Friday, May 26, 2006

Enterprise Antivirus Solutions?

My company's Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition subscription is about to expire, so I figured this would an opportune time to examine other antivirus options.

I've used a number of antivirus solutions on the enterprise (or at least small-to-medium business) level, including Symantec, Trend Micro, CA, and Panda. I've fooled around on the personal computing level with some of the other options, such as McAfee and Grisoft. I sort of inherited the existing Symantec setup at this company, and it has performed relatively well for us, purely on the level of virus scanning. We had an issue about a year ago with a zero-day virus infection, but one we isolated the executable, Symantec quickly gave us a Rapid Release definition to detect and remove it.

On the other hand, I'm not that thrilled with the centralized administration Symantec offers in this product. The deployment options are kind of klunky, and the ability to determine which computers on the network need the software installed is somewhat inadequate. These are minor annoyances that could certainly deal with if necessary, if the rest of the product is satisfactory.

The one thing I have a major problem with is the performance of the application. A while back (I believe it was with version 10.0.1000), there was a bug that caused computers to boot up extremely slowly due to a startup scan that slowed everything down. I believe the solution was to upgrade to version 10.0.1007, which disabled this scan at startup. I'm not sure if this has been rectified in later versions, but it seems to me that a startup scan would be a good thing, if it didn't hobble performance so much.

In any event, if I didn't think there was anything better out there, I would probably just grin and bear it. But I have had some very good experiences with Trend Micro (on a smaller scale, mind you), and Panda has been highly recommended by some of my peers. I'm not too crazy about CA, just because of some bad experiences with Cheyenne AV back in the Windows NT days.

Any recommendations? Or does anyone have any good resources, such as product comparisons and reviews from a reputable source? I tried searching for reviews, but most of the comparisons I can find are no more recent than 2003.

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