Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Software for free: Avast! anti virus Home Edition

As you all know i'm not one to pay for anything when i dont have to. Some may call this being cheap, personally i like to call it frugal and sensible.
As freelancer i dont want to have my computer at risk but on that same note i simply dont have the free cash to throw in for frankly awful anti viral solutions such as Norton or McAffee, at between £30-£50 ($56-$96 US) a year for software that slows down my computer and laptop to a crawl and uses up a significant amount of my processor resources while offering little to no real protection to my work.

Then I was directed to avast! by a fellow freelancer as a totally free and effective anti virus that would protect my computer wile taking almost none of my run time. The system updates from the same viral database as both McAffee and Norton on a bi-weekly basis and thus offering not only similar viral control but also updating on a more regular basis.

Now I should say a few words on the system interface, namely that it sucks the big one and looks like it belongs on windows 98 and takes a goddamn age to scan through your files, if you happen to have a hard drive bigger than 60-90GB and if you have a 1TB drive or more in your system then you may well have to give it overnight once a month in order to do a full scan and clean up.

Regardless it is an efficient and ridiculously simple to use system offering professional level protection from its normal Home Edition that will run on ANY system, even happily protecting my crappy little netbook. Remember you do not pay of your protection EVER but should you still feel a little unsafe or simply have too much money you can always purchase the professional edition and get the updated interface and access to some really good system retrieval tools and firewall settings for you work networks.

All in all its a great deal and if the interface were a little better it would have a flawless score but as it stands:

97% stonking great and well worth the download.

Get it here: http://www.avast.com/

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Daily Blogg: New toys

Meet my shiny new ultra cheap Netbook disgo net browser 3000.
a snip at a paltry £99 (about $160-$190 US) my funky little friend here will be taking the workload off my laptop & desktop in the form of a much more affordable and expendable on the go method of both writing and uploading for work while i'm on assignment.

Now I know what your thinking "you have a perfectly good laptop that can do this and still lets you enjoy the full range of apps and games while your out in the real world", and thats the problem y'see. I know i am very easily destracted and having WoW and a myriad of movies at my finger tips tends to mean i rush my work so i can do something else like gaming or a movie or even the much misunderstood DTV dongle.
So in order to keep myself on track i splashed some cash on this little toy. Now the system is limited (at least until i install Linux on it) to Windows CE and with a tiny little 284MHz processor and a minuscule 64MB DDR RAM and using only a 2GB flash memory it means i have almost nothing to distract me bar the Internet itself.

Now i do have a 1GB DDR ram stick to go into it and i will soon be flashing Linus to it so it will get a bit of a boot in the bum as far as processing power go's but lets be honest this thing will never run WoW lol.

None the less it was well worth the small outlay and means i dont have to worry about my laptop being borrowed by the local constabulary during events or it taking damage and loosing everything as all my work is now held on 2 8GB flash drives that stay very much attached to my keys and lodged in my pocket or on my custom made USB Flash HD (see the how too archive for details on that) ready to be uploaded to work or to my home network when im finished.

If your looking for a new way to surf you really couldn't do better than this for the cash and combined with a 1 year warranty you wont worry to much about destroying or loosing it.
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