Neowin Review: Symantec Norton Internet Security 2009

Back when I got my first PC, there wasn't a need for Antivirus software, malware wasn't heard of, and Spam came in a can, and could arguably be called a tasty treat. Now, you just about can't run a PC without some sort of Antivirus/spyware protection, especially if you're connected to the internet (something we'd only be able to use if we were students at the local college). Back in late 1990, Symantec released their first Antivirus software, called Norton Antivirus (from the original company name, and founder, Peter Norton). At the time, it was considered one of, if not THE best AV software out there. Given, there weren't a huge number of viruses out there, but the number was increasing every day. As more and more viruses appeared, the software required to detect them became more sophisticated, and in turn, became larger and slower. Antivirus companies added more features, which in turn made them larger, utilizing more memory, and more cycles to do their jobs. They then added features like Internet firewalls, intrusion detection, spam detection, all of which further increased their footprints. During this time, the Norton Antivirus acquired a reputation for being one of the more bloated packages out there (arguably anyway).

With the release of Norton Internet Security 2009, it appears that Symantec has put their flagship AV software on a much-needed and overdue diet, and raised the bar on Internet protection. From the cover of the box, they say it's Strong on protection, light on system resources. It looks like they've listened to their customers who want great protection for their PC, without sacrificing a large portion of their system resources.

One of the things that Symantec touts for the 2009 edition is that their new installer is a 1-click, 1-minute process. While the actual install routine is quite fast, the entire install process takes about 8 minutes (depending on your internet connection), since it downloads the current updates from Symantec's servers. It also requires more than just a single click, since you have to enter your Product Key. I know I'm splitting hairs here, but if you say it's 1 click, 1 minute, I should be able to put in the disk, click install, and be sitting back at the desktop after installation as close to the one minute time-frame as possible. To be clear though, once the updates were downloaded, and the Key entered, installation took just a few seconds over 1 minute to complete.

Norton has also added a new Identity protection feature, which will manage your web-site logins, as well as manage credit card information. I've not used the Card features yet, but the password safe built into the system seems to work pretty well, has ability to be toggled on and off per-site, and can be set to require your Identity Safe password to be entered before filling out any forms/logins. There's other software out there for this, but it seems better integrated into both IE & Firefox than some of the other solutions I've tried in the past.

Also added is a Network Monitoring module that shows you a visual picture of the devices on your network, and will let you determine the amount of trust to give to a particular device, to determine amount & types of traffic you want to allow to your PC from that device. This goes from Full Trust (all traffic allowed from that device), to restricted (NO access from the device), to the default of Protected (Full threat protection, but normal traffic is allowed through). You can also monitor the status of other PC's running the 2009 suite from the Network Monitor.

Another great feature is called Silent Mode. Have you ever been watching a movie on your PC, or been playing a game, and had your protection software pop up some piece of info that switches you back to the desktop, or dumps you out of what you were doing? Well, that shouldn't be a problem anymore. If you go into a full-screen application, Silent Mode is activated by default for everything except critical notifications. If you require more aggressive message suppression, you can go into the Misc. settings and turn on Manual Silent mode, which asks you how long you want to be in silent mode, and further reduce the chances of interruption by Norton.

Two other new features are the Performance meters, and Norton Insight. With the new performance meters, you can see exactly how much CPU and memory usage you've had, and also see what percentage of that was used by Norton. This is shown on the main dashboard page via two meters (one for the total system usage, one for Norton's percentage), as well as a detailed display that also shows you what background jobs Norton has run, when they last activated, and their current status. Norton Insight shows you the currently running processes, and whether they are a Norton trusted process, or a process that needs further scanning. In theory this should allow Norton to use less resources scanning processes that it knows are legitimate, and concentrate on processes that appear suspicious, which should lessen the amount of scanning the system has to do. On my test systems, I never noticed more than 2 or 3% in the Scan needed category, and a few times as low as 1%. Once it's scanned a particular file, as long as the file stays the same, it's not scanned again. On my test system this seems to help quite a bit, especially when opening and closing the same applications (Outlook for example), and accessing the same files multiple times.

What most people are going to want to know is about the performance improvements for the system, especially memory usage. On my test system (under Windows XP), the 2009 system typically uses about 11m at idle, and 0% CPU usage, with spikes of 18m and 8-10% CPU during real-time scanning. On the Vista test machine, idle memory is about the same, but the memory spikes were lower, at about 16m memory. When receiving mail in Outlook 2007 (in Pop mode), CPU usage spiked at about 20%, and memory usage went to about 18m. When you take into account that this is the full Norton system usage, those numbers are quite good. That's roughly one eighth of the memory that Eset's NOD32 Antivirus uses at idle (on my main system NOD32 idles at 36m for the service, and 3m for the GUI). Symantec's own Endpoint Protection weighs in at about 18-20m at idle on one of my work systems, and it doesn't have half of the features of the 2009 package. Eset's Smart Security suite uses a bit more on idle (a bit over 40m). During a full system scan, memory usage goes much higher with the 2009 package, weighing in between 74 – 80mb total memory usage. While this is quite a jump in memory usage, this was during a scheduled full system scan, not the normal real-time scanning. All in all, I perceived a definite boost in system responsiveness on my test box over my normal AV of choice, NOD32. In daily use, the system seemed to be more unobtrusive than other AV suites, and did it's job well.

