Vipre Antivirus and Antispyware by GFI Software runs on Windows 2000, Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7; it is not compatible with Windows 95, 98, or ME, Macintosh, or Linux. There is a 30-day free trial version which is allegedly fully functional and provided by GFI as a free download of 43Mb.
Installation takes a few minutes and does not demand a reboot. A wizard takes you through a predictable configuration. On paper, it’s a good package, with extras such as a secure file eraser that writes 1s and 0s over deleted files, a history cleaner that goes beyond the web-browser cache, and the confusingly-named PC Explorer, which highlights processes and services running that are suspect or known to be malicious.
If you can get it to install, the Vipre interface is one of the cleanest we’ve seen on any anti-virus product. It’s intuitive and easy to use. Four tabs across the top take you to Scan, Manage, Tools, and the overview page. However…
Vipre is not a well behaved product. The first bad behaviour to earn a black mark comes when it installs Microsoft .Net Framework 3.5 SP1 – without asking or warning! The web download gives no indication of size of download either. I checked, this is the dotnetfx35.exe – all 231.5MB of it dragged down as a pre-requisite.
On Windows 8, you get the same announcement but if you click OK, the installer gracefully shuts up shop and closes down – no download, no option to continue. This may be down to Windows 8’s security settings, but you can’t argue with it or persuade it.
During the install, the progress window says “try the MSE definitions.” What? They’re not using their own virus definitions? This is not a good sign.
Somehow Vipre scored well in CNET Labs’ Windows XP performance tests, and garnered some positive points:
- light on resources, so doesn’t slow your system down
- doesn’t nag like some AV products we could name
- runs unobtrusively in the background
- it will register and monitor several machines on a network
- value price-point for the paid product
- phone support available
- this version allowed the well-known SmartHDD and Conficker Malware onto various computers, amongst others
- the 30-day trial only gives 15 days instead of 30
- it does clog the PC, hogging a large %age of the processor, slowing Internet performance and erroneously blocking many sites
- should you try to get of it using the installer, you may get a Blue Screen of Death.
- there’s no weekend phone support
- it misses a number of common viruses
- the trial version won’t install on a server
The problem isn’t just that it fails to live up to a decent 2011 version, but it fails to measure up to any of it’s competitors. I scrubbed it when I rolled-back my Virtual Machine test box.
If you want to try it you can get it from GFI Software. AJS
“Get everything you need to protect your PC (and nothing you don’t) with VIPRE Antivirus 2012. VIPRE combines anti-virus and anti-spyware into a single, highly efficient solution that detects mal-ware threats in real time via dynamic code translation, heuristics, behavioral analysis and tradition, signature-based technologies. The result is clean, fast and comprehensive mal-ware protection that doesn’t slow down your PC. VIPRE was developed with you in mind. It’s the easy-to-use and affordable way to safeguard against viruses, worms, spyware, Trojans, bots and rootkits 24/7. So chat with friends, log into Facebook, play games, shop and pay your bills on-line knowing that your PC is protected. VIPRE licenses protect between one and 10 PCs for a period of one year to the lifetime of the PC. All licenses include free tech support from knowledgeable, friendly technicians and an 100% money-back guarantee.”