Ten free security utilities you should be using

The folks at Tech Republic just pubbed an excellent list of 10 freeware that everyone should be using to protect, disinfect and manage their Windows systems. Surprisingly, there’s a lot of applications in there that I’ve never heard about.

So, has anyone here ever used these software? Do you have good or bad feedback to give us about them? Let us know in the comments section below.

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26 Responses to Ten free security utilities you should be using

  1. I think some of them are already popular, like OpenDNS and CCleaner, but there are also some strangers in the list, yes. Hijack This may well added to this list.

  2. I think some of them are already popular, like OpenDNS and CCleaner, but there are also some strangers in the list, yes. Hijack This may well added to this list.

  3. This is a great list because it exposes you (at least it did to me) to software you've either never used or never heard of. It's not one of those lists of the most common pieces of software that everyone already uses (though some of them are included).

    I use this site quite often as a baseline of absolute must-have tools for keeping a clean system:
    http://www.castlecops.com/postlite7736-.html

    The article is almost 4 years old and the software mentioned is still some of the best around.

    Since we're on the topic, here are two sites I keep handy when looking for AV software:
    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1895,2135092,00.ahttp://www.av-comparatives.org/

    And a few more for personal firewall reviews:
    http://www.firewallleaktester.com http://www.matousec.com/projects/windows-personal

    OK, enough rambling!

    Here are my two cents for the software in your article:

    * Secunia Personal Software Inspector

    I'm not sure I want anyone knowing what's installed on my workstations … especially my systems at work. I don't have any illegal software installed (I don't trust cracks and keygens); I just don't feel comfortable with the whole thing. If Secunia offered their database as a download that I can check locally then I might be interested.

    * OpenDNS

    I don't really have a use for this so I've never tried it.

    * Active Virus Shield

    Never heard of it.

    * Haute Secure

    Never heard of it but it looks interesting. Too bad it's only IE right now. I haven't used IE in forever.

    * GMER anti-rootkit

    This is an excellent tool. I also use Rootkit Unhooker and IceSword. I highly recommend each of these tools as their development stays current and their reputation is top notch.

    Here's a good forum post with instructions on using CCleaner GMer, RKU, and HijackThis:
    http://www.castlecops.com/p967043-Should_I_delete

    * Netcraft Toolbar

    I'm not a big toolbar kind of person but I can see the need for this for some people I know.

    * File Shredder

    I've heard of this but never used it. I don't really have a need to permanently delete anything.

    * CCleaner

    This is a great tool for keeping your system clean. It's best to run this before any type of malware or anti-rootkit (ARK) scan.

    * PC Decrapifier

    I remember this tool when it was for Dells only (I think it was Dell). I see they've added a commercial version. I wonder how many Geeksquad employees are using the free version? :)

    * NoScript for Firefox

    I see this tool mentioned everywhere it seems. One of these days, quite possibly today, I'll get around to installing it.

  4. We have been using OpenDNS for several months now and are very happy with them. They now offer content filtering in addition to preventing phishing.

  5. We have been using OpenDNS for several months now and are very happy with them. They now offer content filtering in addition to preventing phishing.

  6. # Secunia Personal Software Inspector

    Used it; helped me clean a ton of security vulns off.

    # OpenDNS

    Use it at home; love it!

    # Active Virus Shield

    not used; I use AVG on my machines.

    # Haute Secure

    not used

    # GMER anti-rootkit

    not used

    # Netcraft Toolbar

    not used; I'm pretty much anti-toolbar these days

    # File Shredder

    extremely useful

    # CCleaner

    use it monthly to de-clutter my machines

    # PC Decrapifier

    not used, though it sounds useful

    # NoScript for Firefox

    used this for a while; became too annoying for me. Just another list to keep up with, IMHO.

  7. # Secunia Personal Software Inspector

    Used it; helped me clean a ton of security vulns off.

    # OpenDNS

    Use it at home; love it!

    # Active Virus Shield

    not used; I use AVG on my machines.

    # Haute Secure

    not used

    # GMER anti-rootkit

    not used

    # Netcraft Toolbar

    not used; I’m pretty much anti-toolbar these days

    # File Shredder

    extremely useful

    # CCleaner

    use it monthly to de-clutter my machines

    # PC Decrapifier

    not used, though it sounds useful

    # NoScript for Firefox

    used this for a while; became too annoying for me. Just another list to keep up with, IMHO.

  8. I've used AVG before and did not like it so I switched to the Free home edition of Avast. It is very good in my opinion, but I have re-register it every year which is a pain. I may try Active Virus Shield as an alternative.

    I have one thing to say about PC Decrapifier… that is an AWESOME name.

  9. I’ve used AVG before and did not like it so I switched to the Free home edition of Avast. It is very good in my opinion, but I have re-register it every year which is a pain. I may try Active Virus Shield as an alternative.

    I have one thing to say about PC Decrapifier… that is an AWESOME name.