To put the new protection features through the wringer, I set the system up on my wife's PC (which the kids seem to use more than she does), and told them to break the system. Usually our youngest daughter can bring a system to it's knees pretty quickly (she seems to be able to ferret out any malicious MySpace pages with surprising speed and ease, and has a knack for finding sites that want to install things like Windows Antivirus 2009 quickly), and the system caught everything they could throw at it. The add-on Parental control module kept the kids out of places we didn't want them to go (the Parental Controls aren't installed by default, and require you to download an add-on pack from Symantec), but did seem to be a bit more rudimentary than other systems I've used in the past. One of my tests was going to a site that was known to attempt to install fake multimedia codecs, and Norton caught it at every attempt, in both Internet Explorer, and Firefox.

I was also surprised with the Anti-Spam and Email scanning features, as they caught a few mails that happened to get by our GFI Mail Essentials on our Exchange server, but also noticed that it got more false positives with the initial tests. The Spam filter can be trained on the good mail you currently have, so the false detection of junk mail can be mitigated somewhat. For a typical home-user target audience, it is more than adequate. It caught much more junk than the built-in filtering in Outlook 2007, and integrates into both Outlook, and Outlook Express. Interestingly enough, on Vista, you only get the SMTP & POP scanning when using Microsoft Mail, as there's no direct integration into the software. I found this odd in that the Microsoft Mail application has been around for over a year, yet there's still no direct support for it. As far as anything else Vista-specific, it does include a desktop Gadget that shows if the system is running correctly, or needs attention. The Vista support felt more like an afterthought though, although everything does function well in a Vista environment.

When I was given the NIS 2009 package to review, my initial thought was 'Great, lets see how big Norton's package is now, and bring my C2D to it's knees', but after using the system for a few days, I'm fairly impressed with how little the performance impact is, and plan on keeping it on my work Laptop and home desktops. The systems feel faster, and I do feel a bit safer with the additional protection. In my opinion, Norton's got a definite hit on their hands, and NIS 2009 should go a long way towards repairing their AV-software bloat image. The days of telling friends to dump the NAV software off their system and install something leaner are over, and I'll have no problem recommending NIS 2009 in the future.

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149 Comments

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As someone who works in Tech Support I can attest that Norton is still garbage and causes more issues than it resolves, I've had to turn off too many feature in NIS09 so that customers could just simply go online for me to ever recommend it to anyone, and these are installs with default settings, not customized settings that are causing issues

judging by the screenshots, they haven't cleaned up anything...
and you can't trust a company who have f*cked their users for years

NIS 2009 is a great product. It's very fast.

You only notice slowdown if you have a rubbish PC. Because I installed it on my MacBook Pro for when I'm booted into Windows XP and I don't notice any difference at all. You wouldn't even know Norton is installed if it weren't for the notification icon.

It is a breath of fresh air. I actually like it.

And I always maintained that Norton has been slow. But it's not any more. If you still think so you need to get over it. Nortons good again, deal with it.

I just dont see the point in this. All you need is a basic antivirus and something to scan for spyware. You dont need all the other apps and such. I think the reason this product is even continueing to be made is because they cater to the paranoid people. As long as you got a hardware firewall you dont need an inferior software one, and if you just gotta have one then use the one that comes with windows. I would have to say the primary defense against all this stuff is not to be stupid in the first place when it comes to the websites you go to.

When you're as mobile as I am with some of my systems, you may not know what type of protection the connection you're using provides. Having the Norton firewall on the system definitely gives me a bit more piece of mind that someone on the public network I'm on is going to have at least a bit more difficulty getting in my system.

I tried NIS2009 its DAC cpu and memory usage do improved lots (although DSC is still as bad as before), I'd say NIS2009 DAC performance is one of the best of all anti virus+firewall softwares, but after I did few virus, worm and trojan tests, I notice NIS2009 did very good job on virus test, soso on worm, and horrible on trojan, there are so many ways to bypass its scanning and firewall, and lots of antivirus + firewall softwares did great on both tests and some of them are free for personal use.
Well, I'd say NIS2009 is a right movement for symantec, but it is still behind its competitors.

I did try NAV 2009- I installed it on my laptop, which has an SSD and boots up completely in 40 seconds. After the installation, it booted in about 80. Not cool.

Good review and reflects my experiences with NIS 2009.
Dumped ESET's offering in favor of NIS 2009 as it's faster, far more effective and lighter. Great product and Norton are back with a bang!
Try it and you'll see.

leo_the_lion said,
Good review and reflects my experiences with NIS 2009.
Dumped ESET's offering in favor of NIS 2009 as it's faster, far more effective and lighter. Great product and Norton are back with a bang!
Try it and you'll see.

So you tested it on which finds more threats and you concluded its more effective?

I like lightweight software but I want my antivirus to be just that. An antivirus. Not 11 applications in 1.

I've been using this since it came out and to be honest it does not eatup the resources as older version did... it works better, whilst the scanning is running you can use other applications and it will not slow down the system. I'm impressed with it to be honest and I never thought I would see the day when I would say I like this version.

excalpius said,
bobbit, you are REALLY sounding like a corporate plant with all of your posts. I'm not saying you are, but...

