Lavasoft, the prestigious security software company, has been leading the antispyware applications market for 10 years with its popular and classic Ad-Aware suite. And as a good way to celebrate this 10 years of Ad-Aware on the market, since last January, the company has made Anniversary Edition available to users, a new and improved version of its antispyware star product, a classic in the fight against spyware. Ad Aware Anniversary Edition incorporates new tools and enhancements to the application's core, making it up to 74% faster and more effective in comparison to its predecessor, Ad-Aware 2008, enhanced by reducing up to 60% CPU usage (processor) for the analysis and system scanning. Today I'm going to tell you about its characteristics and novelties.
As I said, Ad-Aware features a fast and easy to use spyware detection and cleaning. This wonderful version of Ad-Aware is very fast at scanning and detection of spyware threats on our computer, in contrast to earlier versions that were somewhat slower. If we take a look at its resources consumption, we'll find that it occupies only 49MB of our hard disk and when it comes to RAM usage, it takes around 56MB when performing a full system scan.
Interface & Functionallity
A first look at its interface will tell us all the essentials we need to know about this application, we'll find a set of three big icons that give us quick access to most important functions and shows the system/program status and on the top-right corner a set of smaller icons which lead us to specific areas, plus the Settings button to access deeper program tweaking, and the Scan Schedule buttom. There are also two tabs one for the Main Status (default) and Statistics where we can see the actions performed by the program.
The first icon Web Uptdate not only shows updating status but also when clicked performs the program and definitions database updating via web.
The second button, Scan System, shows the system status, date and mode of last scan, and when clicked leads to the scan window. This same action is performed if we click on the smaller Scan button placed on top.
In the Scan window we find four tabs: Scan where we select the scan mode through three tabs one per each scanning mode: Smart, Full and Profile, Scheduler, Quarantine and Ignore list Easy and simple to understand. Just select the mode that best fits your needs and click Scan (the green button below).
The scanning process goes smoothly and when finished, results are shown in an easy to read chart.
The third big icon on the main window shows Ad-Watch which is Ad-Aware's realtime protection, if clicked we access its configuration. It works on three areas: Processes is for blocking the execution of malware processes, Registry avoids malware access to Windows registry sensitive areas, and finally Network is useful to block blacklisted IP adresses. Under each of this aspects we can find its status and edit its functioning rules.
If we click on the Extras button, we find the TrackSweep tool which is a superb cleaner of temporary files and browsing history for the web browsers Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Internet Explorer and Opera Web browser, we are able to choose which items to delete. And all we have to do is to click on the Sweep Now button to activate the cleaning process.
On the second tab, ToolBox, we can find a set of four handy tools very well described in the next screenshot, all we have to do is to click on the start button. They are all comprehensive tools which will help us to deepen our system watching.
In order to get an idea of what are they capable of I started the AutoStart Manager just to get astonished of how many programs and windows services start along with windows. Of course we can disable them by unchecking the boxes.
If we need to make deeper tweaking like making a selection of what kind of files Ad-Aware scans or to make some appearance adjustments, we can access the Settings window.
As we can see, Ad Aware Anniversary Edition provides not only effective protection against spyware, malware, and rootkits, but also new features aimed at better protection like the incorporation of technology and what is more important, it is extremely simple and fast to use. We can take advantage of its free edition as well, but it brings only basic functionality.
Have you tried Ad-Aware? If so, please leave a comment with your opinion.
Author: Lucas Artigas Review on: Ad-Aware 2009 188.8.131.52