Longtime readers of Terry’s Computer Tips will know that I’ve been a user of a particular anti-virus, anti-malware, and firewall suite since the time that it was marketed as individual products.
In the last few months, my frustration with a delay from a "not responding," problem in Windows finally convinced me to try changing the anti-virus suite to see if that made a difference — it didn’t. The AV suite wasn’t the problem.
That was really a stab in the dark, as I was pretty sure that the AV wasn’t the issue, as I saw the "[program name] is not responding" problem on Windows XP (back when I used a computer that had XP on it) and Windows 7 computers that not only didn’t use the same protection software, they weren’t even on the same network.
So, what’s the purpose of this preamble. To let you know that I wan’t dissatisfied with my old anti-virus suite (and still use it on some of my computers), but that the situation pushed me to try something else.
I tried one alternative, but had a few too many blue-screens in the week that it was on my computer. It came off, and I installed Webroot SecureAnywhere in its place.
Webroot SecureAnywhere takes a different approach to anti-virus, anti-malware and, to an extent, firewall functions. Instead of working with signature files that are always being updated, SecureAnywhere takes a more heuristic approach. It protects by paying attention to the actions of a [rpgra,, and blocking certain types of activities, or at least asking if you want to allow the function.
Instead of a huge file to install and a big multi-megabyte signature file to download, SecureAnywhere installs quickly from a relatively small file.
The Webroot SecureAnywhere main screen looks like this.
Note: These example images are from my notebook computer, which I do not use a lot, so you won’t see a lot of activity reported. I’ve been using Webroot SecureAnywhere Internet Security Plus on my desktop and my notebook for about three months. The license allows use on three devices.
Notice how fast the scans are! However, there’s a reason that this is so much faster than a scan by the typical antivirus or antimalware scanner.
Since SecureAnywhere is not signature-based, its main function is on access of the files — when they’re opened or executed. The scan that I normally use focuses on rootkits, trojans and other threats.
The next image is the menu screen that we get when we click on the cog icon, located to the right of the PC Security heading.
This screen lets us control the scan operations. We can trigger a scan now. We can also click on the Custom Scan button at the bottom. That allows us to choose a quick scan a full scan, a "Deep"scan or a custom stan scanning only certain files and folders.
At the top right of this screen and the initial screen, we find a cog icon labelled Advanced Settings.
It opens the following control screen.
This screen and the next three should give you an idea of the level of control that you will have with Webroot SecureAnywhere.
Along the left side are headings, each of which has a set of options you can select or unselect.
Most of the available options are checked by default.
The Bottom Line:
I found Webroot SecureAnywhere to be a fast-to-install, easy-to-use protection suite. I tried it specifically because it’s antivirus-only version had received very good reviews and awards. It does not seem to overwhelm the user with messages and choices.
Configuration options are at a high level, without the fine granularity of user control that some other security suites offer. Or, if SecureAnywhere has more fine controls, I haven’t found them. Typical users should be pleased with the program. Advanced users may find it frustrating because of its ease of use design, with limited fine controls.