Review: Norton Internet Security 2011

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Norton Internet Security 2011 is the latest all-in-one security solution from Symantec. It features Anti Virus, Anti Spyware, Firewall, Email Protection and much much more. This version appears to be a lot slimmer, faster and more responsive than previous version of the software. NIS 2011 has a redesigned interface featuring a world map displaying the recent blocks the Norton software has preformed. Check out the review after the break.

  • Score:

    8.5 / 10

  • The Good:

    Better Performance, Nice Interface, Easy to install

  • The Bad:

    Nagging updates, Unneeded world map.

  • Bottom Line:

    Fantastic update to the Norton suite.

Installation

The Installation of NIS 2011 was very fast (took about a minute or two to install) and then promptly displayed the main screen. After installation, you are required to register the software, unless your installing it as a trial. In earlier versions of NIS, it forced open your web browser and you had to register on the company website. Now, it’s all done inside the application. Uninstalling the software is also very easy and gives you the option to keep settings and registration information behind (just in case you would like to install again) or completely remove NIS and it’s settings. Both options took the same amount of time to complete which was about 3 minutes.

Interface

The interface is a dark background with orange/goldish text. It gives you an overview of your protection status on the left side and the options to disable certain features on the right side. At the bottom of the interface, you are shown a world map with indicators of threats being immunized by Norton, this is a nice feature, however, doesn’t give you any information on your computer. The space could be used for something more useful. Underneath that shows your subscription status and also buttons to setup Online Backup, Parental Controls etc. It’s a very nice and concise interface, we like it.

Performance

On our testing system, which was a MacBook running Parallels Desktop 6 with Windows 7 Ultimate installed (Intel Core 2 Duo, 2.26ghz, 1024mb RAM) the Full Scan ran in just 18 minutes which the Quick Scan which scans start up items and currently running items took 48 seconds. A very good result which we are happy with. Something that has been undesirable with Norton is its effect on Startup and Shutdown times, however, during our testing we have found NIS 2011 has almost no effect on startup and shutdown. Startup time was increased by just 4 seconds while shutdown was effected by just 1 second. Additionally, opening files, programs etc while On-Access scanning was enabled had no increased startup time which is a really nice improvement to the software.

In regards to the performance of picking up viruses, we have used the Eicar Anti Virus test file. Norton picked up the file straight away as it started downloading and deleted it immediately. It also detected the virus embedded within the .txt file and also detected the virus embedded in two zip files. Upon trying to test Malware protection with online tool, Spycar, Norton immediately blocked the website from opening. We allowed the website to load and upon running the tests, Norton blocked the downloading of every single one.

Conclusion

Norton Internet Security 2011 is a great improvement from previous versions and offers a full suite of tools to keep your computer protected from nasty viruses. With impressive results, NIS 2011 is a great security option for users.