Er, I've pretty much said all their other products, even their latest N360 one, are rubbish. I then say that NIS 2009 is pretty damn good but still has its problems, and you come galloping in accusing me of being paid off to say that Symantec makes rubbish products?

heh...

So I decided to give this a shot after reading the article and the comments but ultimately I decided to go back to ESET Smart Security 4 Beta...

I first tried NIS2009 and then N360 3.0 Beta and neither of them lasted more than a few hours. I am running Win7 Beta 1 and until now I had not seen it act up the way it did. The system slowed down noticeably, Windows Explorer crashed I don't know how many times, web browsing turned into an annoying experience, having to cancel out every time I would visit a web page with a contact or login form - overall I had a horrible experience.

I am back to ESET Smart Security 4 Beta and having no issues at all. Windows runs just fine again, no annoying dialogs, no bloat - just straight up security. Yes, Symantec have managed to HIDE the bloat behind their sassy user interface but both products (NIS & N360) seemed bloated to me compared to ESET SS 4... Just my $0.02

You cannot possibly even go close to comparing the Titanic bloat of AV and PC cleaning software, N360, to NIS 2009 or anything else for that matter, ESPECIALLY when it's a beta programme, running on a beta OS...

I just spent about the last hour playing with NIS2009 in Windows 7 Beta 1 (x32), and I will also agree to some difficulties (especially with the network attack detection from web pages, caused a bluescreen and reboot), but didn't notice the general slowdown Obry mentioned (although I only played around with it for about an hour, so can't say it was terribly in-depth). I'm sure Symantec's stance will be that Windows 7 is a beta product, and at RTM, they will release either a patch, or a new version that supports Win7 (same as they are saying with IE8 on other platforms, as soon as it's released, they will add support). Also, you can turn off the login prompts from NIS on IE, if they get too annoying, but I guess Obry didn't get that far into configuration.

I've been using NIS 2009 for a few months on Vista and now on Windows 7 and I haven't come across and major issues - certainly none of the ones you mentioned above.

Norton is no where near as bloated as it once was, even the 2008 line up was notable faster and lighter on resources, but the 2009 line-up deserves some kind of award for being one of the quickest to install and the most lightest AV product i've ever used.

I have used Norton Internet Securitys for yrs but I have to admit since the 2004 version came out I haven't been pleased so I was going to switch to NOD 32 this yr since the Computer Shop I work for uses it and has been very pleased with NOD 32 But I had a problem with leaveing Norton because I have been a long time user of there products so When Symantec released there Bata Version of Norton Internet Securitys 2009 I had to try it before I broke away from them and I have to admit this was the first time I ever used any Bata version of theres in my life and I have to say I am glad I did try it because I can see the changes they have made and I liked what I see so far and it uses far less CPU Power then before there are a few things I was upset about though

(1) most antivirus vendors give you a free 30 day test drive on there bata products Symantec on the other hand only gives you a free 15 day test drive on there product and if you want a 30 day test drive they make you pay for it which doesn't seem right to me one would think they are just greedy and just want to take your money while other venders are offering 30 days for free I just don't think it is fair that they give you 15 days free while they make you pay for 30 days

Anyway I guess the point I an trying to make is I took the 15 day trail and I liked it so I stayed with them for another yr since they made it lighter and better

(2) I am now running a full version of Norton Internet Securitys 2009 which I installed 3 days ago but now that I have a full version I have to wonder if they gave up a few things in the way of Security by making it lighter because it faild to find a Trojon32 Virus on my computer What really Serprises me is Adware by Lavasoft found the Trojon32 and removed it I did my Bata testing with there product in November of 08 but didn't install the full version untill 3 days ago when my 2008 version ran out Now I am wondering and second guessing myself weather I should have gone with NOD 32 I guess I have a yr to find out weather I did the right thing or not

I just thought you people should know

kram nella said,
(1) most antivirus vendors give you a free 30 day test drive on there bata products Symantec on the other hand only gives you a free 15 day test drive on there product and if you want a 30 day test drive they make you pay for it which doesn't seem right to me one would think they are just greedy and just want to take your money while other venders are offering 30 days for free I just don't think it is fair that they give you 15 days free while they make you pay for 30 days

What a load of crap!

I tested the NIS 2009 Beta for quite a while and it did not expire after 15 days, nor did they ask me to pay to continue to use it - I think your getting mixed up with the subscription renewal service that was part of the Beta but didn't ask you to pay as they were testing it.

The reason they only give 15 days was because they planned on releasing a new build every 15 days, which didn't always happen, but the Betas were fairly frequent.

To be fair, the current trial version of NIS2009 is only for 15 days:

Free Trialware
Try our products for 15 days before you buy.

* Norton Internet Security 2009
* Norton AntiVirus 2009
* Norton 360 Version 2.0
* Norton SystemWorks Standard Edition 12.0
* Norton Ghost 14.0
* Norton Utilities
* All Trialware

The trials are 15 days, but this guy was talking about the betas. In addition to what bbfc_uk said about Symantec's beta releases (which is absolutely correct), if they do not release a build within the 15 days, you can renew your test license until the next build is out.

