Microsoft Security Essentials fails another antivirus test

Microsoft Security Essentials has once again proven that it's not adequate for protecting a user's computer, after failing another antivirus test by scoring well below competitors' products. Dennis Technology Labs evaluated eight major antivirus programs from October to December 2012, awarding each program both a total accuracy rating and a protection rating, and in their testing they found Microsoft Security Essentials to be significantly worse than the other seven products on the test bed.

The total accuracy rating measures how a product manages to protect a system against malware, but also how it handles legitimate applications. Dennis Technology Labs awards points for stopping threats and allowing legitimate programs to be installed and run, while subtracting points when a threat fails to be stopped and when legitimate files are handled incorrectly. 

Total accuracy ratings can range from a maximum of 400 down to -1000: Microsoft Security Essentials scored a paltry 30 in this arena, while other products such as Norton Internet Security 2013 - which scored 388.5 - almost reached the maximum score. Awards are handed out for programs that perform to a decent standard, ranging from AAA to C, however Microsoft Security Essentials performed so poorly that it didn't qualify for any of the awards. All the other products gained an award, and five of them gained at least an A.

Next up was the protection ratings, which ranked a product on how it performed at handling malware only. Here points were awarded for neutralizing and defending against malware, while points were removed if a threat managed to run on a system; the best attainable score here was 300 and the worst was -500. Microsoft Security Essentials scored -70, the only program to score negatively, while most other programs scored between 250 and 300.

When looking more closely at the data given, it turns out MSE only protected against 59% of the sample range of threats, while the average was 92% protection and Trend Micro Internet Security 2013 managed a perfect score of 100% protection. On the positive side, Microsoft Security Essentials did not report any false positives during testing, the only product aside from Kaspersky Internet Security 2012 that managed this feat.

It should be noted here that MSE was the only free anti-malware solution tested, but even so it goes to show how inadequate Microsoft's product is against a proper paid anti-virus application. If you were going only by Dennis Technology Labs' tests, you should replace MSE with either Norton Internet Security 2013, ESET Smart Security 5 or Kaspersky Internet Security 2013, which were the top three best performing programs.

Source: Dennis Technology Labs (PDF) via: PCMag

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That sounds right... When I had MSE, I always thought my computer was safe because I had no security warning at all but my computer was kind of slow and I thought it was MSE. After reading tests results of AV softwares conducted by independent virus labs. I decided to delete it and installed Kaspersky. I was shocked... My computer was infected... Well the USB I gave to my friend was infected actually which spread the virus to my computer... Kaspersky fixed the issue and my computer got faster again. I'm using Webroot now and I'm really happy with it. I don't trust MSE anymore. They need to work harder if they want to be in the game in AV industry.

it's great these tests are fleshing out the dud that MSE really is. give those lazy bums at microsoft some work to do.

not surprised, its free we cant expect improvement. Hoepfully things will change sooner. Right now avast and bitdefender free seems to be a worthy replacement. For those who pay eset nod32 version 6 its improved a lot over the past version since 3 have been a mess

Microsoft seems to have lost their focus. It is clear that the Windows-8 and Surface debacles are sucking up way too many resources that should have been spent on keeping Security Essentials more comparable to other anti-virus/malware applications. Pity, that what was an excellent application seems to have been allowed to wither.

> On the positive side, Microsoft Security Essentials did not report any false positives during testing, the only product aside from Kaspersky Internet Security 2012 that managed this feat

For me, that's the key right there. Based on my usage and browsing habits, I'm much more likely to encounter false positives with another AV, than get infected because MSE let something in that others wouldn't. I've had other anti-virus software silently delete files, and not realize it until I happened to check its history--that's much worse IMO.

I find it funny also that they'd bring up Kaspersky in the same sentence. My employer used it years ago--and dropped it when it kept messing up with everybody's install of Visual Studio.

Personally, I don't need an uber-paranoid anti-virus, but then I'll concede some people *do*.

I don't care, MSE works fine for me for years. I think I'm better with it than with another oil factory fashioned software getting my PC hard to start.

