Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Cleaning Your Computer

by: Brian LaCrette

Cleaning viruses off your computer system can be an easy process if you have the right tool. There are many fee and free programs that you can use to do this, ones that you may not even know are available to you. Many of these programs are set up so that even the most novice of computer user can use them without a probleam. Running a virus scanner will safeguard your computer, and may save you from a lot of headaches in the future.

Some of the well known virus scanners are made by Symantec (Norton), Mcaffee, and Trend Micro. Computer Manufacturers will even include a month to six months to a year of free updates with these virus scanners. Once these free updates run out, it doesnt mean that your virus scannner is not working. It means it wont be updated with the latest virus information. While it is reccommended that you have the most recent updates, having the virus scanner itself on your computer will afford you some protection. I dont recommned keeping your computer this way, but if it is your only option, as in you some how cant download one of the free virus scanners I will mention later on in this article, make sure you keep atleast this one line of protection on your computer. Norton and Mcafee sell their antivirus programs for 39.99. You get a years worth of updates with both of theses. Trendmicro bundles their antivirus package with their internet security suite. This costs $49.99, the same as the Mcafee internet security suite, but less than the Norton internet security suite at 69.99. If the information on your system is important to you, the cost is actuallty very reasonable.

There are ways you can save money on Antivirus programs. Many internet service poviders such as aol, verizon, and netscape have started to offer their customers the choice of getting virus protection from them. For instance, with verizon dsl, you can download MSN Premium, which in turn allows you to download Mcafee's virus scan for absolutely free. You simply have to make sure to sign into msn to verify your subscription once every few months. The reminder is actually very non intrusive. Netscape for an additional 3.00 a month will provide you with antivirus protection from Mcafee as well. This comes out to 36.00, so you'll save about 3.99 against buying the actual program. While this is not much, as they say, every little saving adds up over time. For AOL users, you get a free Mcafee virus scan online included with your service for no extra charge. If you're not sure if your isp offers a free virus scanner, you can check over their web site, send their representatives an email, or give them a call. For those of you signed up with the very very inexpensive isp's make sure that you're not going to be charged to call them for information. Most of them though will offer free email support.

For an abosolutely free virus scanner that any home user can get, you can check out a company named TrendMicro Housecall. While it will not reside on your computer to actively protect you from viruses, you can run the program from the internet to verify your computer is virus free, or even to remove a virus if it has not caused enough damage to your computer to stop you from using it. It is available at Another free virus scanner that you can download is AVG free edition from Grisoft. It has an in resident scanner that can actively protect you from viruses. You can download it from If you like the free version, and would like a more full featured anti virus program, Grisoft also offers a paid version to their antivirus program.

So no matter what you budget is, you can get a virus scanner from some where. You can even get the full featured clients depending on which isp you are using. The most important thing is that you have the scanner on your computer, protecting your data from harm.

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