Pros previous reputation as having a quality product
Cons Difficult to install, noticeably slows computer, expensive tech support hard to understand
Summary This product has been a nightmare from the start. Has conflicts with Windows XP SP2, the Symantec website has instructions on how to get rid of current viruses so that you can load the software, but their instructions don't work. Fortunately they are willing to have someone that barely speaks English tell you the real way to get rid of the virus over the phone for only an additional $69.95. Once installed the software burns alot of available resources and has slowed my computer considerably. Try McAfee, Zone Alarm or any other product before even thinking about this one.
Pros Frequently updated and probably effective
Cons Slow to operate, hogs the memory, hard to configure
Summary Originally I intended to prolong my old NIS 2002 subscription, but instead I decided to upgrade to NIS 2005. What a mistake.
Well, the installation is somewhat better perhaps, and it far less reboots and live-update downloads to get this new version completely updated and operating.
However, this creature is a huge memory and performance hog. The basic application, "ccApp.exe" takes no less than 90MB of memory. Opening the application's screen takes an aditional 40MB. All of this for a few screens with lots of unimportant graphic effects and many obscure checkboxes.
I don't know what got into the programmers at Norton. Their user interfaces have always been buggy, slow and memory consuming but this has gone too far. Why don't they learn from products such as Photoshop or Firefox, which have a far more sophisticated user interface, yet are able to perform without taking so much system resources?
Well, if that's how the symantec programmers write the GUI, I doubt if they know how to write their Antivirus engine. Well, I have no doubt their engine works, and it does block viruses (no doubt about the previous versions of 2002 and 2001), but at 90MB memory footprint it seems completely obvious that they don't know how to write an efficient code.
The Norton Anti Spam is included in this package, but don't get your hopes high: it is almost impossible to configure. It shoots down legitimate mail, and even though I had friendly addresses in the "allowed list" - it keeps flagging them down as Spam.
As for the "Support"... Well, they have a huge online knowledge base which is rather difficult to navigate through... But what do you do when your problem is not listed? I'm a very experienced user, and it took me more than an hour's worth of trying to navigate through their site and find the simple form where you describe your problem and hope to get an answer. What a futile waste of time - even then, they only provide answers from their knowledge base, and they never bother to consider the problem could be genuine, and that a bug is possible in their system. Oh and of course, the ultimate solution for all problems is "Reinstall NIS 2005". Does anybody have another hour to spare?
Symantec's hardward specification for this product is "300MHz processor or higher and
128 MB of RAM". Well, I've tested it with a 800 MHz processor and 256 MB and it brought my PC to a halt. NIS worked far better on a P4 1.4GHz equipped with 1.5GB RAM, but still - the interface is slow and the memory consumption is outstanding.
In any case, you should look for alternatives. I will return my product and request a refund. A complete waste of time, memory and CPU power. I gave this product a "1" mark not because it is completely bad (hey it catches viruses! it blocks net attacks!) but rather because Symantec deserves a slap on the hand. They deserve the real shock of customers leaving them. They need to get their heads together and come up with a fresh new software, and a better programming quality.
Pros Easy to set up and use
Cons Incompatibility issues with XP-SP2 security updates
Summary I've used Norton IS for several years. I installed the 2005 version, which worked well for about 1 month. That is, until I downloaded a security update for SP2. Subsequently, I could no longer update core program components via Live Update, but could update the virus definitions using LU. I regularly used Intelligent Update at the Symentec site for updates also. Had an on-going dialogue with Symantec support, at first via email, the last one via their new 24/7 phone support. In every correspondence, they went through troubleshooting by the book, but ultimately suggested I re-install the app, and referred me to MS KnowledgeBase articles. I re-installed thrice, and it just got worse, telling me that my subscription had expired, which had the net result of preventing me from using IU. The telephone support I got during the week of April 10 was the last straw. I could barely understand the individual, located in southern India (I work with several first generation Indian immigrants, and we have no communication issues). She did go through troubleshooting by the book, but when she suggested I uninstall SP2, I knew the end of my days as a Norton IS user were over. Not that I am a proponent of XP, which certainly has more than it's share of issues. Bottom line: I dumped the NIS program, and every file associated with Norton and Symantec (Many remained after the dump). I purchased a program from Computer Associates, EzArmor, which will end up having cost me $10 after I recieve my rebate. Seamless installation, much more interactive than NIS, much more detailed info regarding attacks (if you want it). It updates the virus definitions virtually daily, as well as updating core components, both done automatically. I'm very happy with it thus far. Also downloaded MS AntiSpyware Beta, and everything has integrated very nicely. Submitted my complaints to Symantec, regarding what I experienced and where I have gone. I've had no reply in 2 weeks; Bye Norton!