I'm not buying any of it. MSSE is enough and much lighter and better than all the AV crapware out there. and as MFST has indicated, these tests can be made to show anything.

Yeah!!! I believe you so much!!! Who paid for this Investigation? Coalition of Antivirus vendors? Im so sick of false porsitives I got with Norton (dont mentioned the CPU usage of it)

MSE is supposed to work WITH smartscreen, windows defender, windows firewall, regular windows update etc. Using it alone will obviously not work. Idiots.

Hello,

Dennis Technology Labs has been reviewing anti-malware software for a while, and they are quite well-known and respected in the anti-malware community and they are a member of the Anti Malware Testing Standards Organization (AMTSO).

The Dennis Technologies Lab reports are a good read, regardless of what you think about the products being tested because they provide very detailed information about how they test the software and how they weight the results of those tests, which is something not all testers put into their reports.

I would strongly recommend reading the tests just for this, if nothing else.

Regards,

Aryeh Goretsky

P.S. I work for a company whose product was tested in one of these tests, so please take that bias into account when considering my comments.

FloatingFatMan said,
The only thing that surprises me here, is that anyone is bothering to listen to company that rates Norton's AV at the top.

It's amazing what throwing a bit of money at a survey company can achieve.

I could be coding a virus program using vb.net/c++/c# etc. But in the end is all about who does the best. I think that MSE have fallen to bad. If you caught the actual virus, the virus will block MSE for sure. Even Maleware Bytes!

Kenny Kanashimi Chu said,
I could be coding a virus program using vb.net/c++/c# etc. But in the end is all about who does the best. I think that MSE have fallen to bad. If you caught the actual virus, the virus will block MSE for sure. Even Maleware Bytes!

Just as will block every other AV app....what's your point?

how the hell can macaffee score better then MSE? mcaffee couldn't catch the murderer if he went straight to the police dept. and dragged the body there and screamed 'I MURDERED HIM!!!'

How is a report that's created 7 months ago (before the introduction of MSSE 4.1) relevant now?

By the way, am I the only one that noticed this: "Dennis Technology Labs - Sponsored by Symantec"?

I think some companies are very angry MSSE is such a popular thing and now tries to kill it whit this kind of reports.

Edited by Studio384, Feb 8 2013, 6:20am :

it make me laugh about this. they are biggest liar! they cause computer slowest at start up since Windows XP, Vista, 7 and now 8. MSE is still best program at start up when computer turn on.

This is how you effectively use Microsoft Security Essentials (well, this is how I use it on the 70 assigned government computers running Windows XP Professional SP3):

- Daily user - Restricted User Privilege
- Windows Steady State - (Can access C:\ or save to the Local Disk) must use their thumb drive
- Group Policy - disable auto-play, can run only approved programs
- secpol.msc - cannot execute .exe files on thumb drives
- Microsoft Security Essentials (updated daily).

Some of these same approaches to security can apply to even average users. What my point proves though, security is more than just the Antivirus, its the overall approach to computing. Of course, if you go to certain websites: download torrents etc, you continually put yourself at risk.

Shame Zonealarm wasn't in those ratings, I freely admit it is a hated program, but as it is the one I use, I would have like to have seen how it faired...

Dushmany said,
Shame Zonealarm wasn't in those ratings, I freely admit it is a hated program, but as it is the one I use, I would have like to have seen how it faired...

Zonealarm are more like firewall sort of thing!

It's just a change in quality. You should try to get used to it, and you will eventually. You are just afraid of change.

Use MSE on lots of machines and VMs (over 100), have been for a couple of years, never any issues. Same goes with the many dozen of non tech savvy people that I have recommended MSE to. So all I can say is experience tells me there is something fishy with these tests.

Furthermore, every time I come across a PC or Server with Symantec or McAfee for example, they are so slow that it's almost like the Anti-Virus is behaving like a virus, to the point where I don't trust them in daily operations.

These companies have so much money riding on the existence of viruses and scare tactics that I would not be surprised one bit if they are not the ones indirectly funding virus programmers.

