Free vs. Paid Security Software

Discussion in 'polls' started by puff-m-d, Feb 7, 2006.


Do you rely on free and/or paid security software?

  1. I rely entirely on [b]free[/b] security software.

  2. I rely entirely on [b]paid[/b] security software.

  3. I rely on a combination of both [b]free and paid[/b] security software.

  1. puff-m-d

    puff-m-d Registered Member

    Feb 13, 2002
    North Carolina, USA
    I have seen the subject of free vs. paid security software brought up from time to time, so I thought I would start a poll to see what people use.

    Your choices are simple:
    1. All of the security software that you use are free versions.
    2. All of the security software that you use are paid for versions.
    3. You use a combination of both free and paid for security software.

    And of course if you wish to list your free and/or paid security software that would be great. It would be most interesting to see what free security software that people rely on.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2006
  2. puff-m-d

    puff-m-d Registered Member

    Feb 13, 2002
    North Carolina, USA
    I use almost all paid security software. The only free software that I use is Ghost Security's GhostWall as I also have a router and like GhostWall's lightness on my system and overall speed.
  3. SwordOfSecurity

    SwordOfSecurity Registered Member

    Dec 23, 2005
    well, i put my vote in for entirely free software, since it does represent the protection i use for my other computers...however my main one uses mostly paid ones, such as NOD32, Spyware Sweeper etc. but still counts as a combination i guess since it also has free stuff like ewido, a squared, kerio pf etc.

    interesting poll, however i think most of the knowledgeable antimalware users tend to stick with paid stuff, while the ones who would rather have a quick fix for protection/removal and are less knowledgeable about malware would prefer free stuff, regardless of the extra things they lack
  4. se7engreen

    se7engreen Registered Member

    Feb 6, 2004
    All of my realtime protections are paid for, but I do use many freeware tools to keep tabs on what’s happening on my systems. Also use some free on-demand scanners.
  5. beetlejuice69

    beetlejuice69 Registered Member

    Mar 16, 2005
    About 90% of my security software is paid the other10% is free. ie: SpywareBlaster and stuff.
  6. sukarof

    sukarof Registered Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Stockholm Sweden
    I am also one of those who keeps the software industry alive :)
    Most of my programs are paid for. I do feel that the paid software has more work
    put into the interface so imo they are easier to understand.
    I notice, now when I think about it, that I tend to buy software mostly from small software makers.....

    I have several programs that I dont use anymore because a couple of months later I find some other program doing the job better so I buy them instead. Wasting money? Yes propably, but I consider them having fair prices so I can afford it. And it gives me a warm fuzzy feeling supporting the programmers :)
    And I do give money to charity too :)


    Firstdefence ISR
    Port Explorer
    Outpost Pro (but I think I have passed the subscription date by now)
    Wallpaper Callendar
    3D Mail effects
    Snagit (screencapturing)
    Irider (IE based webbrowser)
    Nero 7

    Process explorer
    Startup List 2.0
    Locate 32
    KeePass password safe
    Forgot to add: Firefox and thunderbird of course...
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2006
  7. Eldar

    Eldar Registered Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    Vilvoorde (Belgium)
    Most of my security software is paid versions. :)
    Primary software for sure, like KAV, Sunbelt Kerio, OutPost, Ewido, SpySweeper, ProcessGuard, Port Explorer, RegDefend,
    Ad-Aware & AppDefend.

    Paid for Opera too, but now it's free and it's getting better everytime. :cool:
    Use Firefox too, but not so much as Opera.
    Spybot, Spywareblaster are the free security tools, which I like too.

    Since I started, I payed a lot for software. Too much to sum it all up.
    Some have already become obsolete since that time.
    NIS2004, anti-spam, Avast Pro, ZoneAlarm, ACDSee, ... :rolleyes:

    I've been cutting back to only buy what's really necessary, although
    sometimes I can't resist. :D

    On the other hand I do have Paint Shop Pro X & SnagIt & some other graphics and multimedia software too
    and whenever there's an update I really don't hesitate to pay for the upgrade.
    Same applies to my security software.

    You could say 90% of my software is paid and 10% is freeware.
    It's my choice to pay for most of it, because I like to support development on software I really like. :D

    Surely wasting money, not to speak about all the Palm software I bought. :D
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2006
  8. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

    Oct 7, 2004
    i use a mix of paid, shareware and free software.






    windows worm door cleaner
  9. Alphalutra1

    Alphalutra1 Registered Member

    Dec 17, 2005
    Free, free like the wind :D

    See the signature :cool:

  10. rdsu

    rdsu Registered Member

    Jun 28, 2003
    Both here...

    I only want what I think it is the best for my needs...
  11. mikel108

    mikel108 Registered Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    SW Ontario, Canada
    I use only paid right now. It's not that I think that free programs are bad, it's just I want to support the developers. In the past I purchased AVG Pro and I can only hope that in some way this helped those who could not afford an antivirus.
  12. nicM

    nicM nico-nico

    Jul 15, 2004
    The few softwares I bought so far are Process Guard, Ace Utilities and TI 9. I usually use paid AV and FW, but I'm using free software for few months now (except for one of my computers, running Avk 2006), mostly because I'm doing my "shopping", choosing what I like, to know what to buy.

