Free Commercial-Grade Antivirus For Your New PC

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Sophos antivirusIf you've recently bought a new PC or upgraded an old one, you'll be needing security software for it. This will ensure that you stay protected from viruses and other malware.

If you're using Window 10, you have a choice. You can stick with Windows Defender, which comes free with the OS, or you can replace it with something else.

While Defender isn't the best security software in the world, it's often sufficient. Especially if you are a relatively low-risk user who doesn't tend to explore the darker reaches of the web such as torrent sites.

But for top-notch protection, you may want to consider something more powerful than Defender. If so, have a look at Sophos. Their security software is used by many of the world's largest companies and is very well respected. They don't actively sell to individual home users, which is why you may not have heard of it. But they actually give away their PC security software for free, for home non-commercial use.

To install it, just head to http://home.sophos.com to create an account. You can then install it on any or all of your computers, and you can also keep track of those machines' security status via a free online dashboard.

The installer is a 214 MB download and appears to be malware-free according to Web of Trust.

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You will want to read this first before installing Sophos Home - https://www.sophos.com/en-us/legal/sophos-group-privacy-policy.aspx#cloud

Snippets:
What personal data do we collect?

We may collect personal data such as your name, company position, address, telephone number, mobile number, fax number, email address, credit card details, age, IP address, and account usernames.

How do you use my personal data?

If you provide personal data to us, we will collect that information and use it for the purposes for which you have provided it and in accordance with this privacy policy.

Like ThirdEye I use Quihoo 360 Total Security . I started using it after a local Printing Business scanned my USB with it and picked up a bug which my (then) Microsoft Security Essentials did not detect. I also periodically run Defender as a further guard.

I agree with Geekomatic. Site staff have lots to do so and provide us with lots of guidance fo which I am very grateful..
I think XP Users should make some effort themselves to click on links to check if a non supported system can use the suggested software.

All i see WildWeasel doing is politely asking to be informed what the minimum configuration to use something is.

I have previously used Sophos Home Antivirus on my Windows 10 laptop. It is a kind of set and forget security solution. Yes it is good. I will give it 7.5 out of 10. It is indeed ideal for home users and specially for parents who want to give their children a safe and decent online experience.

Pros.
1.) Best in class web protection with lots of configuration.
2.) Good PUP detection (Thats what many say)
3.) Web dashboard with intuitive controls.
4.) Simple to install and use. But first create a account.

Cons.
1.) 280 to 300 MB idle RAM usage ( Yes you read it correct).
It has many components including its web shield or call it a web inspector.
2.) Could have provided some local controls as well.
3.) Using it some users experience slight system slowdowns and also slightly sluggish web browsing.
4.) FINALLY, THE PROTECTION OFFERED BY SOPHOS HOME OS PRETTY AVERAGE AND HAS WEAKER DETECTION RATES WHEN COMPARED TO AVIRA AND BITDEFENDER ENGINES. ITS MALWARE BLOCKING IS SORT OF GOOD TO GO BUT NOT AT ALL IMPRESSIVE. ( MY EXPERIENCE, in agreement with independent lab tests and PC mag etc.)

I believe if you can deal with some false positives which become unavoidable for a stronger proactive defense and excellent zero day protection then Qihoo 360 total security is a better choice.

Hey friends please share your thoughts in the comment section. I would like to know. What does your experience says?

Wildweaselkeeper continues to complain that Rob doesn't cater to users of obsolete operating systems. I say "continues" because Weasel has posted his beef on various Tech Support Alert software reviews over the past several months (at least). Weasel: Give it up. XP hasn't been supported for years. Neither has Win NT, Win 98, Win 3.1, or MS-DOS 5. Was Win XP a great OS? Yes it was. So what? So was DR-DOS in its time. It is STUPID to expect a contemporary software review to address OS's that are no longer supported. You want to use an old OS? Fine. Have at it. But you have to know you are on your own. Don't expect software reviewers to spend any time or resources on irrelevant issues like the one you care about.

No one is stupid for asking a question.He had a question and wants to know.
Microsoft is now getting ready to release a "lite" OS just for older hardware so his question IS valid. I am not sure why you were so angry with hime. Lots of software will list the OS they support i.e 7 / 8 / 10 for instance
If that information was available what is the harm in posting it.