So, who would you trust, the one that has everything to gain by protecting you, or the one that has everything to gain by infecting you ?

THIS is the parent company of "Dennis Technology Labs": http://www.dennis.co.uk/

They're a aggregated magazine publishing house. A significant business for such outfits is to offer custom publishing services to corporations for PR and marketing purposes. This can take the form of magazines or Web sites that contain paid editorial content that is favorable to the corporation's products.

It would not surprise me in the least to find that "Dennis Technology Labs" latest A/V testing is such a sponsored effort.

Tim, I think you would be doing your blog a favor by actually checking out this possibility.

So? How is that a guarantee? Just because a competitor to everyone tested and was not included in the tests says so? I've read several of their "reports". They are not specific on how they conduct the tests. Simply agreeing with some philosophy about how to test, does not mean you actually followed it. And the report certainly doesn't give enough information to discern if the testing method is valid.

Scorpus said,
I guarantee you it's not, check out what Sophos has to say: http://nakedsecurity.sophos.co...s-the-right-way-to-do-them/

Actually Tim, I think you've been Scroogled. Perhaps you should read this:

http://www.rocketnews.com/2013...ut-on-questionable-av-test/

Here's an excerpt from the post:

"Back in 2009, the folks behind Avast! did some digging of their own and discovered that DTL might not be the best source for reliable test data. Back then, the lab had just opened for business and published a comparative that lauded Symantec's antivirus protection above all others and downplayed its faults. The sponsor of that test? Symantec, of course. CEO Vince Steckler (a former Symantec man) told me that ever since he blogged about these concerns on the company website, Avast has been shut out of DTL's testing. It's a curious omission considering Avast! is in use on nearly 200 million computers worldwide.

This time the story is a little different. DTL's documentation notes that this particular test wasn't sponsored, but the setup seems to have put MSE at a disadvantage. Security Essentials was designed to work in concert with Windows' own built-in security measures. It works best on more current releases like Windows 7 and Windows 8, but the DTL test used systems running Windows XP Pro with Service Pack 3 and Internet Explorer 7. No additional updates were pushed to the systems. Microsoft has, of course, pushed loads of updates since Sp3 was released..."

Do you really think testing MSE on an *unpatched* XP SP3 system is fair to Microsoft when MSE (now Defender) is integrated into Windows in a deep and interdependent manner?

Also, doesn't MSE get it's updates through Windows Update? If so, wouldn't freezing patches/updates at SP3 effectively neuter MSE?

GoogolPlex said,
Also, doesn't MSE get it's updates through Windows Update? If so, wouldn't freezing patches/updates at SP3 effectively neuter MSE?
Normal, no, it won't, but they stated they didn't update the machine with Windows Update, so MSE on that machine was indeed out-dated.

Silversee said,
Do you really think testing MSE on an *unpatched* XP SP3 system is fair to Microsoft when MSE (now Defender) is integrated into Windows in a deep and interdependent manner?

DTL explains in their report why they used XP SP3. A good security suite would work and protect any platform, and they chose to use the most vulnerable they could find on purpose.

Regardless, AV-Test has shown that MSE is ineffective even on a more recent operating system such as Windows 7, so it's definitely believable that its worse on an older one.

Scorpus said,

DTL explains in their report why they used XP SP3. A good security suite would work and protect any platform, and they chose to use the most vulnerable they could find on purpose.

Regardless, AV-Test has shown that MSE is ineffective even on a more recent operating system such as Windows 7, so it's definitely believable that its worse on an older one.


So you want Microsoft to update XP by backporting new technologies from the NT6 line?
Would be fun if MS would implement UAC in XP, the new and improved/changed user/system space in the NT kernel And the dozens of other new security features.
All what will be left to backport is the new DWM and your XP will be a Windows 8.
If its about _all_ platforms as you put it, why not include OSX? Grab Ubuntu with it, Android, iOS, WP...