    I'm not even sure to use a paid AV for the next months; if I buy it's NOD 32, but I really like Avast and Antivir 7 :) . However there are so much good freeware in every category of security software that I'll always use some.

    About freeware, the question shouldn't be "why do you use it", but "why don't you use it", indeed :D .

  13. Notok

    Notok Registered Member

    May 28, 2004
    Portland, OR (USA)
    I think you ought to add "Mostly paid" and "Mostly free" software to the poll options :)

    I would have to go "Mostly paid", although the majority of paid software I have I got for free from beta testing. I do buy a lot of software, though, and not just security software. Since the whole thing with the RIAA started, I've started to buy software rather than CDs (after I started making money again after the whole economic meltdown *cough*), and feel the better for it. When it comes down to it, I look at the software more for it's merit than it's price. There's some great freeware out there, but there's also plenty of pay-ware that just can't be matched.
  14. Brandon

    Brandon Registered Member

    Sep 9, 2005
    I currently use both freeware and shareware software.

    • Outpost Firewall Pro
    • BOClean
    • ProcessGuard
    • Online Armor (free from beta testing)
    • Ewido
    • TrojanHunter
    • A-Squared Personal (free from beta testing)

    • Spybot S&D
    • SpywareBlaster
    • Microsoft Anti-Spyware
    • Thunderbird
    • Firefox

    Right now I am deciding on an antivirus it will most likely be a paid one ;) Im thinking of beta testing VBA32 again or trying Avast Pro :)
  15. manOFpeace

    manOFpeace Registered Member

    Feb 1, 2003
    Free and paid, although major software is all paid.
  16. Arup

    Arup Guest

    I use free Opera, Open Office, Avast and CHX along with free DNS server Treewalk, all work nice and secure on my PC.
  17. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Milan and Seoul
    PAID:ShadowUser-ProcessGuard-NOD32-L'n'S-RegDefend-Ad Muncher
    FREE:Script Defender- Mail Washer

    This is all real time security.
  18. yahoo

    yahoo Registered Member

    Feb 23, 2004
    Tiny Personal Firewall

  19. iceni60

    iceni60 ( ^o^)

    Jun 29, 2004
    my main OS is Ubuntu and that runs totally free software, maybe all open source. i use just about all free software for XP too but with a proprietary AV atm.

    recently, because of Ubuntu, i have been reading about GNU/Free Software, Open Source and proprietary software. there are some great benefits for 'free' software. i was going to write about the differences but it would be off topic. you can lookup the benefits of open source, or GNU/Free Software - they are two separate schools of thought. or proprietary vs open source, or GNU/Free Software. there's some good articles.

    i'll just say this - a few days ago i was listening to an interview with an Open Source developer, i think it was about the program called Wine; the interviewer asked how many people were working on the code, i thought to myself 3/4 people, then he said 400+ i was shocked, but that's normal for Open Source.
  20. sweater

    sweater Registered Member

    Jun 24, 2005
    Philippines, the Political Dynasty Capital of the
    I am just an ordinary surfer, mind you, not a multi-millionaire or related to Mr. Bill Gates or something like that and I don’t need to buy F16, M1A1 Tank or Apache Attack Helicopter just to protect my pc when surfing the web. An ordinary person I think only needs a medium-high concrete wall, an ordinary medium size dog that knows how to bark when there’s a stranger or visitors and a .38 revolver pistol to protect his home from possible intruders (considering that their area is peaceful and not infested w/ bad elements and if that so then he might add a shotgun, uzi, security guard and a motion detectors). In other words, I just use an all free protection software program set-up…not only coz I love freewares, but I don’t like complicated techno things as I am not paranoid enough to “armorize” my pc using full paid protections just to surf the net. I don’t use my pc for online-banking, or use my credit cards on the internet. I believe there are lots of free softwares out there that can already do the job same w paid versions. ;) :D

    To tell you, many of my friends aside from having Firefox browser, only use two or three of the free protection softwares for several years(but I would not recommend it)…and miraculously they survive surfing the net without any bruises or scratches. Some of them even works in computer stores.

    For ordinary surfers out there…maybe you can copy my set-ups here. Just download/installs them one-by-one in any order. All of them are free… no strings attached, no subscriptions pay, no lengthy techno explanations and no boring yadda yadda words. :cool:


    Aside from using the built-in Windows XP SP2 Firewall (set to no exceptions) and using limited account when surfing the net, I also uses:

    Firefox browser- w NoScript, Earthlink Scam Blocker, and Site Advisor extensions.

