Tips to Choose Antivirus Software

Introducing a decent antivirus programming is key to shield your PC and information from outside security dangers. Notwithstanding, with the scope of projects accessible in the market, picking one can be an extreme. Here is a short guide that will make it simple for you.

A computer without a good antivirus software is akin to the human body with its immune system turned off. Such a system is extremely vulnerable and can be easily compromised, especially when the computer is connected to the Internet. Ergo, installing an antivirus program is no longer a choice, it’s a necessity.

About Antivirus Software Programs

A computer virus is a malicious piece of software code, written with the intention of stealing data, gaining unauthorized access, or compromising your computer’s security. There are many virus weapons in the hacker’s arsenal, which can only be combated with the best antivirus program installed on your computer. Such a software is designed to detect the presence of malicious computer programs or viruses like trojans and worms on your system.

Most of them work by scanning your system files and look for virus signatures, by referring to a database, which is regularly updated. What complicates matters is an Internet connection, which is a hotbed of viruses, waiting to pounce upon your system. The best programs offer protection for all the exposure points of your system.

This includes network security, Internet security, protection for email and Internet browsing, P2P protection, and a firewall, besides real-time scanning for the system. Let us see what features to look out for, when buying the software.

Selecting One

When checking out reviews, you will discover many programs that offer basic features, while there are paid versions of the same programs, which offer a wider range of protection features. Most of them are ‘suites’ which offer a wide range of security features.

Rather than going for a free standalone program, it is highly recommended that you go for a paid program which offers all-round security. Here are the prime features that I would check for, when buying an antivirus software.

Check For Virus Detection Rate
The most important thing you want to know is, how good the program is at detecting computer viruses. One way of determining the detection rate is to use the free version. Another, is to rely on expert opinion, in the form of reviews of these software programs provided online. Consider the results of benchmark tests.

Go for antivirus engines which offer a solid track record, in terms of virus detection. Opt for a program that uses the system resources, without slowing it down too much. Make sure that it has a rootkit virus detection tool and a registry cleaner.

Look For Internet Security
Among all the scanning features provided by a program, look for Internet security features, that include link scanning, email scanning, P2P scanning, and network security. Real-time scanning and scheduled scanning is offered by almost all programs these days. If you use your computer terminal for online banking transactions, it is essential that your antivirus program has anti-phishing filters.

Check for Malware and Spyware Protection
Malware and spyware are two breeds of viruses that need to be effectively contained and removed to ensure smooth operation of your computer. See to it that the software you opt for, has a good malware and spyware detection rate.

Check the Firewall
The OS firewall is not sufficient to block incoming security threats. So, one feature that you should look out for in an antivirus, is the provision of a firewall. It can effectively block out unauthorized connections.

Depending on your level of usage and range of computing activities, you need an antivirus program that can provide you with all-round protection. Symantec, TrendMicro, Kaspersky, McAfee, Avast, Avira, Norton, AVG, and ESET NOD32 are some of the best antivirus brands to choose from, in my experience. Select one which suits your overall requirements and budget.

If you don’t want to spend on buying an antivirus program, the Avast Antivirus free edition is a highly recommended choice. Go for programs which offer a wide range of security features, which includes a strong firewall, Internet security, real time scanning, and a regularly updated and robust antivirus engine. Check out reviews and read the comparative benchmark test results, presented by reviewers, and choose one which suits your requirements.

Ways To Go About Software Testing

This is for the individuals who are new to the testing field, to help them comprehend the different parts of programming testing and the pertinent phrasings.

Testing is a major component of software development for assuring the reliability and quality of the software. This field is very vast with a plethora of opportunities for both freshers and experienced individuals. A person aspiring to be a tester should be well-versed with the different concepts and terminologies of testing. Besides, one needs to possess certain skills and tenacity to be successful in this field. Below given are some of the key aspects of software testing and how to go about for beginners. These will give you a fair understanding of the actual process.