After reading this, clearly a biased result. Should've put it in the topic how these tests where done. As its well known MSE performs poorly on XP and especially if its outdated. (MSE does not include virus definitions that security updates have patched, unlike the other AV's often do)

Shadowzz said,
After reading this, clearly a biased result. Should've put it in the topic how these tests where done. As its well known MSE performs poorly on XP and especially if its outdated. (MSE does not include virus definitions that security updates have patched, unlike the other AV's often do)

So hang on, a good anti-virus software should ONLY work correctly on a fully updated system? Well that's a laugh. It should work on all OSes still supported by Microsoft, and download any necessary definitions to protect the system.

Windows XP is three versions old, no longer receives mainstream patch support, and has been surpassed in market share by Windows 7. XP is no longer an accurate representation of the average user's system.

Patching isn't even the issue; a Windows 7 SP1 clean install is inherently more secure than a Windows XP SP3 clean install, even if neither has any updates. Windows 8 is better yet since SmartScreen runs at the system level. Many samples that infect on XP will fail on Vista/7/8 due to various OS-level improvements independent of any running security product.

Any group wanting to be taken seriously run their tests on Windows 7. This is isn't a matter of opinion.

Scorpus said,

So hang on, a good anti-virus software should ONLY work correctly on a fully updated system? Well that's a laugh. It should work on all OSes still supported by Microsoft, and download any necessary definitions to protect the system.


Yes if your bothered enough to keep your AV up to date, why not the OS itself? If you care even slightly about security, why run the internets with an outdated POS machine and ONLY rely on the AV software to protect you?
MSE is not advertised as a full featured security suit. It is only anti-virus. It does not fix holes in the OS it runs on like the other AV's/security suits do. It also relies on other security features in the OS (be it natively, or 3rd party).

For a fair comparison if its about your "it has to run on all OS's" where are the results for Vista, 7 and 8? These are all still supported OS's.

Studio384 said,
Normal, no, it won't, but they stated they didn't update the machine with Windows Update, so MSE on that machine was indeed out-dated.

I think MSE gets definitions through WU and also through it's own interface, manually, if you push a button.

Scorpus said,

DTL explains in their report why they used XP SP3. A good security suite would work and protect any platform, and they chose to use the most vulnerable they could find on purpose.

Regardless, AV-Test has shown that MSE is ineffective even on a more recent operating system such as Windows 7, so it's definitely believable that its worse on an older one.

Also there are a lot of machines that are not regularly updated that run a vast array of security suites or antiviruses. Those are locked down enterprise machines. And in that case i think the security microsoft provides (more complex than MSE) performs comparatively with Norton Endpoint Protection and all the other competitors.

Edited by LauRoman, Feb 8 2013, 2:12pm :

No matter what, those 'test' by 'some' tech lab seems like a paid test/propaganda to me.

MSE been protecting all 5 PCs in my home for the past few years and its doing a great job so far, unlike some AV out there that keeps trying to kill my Windows every time it starts.

BTW, Norton came first place? Please ...

Norton first? lol.

It's a resource hog, and every time there's an alert it looks like an apocalypse is happening. I don't want to see it again on my PC. I can't talk about other AV solutions as I didn't tried any except MSE. Never had a problem with it on nearly three years unless I wanted to.

I agree common sense is the best antivirus in the world.

iNoPhone said,
Norton first? lol.

It's a resource hog, and every time there's an alert it looks like an apocalypse is happening. I don't want to see it again on my PC.

You should come out from under that rock some day, the world has changed.

Actually, it still is incredibly bloated. The other day I was uninstalling a Norton trial together with some crapware preinstalled on a friend's laptop and I couldn't believe how long it took to uninstall (it had a 3rd gen i7 processor). Of course I installed MSE after that.

I'll give you that it takes a lot of space on the drive, but a resource hog it is not. It's the lightest out of the big 3.

Edited by Luc2k, Feb 8 2013, 10:04am :

Funny...hey MS, worry about your own issues before blasting others. I used to use MSE and it was fine but I still use other programs here and there to scan my system.

