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Microsoft Windows Anti-Spyware (beta) Software Review

Microsoft Windows Anti-Spyware (beta) Software Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: A recipe for making software that gets rid of the Spyware infesting the Operating System that draws in Spyware like a moth to a candle.
Filed under: Software Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Microsoft Jan 13 2005   Mike Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Software > Microsoft Anti-Spyware

Final Impressions and Recommendations

Overall we came away impressed with the Microsoft Windows AntiSpyware (beta) software, though we felt that some things needed improvement. This application's strong suit right now is its appealing and simple interface, coupled with the real-time protection offered by its 'agents.' This type of protection is something that the major free antispyware applications out there just aren't providing right now, and it gives a compelling reason for using this Microsoft beta product.

Spyware scanning and elimination were both simple and very user-friendly. The range of spyware/adware/malware threats detected was impressive in comparison with Ad-Aware, but very inconsistent. On our three test machines, the Microsoft Windows AntiSpyware (beta) software generally detected more infected files, but never managed to completely overlap Ad-Aware's results, in one case missing several infected files and registry settings.

This leds us to the unfortunate conclusion that a single anti-spyware product, even one as full-featured as Microsoft's new app, is still not enough to ensure your computer is fully cleaned. Whether this changes in the future will depend on the quality and frequency of Microsoft's spyware definition updates.

The SpyNet feature could be the thing that helps Microsoft's antispyware beta make up for this inconsistency in the long run though. If it works as advertised, and the user base is large enough (which it surely will be, even when the software is in beta), then the combined weight of thousands of PCs should ensure that any new spyware threat is promptly discovered and categorized ready for Microsoft to add it to the next definition file update.

Where the Microsoft beta stands head and shoulders above at least the free antispyware apps is in the area of prevention. The real-time protection agents block vulnerable system areas from being subverted by spyware, malware and browser hijacking programs, hopefully preventing most future spyware infestations. This seems like it would be very effective, especially coupled with the (we assume) frequent updates and feedback from the SpyNet community.

Visually the program is appealing, but the language and titles could use a full Microsoft spit and polish. It seems fairly obvious that Microsoft has not done much except rebrand GIANT's antispyware application for this beta release, and there are some misspellings and awkward language that should be rectified.

Deciding to integrate the antispyware technology into future versions of windows for free would be the karmically correct thing to do, and it seems that they realize this, as Bill Gates recently announced that this product would remain free to licensed windows users.  Now how about free Microsoft Antivirus?

To sum up, the Microsoft Windows AntiSpyware (beta) software (update - this software is no longer available from MSFT) shows a lot of promise, and I would encourage our PCSTATS readers to download it and give it a run through. Just don't remove your current anti-spyware program yet!

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< Previous Page © 2018 PCSTATS.com Software News»


Contents of Article: Microsoft Anti-Spyware
 Pg 1.  Microsoft Windows Anti-Spyware (beta) Software Review
 Pg 2.  Scanning Options
 Pg 3.  System Explorers
 Pg 4.  Introducing SPYNET
 Pg 5.  AntiSpyware-ing Interface
 Pg 6.  System Load During Scanning
 Pg 7.  Testing for Spyware
 Pg 8.  Ever So Lightly Infected: The AMD Office PC
 Pg 9.  Clean as a Whistle? The AMD Gaming System
 Pg 10.  — Final Impressions and Recommendations

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   11 / 18 / 2018 | 9:51PM
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