New Tablet PC? Make it Secure and Boost Performance for Free!

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  1. Barry J. Doyle

    Barry J. Doyle Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Chapter 1 - A New Tablet PC!

    So youjust spent a few hundred bucks on anew Tablet PC - the latest and greatest in fast and efficient computing. You fire it up for the first time and are greeted by your "ninety day trial" of Norton Antivirus to keep your machine protected right from the start. (Or you didn't get any included trial antivirus software, so you just fork out another $39.00+for a one-year subscription with updates).Great, virus problem solved!

    After using your new tablet for a few days, perhaps you notice that it takes more time to boot up then you'd prefer. Or you notice that your new technological wonder randomly "slows down". Maybe your mouse pointer stutters for a few seconds. Or does bootingseem a bit too sluggish for a brand new machine? Oh and by the way, what's with all those little icons down there in the Windows task bar? Do you really need all that "stuff"?

    Chapter 2 - "Friendly" Advice

    You read up on some forums abouthow "reformatting your hard drive" and reinstalling a fresh copy of Windows will make your tablet run so much better. Your techie friends tell you "there's a bunch of bloatwear on your computer that you can't get rid of unless you reformat your drive and start from scratch". So all you need is a few hours of your time and some knowledge about device drivers and your "new" Tablet PC will run the way it should right? Well MAYBE. But is this the right way to go? Read on for an alternative to this potentially frustrating goose chase that may lead you right back to where you started - being forced to reimage your computer with the manufacturer's recovery disk.

    Chapter 3 - A Better Solution!

    Perhaps you are the adventurous type, a Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator or work for NASA. Reformatting your tablet is a piece of cake. Well then we say "go for it"! But if you're like the other 99% of the population, you just want your new computer to work the best it can, stay fast and secure without a big hassle. Sound like you? Read on...

    Whether you just purchased a new Tablet PC, already have one or plan tobuy soon, our tips willsurelyhelp you to get all the security and performance you need without a big hassle.Here we share the best software tools, antivirus software and Windows optimization tipsthat you need. Best of all, you don't need to spend a dime!

    The Plan

    When it comes to establishingbasic security of your data and privacy for your Tablet PC, you need two basic tools.

    1. Antivirus Software

    2. Antispyware Software

    Your tablet may or may not have come with these tools. If it did, it is most likely that they are only trial or limited versions. Let's first touch base with your Antivirus software. You have probably used Norton Antivirus before and if your machine came preloaded with the trial version it seems prudent to simply go with that solution. However, this comes at a cost. Not only will you be up to payfor a subscription renewal in 3 months, but the fact is that the "industry trusted" Norton Antivirus slows down your computer. Not just a bit, but a lot. Think that'sa necessarytrade off to keep your computer safe and virus-free? Think again.

    [​IMG]

    Our recommendation? Computer Associates eTrust EZ Antivirus. Did you know that you can get a one year subscription for free? Oh and guess what. CA's eTrust EZ Antivirus just happens to be what Microsoft uses on their own PC's within the company. I don't know about you, but besides being essentialy "free", nobody knows what protects a Windows-based PC better than Microsoft! In final, this great solution is significantly less invasive then the others like Norton, McAfee and Panda. You would be amazed how much better your computer can run without being bogged down by resource hoggingsolutions byNorton or McAfee.

    You can download your free copy of eTrust EZ Antivirushere.

    Moving right along, the next essential you will need is an "AntiSpyware" application. There are many great choices of AntiSpyware software out there, but they are often costly and may be taxing on your system.

    Our recommendation? Microsoft Windows AntiSpyware (Beta). This is one of the best things we've seen from Microsoft for free! You will enjoy three benefits from this application.

    1. Solid, realtime protection from troublesome spyware.
    2. Free, consistent updates.
    3. Bonus: Easily optimize your Windows startup with a built-in tool!

    You can download your free copy of Windows AntiSpyware here.


    How to OptimizeWindows Startupwith Windows AntiSpyware:

    [​IMG]
    On the top right corner of the Windows AntiSpyware home window, you'll see "Advanced Tools". Click Advanced Tools.


    [​IMG]
    On the next screen, click on "System Explorers".


    [​IMG]
    Under "Applications" in the tree menu on the left, click on "Startup Programs".


    [​IMG]
    You will see a list of programs that start with your computer. Here you can choose unnecessary applications and block them from your Windows startup. Highlight applications you wish to block in the list, then click "Block this startup program" in the blue area on the right side of the window.


    [​IMG]
    You'll be prompted to confirm your choice.


    [​IMG]
    Finally, the dialog reassures you that the selected program has been blocked and that this process is reversible.

    By blocking unnecessary programs from your Windows startup, you will have a clean booting system that won't be bogged down by unwantedautomatic updates and "bloatware" preinstalled by the manufacturer.