Before You Venture into Software Testing
Before you enter the field of software testing you need to gain thorough knowledge about the subject. For people with a background in IT, it should not be that difficult as you already know the different technical jargons and terminologies, though it would be better to take a course in software testing to get an in-depth knowledge about the concepts. However, those who are not from a technical background, it indeed can be quite difficult for them to understand the relevant terminologies.

The field of computer science and software engineering is very vast, you have to go through the basics to help you get started. Learn about the various terms used in software engineering and programming domains. Getting familiar with different technical jargons like, software, instructions, program, execution, bug/error, development and testing life cycles, etc. will help you gain enough momentum for working in the testing field.

You should also get an overview of the various development methodologies such as waterfall model, spiral model, incremental integration model, etc.

After you finish the first step, start reading some books on the various concepts and fundamentals of testing procedures and how to put them into practice. Understand the various types of testing, strategies, methodologies, etc. Even though most of the definitions/terminologies are simple and quite easy to interpret, you should try to create a small definition directory, which will be handy for you anytime you wish to go through. It is always a good idea to join a training institute to help you get a better understanding about the testing methodologies. Beginners can also choose to get a diploma in software testing from a recognized institute to take their career to new heights. At this point, you will have enough knowledge to be able to take a plunge in the field of software testing.

Overview of Software Testing
As a software tester, you need to design test cases and scripts and execute them to evaluate the results of different methods. For this you have to know what is a test case, the objectives of testing, testing methods, testing levels, and testing approaches. Let us try to understand them one by one.

To check if the software meets the needs of customers and conforms to the requirement specifications, and ensure the quality and correctness of the application.

Testing Methods:
There are two popular methods of software testing – white box testing and black box testing. In white box testing, the internal code structure or algorithm of the program is taken into consideration. The test cases are designed keeping in mind the internal structure or working of the program, whereas in black box testing the tester is not required to have any knowledge about the code or algorithm of the program i.e. it tests the functionality of the system.

Testing Levels:
Testing levels are classified into three categories: Unit testing, integration testing, and system testing. In unit testing the various units or components of the application are tested to check for the functionality of the code. In integration testing, the testing is carried out by integrating the different modules, whereas in system testing the entire system is tested for both functional and system requirements to check for the behavior of the system and how it functions at different levels.

Testing Approach:
The testing can be performed in two types of approaches – top-down and bottom-up. In top-down, the top level components are tested first going further down to the lower levels, whereas in bottom-up approach the lowest components are tested first gradually proceeding to the higher levels.
Test Case:
A test case is a set of conditions that are used to determine whether an application is working fine or not. Test cases can be positive or negative. Positive test cases are designed to check if the application functions the way it is expected to be, whereas negative test cases are designed to check how the system responds to unusual sequences of actions or unexpected values. Every requirement to be tested in an application must have at least two test cases – one positive and one negative.

How to be a Good Tester

» Expand your knowledge and understanding of the subject, depth of thinking, and be creative.
» Ensure that all the problems are identified and dealt with in the initial stages to save time.
» Develop your analytical and technical skills, and try to learn new tricks which will help you stand out in the crowd.
» Test the system to find more and more bugs, giving the best results. Improve the process by giving suggestions to the developers.
» You need to have excellent people skills and maintain good relations with the developers. The main aim is to develop a quality product.
» Looking for defects/errors in a system requires curiosity, a critical eye, good communication with the development team, and experience.
» If something doesn’t work, troubleshoot to find out the reason. This will develop your confidence and help you move forward in your career.
» Develop your interpersonal skills and be tactful. Communicate the defects to the developers in a constructive way.
» Learn to work independently. This helps one to be more effective in detecting errors or defects.
» Be organized and maintain your files and documents to record your findings.
» Keep up with the latest testing tools and techniques.
» Be ready to take risks and find errors or bugs which would not have been detected otherwise.
» Learn from your mistakes so that you do not repeat them in future.
Is it Necessary to Learn Automation Tools?
The software testing field is growing at a higher rate. Though manual testing helps find bugs it can be time-consuming. So a good knowledge of the automation tools will help you test the application faster making it more reliable. The more you know about automation tools, the better chances you stand to mark your presence in the industry over others. It also depends on the type of project you are working on. If your work demands you to understand and use an automation tool, you will have to learn it.

