General Question

2davidc8's avatar

Is there any benefit to running more than one anti-virus product simultaneously on your PC?

Asked by 2davidc8 (4688 points ) March 22nd, 2012

By anti-virus, I’m also referring to anti-spyware, anti-malware, anti-phishing, etc. I took a look in my local computer store and noticed that there are AV software made by McAfee, Norton, Kaspersky, eset, Trend Micro, bitdefender, AVG, Panda, Malwarebytes, and after that I stopped writing down names because my eyes were going cross-eyed.

Just wondering if there is any benefit or advantage to using two or more of these at the same time. Or would they just interfere with each other and get in each other’s way? Don’t they basically do the same thing?

And btw, which of the above products do you recommend?

Thanks!

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8 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

No. They will most likely identify each other as viruses and impede each other’s functions

dappled_leaves's avatar

Multiple anti-virus – no.
Anti-virus plus anti-malware or other you’ve listed – essential.

I am currently using MSE, which despite multiple recommendations, I really dislike. I will probably switch to AVG in the near future. I use Malwarebytes on a semi-regular basis, and occasionally do an anti-spyware and/or anti-phishing scan just for the halibut.

2davidc8's avatar

@dappled_leaves So, when you run Malwarebytes, do you first turn off your MSE?

dappled_leaves's avatar

I think it’s recommended, but realistically I don’t always.

jerv's avatar

As stated above, anti-virus programs do not play nice together, but anti-spyware stuff generally isn’t an issue

One of the best antivirus programs available at any price is free; Avira . The paid version is a full security suite while the free version is antivirus only. I have only ever had one PC virus in 30 years, and I was using AVG at the time, but Avira consistently gets high marks and hadn’t let me down yet.

I run the Avira full suite, and Spybot S&D. Been running that setup for a long time, and never had an issue. They actually protect me well enough to use P2P software safely; no small feat.

john65pennington's avatar

I have three anti-virus programs installed on my pc. I am not worried with pop ups or unsolicited junk.

I figure that if one anti-virus program misses something, the other two will catch it and destroy it.

So far, so good, Just be sure to clean each one every day.

jerv's avatar

@john65pennington I am honestly surprised they don’t conflict enough to make your system run like crap. Generally, they do see each other as viruses, and things get ugly from there. The lucky ones merely waste RAM and bog their computer down a bit; the really lucky ones have all but one of the AV programs deactivate themselves. Most of the time, they get into a fight and your computer gets caught in the crossfire.

lightsourcetrickster's avatar

oh johnny boy, the bugs the bugs are calling….seriously dude, that many AVs is bad for your system. They will scrap with each other like jerv said. The idea is to keep one and make sure it’s updated, thereby eliminating the need for an entire army of AV programs. I would get rid of two of those if I were you. They are going to be a resource hog on your system.
I wouldn’t use Norton, Norton stinks. I don’t rate their customer service either having paid once (and never again) for a year’s license. Not only are they terrible, they’re also kind enough to have you pay for the license, and then charge you again if you happen to have a virus on your system that their AV hasn’t successfully picked up. So even if Norton were to be ever ‘free’ I wouldn’t touch it with a ten foot plank of anything – and I do mean anything.
Avast is good, AVG is fine, but I found it a bit of a resource hog, MSE is a definite drainer. It added forty seconds to my bootup time on my laptop (which is 3 years old and still going – so it’s not really high end) – that said, it does do a good job of picking up on stuff, but still, the waiting for loading up the logon screen alone is just mindbogglingly painful.
Spybot and Avast, are what I’d go for. I think I might just do that now whilst I think about it.

That said, there is a program called Anvisoft System Defender, which is a fairly recent offering in anti-malware. It’s so fresh out of development that it picks up a billion false positives but you can’t fault a product for thinking something is something it’s not! And..and…they do have a very good customer service support and it costs either nothing for the free variety (well duh, obviously), and there are some little extras for a small fee otherwise. It’s worth looking into I reckon.

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