  10. This is a great list because it exposes you (at least it did to me) to software you've either never used or never heard of. It's not one of those lists of the most common pieces of software that everyone already uses (though some of them are included).

    I use this site quite often as a baseline of absolute must-have tools for keeping a clean system:
    http://www.castlecops.com/postlite7736-.html

    The article is almost 4 years old and the software mentioned is still some of the best around.

    Since we're on the topic, here are two sites I keep handy when looking for AV software:
    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1895,2135092,00.ahttp://www.av-comparatives.org/

    And a few more for personal firewall reviews:
    http://www.firewallleaktester.com http://www.matousec.com/projects/windows-personal

    OK, enough rambling!

    Here are my two cents for the software in your article:

    * Secunia Personal Software Inspector

    I'm not sure I want anyone knowing what's installed on my workstations … especially my systems at work. I don't have any illegal software installed (I don't trust cracks and keygens); I just don't feel comfortable with the whole thing. If Secunia offered their database as a download that I can check locally then I might be interested.

    * OpenDNS

    I don't really have a use for this so I've never tried it.

    * Active Virus Shield

    Never heard of it.

    * Haute Secure

    Never heard of it but it looks interesting. Too bad it's only IE right now. I haven't used IE in forever.

    * GMER anti-rootkit

    This is an excellent tool. I also use Rootkit Unhooker and IceSword. I highly recommend each of these tools as their development stays current and their reputation is top notch.

    Here's a good forum post with instructions on using CCleaner GMer, RKU, and HijackThis:
    http://www.castlecops.com/p967043-Should_I_delete

    * Netcraft Toolbar

    I'm not a big toolbar kind of person but I can see the need for this for some people I know.

    * File Shredder

    I've heard of this but never used it. I don't really have a need to permanently delete anything.

    * CCleaner

    This is a great tool for keeping your system clean. It's best to run this before any type of malware or anti-rootkit (ARK) scan.

    * PC Decrapifier

    I remember this tool when it was for Dells only (I think it was Dell). I see they've added a commercial version. I wonder how many Geeksquad employees are using the free version? :)

    * NoScript for Firefox

    I see this tool mentioned everywhere it seems. One of these days, quite possibly today, I'll get around to installing it.

    • Actually, the original AV that was pointed by the article wasn't available anymore, and pointed back to this one..

      All you need is an AOL email address.. that's all…

    • Actually, the original AV that was pointed by the article wasn’t available anymore, and pointed back to this one..

      All you need is an AOL email address.. that’s all…

  11. I use NoScript. It works well but you have to click allow scripts alot until it gets updated. I'm finding 1/2 the sites I use don't need scripts. If it was lower, I'm sure I'd find enabling the scripts all the time annoying.

    I also use Adblock. Think the combo helps speed up Firefox a bit.

  12. I use NoScript. It works well but you have to click allow scripts alot until it gets updated. I’m finding 1/2 the sites I use don’t need scripts. If it was lower, I’m sure I’d find enabling the scripts all the time annoying.

    I also use Adblock. Think the combo helps speed up Firefox a bit.

  13. AdBlock definitely needs to be on the list right alongside NoScript. I'm not a big fan of AdBlock Plus, maybe I'm not smart enough to use it. Combine the Filterset.G updater for AdBlock and your block list is constantly being updated.

  14. AdBlock definitely needs to be on the list right alongside NoScript. I’m not a big fan of AdBlock Plus, maybe I’m not smart enough to use it. Combine the Filterset.G updater for AdBlock and your block list is constantly being updated.

  15. The worst program in the world is internet explorer. so many problems can be solved by never opening internet explorer ever again.

    Firefox plugin like noscript, adblock, and flashblock are great tools to protect your firefox. If you search the web a lot then it is a must have. noscript and adblock can remember which webpages you allow and which ones you want blocked. after a while its just smooth sailing.

    1 problem with firefox plugins is that they only work in firefox. So for my needs I needed a program that blocks flash, ads, and websites. I use adsgone which does all this and has free updates but it is not free unless u crack it. great thing is it blocks 99% of ads on any program.

    Zonealarm is great program to block stuff from accessing the internet. Note that you can not use spybot’s tea timer and zonealarm pro together. AVG is the lowest resource eating best virus detection ratio in my view.

  16. The worst program in the world is internet explorer. so many problems can be solved by never opening internet explorer ever again.

    Firefox plugin like noscript, adblock, and flashblock are great tools to protect your firefox. If you search the web a lot then it is a must have. noscript and adblock can remember which webpages you allow and which ones you want blocked. after a while its just smooth sailing.

    1 problem with firefox plugins is that they only work in firefox. So for my needs I needed a program that blocks flash, ads, and websites. I use adsgone which does all this and has free updates but it is not free unless u crack it. great thing is it blocks 99% of ads on any program.

    Zonealarm is great program to block stuff from accessing the internet. Note that you can not use spybot's tea timer and zonealarm pro together. AVG is the lowest resource eating best virus detection ratio in my view.

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