The Lite OS looks interesting, but I don't see any association with Microsoft except in the use of the Microsoft and Windows names on some of the graphics and text references. The website domain is webnode, a free site provider. The previous site was a blogspot site. The contact links point to personal Facebook and Twitter accounts. The download links show "safelinking.net". The About Me, Contact Us and FAQ pages make no reference to Microsoft. Is this really a Microsoft project? It doesn't appear to me that it is.

IT IS IN THE DESIGN PHASE. You are not going to SEE a Microsoft announcement yet.It is in the works - that's all I really know about it

It is someone who is stripping down Windows and is distributing a pirated version. In the FAQ it states that to activate it you need to download an activator from the Pirate Bay.

No. Microsoft is developing a scaled down version of windows that will run on older machines and provide adequate security. It has NOT been released. It has NOT been announced. I sent a link that was to something similar and that is what got a couple in a snit.
THere is no microsoft link
If you know someone who is in Microsoft, they can give you a heads up on some projects that are still in the concept mode

How come you know about it?

"It has NOT been released. It has NOT been announced." In other words, it's a rumor.

By the way, correcting a factually incorrect or unsubstantiated assertion is not the definition of being "in a snit".

Chill your anger buddy .. it is simply not worth it

No anger here, my friend. Just trying to keep you on track.

Usually you would see some sort of corporate boilerplate talking about intellectual property rights or trademarks or something like that at the very least. And they wouldn't be using a DIY website builder to host the project. My evidence-based opinion of this Lite OS that you linked to is that it is not a Microsoft project. That's doesn't mean it's not a good project, but it's not a Microsoft project, IMO.

I did a little more searching and found that there IS a lite version of Win 10 that MS released 18 months ago for certain platforms. See this link: https://blogs.windows.com/buildingapps/2015/08/10/hello-windows-10-iot-core/#6iSlBvGZtxguDYbS.97
Notice how everything looks like official Microsoft: the web site, the logos, the professionalism?

You win. You know more about it

Yes, it is not from Microsoft. Someone seems to be doing it. It seems like the one who is developing this project is removing stuff from Windows which is not needed for normal use, so that the OS becomes lite. I think it is on the same lines of NTLite and NLite?

Will have to read more. It does look interesting.

Hi Rick,

Can you please elaborate on what the "lite" OS Microsoft is going to release is?

I have a lot of old computers and an OS with similar system requirements to XP or even a bit higher would be a great thing.

Cheers,

Paul

@Rick: First, no anger here. You read that in yourself. Second, as I stated in my original post, weasel has been on this soapbox before. Yes, lots of software do list the OS's they support, and that's a good idea. Weasel was complaining that Rob didn't specifically inquire for support of his (weasel's) favorite OS, an OS that is nearing 3 years past its support termination date. Sure, if the information is available, there is no harm in posting it. However, weasel wants Rob to spend his time obtaining that information and putting it in his review. I'm saying it is unnecessary in a December 2016 software review to deal with an app's compatibility, or lack thereof, with Win XP.

About the only good thing re: Defender is that unlike other free AV, it doesn't pop-up with continuous "upgrade" begs, which is refreshing. Thanks for the head's-up on Sophos-- will give it a try!

As far as system requirements-- yeah, in addition to all of the other stuff you do here, some need you to provide even more so they don't have to click on a link themselves, because clicking a link ("learn more") is SO much harder than writing to critique the work you've already done for them. And XP?? Seriously, at this point, a determined user of a FIFTEEN year-old OS really ought to have it down pat as far as researching your very rapidly-shrinking pool of software yourself. Good grief.

Another point is that XP is now obsolete and no longer supported by Microsoft. In this respect, although some antivirus programs still run on it, any protection will be minimal at best because the system itself is no longer updated with security patches. So, antivirus or not, XP users have in fact no security whatsoever against current threats, many of which are designed to attack these very machines. MC - Site Manager.
https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2013/08/19/microsoft-predicts-bleak-fut...
https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2016/04/11/millions-of-people-are-still...

Rob, I read a review some time ago, from someone, that suggested you provide system requirements. I have to echo that suggestion; many of us, for whatever reason, still use XP and unfortunately more and more software companies, just like Microsoft, are no longer supporting XP. That would be nice to know information, upfront, before we jump through all the hoops just to find out we can't use it.

System Requirements would be nice, especially if XP or any other OS is not supported.

Thank You!