As this review is for NIS 2009, does this mean NAV 2009 would be even faster? (since it doesn't have the extra firewall and such)

We're actually USING all of these packages and many of us have had the displeasure of cleaning up after failed "lesser" packages. It is where our love of NOD32 and our hatred of anything Symantec comes from.

I have to admit I have not tried G-Data, but then again I have never put stock in that particular rating service. I could be wrong about that, of course.

Right now, I continue to recommend KAV as #1 and NOD32 as #2 because NOD32 has been missing things this year. I hope they fix whatever it is they stopped doing.

One small question: how would you rate NIS 2009 for very novice users? Is it a fire & forget application that does not require constant monitoring and is not too scary with obscure error messages?

Vykranth said,
One small question: how would you rate NIS 2009 for very novice users? Is it a fire & forget application that does not require constant monitoring and is not too scary with obscure error messages?

It installs and can be left alone until it alerts you to something. The only downside to it is the Options menu is a bit confusing, but I suppose the average Joe will not need to tinker with them.

I think it's fairly simple. I use it on my systems and I gotta say they have made some great improvements in it. It used to be terrible software but now it's a lot lighter.

Vykranth said,
One small question: how would you rate NIS 2009 for very novice users? Is it a fire & forget application that does not require constant monitoring and is not too scary with obscure error messages?

Neither my wife nor my kids seem to have any problems using it. Once I installed it, there wasn't much else to it. The only part that's not 'fire and forget' would be the content filter/parental controls, as that's a separate download you have to install after getting the main program set up.

Tried, and yes it's much more better than old Nortons. Still, I uninstalled it as the UI is not my cup of milo. Unless the UI goes beautiful like NOD32 or Kaspersky, I'd stick to my AV.

I tried the new version some days ago and i was about to post exactly what you said about the GUI. The interface is still very ugly. Why they don't overhauled it even a little bit is beyond me...

Granted, 2009 version is a lot better than 2002-2007 versions (as far as i can remember because i always try all the AV/Suites i can) but it still installs separate modules such as Live Update that needed to be uninstalled separately if there is ever a need to do so.

I'm surpised that no one has mentioned Kaspersky AV/Internet Security. I began using it since version 6 and i still use it (version 2009) at work/clients/home without any noticeable slowdowns.

NOD32 2.x was very good but sadly, the 3.x versions let some nasty files come through and the slowdown it puts on file copying and extracting from compressed files is somehow very big (at least in Vista).

All that said, i always recommend Kaspersky to people that asks me because i have seen many other AVs fail on "average" users computers.

I don't think the reviewer got paid, but if those people claiming he is always been fond of Norton, the review is fine, but far from imparcial.

bobbit said,
You can change the pattern and colour/make the window transparent, FYI.

That is just a little part of what GUI stands for...
It's not the color/transparency. For me, its the big buttons, the ugly ticks on checkboxes and other things i don't like.

Wait, what checkboxes? The only options are in some nifty slider styled thing and everything else is either big buttons, the slider boxes or drop down boxes...

Also, you may not think the big buttons are pretty, but they are practical. Symantec products aren't actually targeted to the generation of users that have the short-term ability to see for 10 miles with great clarity. ;]

ajua said,
Granted, 2009 version is a lot better than 2002-2007 versions (as far as i can remember because i always try all the AV/Suites i can) but it still installs separate modules such as Live Update that needed to be uninstalled separately if there is ever a need to do so.

NAV 2009 does not install LiveUpdate separately; the only entry in Programs and Features is 'Norton AntiVirus 2009'. The uninstall removes all components in one go (the install/uninstall is very fast).

Steven

ajua said,
I tried the new version some days ago and i was about to post exactly what you said about the GUI. The interface is still very ugly. Why they don't overhauled it even a little bit is beyond me....

The UI is completely different from the 2008 version, though I have to admit, its not the prettiest.

Typhoeus said,
Tried, and yes it's much more better than old Nortons. Still, I uninstalled it as the UI is not my cup of milo. Unless the UI goes beautiful like NOD32 or Kaspersky, I'd stick to my AV.


While the UI isn't the best looking one, it does what it's supposed to do, give you the status of the software.

How were startup times affected?
One of the things I noticed about the old NAV systems was how much longer it took Windows to boot (a solid 3x longer in my experience).
I also used to be a big fan of NOD32, but as with a few people here, it's let me down big time lately so I'm willing to change, but I never thought I'd ever consider myself going for Norton ever again.

For me Norton is one of the first things to load and leaves everything else lots of room to load up. I have a lot of programmes that run on startup but it hasn't made any negative impact.

On my machines, I seem to have a massive slowdown on the system on boot with NOD32 loaded (basically from when their logo appears, until it's finished initializing, sometimes 5 seconds, sometimes 10-20 seconds, it's not 100% consistant). I haven't noticed that slowdown since removing NOD and installing NIS. I'm guessing it could be my systems, but I've noticed it on at least a half dozen machines that I've got NOD on (I don't use any of the other ones myself so I'm not sure if they pause or not on bootup). This is also on Vista as well as Windows XP machines. And for the record, this is with Eset's NOD32 v3.0 Business Edition.

