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What does everyone feel is necessary to have for the best possible security results? This of course includes anti-virus, anti-malware, firewalls, and others forms of security software and hardware.

Clearly the most important is the operating system. I look forward to hearing everyone's replies.

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first thoughts when i read your question is that we are pretty much always bombarded with having safe internet practices such as don't open email's that have attachments form unknown names or sources, don't visit porn sites etc. etc. the emphasis has been if you have a good layered security system that includes firewalls, anti-spam, anti-virus, and the like, the OS will stay healthy. you can visit literally a hundred different forums and you will find most will have a greater emphasis on security related topics rather then topics on how to maintain a healthy OS. when a forum is found specifically for a OS most of the subject matter will be how to fix something that is broken or tweaks/hacks on the OS but hardly anything on how to maintain that healthy OS.

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The "best" possible is to pull out the power cord. :D

Or pull out the network cord and keep it in a faraday cage (electromagnetic shielded room).

The most important (for me) to keep my computer safe is to not let my mom (siblings and other malware-mangets) or anyone near it.






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Short of not using your computer, ala Eldmannen, the best possible security would involve browsing from a Linux VM, or a live CD or DVD - not that I feel that's necessary for normal browsing.

With a typical Windows setup, I feel you're adequately protected with a firewall, AV, 2 or 3 anti-spyware scanners (maybe 1 with real-time protection), system monitor (such as WinPatrol, Arovax Shield, or even the despised Defender), rootkit scanner, and the occasional online scan to double-check. I don't use anti-spam because I only use webmail, I'm not sure having an email client on your machine is a good idea at all.

Don't browse with IE or any IE shell (like Maxthon or Avant); I think Firefox is the best choice - adding the NoScript extension provides a significantly higher level of security (though I admit it can be annoying).

Of course, the user is the most important factor in security; follow those safe internet practices M.P. talked about - if you're going to visit porn and other dicey sites, see the first paragraph.

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I know little about hardware to be honest, apart from the fact that a router is nearly always best. Other than that, ideally, the ebst OS is Linux, but as most people use Windows, I suggest really good powerful software, which for me has been:

Anti-Spyware: Spybot - Search and Destroy, SpywareBlaster and Windows Defender (Included in Windows Vista)

Anti-Virus: Avast Home Edition

Browser: Firefox

CD/DVD Burning: AVStoDVD, InfraRecorder and Windows Media Player 11 (Included in Windows)

Disk Management: CCleaner and Disk Defragmenter (Included in Windows)

DVD Ripping: DVD Decryptor and DVD Shrink

File-Sharing: BitTorrent and Frostwire

Firewall: Comodo Firewall

FTP: FileZilla

Graphics: Paint.NET

Instant Messenger: Windows Live Messenger with A-Patch

Media Players/Codecs: K Lite Mega Codec Pack, Quicktime Alternative and Windows Media Player 11 (Included in Windows)

Office: OpenOffice or Microsoft Office 2007 Enterprise

PC Visuals: XPize or Vize

Technical Tools: Dial-a-fix, HijackThis and Unlocker

Utilities: 7Zip, Dizzy, Foxit Reader and TuneUp Utilities 2008

Web Program: Notepad ++

Only TuneUp Utilities 2008 and Microsoft Office 2007 Enterprise costs money from the list above though you can use the brilliant OpenOffice as an alternative for MS Office.

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  • Administrator

The top option is a hardware firewall; that simply cannot be beaten. A router's firewall shouldn't really be used since that's not the primary purpose of a router.

I always keep my Windows up to date, though I run a software firewall. I prefer to see the incoming/outgoing for my computer so I can choose to block an application if I'm unsure what it is.

I don't run any antivirus, as I don't download any questionable files. If I ever do, I upload them to Jotti or VirusTotal.

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ahh! i misread and didn't understand your question correctly. the best possible security is you. knowing what you download and staying away from bad sites is the best possible way to maintain a good and clean OS. i wish there was an all in one security application that has it all and be effective. currently i have my router firewall, Comodo Pro firewall, Avir AntiVirus, and Windows Defender. to have one single program that does everything would be great.

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Forgot some of what I meant to say - yes, a hardware firewall is the best kind; and keeping everything updated is crucial. You have to run those programs, too - not just have them sitting around.

As for doing without some of the security layers, there's the question of whether anyone else is ever going to use your computer. If you're the only one that will ever touch it, then you can rely on the user's caution. Otherwise, you'd best have all your shields up.

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  • 7 months later...
  • Administrator

Mark Russinovich has discussed in detail that cleaning the registry is pointless.

A few hundred kilobytes of unused keys and values causes no noticeable performance impact on system operation. Even if the registry was massively bloated there would be little impact on the performance of anything other than exhaustive searches.

Mark's TechNet blog

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Thanks, RTZ - though your first link is to the wrong program.

Forgot that I do have a link - it's on the Top Freeware Picks page. In fact, both of those are.

Nice thing about Auslogics Registry Defrag, it creates a restore point automatically before it defrags. I've never had any problems caused by defragging the registry, but I've heard of it happening - so it's a good feature.

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  • 3 months later...

My current Setup of Security Apps

Realtime Protection

Vipre Antivirus + Antispyware


Defense Wall

On Demand

Hazard Shield


Advanced System Protector

Other ( Emergency Malware Killers and useful Ultilities)

( AMT ) Anti-Malware Toolkit

Disk Maintenace Utilities

Disk Defragger


Registry Cleaner

Comodo Registry Cleaner

Drive Cleaners


ATF Cleaner

PureRa 1.3

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  • 3 weeks later...

On my home computers I don't use anything as they are pretty well maintained.

I do however have avast on my laptop after there was an outbreak of a USB drive virus at the university that I attend. I was lucky enough not to get infected by it but I probably would of had I used my drive then.

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