[Dshield] Personal Firewall Day

John Holmblad jholmblad at aol.com
Fri Jan 16 14:48:48 GMT 2004


the personal firewall site looks helpful but it puzzles me as to why 
Mcafee would be singled out from the rest. In fact my own experience 
with their combined a/v & Firewall product (Mcafee Virusscan Pro 7.0 + 
Firewall 4.0) has been frustrating in comparison with Symantec's similar 
product (Norton Internet Security 2003). As a consequence of the 
problems I have had with Mcafee's product, I set the product to NOT 
automaitcally install signature file updates but to notify me that they 
are available. Then I use the Microsoft Windows XP system restore 
service to create a restore point just PRIOR to directing the Mcafee 
software to install the new a/v/ signature files. That way if the Mcafee 
update process corrupts, as it sometimes seems to do, a critical OS 
component/registry setting, then I can recover using the restore point I 
had just created.  The downside of course is if I miss the little icon 
flashing that signals that a new signature file is available (which icon 
I only see when logged on with administrator priveleges) then I may not 
get the latest a/v signature file updates for a few days (or until I 
notice it) and thereby be at higher risk of  contamination.

In the last year I  have had, I would say, ~1 our of 10 such failures 
with the Mcafee product where I actually had to perform the system 
restore after completing the signature file update. From checking 
Mcafee's user forum threads I have confirmed that I am not the only 
customer who has experienced this phenom. For this reason I always 
recommend Symantec over Mcafee. Since both suppliers seem to come out 
with new product versions at least once a year, it is possible (likely I 
hope) that Mcafee has fixed this little gem of a product flaw with their 
new release.

Best Regards,


John Holmblad


Televerage International


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