Security Software: McAfee Sucks

January 22nd, 2012 by Potato

I’ve long been a user of Trend Micro’s Internet Security largely because it worked without eating up an unreasonable amount of system resources, wasn’t too intrusive, and because it was cheap (just $20 a copy as a UWO student, and each license could cover 3 computers). But beyond inertia, I didn’t have any particular devotion to it.

My new laptop came with a subscription to McAfee, and I figured that would be fine: all the big anti-virus programs are pretty competitive in terms of protection offered, since it’s not an area they can afford to fall on their face over. However, the other aspects have just been terrible. A lot of restart-nagging for updates, but worse is the subscription nagging: I once every week or two it pops up asking me to renew now, even though I still have over 6 months left on my subscription! And the pop-ups don’t have little X’s in the corner to quickly dismiss them. You have to click on a drop-down menu and select close to get rid of it. I just got two renewal ads tonight, so I’m thinking of blowing it away and starting over with something else (likely Trend Micro), it’s simply inexcusable to start nagging me about renewal that far in advance.

But there are other issues too:

  • Details are buried 3-4 menu levels deep. Great McAfee, you found a trojan and saved me: but on what file? How do I know it’s not a false positive and something important is about to break?
  • It’s slow. I know full system scans can take a while and slow you down, it’s just a fact of life with antivirus. But usually there’s a bit of a trade-off: a scan will only take an hour or so, or it won’t noticeably slow you down. McAfee’s scans are taking 4+ hours, and I can barely use my computer in the meantime. That’s worse than any other antivirus I’ve used.
  • At a friend’s work a recent McAfee update appears to have upped the firewall sensitivity, and killed the network.

In short, McAfee sucks, and I’m to the point now where even for free with it already installed and running on my computer, I don’t want to use it any more.

3 Responses to “Security Software: McAfee Sucks”

  1. Netbug Says:

    Microsoft Security Essentials is the best right now if you have Windows Vista or higher.

  2. Alex C Says:

    Agreed, Microsoft’s antivirus is lean, fast, and reliable. And free!

  3. Potato Says:

    Thanks guys! The new computer is Win7, so I’ll go with that!