Few Pointers for Beginners

» You should have a fair idea about the requirement specifications before you begin with testing.
» Do not test a system without knowing the requirements. The reason is simple – you don’t know what should be there in the system and what should not be!
» You need to be aware of the software and hardware requirements of the application you are working with.
» Do not assume anything while testing a particular application.
» Follow the procedures and standards set by your organization in terms of testing tools and procedures, file maintenance, documentation, etc.
» Test the application from the customer’s point of view.
» If you really want to test a system no matter what the requirements are, then you surely can go ahead and do so. But then you will have to use only monkey testing. The reason for this is again the same. You don’t know anything about the system! So whatever you LOGICALLY think can be a potential bug in the system, you can report it.
» It is not possible to test a system completely as the requirements may be subject to change.
Software testing is a wide domain with ample career opportunities. However, know your abilities, interests, and skills before you decide to take the plunge in this field.

Tips to Find Free-to-download Antispyware and Antivirus Software

A spyware is a product which is introduced on your PC without you thinking about it and without your assent, which catches or takes fractional control over your connection with the PC.

The term ‘Spy’ ware also suggests that it makes a note of your behavior on the computer and it may often collect different types of personal information such as your web browser activity, keystrokes, etc. Spyware have also been known to steal credit card information. These are known as ‘Stealware’.

This kind of spyware also installs additional software which might install harmful viruses and open a variety of pop-up windows while you are surfing the Internet and then divert advertising revenues from those pop-up ads to a third party.

All this can eventually result in your computer slowing down. The spyware may also alter your computer’s settings which may cause your Internet speed to slow down.

When such spyware begins to display advertisements in pop-up windows, it is termed as ‘Adware’. Spyware differs from viruses and worms due to the fact that it doesn’t replicate itself.

Where Do Spyware Come From

Spyware can be downloaded automatically onto your computer from malicious websites. This is known as a ‘drive-by download’. The makers exploit the security vulnerabilities in the code of the browser.

Some spyware are installed onto your computer when you install another program, because they are bundled with the software program and you don’t know it. This process is known as ‘Piggybacking’. Some shareware programs are often known to do this activity.

Sometimes, it is presented as helpful software, for example, as a ‘web accelerator’ or something similarly helpful.

As such, anyone who surfs the Internet is vulnerable to have it installed on their computer. It is said that at least 9 out of 10 computers have some kind of a spyware installed on them, and most users are not even aware of it.

Free-to-download Software

However, there are solutions to these problems. Over the Internet, you will find many free to download software which will claim to be antispyware or antivirus. As you have read above, you might just be landing out of the frying pan and into the fire. It makes sense to double check the reliability and the usefulness of such a program before you download it onto your computer.

However, there are quite a few well-known brands which do offer free antispyware downloads. These include Windows Defender, Ad-Adware SE, Spybot – Search & Destroy, HijackThis, and Spy Sweeper.

Different antivirus companies also entered the fray and began adding antispyware features to their software. Most of these free downloads are available on the Internet.

Antispyware works just like your antivirus software, in that it can detect and remove spyware on your computer as and when it is being installed. Some also schedule a regular scan of your computer (daily, weekly, monthly) to detect and remove spyware installed on your computer.