    Active real-time monitors/detectors:

    Sentinel Integrity Checker, XP Firemon- to monitor the Windows XP SP2 Firewall, Avast! Home AntiVirus, AnalogX Script Defender, SnoopFree Privacy Shield - Anti-Keylogger, WinPatrol, SpywareGuard, and ProcessGuard free

    Immunizers/bad download blockers:

    SpywareBlaster and IE-SpyAd2


    BitDefender 8, ClamWin, Ewido, A2-Squared, Ad-Aware SE Personal , Spybot S & D, X-Cleaner , F-Secure Blacklight Beta –anti-rootkits

    Hardening Softwares:

    Windows Worm Doors Cleaner, SafeXP and Harden-IT

    Connection Watcher:

    CurrPorts, and Windows XP Firewall Log Viewer by Pär Thernström

    Accessories…analyzer, start-up etc…

    Startup Mechanic, Autoruns, Process Explorer, ProcX, Doc Scrubber, EULAlyzer, ERUNT for daily registry back-up just in case XP’s System Restore didn’t work, and CleanCache 3.2 for erasing MRU and those internet surfing histories, etc… HD Cleaner-has lots of information and warnings. But I only use the Wipe Free Clean Space function to clean out free space to avoid possibilities of deleted entries in the recycle bin being restored.

    As I have said, the above was meant to be for the ordinary surfers… who don’t use their pc on the net for financial transactions, on-line banking, using credit cards buying in the net, and didn’t have very important data stored in their pc’s. If however I use my pc for this purpose, then I would just add a very good paid versions of anti-hackers/Trojans tools coz I know that this is the stealthiest and hardest to detect enemy in the net. Like a good quality firewall…Outpost Pro I think is very good and it overwhelms me with lots of info that other firewalls will blushed, but if this would still make my surfing slow then I would replace it with Look N’ Stop. A full version of ProcessGuard and Ewido Plus and lastly a very good system image copier so that I can restore everything just in case everything else failed. And Hmmnn…. When I got over paranoid, maybe, I’d also buy a high-tech anti-wiretapping devices for my cell phones to prevent CIA, FBI or Mr. oppositions or James Bond or Lara Croft to record my phone conversations to use them as court evidences and maybe a hidden camera in every corner outside/inside my home that is aside from hiring lots of bulky looking armed men(careful, they are voracious eater…your kitchen will be possibly be wipe out), guarding my privacy while I’m surfing the net (he, he, he just joking). :D

    Anyway, I still love to choose freeware programs if I can coz I’ve been inspired by this words of sentences from Mr. Patrick M. Kolla the creator of one of the most popular anti-spyware program I have ever known Spybot-S&D. (I am just hoping that some developers of paid version programs will not get mad at me, sorry sir/madam.)

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 13, 2006
  21. LIW

    LIW Registered Member

    Mar 7, 2005
    Nod32, Spyware Doctor, lns

    Opera (used to pay for it), Ewido.

    As you all can see, I am running on minimal settings coz I play online games a lot and I am a safe surfer.

  22. TAP

    TAP Registered Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    I'm entirely rely on free software

    - avast! Home Edition, free antivirus that's best for my needs
    - Ewio (backup anti-malware scanner)
    - Spybot S&D
    - Windows Firewall

    There's no need to pay for anything...
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2006
  23. masqueofhastur

    masqueofhastur Registered Member

    Nov 19, 2005
    I use a combination of free and paid, I always try free first, and use a trial whenever possible, because I often find that pay software causes problems that free software doesn't, ie Outpost prevents me from using mouse gesture software, BlackICE's application protection grinds my system to a halt and prevents certain necessary programs from autostarting, AntiHook results in a constant ~4% CPU usage for almost every program (fortunately I got the free deal for it so no money wasted). Some paid programs also aren't worth what they cost, ShadowSurfer is really limited in only being able to protect entire partitions, and is only really worth it if I'm doing something I know will probably screw my computer up and I want to test my settings, Sandboxie works nicely for what I'd usually want ShadowSurfer for and it's free. Ewido was mostly just catching cookies for me, so the realtime scanner wouldn't be of much use to me especially when I can change the privacy settings to not get the cookies anymore. The only program I've found to be really worth it is Nod32.
  24. marcromero

    marcromero Guest

    I use paid security software. I utilize the advanced features usually supplied in paid versions as opposed to free software with disabled feature sets.
  25. herbalist

    herbalist Guest

    I'm not quite sure how to vote this one. With one exception, I use freeware exclusively. For the one paid app, I got a free license as a beta tester, so I haven't spent one cent on security apps. Since the one program is paid software, I voted both.
    Partial list:
    Kerio 2.1.5
    System Safety Monitor
    AntiVir 6, manually updated, not usually running
    F-Prot for DOS, manual scanning
    NIS Filecheck
    DirMon 2000
    Scramdisk 3.01r3
    PGP 6.5.8ckt08
    Script Sentry
    I don't see one good reason to spend money on software that won't do any better than these. Anti-Spyware and Anti-Trojan software is not worth bothering with. They serve no purpose that System Safety Monitor doesn't do better. Pending further testing, it will likely replace my resident AV as well.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2006
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