The State of Anti-Virus Software & CNSIT South

Updated: June 29th, 2015

Author: Ross Madden

Categories: General CNSIT, Security

Very recently, CSU has decided not to continue using Symantec Endpoint Protection (SEP) as its preferred anti-virus software.  Our license for this software will expire at the end of June 2015.  At some point after that date, SEP clients will stop receiving updated virus definitions.  As such, we are in the process of migrating to other software.  The process of migration involves first uninstalling the SEP client.

Uninstalling Symantec Endpoint Protection

Windows (https://support.symantec.com/en_US/article.HOWTO55084.html)

  1. On the client computer, on the Start menu, click Control Panel > Add or Remove Programs (or Control Panel > Programs > Uninstall a program).

  2. In the Add or Remove Programs (or Uninstall or change a program) dialog box, click Symantec Endpoint Protection, and then click Change, Remove or Uninstall.

  3. Follow the onscreen prompts to remove the client software.  During the uninstall process, you may be asked whether or not to turn on the Windows Firewall – you should choose ‘yes’ for the Windows firewall to be turned on.

If you have trouble with the normal uninstall process, please feel free to use the following CleanWipe application which short uninstall SEP through a different process: CleanWipe.zip

Mac (https://support.symantec.com/en_US/article.TECH132120.html)

Here is also a link where you can download the Mac OS X version of an uninstaller application: https://support.norton.com/sp/en/us/home/current/solutions/kb20080427024142EN_EndUserProfile_en_us

Comprehensive List of Uninstall Instructions: https://support.symantec.com/en_US/article.TECH184988.html

Installing New Anti-Virus

After the uninstall, new antivirus software should be installed.  The following directions should provide adequate information on what the ACNS/CNSIT recommended alternatives and how to use them.

Windows Operating Systems (Vista and newer)

We are recommending the use of the free Microsoft Security Essentials for Windows based computers.  For Windows Vista and Windows 7, this product can be downloaded here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security-essentials-download

For Windows 8 and Windows 8.1, the software is called Microsoft Defender, and is already installed on default.

MacOS X (10.6 and newer)

For MacOS X, there are some free options as well as some buy options.  At the moment, we don’t have enough experience with any of these to recommend one over the other.

Here is a list of several free and for-purchase options: http://www.tomsguide.com/us/best-antivirus,review-2588-6.html

Linux (various distributions)

For Linux, our recommended anti-virus solution is the free ClamAV (http://www.clamav.net).  Depending on your Linux distribution, the installation and usage instructions will vary.  Information on the ClamAV site linked to above should assist you in the installation.