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Windows 7: MS Security Essentials

26 Jan 2015   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
MS Security Essentials

I have read a few articles that MSE is not as good as it was a few years ago. I have not had any problems but was wondering if any of you have switched to a different product, Thanks,

My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #2

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64

If you look at this thread by A Guy, the report shows MSE now gets a "0 rating for protection"
Which Antivirus Offers the Best Protection? AV-Test Reports

I have several systems, and right now my favorite is Panda free...
I currently use ONE OF Panda, Avast, MSE, or WD for real-time AV.
I use only 1 AV per system, i like to try different AVs, so i give them a test drive on a test system ...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #3

Win7 & Win8 64bit

Hi there,

In addition, I like experimenting different AV products as well. I've installed Avast, Avira, AVG and Panda - all are free and great Anti-Virus products for home/personal use. If you'd like the paid version, I like Eset then second choice is McAfee.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

26 Jan 2015   #4

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64

Maybe the first question should be does a person want a paid or free solution ?
I've seen many people use the "default OEM trial" product, and then never pay up for continued protection, or get something else ...
There is no one product or answer that fits all ...

I try different products and tools so i can learn.
I read the advice and suggestions here so i can learn.

For folks i personally help, i suggest an AV based on
  • my personal experience with the product
  • their financial situation (what can they afford)
  • their "geekiness" (willing to learn something different)
  • their "geekiness" (able to accept and understand popup messages)
  • their PC use habits - how secure conscious are they
  • And more ... such as grandchildren or neighbors using the PC (been burned there)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2015   #5

Windows 7 64-bit

A few days ago I had trouble extracting a zip file using 7-zip so I tried installing WinRAR. Despite un-checking every install offer, the install process installed a lot more than WinRAR! The biggest headache was a type of search engine called Vosteran. Tried an uninstall but couldn't get rid of it.

Enter Microsoft Security Essentials.

I did a full scan with MSE & found nothing! Then used the latest version of free Malwarebytes-Anti Malware & once again did a full scan. It detected 30 issues! See log. I appreciate MSE being free but how can one trust protection that doesn't protect?

Attached Thumbnails
MS Security Essentials-mse.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2015   #6

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64

Those are all PUP's and I don't think MSE scans for PUP's.
Free AVs such as Panda and Avast can scan for PUP's (optional in settings).
Are they as good/aggressive as MBAM with PUP's, I don't know.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2015   #7
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit

I tried MSE quite a while back since many computer gurus thought it was the greatest thing since indoor plumbing. I had nothing but problems with it, the worst two being were I couldn't get it to update automatically and it was letting nasties through, so I went back to Avast free. That was back before MSE starting hitting the bottom of the charts. Still, there are knowledgeable people who still swear by it (instead of at it, like I do).

Keep in mind that no one single AV or anti-malware program can catch everything. One's best bet is an arsenal of one good AV and several other compatible anti-malware programs (and practice good browsing habits). While an antimalware program like MBAM will catch many or most of what a mediocre to lousy AV lets through (such as MSE), it's still a better game plan to have the first line of defense, the AV, capable of catching as much as possible to begin with.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2015   #8

Windows 10 Pro x64

Microsoft Security Essentials doesn't really scan for, nor really catch, anything other than actual virus activity - it's not necessarily a full-on malware scanner, as it's tuned more towards detecting things like rootkits and malware that does virus-like activity (drive-by installers, etc.). One other thing to note is that MSE is not the same as Windows Defender in Windows 8 and 8.1 - Windows Defender uses the same update/scan engine, but it scans for or tries to protect from more than what MSE does. They're similar, but not the same, and while MSE is what someone using Windows 7 here would use, it's worth noting that Windows 8/8.1 does have something a little more advanced built in. AV Comparatives don't test Defender, they test MSE, and I'd guess partially because you need Windows 8/8.1 to get the advanced Windows Defender engine, whereas if you're on Windows 7 or lower you're stuck with MSE.

In general, while MSE is great at protecting a machine once clean (and it does a damned good job when used in an offline scan of an infected one), it's not perfect if you want something full-featured. Admitting that up front is the best way to approach any security product - what does it do, what does it not do, and does it do what it does well. Looking at what MSE is good at, it scores very well - Microsoft Goes From Cellar to Stellar in New Antivirus Test - but as an overall security suite, it's not very good when compared to products that do a lot more.

AV Comparatives gives MSE a relatively poor overall rating specifically because it's not a full-featured product, and when compared against those types of solutions it's most certainly not going to score well. I think some people equate that with "MSE must be bad!", when that's not exactly the case (again, it's a minimally-featured product designed to protect people who don't ever think about this, or who got that OEM trial and never updated it or paid for it, etc. - even Microsoft admits this and recommends something more thorough if you want or need it). It can be used as a primary product if you're already careful, but if someone is expecting it to behave the same as some of the more well-known and full-featured antivirus/antimalware products, then yes, there's going to be a problem (perception or otherwise).

There's nothing wrong with that, and there are lots of great products out there that are probably better overall if that's your goal. However, I find MSE + MalwareBytes + CCleaner to be good enough for me, but I don't do a whole heck of a lot with the PC either (some email, basic web browsing to specific sites, and gaming).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2015   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1

I have MSE and MalwareBytes. I don't do that much Online. A couple hours a day at the most. I was just curious if anyone had a bad experience with MSE.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2015   #10
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

I use MSE on some systems and Norton IS on others. Never had a problem with Norton but on one MSE system I needed MBAM to clean up a keylogger that MSE had not discovered.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 MS Security Essentials

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