Pros Solid past reputation, up to date antivirus definitions
Cons Nightmare to install, noticable slowdown in boot times, noticable slowdown in normal system operation, occasional system hangs, support stinks, some features don't work without a lot of effort
Summary Well what can I say other than I'm extremely dissapointed. I've been a loyal Norton, and then Symantec customer, ever since Peter Norton came out with his drive utilities back in the early 80's. Never have I had the problems with any of his, or Symantec's, products that I've had with Internet Security 2005.
I am licensed on 3 systems for this product (I'm a glutton for punishment) and have had problems on all 3. Two of them run XP Pro (SP2) and the other is on Windows ME.
On the ME system I have spent roughly 30-40 hours trying to get the user account feature to work the way it did on previous versions. No luck. I finally just gave up and said the heck with it. Since this system was primarily used by my younger kids I disconnected it from the Internet (problem solved - yea!).
On the XP systems I was locking up once a day. The CCApp process would start out taking 20 MB or so of memory and progressively would get up to around 90 MB before the system would freeze. Once my system would not reboot at all and I ended up restoring my C: drive from a recent backup. In day to day operations my system has been noticably slower even when things seem to be running correctly. Called tech support and talked with some guy in India about these problems. It's interesting talking with someone who is A) hard to understand, B) probably can't understand what I was trying to convey, and C) is trying to get me off the phone as soon as possible. You may wonder what the resolution to my problem was. Well, I was told to make sure my LiveUpdate was enabled and to check for updates over the upcoming weeks. No further explanation. About a month later Symantec did release a patch so my system only locks up occasionally (once a week or so).
My smaller XP system has 512 Gb of memory installed and normally I have 150-200 Gb available after a reboot and starting a few select applications. After installing Internet Security 2005 it is routine for me to see less than 60 GB free under the same circumstances. At times I have checked and the available physical memory has been close to zero.
I wouldn't be at all surprised if Symantec had outsourced some of its development to India based on what I'm seeing with this product.
So Symantec as a reward for your poor product quality and support I'll be looking somewhere else for my utility software. You may have my $69.00 (X 3), but you will forever lose my business. Adios!
Pros Effective at identifying threats
Cons Consumes resources; slows DSL down; awful customer service.
Summary Having been a Norton used for several years, I was pleased that Norton Internet Security 2005 came pre-loaded on my new notebook (Compaq w/AMD Athlon 3200, 1GB RAM, etc.). In the past, I had accepted the resource consumption by the application as part of the sense of security.
After the first day of using the notebook, I noticed my surfing on DSL was considerably slower than my old notebook running the 2002 version of Norton. Grudgingly, I accepted this with the notion that I would dig further into the problem later.
One morning, I was confronted with having to do a system restore (long story) and tried to run LiveUpdate the following day. I received an error which caused me to spend the next two days attempting to download a fix, then reinstalling Norton several times from OEM disc and finally calling Symantec and faced with a choice of $3.95/minute or $29.95/occurrence. I chose the latter and 90 minutes and $30 poorer, I hung up on the rude "customer service" tech who merely had me do over what I had done prior. Though not a computer "pro" by any means, I was appalled at how I was treated.
In my anger, I removed ALL remnants of Norton and installed PC-cillin which co-exists peacefully with Zone Alarm. I've had the program for about a month and I am very content with the application. My internet connectivity has definitely sped up and I have no problem with viruses.