Really, since I've been using MSE, I haven't had any virus for years. I don't surf places I do not know and I also use WOT (Web of Trust) - it helps me to recognize suspicious places. With some common sense and MSE, My computers have been virus free. However, for my netbook (eee 1000HA) I use Panda Cloud AV - since it is much much lighter than MSE.

This paid ad brought to you by, Norton and the remaining companies struggling to stay relevant in a world where free AV is just as good as paid AV.

Anyone who reads this and thinks its not skewed by these companies is out of their mind. OF COURSE they are going to make their products look better than the FREE ALTERNATIVE. Give me a break.

Come to think of it, maybe ill just make a website called "kevin teknologie labbs" and write a bogus article like this so I can get featured on neowin.com too.

I suspect MSE must be putting a pretty big dent in the AV market. It seems that we are getting endless "tests" that seem to find MSE failing epically.

I work in IT, so my job is pretty much removal of malware nowadays. My company uses Symantec Endpoint Protection (same engine as Norton AV). I run Microsoft Endpoint Protection because it's included in our Enterprise Agreement and because SEP greatly reduces performance and likes to mucky-muck with the networking stack (and patch the kernel in XP...a big no-no). I also have a system running NOD32 as an alternative scanner. When I remove malware from machines protected with SEP (Norton AV), I upload the file(s) and check VirusTotal. Almost always, both NOD32 and MEP detect the threat, obviously since I'm removing an infection, SEP does not detect it. I'll hold on to the file(s) tested and check a week later. SEP still doesn't detect.

I believe MSE is doing a good job and all these tests are wrong and mainly propaganda. Interesting how the testing procedures are long-winded and vague or non-existent when reading the details of these reports. Also interesting, Norton seems to win most of the time.

I have a hard time believing that MSE did so poorly in those test. I have been using it since vista and havent had any problems at all. I actually dumped NOD32 at the time because i wanted something lite that did a decent job. MSE has been doing fine ever since.

Smell a little fishy to me....

If you're not remotely retarded on the Internet, you won't get any virus or malware.. But the reality is not that

I tried MSE when it first appeared, POS so removed, then when it started brainwashing everyone I tried it again, still a POS, didn't need a graph to tell me that but backs up what I already knew, I just have no idea why so many people started worshipping and defending it all of a sudden.

Detection said,
I tried MSE when it first appeared, POS so removed, then when it started brainwashing everyone I tried it again, still a POS, didn't need a graph to tell me that but backs up what I already knew, I just have no idea why so many people started worshipping and defending it all of a sudden.

Because it's not bad? It does exactly what's intended to do. Nothing more, nothing less, and it doesn't try to do everything like these stupid so called security suites, that just do more harm than good.

Personally I don't believe any of that. Doesn't even make sense.
If MSE were as useless as the results state, then why would Microsoft even bother with it?
And like someone else mentioned, in all the years I've used MSE, I've never gotten a virus either.
Sounds like it's something made up just so people will actually pay for those other programs
To me, Norton itself is a virus. Also the only time I got a virus is when I had Norton running.

I think the antivirus software industry is butthurt because MSE has become the most used antivirus in north America and second in the world.

I wouldn't be shocked if some of these AV companies are paying for these studies. I certainly haven't heard of Dennis Technology Labs .

In fact if you do a whois on dennistechnologylabs.com you'll see that the site was created shortly after Microsoft Security Essentials was released.

The second graph looks like MSE actually harms you because it has a negative rating. How does that work?

If you head to the PDF you'll see that you get up to +3 for preventing malware from being installed but -5 for failing to protect

Wasnt this software highly regarded and performed quite well throughout most of last year? Seems like in the last few months its really slipped

Or....it's still fine and these "tests" are deliberately created to perform poorly within MSE. I wonder if Norton or one of the other pay-for AV companies paid for this study

nekkidtruth said,
these 'tests' are deliberately created to perform poorly within MSE. I wonder if Norton or one of the other pay-for AV companies paid for this study

if that true, and somehow the 'test' mechanics were leaked to some virus makers,
this will trully makes MSE ineffective in the wild.