Not until a vast majority of reputable IT professionals reach a consensus that NAV2009+ is vastly superior to the AV software we are all using to secure some of the world's largest networks.

We ALL got burned by Symantec and we've been boycotting them ever since. In fact, that effort is the only reason Symantec has invested in FINALLY improving their products - years too little too late IMHO.

I think Norton 2009 is great, been using it for a couple of months now, but I installed it on Windows 7 and now my wifi network won't reconnect when I sleep / resume my laptop, I need to do a full reboot.

Perhaps it's not Norton that did it but it was an odd co-incidence, I uninstalled Norton and the problem remains...

I just tried this on my Dell M1530, and my wifi came back up after sleep, but it was only off for 20-30 seconds, a longer sleep may still cause it (although I've had some problems in the past in Vista with my wireless not coming back after suspend, and I wasn't running anything Symantec then).

rakeshishere said,
Windows 7 + Norton 2009 FTW . I stopped using Norton 4yrs back... and now i can finally trust them.

Trust them? urgh

I've been a beta tester with Symantec for a few years now and I can tell you that when 2009 came out, I was pleased. Yes, there are still problems but holy hell it's come a long way. I have other Symantec products installed (Endpoint, Save & Restore, SystemWorks 2009) and they all are still pretty bloated and slow.

Also, Norton 360 is still a piece of crap and if you want bloat, download that. Maybe by version 10 they might fix the "I'm my own operating system and I eat ram" issue. So no, I'm not a Symantec fanboy, but 2009 is a great, great piece of software and I just wish people would stop being so arrogant and give it a try before comparing it to the **** Symantec has come out with in the past.

Av Comparatives always said Norton is great, even when everybody said it's bloatware. Nothing changed. Less bloatware, but still bloatware.

Glendi said,
Av Comparatives always said Norton is great, even when everybody said it's bloatware. Nothing changed. Less bloatware, but still bloatware.

People throw that term around a lot. In what way is it still bloatware? Or do you just like saying the word because you think it makes you look cool?

Kharhaz said,
People throw that term around a lot. In what way is it still bloatware? Or do you just like saying the word because you think it makes you look cool?

I don't think he has even tried Norton 2009. From what I can tell it is a pretty lean and fast package. While I am trying out the the more slimmed down Gamer Edition, even the full product isn't that "bloated" as people like to say, it has what you need and it works incredibly well. I think people just throw that word around to make themselves seem intelligent.

As I was reading this really quite well put together review, I had this nagging feeling that it was all going to be ruined by the overwhelming majority of predictable knee-jerk replies. Sure enough, the usual crap was there to be found. People who haven't yet tried the product declare it is still bloatware, or that it's a paid review, or that the author of the review is blinkered to the Symantec company, etc. etc. etc.

It's just utterly bizarre that supposed computer enthusiasts can't grasp that software changes, often to the better, and that Symantec may have just listened to the critics and resolved many of the issues. That is, after all, what software developers strive to do, so it shouldn't be that alien a concept.

As a couple of the more intelligent people above have stated, use this review in conjunction with others that are available o the web. Oh, don't tell me, they are all paid reviews too....

Nice review, and you've given me enough reason to at least investigate the product for my neighbour's needs. Thanks.

Interesting though regarding CharlyAR's comments. I tried his suggested google search and he is right. I would also think twice and look at more reviews on the internet regarding NIS2009. Maybe it is a great package as stated but heffe2001 is not consistent with his comments regarding Symantec products. he has always been positive about them indeed, just to keep in mind when reading his review. On the other hand I have read positive feedback on NIS2009 on other sites as well.

There again, if you read the package I was talking about, it was clearly Symantec AV Corporate, an entirely different package. I also mentioned Avast, so that makes me an Avast lover as well now :p.

*EDIT* If you want to give it a try, Symantec does have a 15 day trial. Try it yourself, see if it's improved or not.

By the way: if you just Google heffe2001 + Symantec, you will see this user loves Symantec stuff since years ago. There is NOTHING new regarding this version. Same piece of cr4p.

CharlyAR said,
By the way: if you just Google heffe2001 + Symantec, you will see this user loves Symantec stuff since years ago. There is NOTHING new regarding this version. Same piece of cr4p.

Really? When I Google heffe2001 + Symantec I get posts on other forums from back in 2006 & 2007 where the posts state that he uses Symantec Corporate AV (a completely different product than NIS and a several years older version to boot) on his machines at work and posts where he recommends Avast free edition to some home users. You can't compare two entirely different products, let alone versions from 2+ years ago, and calling someone a "company X lover" just because they claimed to use a different product intended for a different market 2 years ago is absurd.

CharlyAR said,
By the way: if you just Google heffe2001 + Symantec, you will see this user loves Symantec stuff since years ago. There is NOTHING new regarding this version. Same piece of cr4p.

And if you google CharlyAR + Symantec, you'll see that this user hates Symantec stuff, and mentions whenever he can. Nothing new there...

Clearly he hasn't used the new one, cause if he did he wouldn't be saying that. I'm no NAV fan and have been telling people to get rid of it for years, however, in recent years Symantec have been really on the ball and NAV 2009 is a fantastic achievement *thumbs up*

I still find it funny that one mention on another forum (SageTV forums), from 2+ years ago, and I've been loving them the entire time, and makes me a fanboi... Guess my having a corporate NOD32 account since November 2007 doesn't count, lol.

