After writing yesterday’s post, which listed what I believe to be the top 10 antivirus products of 2009, I shared my views with the folks on Twitter.
As with any list, someone always feels left out (yeah, I’m talking to you Mr avast! Bellinger!)
One of the more interesting omissions that was pointed out to me however, one that I’d not even considered, was the new Panda Cloud Antivirus.
Free, But At A Cost
Panda Cloud Antivirus is available as a free download from CNET but be aware that it is still in beta, meaning there could be bugs and other problems associated with it.
(When the program leaves beta Panda have said that the client will continue to be free.)
This new cloud antivirus has been almost 3 years in development and some think it could ultimately lead to a better level of protection that traditional antivirus programs currently offer.
Panda Cloud Antivirus offers on-demand scanning and, from my own experience, uses far less memory than any other antivirus I have ever used before.
Having a program that uses less memory is certainly a good thing as some other products I’ve tried have eaten up my physical RAM and page file in a flash.
Ironically, however, I found that this new offering from Panda crippled my system in another way though – my CPU usage didn’t once drop below 100% whilst I was running a scan.
That would have been fine if I was going out for a few hours but, as I wished to use my PC for other things, it was a huge negative point.
I would have to wonder if that CPU usage was because the program is beta, or because of the way my system is set up, or whether it is common complaint amongst testers?
Panda Cloud Antivirus Response Rate
Using Panda’s proprietary cloud computing technology, known as Collective Intelligence, the program undertakes the usual duties, such as detecting viruses, rootkits, malware, and heuristics.
One of its main strengths is its userbase who contribute to keeping the program updated in real time, rather than via periodic updates.
Panda claim that Collective Intelligence can classify new malware in under 6 minutes which is an incredibly fast response time.
It works by classifying any detected threats into two groups – executables that must be scanned immediately and non-executables that are checked later, typically when the computer is otherwise idle.
Unfortunately I cannot comment on how effective Panda Cloud Antivirus is at this time as I installed it onto a system that I knew was clear of any threats but the fact that so many people have downloaded it should mean that new threats will continue to be identified quickly for some time to come.
Panda Cloud Antivirus is already compatible with Windows XP and Windows Vista and has been designed with the new Windows 7 in mind too (I’ll try Morro antivirus when it becomes available).
Are you using Panda Cloud Antivirus?
If so, have you have the problem I had with CPU usage or has it worked great for you?