Agreed, until recently it was considered one of the good ones. There doesn't seem to be an explanation for the drop off, other than the testing methods have changed.

Personally, i don't care what anyone says, i'll never run Norton on any computer i control ever again.

lkernan said,
Agreed, until recently it was considered one of the good ones. There doesn't seem to be an explanation for the drop off, other than the testing methods have changed.

Alternatively, everyone else improved their products, attacks got tougher, while MSE stayed unchanged

nekkidtruth said,
Or....it's still fine and these "tests" are deliberately created to perform poorly within MSE. I wonder if Norton or one of the other pay-for AV companies paid for this study

I'm inclined to believe this mostly because NIS interferes with so many things. I can't compile anything in Visual Studio without it flagging half of the stuff and this was building Mozilla Firefox nightly code. They have generic codes that reflect what "might" be an infection and automatically delete it without confirming with you if it really is an infection or not. In one case it wouldn't even allow me to restore a perfectly clean file. The reputation bit is a joke. I had shut that off but it still is too much of an issue to use reliably.

shinji257 said,

I'm inclined to believe this mostly because NIS interferes with so many things. I can't compile anything in Visual Studio without it flagging half of the stuff and this was building Mozilla Firefox nightly code. They have generic codes that reflect what "might" be an infection and automatically delete it without confirming with you if it really is an infection or not. In one case it wouldn't even allow me to restore a perfectly clean file. The reputation bit is a joke. I had shut that off but it still is too much of an issue to use reliably.


Or developers should follow coding guidelines, your using an example from Mozilla... a company known that through its entire history of existance can drink Microsofts blood and does as much as possible to put MS in a dark shadow.

Their code is entirely open source. If you think you can do better you are always welcome to provide your input, patch up the code to improve it, and submit then for review. I compiled the application from source and there is no reason for a scanner to flag freshly compiled code that is perfectly valid and not malicious in any way. It should not flag based on generic "heuristics" that may or may not be valid in any condition or default to high risk and result in deletion of key files. Worse case scenario it should flag them for review but not actually do anything with the files until the end user can specify otherwise.

Yes new files are not going to have a reputation because they were just compiled.

P.S. - I also had it flag graphics drivers that had not even finished downloading too...

BTW the files were getting flagged as Suspicious.Cloud.7 which is a flag because it thinks that it is suspicious but doesn't seem to have any basis. Somehow the flag automatically marks the file as high risk and deletes it without allowing the end user to refute it.

They also have WS.Reputation.1 which all new files are automatically marked as since they have not had time to gain reputation. This hurts everyone. Yes you can disable it but it shouldn't be there in the first place. This one also automatically gives a high risk flag and an automatic delete. They need to design real heuristics.

Scorpus said,
I don't think anyone is shocked here, MSE performs poorly against basically all antivirus software, paid or free

So you published this story to support your opinion?

What? Now that's jumping to conclusions. I published this to inform people of a recent report, and I left my opinion out of the article as one does when reporting news. Find me a recent report backed by statistics saying that MSE performs well and I'll be happy to publish it.

Scorpus said,
What? Now that's jumping to conclusions. I published this to inform people of a recent report, and I left my opinion out of the article as one does when reporting news. Find me a recent report backed by statistics saying that MSE performs well and I'll be happy to publish it.

Perhaps you try finding a test done that where the comparisions are done among products that are all doing the same thing. MSE doesn't have half the functionaility that these full suites have, so it's obviously not going to do as well.

It doesn't matter if it doesn't have the same functionality, a good security suite would have all the necessary features to protect against threats in the real world and in tests like this.

SharpGreen said,

Perhaps you try finding a test done that where the comparisions are done among products that are all doing the same thing. MSE doesn't have half the functionaility that these full suites have, so it's obviously not going to do as well.


MSE is dependent of other build in security functionality of Windows.
Turn of UAC and MSE will be allot less effective, disable your firewall also punches holes in the MSE defenses.
Wouldn't surprise me if these numbers where legit... they did disable other windows security functions.