Symantec = bloatware

Slows everything down. You cannot program, you cannot work. Is the worst piece of sh¡t. The only reason because a virus or a hacker would not enter a system using their "security" software is because out of pity.

Plus, currently I have 3 servers down in some company I work in. Some genius decided to use Symantec AV.

It has a lot of issues with programming. A lot of issues with IIS. A lot of issues with... errr... A lot of issues!

Recomendation: stay as far as you can from any Symantec ****ware.

While a week or 2 ago, I would have agreed with you 100% on the bloatware comment, after testing this particular package, I can definitely say they've trimmed off the fat, and have a lean system now. And further, even when we did use Norton on our Windows 2003 servers, we never had any problems with programs running, nor with IIS. The only time we really ran into anything was the performance hit with Endpoint Protection (the original Symantec Antivirus Corporate edition was a good, low-impact AV, but wasn't as robust as other programs at the time). If Symantec works the same magic on their enterprise/corporate edition, I will most definitely be re-installing it on our servers, as well as our workstations when our NOD subs run out.

CharlyAR said,
Symantec = bloatware

Slows everything down. You cannot program, you cannot work. Is the worst piece of sh¡t. The only reason because a virus or a hacker would not enter a system using their "security" software is because out of pity.

Plus, currently I have 3 servers down in some company I work in. Some genius decided to use Symantec AV.

It has a lot of issues with programming. A lot of issues with IIS. A lot of issues with... errr... A lot of issues!

Recomendation: stay as far as you can from any Symantec sh¡tware.


Sounds more like a user skill issue as Symantec's corporate products never got as bloated as their consumer offerings. NAV 2009 is an amazingly improved product, pretty far from bloatware.

CharlyAR said,
Strange.
I can find posts from 2007 where you are loving Symantec and recomending it.
Seems nothing changed to me.

Just like most people, I change up the software I use. At the time I was probably talking about Symantec AV Corporate, which we used on our corporate network until the Endpoint Protection fiasco. Around that same time we started using NOD32 on our work laptops, due to size mainly (and the fact that Dell ships with McAfee by default, now THAT's a bloated piece of software). Once we upgraded our network to Endpoint Protection, we started having issues with speed, the PC's felt more like old 486 machines at time (was actually due to the specific version of Endpoint we had, it was a known bug in the installer that didn't upgrade older versions of AV Corp correctly, requiring you to run nonav and reinstall to fix it), so over the past few months we started moving Endpoint out, and moving NOD in (just finished that up over Christmas break, although I did find one last machine with the old AV on it a week or 2 ago).

If it was a few years ago, I would of agreed with you whole heartedly. However, it's simply not the case anymore. I just installed the trial version for NAV 2009 (gaming edition) and it very impressive; extremely fast and very light weight. I'm almost completely sold on it, only thing stopping me buying it is the fact I experience slowdown (even with NAV in gamer mode) when playing a game, however, it could be something else at fault so I will investigate further before coming to a final conclusion on it.

Even when Norton is bloated, I stick around with it because I trust Norton A/V more than any other A/V. Now that it's lighter, it should be even better for me to stick with it.

Great review, been using NIS2009 since end of last year - a huge improvement over NIS2008. NIS is the only security suite I use (all the way back to the 2003 version). It also works great in Windows 7.

Radish™

ohh radish we all know that you are a norton fanboy ^^, and even defended the 2004 version which its awful and make me switch at that time.

Lets see this new version... so far im still with nod32 2.7 which its very light and works with windows 7 too

eilegz said,
ohh radish we all know that you are a norton fanboy ^^, and even defended the 2004 version which its awful and make me switch at that time.

Lets see this new version... so far im still with nod32 2.7 which its very light and works with windows 7 too


You forgot one thing, I don't preach it to others - I let people make up their own mind.

Radishâ„¢

ive been using norton and norton gamer edition over a month now
im VERY pleased with the two..and i was a big time norton hater

I've had NIS 2009 for a while now, and it even works on Window 7. Its a fantastic product and SO light its incredible compared to Norton's of the past.

C_Guy said,
Great write-up, might have to take Norton off my Blacklist ;)

I already did that.
was using kaspersky btw.

I might give it a go, I'm in need of another AV for my laptop (currently use AVG Free) as my current AV (Trend Micro) for my main machines has a 3 seat license but I've used them all and you can't get a 4 seat license (next one up is too expensive for my liking, cheaper to just buy another AV for one extra PC)

Avast!

Xerxes said,
I might give it a go, I'm in need of another AV for my laptop (currently use AVG Free) as my current AV (Trend Micro) for my main machines has a 3 seat license but I've used them all and you can't get a 4 seat license (next one up is too expensive for my liking, cheaper to just buy another AV for one extra PC)

neo7 said,
Avast!

I came from using Avast! and it wasn't working for me, so I went to AVG. I'm actually considering the Gaming Edition of Norton 2009 as after reading up on it, it looks more inline with what I'm after.

Deihmos said,
maybe you should add that there is no native 64bit version which is really bad in this day and age.

