How to protect your PC
In order to enjoy your games, your PC needs to be in top condition and that means keeping bad programs away from it.
- Use a web browser other than Microsoft Internet Explorer. I am not going into the "who is more secure" debate because hackers target whoever is "on top" and that is the IE browser. I personally use Firefox because I am a web developer and really like the custom extensions available.
- Use a hardware firewall if you can afford one.
- Even if you have a hardware firewall, use a software firewall. (use only one)
- Use an Anti-Virus software and keep it updated. (install only one)
- Comodo Antivirus (FREE, no restrictions)
- Avast! Home Edition (FREE for home use)
- Avira Antivir (FREE for home use, crippleware)
- AVG Anti-Virus FREE Edition (FREE for home use)
- Clamwin (FREE, does not have real-time scanner...manual scans only)
- Microsoft Security Essentials (FREE)
- Panda Cloud Antivirus (FREE for Home Users)
- Immunet Protect (FREE)
- Digital Defender Antivirus (FREE)
- PC Tools AntiVirus Free (FREE)
- Use Anti-Spyware software and keep them updated.
- Comodo AntiMalware (FREE, no conditions)
- Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool (FREE)
- Malwarebytes (FREE for home use)
- Ad-aware (FREE for home use)
- Bazooka Spyware Scanner (FREE)
- Microsoft Windows Defender (FREE, requires Genuine Advantage)
- Spybot Search and Destroy (FREE)
- Spyware Blaster (FREE)
- TrendMicro HijackThis (FREE, good for reporting)
- If you use Email, use an Anti-SPAM program and keep it updated. (install only one)
- Before disaster strikes, make a bootable recovery CDROM. The Ultimate Boot CD for Windows is probably your best bet.
- Keep all your "data" files that you consider necessary (as in the event of a hard-drive failure) in one location to make backups easier, faster and thus more likely to happen. I keep mine in an organized structure under E:\MyData and use a tool called SyncBackSE (or Synkron) to copy all the files to a secondary hard drive on a nightly basis in case one hard drive goes belly up. I also have another SyncBack profile that copies the same data to an external hard drive once in a while for offsite storage.
NOTE #1: Avoid Download Managers, most, if not all, are garbage and cause more problems than they help (such as system instability).
NOTE #2: Click here for the current security analysis report that compares security suites on how well they protect your PC from various threats.