Eset Smart Security 5 Review: Internet Security Software
|Visit Eset Smart Security 5 Website|
|If you aren't in to all the bells and whistles and just want the simplest security software that will protect your computer, ESET is your best bet.|
If what you want is simple security software without all the bells and whistles, then Eset is the software for you. The problem is, even without the bells and whistles the software is still difficult to maneuver. But Eset's high performance in its antiviral and anti-malware protection more than make up for its less-than-stellar interface.
Installation was a little bit tricky with Eset Smart Security 5. First, we never received our registration email, and had to email Eset's support team to get them to send it. Then we had issues installing it because of another security software program that we had already uninstalled from the computer. On the plus side, customer support was quick to answer our call — even though they were experiencing high call volume — and addressed our issues quickly and effectively. We were only on the phone with them for a total of five minutes.
After the problems were resolved, the software easily installed and was ready to use after a few minor questions from Eset.
Eset decided to make their simple interface even simpler, although there aren't too many drastic changes over the last model. There are only five basic choices on the main screen: Home, Computer Scan, Update, Setup, Tools, and Help and Support, all of which are pretty self-explanatory.
Although Eset's interface is simple, it is not always easy to use. It's not as intuitive as you would think, many of the features seem hidden and there are many redundancies. While BitDefender and Kaspersky list all of their features on the main page, Eset sets up a treasure hunt for you to find the features you need.
The main problem with Eset's interface is that it needs too much attention. In the few short hours we were testing the system, alerts and notifications continued to pop up over and over again. The pop-ups slowed when we switched to gamer mode, which turns off most notifications so that you can play video games more easily, but if the user doesn't know to do this, it can become a headache.
Antivirus and Antimalware/Performance
This is where Eset shines. It scored 3 out of 3 stars in both AV-Comparatives' Performance test and the Whole-Product Dynamic Test, which takes into account the sum of the product's parts in protecting PCs. In the past, it's averaged 2 and a half stars on all AV-Comparatives' antivirus and antimalware tests and 3 out of 3 stars on all the performance test. It also detected and protected against all the test viruses we used in our testing.
While Eset isn't big on the extra features, it has started adding features that you find standard in other security suites, probably to keep up with the competition. And the features that it does have work very well. One such feature is Eset's smart firewall, that records how you use your computer and does its best not to block programs or websites that you frequently use.
Eset finally has gamer mode, which turns off most notifications so that you can play video games more easily, so the system can run almost silently, which is good considering how active the software can be. Eset has also added reputation features to its cloud-based detection, a feature that most other suites also employ. The reputation features pull data from other Eset users to gauge the reliability of the files you are downloading, based on their experience with the files. Eset has also added parental control features and updated its antispam feature.
If all you want is strong protection from viruses and malware without the extra features, Eset is the best software for you, especially at the price. ($59.99 for one year, which is cheaper than most other suites.) The 2012 version of Eset steps up by adding standard features on other suites, but still lacks when it comes to the user-friendly interface.
System requirements: Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP
AV-Comparatives ratings on a variety of tasks related to the antivirus and anti-malware product. "Known Malware" refers to a product's ability to catch pre-identified viruses, while "Unknown Malware" refers to its ability to detect brand new viruses. Older scores may reflect previous software versions.
AV-Comparatives. Score indicates overall effectiveness in a variety of tests over time. † indicates that company did not take part in all tests. See reviews for details.*Averaged 2010/2011 scores for each company's antivirus/anti-malware product by independent testing agency
**Score indicates impact of antivirus product on system performance. Average of performance tests by AV-Comparatives.
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