that I did my first coding in octal via switches on a DEC PDP 8
notably browser home page and search re-directions
Switch over to the new Chromium based Edge and set your browsing to "strict". It's amazing the number of things this blocks - to the tune of no popup blockers are needed. I bet this would also block the browser attacks because those are almost always delivered via third party cookies.
Top three third party cookie sites I've seen getting blocked since I switched in mid-May:
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