According to Symantec (and from my testing it on my Vista x64 gaming rig at home), it supports x64 flavors of Windows fine (and from my research, has since the 2007 version and Vista's release). Might want to check on things like that before posting..

heffe2001 said,
According to Symantec (and from my testing it on my Vista x64 gaming rig at home), it supports x64 flavors of Windows fine (and from my research, has since the 2007 version and Vista's release). Might want to check on things like that before posting..

He didnt say it doesnt work on windows x64, he said that there is no native 64bit version which doesnt contradict what you say. Most x86 software should run perfectly on windows x64, and that would be the case here. That doesnt make it native.

heffe2001 said,
According to Symantec (and from my testing it on my Vista x64 gaming rig at home), it supports x64 flavors of Windows fine (and from my research, has since the 2007 version and Vista's release). Might want to check on things like that before posting..

The software is 32bit and you lose some of the features when using a 64bit OS. Nod32 and many other antivirus companies have native 64bit software.

shakey_snake said,
What features do you lose, exactly?

According to their community forums you loose Sonar (which is the Advanced protection), and Right-click scanning, but they are working on it though.

Kirkburn said,
Sorry, I think you spelt "Review" incorrectly.

Neowin has not and will not ever be paid for reviewing a product. I can tell you that I was very skeptical about NIS 2009. In fact, I recieved a Netbook from Lenovo a couple of months ago that came with NIS 2008 preinstalled, one of the first things I did was remove it.

Try it out, you will be surprised as well.

I would like to add to this. When looking at the Programs and Settings area in Windows, the program is listed as a whole 10.9 MB. Again, that is megabytes. Think about it.

Tanshin said,
I would like to add to this. When looking at the Programs and Settings area in Windows, the program is listed as a whole 10.9 MB. Again, that is megabytes. Think about it.

I knew I left something out. On my Vista laptop, it's clocking in at 11mb total size. I'm thinking my NOD install was around 20ish, but I removed it from this machine earlier.

Tanshin said,
I would like to add to this. When looking at the Programs and Settings area in Windows, the program is listed as a whole 10.9 MB. Again, that is megabytes. Think about it.

Damn it, that's HUGE!!!!!11 Obviously Norton just hates everybody and wants their computing experience to be as horrible as possible. :-D

Never ever going to use Symantec anymore. Their adoption of bloatware and the slowness is their software is unacceptable...fixed or not.

techbeck said,
Never ever going to use Symantec anymore. Their adoption of bloatware and the slowness is their software is unacceptable...fixed or not.

reading comprehension failed? Norton is no longer bloated, runs better then NOD.

nekrosoft13 said,
reading comprehension failed? Norton is no longer bloated, runs better then NOD.

Sorry? I've tested them myself and Norton slows down the PC a lot more. I can't even feel NOD32 installed.

Sorry, next time don't pay attention to paid reviews (which claim Norton is lighter), try stuff by yourself.

BTW, this looks like one of them.

I have tried Norton by myself, and it didn't slow my PC down at all... I have Nod32 right now and I think it may be more noticeable

Symantec has really improved their software, but naturally, people are too stubborn to let go of their previous experiences and now probably blame every hiccup on Norton when it's probably not

Glendi said,
Sorry? I've tested them myself and Norton slows down the PC a lot more. I can't even feel NOD32 installed.

Sorry, next time don't pay attention to paid reviews (which claim Norton is lighter), try stuff by yourself.

BTW, this looks like one of them.

Well, I can say it's definitely not a paid review. I've been a big supporter of NOD32 for several years (especially since work's AV of choice was Symantec Antivirus, but we got 'upgraded' to Endpoint Protection (doesn't use much more memory on idle than the current NIS, but absolutely kills any machine's performance). In the past month I've finally replaced all the Endpoint protection AV's on our work network with NOD32 Business, but I'm going to suggest we switch back next fall when our NOD sub runs out. I'd also be willing to bet that you've not tried this latest installment, or you'd definitely not see the slow-downs you're claiming).

Glendi said,
Sorry? I've tested them myself and Norton slows down the PC a lot more. I can't even feel NOD32 installed.

Sorry, next time don't pay attention to paid reviews (which claim Norton is lighter), try stuff by yourself.

BTW, this looks like one of them.


I'll call shenanigans on your post, I'm running NAV 2009 right now and you really don't know it's there. Your accusing other people of being schills for Symantec but at this point I suspect your the one "promoting" product.

heffe2001 said,

Well, I can say it's definitely not a paid review. I've been a big supporter of NOD32 for several years (especially since work's AV of choice was Symantec Antivirus, but we got 'upgraded' to Endpoint Protection (doesn't use much more memory on idle than the current NIS, but absolutely kills any machine's performance). In the past month I've finally replaced all the Endpoint protection AV's on our work network with NOD32 Business, but I'm going to suggest we switch back next fall when our NOD sub runs out. I'd also be willing to bet that you've not tried this latest installment, or you'd definitely not see the slow-downs you're claiming).

I bet you're trying it on a Core Duo machine with 4 GB RAM.

I could notice the startup (especially) and overall slowdown very clearly. Changed back to NOD32 a week ago, I'm quite satisfied. And yes I'm using the lates, unless there is a Norton 2010.

@bob_c_b: Read what I said above, run it on a machine with such resources. It doesn't slow down on my Vista killet laptop, but it does in my old PC.