Scorpus said,
It doesn't matter if it doesn't have the same functionality, a good security suite would have all the necessary features to protect against threats in the real world and in tests like this.

Except MSE is NOT a security suite, its an antivirus program.... Thats all.....

It relies on Windows Firewall or another 3rd party one.
It relies on SmartScreen filter or another form of web protection.
It doesn't scan emails.
It needs UAC enabled to be effective.
Its not a paid program.

Therefore this article is pure bull****.... but hey... its neowin.

Again it doesn't matter. Microsoft could add those features in, but they haven't and it leaves computers vulnerable while still giving the user the illusion of protection

Scorpus said,
Again it doesn't matter. Microsoft could add those features in, but they haven't and it leaves computers vulnerable while still giving the user the illusion of protection

Why should MS add those features in? It comes NATIVELY with the OS MSE is designed for...
It is just a virusscanner enhancement for Windows 7/vista/XP, it comes default with Win8 now under Windows Defender.
Why dont they take Windows Defender on a fully updated Win8 machine into the statistics? Or even MSE on a fully updated Windows 7.
Why specifically for an OS that is close to retirement? An OS even MS wants to get rid of.

Scorpus said,
Again it doesn't matter. Microsoft could add those features in, but they haven't and it leaves computers vulnerable while still giving the user the illusion of protection

It most certainly does matter. Windows has a alot of the crap builin that these so called "security suites" have, so why does MSE need them as well?

Scorpus said,
Again it doesn't matter. Microsoft could add those features in, but they haven't and it leaves computers vulnerable while still giving the user the illusion of protection

Woops I thought you were smarter than that, oh well.

Did you know on a default fresh installation of win7/8 windows it has windows firewall enabled, it has smartscreen filter on ie, it has uac enabled and on win8 it had the renamed MSE builtin (windows defender in case you didn't know).

all those things are the core items that make windows rock solid, when you learn more about windows you will realise why MSE doesn't need to be anything more than just a antivirus.

My school uses Old XP Computers with Pentium 4 and have Security Essentials Running on them but because we use a central server (extremely slow 4 minutes boot time for each PC) it can't clean the virus so it always pops up a virus is detected and when you click the X the window streaks behind (horrible graphics of XP) and takes forever to close But MSE is extremely useful on Windows 7

the problem is the so-called MS Antivirus was stuff they buy from another source.
MS never tries to design their own antivirus from scratch.

heck even during the DOS era, the engine for MS-AV was bought from CentralPoint AntiVirus.

Torolol said,
the problem is the so-called MS Antivirus was stuff they buy from another source.
MS never tries to design their own antivirus from scratch.

Interesting, do you have a source for this? Genuinely curious

Torolol said,
the problem is the so-called MS Antivirus was stuff they buy from another source.
MS never tries to design their own antivirus from scratch.

heck even during the DOS era, the engine for MS-AV was bought from CentralPoint AntiVirus.


Whats your point?
MS has basically gotten DOS from IBM
Hotmail is bought
IE was originally Mosaic.

It happens, every major company often just buys in technology instead of developing it themselfs.

Shadowzz said,

MS has basically gotten DOS from IBM

Umm, no. Microsoft sold MS-DOS to IBM, they bought it from Seattle Computer Products when it was called QDOS.

Shadowzz said,

MS-DOS != DOS

IBM-DOS, or just DOS, is MS-DOS. Microsoft sold it to IBM under license, IBM changed the name. It's still the same product that MS sold to IBM though.

Learn your history.

This makes me laugh. I've been using MSE since it's inception and never had any issues. Of course, I'm definitely more savvy than the average user so I know what should/shouldn't be downloaded/installed/whatever, but this graph makes it seem like MSE does zero to protect you. Directly contradicts my experiences over the last few years that MSE has been around.

