It seems as if we’ve been searching for the best antivirus solution for ages. The problem with older antivirus software solutions was that they were either ineffective or extremely inefficient.
You know the scenario- your antivirus product informs you that there is a virus infecting your computer, but then it has no ability to get rid of it. Or on the flip side, you get a great antivirus solution that detects and deletes viruses very effectively, but take days to finish a scan while eating up all available system resources. The end result is always the same – wasted money on useless antivirus applications.
Current technological advancements have now provided some very good antivirus software solutions that can actually scan, detect, quarantine, or delete infected files very effectively. The reliability of today’s antivirus software solutions, when it comes to threat detection and threat response, has increased significantly. The remaining task now is to judge the efficiency of these antivirus software solutions.
I’m sure all of us have experienced at least one antivirus product that scans horrendously slow, making it impossible to do anything else with our computer during the scan. Usually, it’s so bad that we end up canceling the scan all together just so that we can continue to work, rendering our antivirus protection useless. We’ve also experienced problems with very long boot times and noticeably slower internet surfing experiences due to newly installed antivirus software,.
To get a better idea of just how improved the efficiency of current antivirus software solutions can be, we’ve listed below some of the criteria for choosing the most efficient antivirus solutions available today.
On-demand scanning speed is one of the most vital factors that contribute to the efficiency of an antivirus product. Norton Antivirus tops the competition with the fastest scanning speed. Closely behind are Kaspersky and ESET NOD32. The antivirus applications that ended up in the slow category are Bitdefender, AVG, Panda, Trend Micro, and Webroot. Norton ended up in our premiere slot due to its innovation called Norton Insight. Norton Insight identifies trusted files on our computers that do not require scanning. This process is known as whitelisting. Because of this feature, the scan duration of Norton Antivirus is significantly reduced. An 85% reduction in scanning time was observed due to Norton’s Insight feature. The downside, however, is that it requires a lengthy full initial scan of the computer. After that, however, your scans will end very quickly.
When it comes to the effect on boot duration, Norton shared the top slot with Kaspersky. Both of these antivirus solutions only added 15 seconds to boot duration. Panda added 35 seconds to the average boot time. Bitdefender added more than a minute while Webroot added 90 seconds. Trend Micro more than doubled the average boot duration of our computer. After installing Vipre and CA Antivirus, the average boot time increased by a full two minutes.
For most of us who spend a lot of time surfing the net, it is very important that our antivirus has little effect on internet browsing speed. Trend Micro was reported to have no or very little effect on browsing speed. This is one of the best features that Trend Micro offers, however. Webroot, on the other hand, was reported to significantly slow down internet browsing. Installing BitDefender added 40% to browsing duration, probably due in part to its anti-phishing protection. After the installation of Kaspersky, browsing took a whopping 60% more time. Tied with McAfee, CA Antivirus more than doubled the time needed to accomplish the browser test.
The frequency of virus definition updates is also a big consideration in the efficiency of any antivirus solution. The updates must be as frequent as possible to ensure the protection of your computer from new malware. Norton also ended victorious in this category with its pulse updates which automatically download new virus definitions every 5-15 minutes. Kaspersky, Bitdefender, and Panda automatically update every hour to ensure that you are protected against the latest threats. The automatic updates usually come about every 3 hours for Trend Micro. AVG and ESET NOD32 schedule database updates four times a day and two times a day respectively. Lastly, CA Antivirus only offers full automatic updates once a day.
Based on extensive testing, we would recommend one of our top 2 reviewed products, Norton Antivirus or Eset Nod32 Antivirus, if you want both an extremely effective and efficient antivirus software solution.
Want more information on either Norton or Eset Nod, as well as all of the other antivirus software products we talk about in this article? Then be sure to read our detailed Antivirus Reviews and Compare them side by side.