It definitely uses more resources. I'm not saying it isn't improved, I'm saying NOD32 is way more lightweight than Norton.


My main test machine that I used is a Dell m1530, C2D T9300 2.5ghz, with 4g ram, that much is correct. My wife's machine is a 2+ year old Core Duo 1.6 with 768m, and it ran fine on that machine as well (as well, or better than Nod32, and they feel safer while on the net and don't worry as much as they did in the past). I installed my 3rd install on my daughters desktop last night (an old Dell 2.4ghz Dimension 3000, with 512m), and it runs well on that machine too. Nod32 was on all the machines before, and even the older machine saw improvement (it being a lower-memory machine you could tell the difference a bit more, going from 40ish-mb for JUST antivirus to an average of 6-8m for the additional protection of NIS made a big difference to her.

On my laptop with NOD, I could expect a 45-50 second freeze whenever the Eset logo came up, I haven't noticed that since I switched with the Symantec logo.

nekrosoft13 said,
reading comprehension failed? Norton is no longer bloated, runs better then NOD.

Could ask the same about you. Why I said in my post that I am not going to use them FIXED OR NOT.

techbeck said,
Could ask the same about you. Why I said in my post that I am not going to use them FIXED OR NOT.


Well that seems pretty stupid. This is a company, not an individual. Grudges are useless. Why not just use the best product available, regardless of where it comes from?

Personally, I don't use any av. That's what standard user accounts and intelligent web browsing are for.

freeeekyyy said,
Well that seems pretty stupid. This is a company, not an individual. Grudges are useless. Why not just use the best product available, regardless of where it comes from?

Personally, I don't use any av. That's what standard user accounts and intelligent web browsing are for.


In the day and age where any honorable, trustworthy web server/site could, unbeknown to the visitor, be infected with any number of nasties, trusting them NOT to be infected is dangerous and foolhardy. I'm sorry, I don't trust every admin of any web server/site that I may visit enough for that.

freeeekyyy said,
Well that seems pretty stupid. This is a company, not an individual. Grudges are useless. Why not just use the best product available, regardless of where it comes from?

Personally, I don't use any av. That's what standard user accounts and intelligent web browsing are for.


Because its a matter of opinion what the best product available is!!!!

Deathray said,
I have tried Norton by myself, and it didn't slow my PC down at all... I have Nod32 right now and I think it may be more noticeable

Symantec has really improved their software, but naturally, people are too stubborn to let go of their previous experiences and now probably blame every hiccup on Norton when it's probably not


I think he has already commited to some crappy AV.

Glendi said,


I bet you're trying it on a Core Duo machine with 4 GB RAM.

I could notice the startup (especially) and overall slowdown very clearly. Changed back to NOD32 a week ago, I'm quite satisfied. And yes I'm using the lates, unless there is a Norton 2010.

@bob_c_b: Read what I said above, run it on a machine with such resources. It doesn't slow down on my Vista killet laptop, but it does in my old PC.

It definitely uses more resources. I'm not saying it isn't improved, I'm saying NOD32 is way more lightweight than Norton.


My Pc is not a dual core, it's acentrino 1.6ghz with 256mb RAM.
I never felt NIS 2009 hogging up my PC's Resources.
It's way too light.

what said,
If like me you've been managing just fine without one, you'd only be wasting your money.

Unless you just use a free AV like AVG. It's not like you'll be out of pocket either way.

I would give it a go, but I have committed to a 3-year licence with NOD32.

If they did this a few years ago, then things would have been easier.

Good luck to them though!

kiddingguy said,
how's this compared to Kaspersky and/or NOD32?

He compares it to NOD in the review. He was a NOD user at the time he did this review.

Its certainly a breath of fresh air coming from The last 5 years of Norton slowness. I'm still not convinced though; I still hate all those toolbars in IE and I'm finding NOD32 faster,even after the improvements.

True, it says it leaves a very small footprint in your performance but I still don't get why it slows down the hell out of my PC.

NOD 32 is way faster.

you know , I was a great fan of NOD32 all the time.
but with its every version, I just lost to some puny virus which Avast alone can caught but not NOD32. I thought eset smart security 4 could be better and at least dont miss tiny viruses, but just 2days ago I lost again.

Now I am using NIS2009 and I m pretty satisfied.

Max� said,
Its certainly a breath of fresh air coming from The last 5 years of Norton slowness. I'm still not convinced though; I still hate all those toolbars in IE and I'm finding NOD32 faster,even after the improvements.


Agreed. I will not be changing from NOD32, the speed is just phenomenal. The rate of NOD32 picking up infections and repairing them effectively is near enough to 100%. I still don't think norton would find even half of them

Owenw said,
Agreed. I will not be changing from NOD32, the speed is just phenomenal. The rate of NOD32 picking up infections and repairing them effectively is near enough to 100%. I still don't think norton would find even half of them


Just try NIS 2009, and i am pretty sure that u will like it.
It really uses very little resources, and the protection is really solid.It feels as if it isn't there.
I tried bitdefender and kaspersky both of which were much slower than NIS 2009, and inspite of that were unable to detect quite a lot of malwares on my laptop. esp. the Vundo variants.