Torolol said,
me thinks, it was your own savvy-ness & wisdom that protects you, not the MSE

Ok...and how about the several family members and friends whom I've setup with MSE as their main defense and my not having to clean their machines off every 5 mins? Those people are not savvy by any means. Their machines are perfectly fine? I call B.S. These tests are clearly very specific in nature.

nekkidtruth said,

Ok...and how about the several family members and friends whom I've setup with MSE as their main defense and my not having to clean their machines off every 5 mins? Those people are not savvy by any means. Their machines are perfectly fine? I call B.S. These tests are clearly very specific in nature.


They're not fine! Eventually when they caught up with virus, then they have hard time scanning and remove the actual virus, because virus have blocked the program.

Except, they are fine. Because I'm not foolish enough to believe that MSE is the ONLY tool available. All my machines including theirs are scanned on a semi-regular basis with other tools. This isn't a case of ignorance produced by the fact I "believe" I'm safe because I run MSE. This is real life experience where I use and have been using it long enough (coupled with other scans) to know that studies such as these, are used by paid-for AV companies attempting to make some new customers.

No one has. It's surely a front for the commercial anti-virus companies...

Given that, MSE has slipped terribly in the last 24 months and they has better get their game back quickly.

syobon999 said,
Good luck with your Common Sense against Drive-by downloads, exploits and network worms.

None of which affect systems that are up to date, don't run Java or other insecure plugins and have a firewall enabled? Oh wait there's that common sense thing again!

The_Decryptor said,
How do you know which web facing things are insecure until they're hacked? Flash has had exploits, your browser most certainly has, etc.

So? Thank god for IE's sandboxing. Took them 1,5 years to break through IE8's sandboxing, around 7 months before IE9's sandboxing was broken and IE10's sandboxing is still unchallenged (earlier exploit did NOT work on IE10 modern).
Whereas for comparison, Chrome's sandboxing continiously gets broken and needs constant updates to stay ahead. IE does one security update and the fences stay up for months.
Smartscreen stops allot, so does inprivate mode and if i really dont trust a site, i open it in modern IE10. Knowing that even IF my browser gets compromised, my system will not.

syobon999 said,
Good luck with your Common Sense against Drive-by downloads, exploits and network worms.

IE10 Enhanced protected mode. Bring them on. /care

The_Decryptor said,
How do you know which web facing things are insecure until they're hacked? Flash has had exploits, your browser most certainly has, etc.

I don't have any magical foreknowledge if that's what you're asking, but I don't have to. Most sites have a reputation for a reason, and I'm not going to every other (or any) site offering things illegally so there's really little to worry about.

And Flash is actually pretty damn secure if you keep it up to date.

The only 'viruses' I've had in many years were false positives from other AV vendors.

It's a matter of time. Microsoft will eventually work it out and eventually surpass everyone again. Their Forefront line of products is at stake here, and making MSE comply with all those test will be the best direction for Microsoft to take.

warwagon said,
LOL. Sounds about right.

And really if you think about it you get it for free for life, it's updated regularly, does an "OK" job but at the end of the day if you're really serious about protecting your computer you wont be using MSE.

warwagon said,
LOL. Sounds about right.

Seriously, AVG is there?!? That thing didn't protect my cousin's laptop, so full of viruses, and AVG ain't doing good.

Order_66 said,

And really if you think about it you get it for free for life, it's updated regularly, does an "OK" job but at the end of the day if you're really serious about protecting your computer you wont be using MSE.


Since MSE was released i've been using it on Windows 7 and now on Windows 8. I personally had no issues with MSE so far. Even using my backup trend micro every once in a while, everything is clean.
Everytime it thinks there is a false positive and i allow it, it turns out to be bad Where my experience with other AV's is that there are more false positives then anything else.

And MSE scoring so low... something is odd. I know AV's differ from time to time and the top 5-10 is never stable for long periods. Really doubt MS dropped the ball so hard on this.

thenonhacker said,

Seriously, AVG is there?!? That thing didn't protect my cousin's laptop, so full of viruses, and AVG ain't doing good.


AVG is so bloated and buggy these days, I wouldn't touch it even if it had amazing detection rates.