Free Antispyware Downloads: What To Look For

So, before you go off and download a free antispyware software, there are certain things that you need to look for. They are:

  • Features: You need to see what features it offers to detect and remove the spyware. A good one will also offer a description of the spyware installed, so that you may decide whether you want to keep it or not. Another feature to look for is an ‘Undo’ feature for when you have made a mistake.
  • Reliability issues: Check if the company, website, or brand is reliable. You don’t want to end up downloading a spyware disguised as an antispyware! There are many data corruption risks associated with such unknowns. Better to be safe than sorry!
  • Install and Uninstall: Is it easy to install or uninstall the program? Or do you need to be a techie to do it?
  • Help: Does it feature a Help Section to which you can turn to in case you are in trouble or want to know more? Is the help detailed and really helpful to you?
    Real Time Effectiveness: Check if it offers real-time protection from spyware.
    Usability Issues: See if it is easy to use.
  • Customization: Can you customize the way it works? For example, can you select only a few areas of your computer to be scanned, or can you customize it to automate certain tasks? These things will make your life easier. Of course, this depends on your personal preferences with regards to the software.
  • Upgrade Issues: You need to know if it has free or paid upgrades. Some free to download software may offer only paid upgrades. It makes sense to check it out.

No matter what you choose or decide, spyware are a fact when you are looking at surfing the Internet. Getting a good antispyware is the best answer to combat the looming threat posed by such malicious products in order to protect your privacy from being invaded in such a sneaky manner.

Free Antivirus Software

It is essential to have an antivirus programming on either your portable PC or PC. It guarantees that your framework avoids vindictive operators that may hurt it, with the likelihood of either smashing or encountering steady mistakes and issues.

Has the performance of your PC degraded due to continuous virus attacks and other malware infections? Although the market boasts of various antivirus tools, there are free versions of such applications that can be downloaded for the safety of your computer.

What is an Antivirus Software?

Antivirus software is a computer application that is designed to identify, obstruct, and eliminate computer viruses or any other malware (harmful applications) that might be dangerous for your computer’s security.

How Does an Antivirus Software Actually Work?

Usually, any antivirus software will primarily scan your computer for presence of previously known viruses that are already defined in the virus dictionary. The computer scans through all your files to find out known viruses to identify suspicious behavior existing in any computer programs. Once detected, the infections can be deleted or quarantined according to the seriousness of the infection.

How to Use a Free Antivirus Software

  • Download your free antivirus software from a secure website, or else you can end up having additional virus infections and spyware attacks.
  • Choose a software program that is easy and quick to download.
  • Choose a program with simple and easy-to-use features that will spare you all the technical jargon, but will do a great job of virus removal and protection.
  • Make sure that the software is efficient in the basic removal and quarantine of virus and malware infection.
  • Look for other features, like live updates and removal of malware.
  • Many programs come with spyware and malware protection, choose the one that gives you the maximum benefits.

Top 5 Free Antivirus Software

AOL Active Virus Shield

This software is easy-to-use and is the most efficient antivirus program available for free. The virus detection rate is impressive. It also provides an active virus shield that guarantees real-time security for your computer. However, the only hurdle is that the installation of this software requires an email activation code that you can get only once you have registered online. So, the process might be time-consuming, but it is surely worth the wait.

Avira AntiVir

AntiVir is a relatively popular and efficient software that is very fast. However, this comes at the cost of thorough scanning. One of the disadvantages of Avira is the terribly annoying full-screen pop-ups that open up at random intervals. Overall, the virus detection and protection is good enough for it to be ranked at the second position in our list.

Norton Antivirus

Norton antivirus is one of the best applications that is extremely efficient for blocking viruses and spyware with advanced protection. It not only detects offline virus and spyware, but is also active in the background while you surf the net. One of the additional perks of this software is that it also scans and cleans all email and instant messaging attachments, which provides you safety from receiving viruses and also prevents the spreading of the infection to others. It also checks for new updates continuously and automatically blocks new and emerging threats.


This software, which shows sufficient and good enough virus detection and removal, comes with a 60-day trial, after which you must register. A completely free version of this antivirus software requires your email address. Although the performance is not bad, it is not easy-to-navigate and does not provide a progress bar that indicates the progress of the scanning process.

Panda Antivirus

Panda antivirus is an application that offers stable, quick, and long-term protection against all types of viruses and spyware. It does an efficient job with virus detection and removal. The daily updates of this application ensure you are protected against all the new threats that appear around the World Wide Web.