Depending on a single security applications to provide broad scale protection, is an absolute “non-starter”. A single security applications does not, and never has had the ability to do this, despite the commonly help belief to the contrary.
Part of the layered security process (stacking security solutions, one on top of the other, to cover the gaps that exist in the protection capabilities of even the most sophisticated security applications), consists of supplementing the primary AV application with an on-demand malware application.
In other words, an AV application that does not start with Windows but instead, is available for manual scanning.
Actually, there’s no harm in installing more than one antimalware application to be used as a secondary scanner – doing so can be advantageous. However, be sure NOT to allow more than one primary application to autostart, in order to prevent potential conflicts.
Virtually all free security applications are programmed to autostart after installation, so be aware of this, and make the necessary adjustments using MSConfig.
I run Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware every day, as a secondary malware scanner, since I have absolutely no faith that a single security application offers adequate protection.
The free version of this speed demon (it’s faster at scanning than any anti-malware program I’ve tested in the last 2 years), is used by millions of people worldwide to protect their computers.
It’s important to note that the real time protection module is disabled in the free version of Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware. Actually, this is perfect for your purpose.
Less critical, is the disabling of scheduled scanning, and scheduled updating in the free version. (Rodzilla, a very frequent reader, and an expert user, is adamant that the lack of auto updating is a critical flaw – we have agreed to disagree on this point).
Each day, as I manually update the definition database I’ve noticed that typically, the definition database has been updated 3/5 times in the previous 24 hours. Since study after study indicate that new malware is created at the rate of 20,000, or more, new versions every single day, it’s easy to see that Malwarebytes’ is being proactive to these conditions.
A simple, intuitive, and easy to use interface, makes Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware straightforward to setup, customize and run, for both less experienced and expert users alike as the following screen captures indicate.
Since real time protection is disabled, I do not recommend that you use this free version of Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware as a stand alone primary security application, since it simply will not offer you adequate protection with this restriction. Instead, use it as I do, as an on-demand, secondary scanner.
Despite this real-time protection limitation in the free version, Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware has an excellent reputation (shared by me), as a first class security application, for its ability to identify and remove adware, Trojans, key-loggers, home page hijackers, and other malware threats.
Blazing speed on quick scanning
Full scans for all drives.
Daily database updates
Additional utilities for manual malware removal
Command line support for quick scanning
Context menu integration to scan files on demand
Systems Requirements: Windows 2000, XP, Vista, and Win 7 (32-bit and 64-bit).
Multi-lingual support: English, Albanian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish.
Download at: Malwarebytes.org
Two quick tips:
Malwarebytes should be run in normal user mode, not safe mode.
I normally run “Quick Scan” and not deep scan since Malwarebytes concentrates on folders where malware is targeted in this mode. In quick scan mode, a scan generally takes seven minutes, or less, on my system.
Another great free alternative:
The free version of SUPERAntiSpyware despite it’s lack of real-time protection deserves its reputation as a first class security application, and it’s definitely worth considering adding to your security toolbox as a secondary line of defense.
You can read the review, and find the download link in my article “Knockout Malware With SUPERAntiSpyware Free Edition”, on this site.
Update: Here’s some welcome input from regular reader Georg Lechner –
“Malwarebytes’, recent iteration 1.46 – New users may find it easier to use Advanced System Care (recent version is 3.6.0) to control the autostart behavior of Malwarebytes’, using the Startup Manager, to be found under Admin Tools.
SUPERAntiSpyware just released its recent iteration 188.8.131.524 – This version is 32 AND 64 bit, but the previous version must be deinstalled manually before installing this one on 64 bit machines (WIN 7).”
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