    Final Words

    Should you choose to go with the recommendations we have outlined in this article, you will get the most out of your Tablet PC without spending any money beyond the cost of purchase. Additionally, you will be protected from malicious code in the form of viruses or spyware AND you can stop unwanted programs from hogging the RAM and CPU power you paid to use your way - not for the bloatware your OEM decided to stick you with right out of the box.

    Barry

     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  2. tabletjunkie

    tabletjunkie Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I'd add a number 3 to your list Barry, and that is a Personal Firewall solution, for outbound program protection.

    I've recently been looking for a new security solution myself and decided to try the latest version of the first AV program I'd ever bought (many years ago). I thought it might help to share my experience with PC-cillin Internet Security 2006. It has a proven AntiVirus solution, Firewall, Anti-Spyware and Anti-Phishing built into one tidy interface (quite a bit more than what I remember from the last version I used). Although it's not free like the AntiVirus program you mentioned, Trend Micro does provide a 30-day Free Trial (fully functional), and a 50% upgrade discount:

    http://www.antivirus.com
    (by the way, Trend Micro's programs are also what many corporate customers use).

    As you mentioned, my experience has also shown that Norton Antivirus does slow down the system quite a bit, so I tested out boot times with PC-cillin using a clean install of WinXP -- and was blown away by the results! From BIOS Post to WinXP startup music, I saw a time increase of 0-1 second! I have previously never come across a security software that was this unintrusive.

    Once again, the Firewall is important in not only blocking incoming network threats, but also for outbound protection in case you do get a malicious program (WinXP's built-in firewall is only good for inbound protection so far as I know). In addition to being a complete security suite, PC-cillin also delivers where it counts -- the previous version won CNET's Editor's Choice and had a higher rating than Norton, McAfee, and ZoneAlarm's solutions. Trend Micro seems to have put some work in and included innovative features like Wi-Fi Intrusion Detection (which seems particularly apt for this Tablet PC discussion), and Firewall Profiles (so you can have different profiles when connected to your wireline home network vs. a wireless hotspot somewhere). The Firewall also seems to have done a good job of recognizing almost all of my internet-enabled programs, thus saving me the headache of clicking "Allow" for every single program that sends out a TCP/IP packet (I've had that experience too).

    The AntiVirus also offers Mail Scanning for email clients (incoming, outgoing, and surprisingly, webmail); there's an Anti-Spam module for Outlook; and the Anti-Phishing solution contains a periodic check for Microsoft Windows and Office vulnerabilities. I haven't had a chance to try out all of these features yet, but they do on the surface seem to be well developed.

    I'd encourage anyone who's interested to download the Trial from the link above and give it a test drive -- as I am now.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  3. tabletjunkie

    tabletjunkie Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Here are some screenshots:


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    Attached Files:

  4. poetdante

    poetdante Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    how do you know microsoft uses it? maybe microsoft does not need more security because it, like my online school system, monitors its employees' computers very closely. at my school, the people who take care of them can take complete controle of any single computer. nothing gets in them. they block certain websites very effectivly, and they start up relativly fast. I have a tablet and I have norton. my brother has worked for a relativly large university as well as Humana (statewide health insurance manager) as a software developer, accountant, and security manager. he says use Norton because it works and don't be too willing to try things for free. I ask you, why is this free AV program $30 cheaper than norton? I will ask my bro about this AV program and try to get back to you on what he says. but as I see him rarely, mostly if there is a network problem where I live, it may be a while. also, please site the source that told you Microsoft uses this AV program.
     
  5. Brian

    Brian Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    We know MSFT uses it because they told us they do. I think Norton is a bloated application that slows machines, but if it works for you, that's fine. I'd much rather have a light and free solution. CA has a corporate version where they make the big dollars from. That's how most of the free home use AV programs work.
     
  6. Barry J. Doyle

    Barry J. Doyle Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    A note on Trend Micro's PC-cillan products; tablejunkie is making a great suggestion. I have a personal copy of Trend Micro PC-cillin (IS 2005) and found that it is fast and does not bog the system. The main reason I choose ezTrust by CA at this point is that it is essentially free. I would whole-heartedly recommend PC-cillin Internet Security to those who are willing to spend the $$ and need the enhanced software firewall.
     
  7. Parjoe

    Parjoe Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Another great free firewall is ZoneAlarm. I've been using it for years without any problems. It's real clear and easy to use.

    http://www.zonelabs.com/store/content/home.jsp

    Apparently they make spyware removal stuff too, but it's not free.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  8. Namssorg

    Namssorg Industrial Designer

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    I just wanted to say thank you so much Barry (and everyone else)! I only discovered this site a few weeks ago when researching tablets. With all of the great info I have found here I was able to find the tablet that was perfect for my needs. Not only that, but now it's running at its very best too!

    I've always hated how much Norton slowed my system down, I went back and even replaced the stuff I was using on my desktop with these lighter programs.

    If it wasn't for all of the info on this site, I'd have ended up with a tablet that I was -ok- with- but instead my expectations have been exceeded, and I now have something that performs even a little bit better than my desktop!

    Tweaked to perfection you might say. Time to make a restore point!!
     
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