Like McAfee’s VirusScan 2006, Norton AntiVirus 2006 installed without undue agony, and a relatively swift 28-minute initial scan alerted us to all 12 of the Payload of Misfortune™ rogues. Purging unwelcome spyware guests proved to be a challenge, however, as both pieces of spyware had to be removed manually with help from the Symantec website.
NAV 2006 also monitors email attachments, keeps an eye out for spyware and unauthorized installations, and can be configured to update itself automatically, just like McAfee’s app. But NAV 2006 shows more polish and foresight than VirusScan before you even install the application. The installation disc is bootable, giving you a clean environment to start with if you’ve got a serious problem on your hands; McAfee’s VirusScan 2006, on the other hand, requires you to make rescue discs instead. And Norton’s real-time PC cop guarding our test system was far less jumpy than the one offered by VirusScan 2006, alerting us only when we had a genuine ITD (Internet transmitted disease).
AntiVirus 2006 also required fewer reboots throughout our test period, and offers browser hijack protection, a curious omission in its competitor. The clincher is that, on top of all this, Norton AntiVirus 2006 is lighter on CPU and memory usage than VirusScan.
We could have done without the Security Center, which, as in McAfee’s product, is just an advertisement for other products; and more effective removal tactics would be welcome. But hey, that’s something to look forward to in 2007.
-- Logan Decker
Month Reviewed: January 2006
+ MUGS: Bootable disc, browser hijack protection, keen eye for viruses and worms.
- THUGS: Failed to successfully remove some infections, annoying Security Center.