Pros Aggressive tools to keep your system clear of trouble.
Cons Massive system resources required to run.
Summary Let me say first off, I have been a long-time fan of the Symantec Utility family of programs, and that dates back to when Norton utilities was independant of this modern corporate sweep. Symantec has been buying up the competition, selectively adding to the suite with generally good selections over the years. My SystemWorks 2005 Premier update subscription ended and I thought hey, I'll just buy the new version since with the rebate program, it'll be less than a renewal. What a mistake!
Unfortunately the latest version, with a slightly reorganized line-up, will likely be a true nightmare of a program for anyone not having the absolutely latest hardware and frontloaded with tons of RAM, and big CPU cache.
Symantec has a bunch of web page real estate devoted to installation trouble and post-installation suggestion that you turn everything else off in your system to relieve system resources. That should be the first clue.
Do not believe the System Requirements. Symantec has now adopted the MS "methodology" of estimating hardware requirements. The standard MS "correction factor" is that you should double the numbers and go to the next higher units to get in the ball park. The same applies here.
I have a 2 year old machine with 1GB RAM and barely made it through installation hell (which, by the way, has been getting tougher and tougher with each new version of SystemWorks-since at least v2001 when I started to keep track. Probably relates to trying to secure the subscription against piracy. Ok, fine, but...) The install program bombed a couple of times trying to unload the "old" version....I always forget that part; Symantec updates between versions never go well. So I helped it out and dumped the 2005 version, including the Internet Security 2005, leaving me unprotected for a time. SW2006Premier couldn't finish the post-install updates on my machine-it ran several routines but never did get the security program updater and worm killer to update. I gave up after the third "install"-uninstall attempt. It didn't ever leave me with enough resource wiggle room to run anything else, like even the Windows Add/Remove Programs uninstall tool! Turning off all the little applets that make a Windows environment useful starts to get you there. But I never did find the magic balance point, even after dumping all of my startup stuff in a "clean" boot up configuration. At that point you have to wonder what the point of operating the computer is: is it to get some work done in the Windows pseudo multi-tasking mode or is it to just open up a computing session and hit the reset button after it freezes in opening the Start menu? What fun! I didn't dare install the companion Internet Security I bought for a complete update round. That goes back to the store unopened.
Pest control: No longer does SystemWorks come with it's own uninstaller on board. You have to download that separately from Symantec...if you can get your machine to run long enough. That took me about 3-4 runs before it cleans out about 80% of the file load. The rest you can do by hand. Stuff gets imbedded pretty deep and spread all over the hard drive with this puppy.
Sorry Symantec. You lost a loyal subscriber with this one. I've gotta go find a new tool kit until you re-engineer this dog to have less overhead. Peter N. must be cringing in embarassment.
Pros None At All
Cons Erases Windows System Restore, blocks legitimate websites
Summary You load this thing up and all seems fine.
Then try going to Yahoo...it's blocked you can't get into it.
Poking around in the settings is a nightmare. Finally, unchecking anything that even resembles the word yahoo in the "worm" control seems to fix the problem.
Then when you start surfing you see other weird things going on...chunks of webpages missing, images not loading correctly, like nobody knows how to code to HTML anymore. This evil software seems to be just randomly blocking certain sites without any rhyme or reason.
OK, screw this S**T, I say. I'm uninstalling it. That doesn't fix the problem. Go to trusty "System Restore" which has always saved me in the past from crappy software and find the that "Norton Go Back" has erased every previous Windows restore point as it installs. There is no way to reset your computer back to before this software has been installed.
Go to uninstall, reinstall, and the reinstall doesn't ask you for your software key - the thing has left stuff on your drive authenticating your purchase even after it uninstalled. Also completely uncool.
So now I have this damn thing running in my computer, with every "worm detector" switched off so that I can actually browse the internet, my Windows Firewall disabled (it screwed that up somehow also), and, other than the virus protection, I would have been better off without even owning this thing. What a waste of money.
I'll run like this for a little while, until I can bother to spend the time to do a FULL FORMAT OF MY HARD DRIVE AND CLEAN INSTALL OF WINDOWS FROM SCRATCH, THANKS TO THIS SOFTWARE. Avoid this like the plague it is. Installing this software is effectively equivalent to a bad virus attack.
Pros It arrived in a HUGE cardboard box that my toddler really liked...
Cons This kind of stuff second-rate amateur half-baked stuff should be banned as ‘cruel and unusual punishment’.
Summary As an average Joe I would reasonably expect that when I buy a product from a big “name” company like Symantec that their products might actually work as advertised without the need of a degree in computer science, as a result of the complete and likely deliberate lack of actual and useful support from Symantec, in order to rectify the chaos and corruption their “product” wreaked on my humble home PC. Is this too much to ask for in the “high” tech world we now inhabit in 2006? No it isn’t! But Symantec is obviously happy to rip off its unwitting customers/victims and make it near impossible to actually get a refund (still waiting…) Oh yes, I followed all the instructions to the letter during installation and set up (as you do!) but I just could not get LiveUpdate to work. After a while and AFTER correctly registering the “product” I kept getting reminders that I needed to update my subscription with a neat little path to follow telling you to pay XYZ dollars. I wonder how many people accidentally payed again, thinking that maybe that was the reason this heap of rubbish didn’t work. “Sorry, you’ll need to tell us our CEO’s moms brothers wife’s mother second dogs vets wife’s maiden name and the non existent password before we can process your claim that we double charged you… ok?” Symantec is in my personal humble opinion a fly by night operation and this product nothing more than a cheap prop in the game of fleecing unsuspecting PC owners of their hard earned cash.
Pros only1 when I uninstalled this thing!
Cons conflicts with other apps, causes system crashes and prevents clean shutdowns, ect
Summary I have a stronger than avg knowledge of computer systems and software as well as a nice power pc,,, (p4,ATI X850, 3gig RAM, ect)
I have used Norton Sys Works and Virus since it came out and have been a very happy customer until the new 2006 version came out. After purchasing just 2 months ago I have had so many issues with the Nortons products and my computer that I re-formated my hard drive three times and started with a fresh install. Well little did I know that the user agreement prevents you from activating (activation key required to run)more than 3 times. I was told that there is no exception and that there system shows I have activated it 3 times. Because of that,, even if they are no longer in use,,, I have to purchase a new lic.
Now in the old Norton way customer satisfaction matters,, but let me tell you it doesn't today!
Bottom line it always caused start up and shut down problems,,, it conflicted with 2 or 3 other devices including my Creative Audigy sound card and my HP 2600 Printer....
I will never,, ever buy another Symantec product again.
Im so disapointed because the 2000-2005 products and customer service were great!
Oh and don't think your going to get to talk to someone that can read something besides a script or speak english.
Pros Nice yellow box
Cons Everything -- Customer Service and Application
Summary This is for SystemWorks Basic 2007 -- I got this with IS 2007 and it was the worst decision I could of done. SystemWorks never configured properly, especially after many attempts at contacting Symantec. Problem never was corrected using the Registry Editor or Auto Removal Tool that they have. I paid for this product in December of 2006 and I finally got through to Customer Service (01/18/07). Getting through to someone in Techincal Support or Customer Service is a pain. Wait time lasted over an hour. Completely avoid Symantec at all costs.