Norton AntiVirus 2012 PC Review - -

Installation 9.0
Ease of use 9.0
Usefulness 9.0
Value 9.0
Distributor: Norton
Review Date:
Nov 2012
Alex Wong


Norton AntiVirus 2012

Symantec's latest antivirus program returns with Norton AntiVirus 2012 which offers users an affordable internet security package for their PC. The best aspect about Norton AntiVirus 2012 is the learning curve to install and use this program which is almost non-existent.

That is, not matter what your computer knowledge is, you should have no problems whatsoever in installing this program and navigating the extremely simplistic menu system. More importantly, scans and updates are done in the background which removes any annoying pop-ups or questions for the user when the program does encounter a security hazard. Also, scans are done when your computer is idle, ensuring optimal performance for the end-user.

Installation & Menu

After the super fast install, the user is greeted to a rather intuitive and professional looking menu system which uses a tab system that keeps things simple for the novice user. These tabs include Computer, Network and General, however if additional information is needed, there is also advanced view for professional users.

If you do encounter an installation problem, you can contact your friendly support people from Symantec and if you system is inundated by viruses, Trojans and Malware, the program will attempt to resolve the problem via a boot installer. Another aspect of the installation program is that once Norton AntiVirus 2012 was installed, the program proceeded to update itself to ensure that our test system was as secure as possible.

In relation to Norton AntiVirus 2012, the program does not just scan for viruses and considering that the threat landscape has changed so much, this program uses leading technology to ensure that even threats not yet discovered are prevented from interfering with your PC. Thankfully after the scan, no viruses, Trojans or Malware was found. In relation to Malware, the program uses SONAR4 which is a detection based utility to scan for any potential Malware.

However I did try to trick the program with some known testing sites and Norton immediately detected any unsafe files from the net. Also in our testing environments, Norton detected virus infected files in our zip files and blocked unsafe attachments in our e-mails.

The first scan of our laptop was relatively quick compared to some of Norton's competitors which was completed in around 25 minutes. Subsequent scans were considerably faster thanks to the reputation based scanning technology of Norton which basically checks the file with Symantec's database.

Another cool aspect about  this software is that it also gives the user additional information on programs such as its reliability or if its unstable which is mirrored via surfing the net thanks to the Download Insight and File Insight.

We also created a small executable Windows Program thanks to C++ and tried and added a few dodgy coding routines but Norton immediately detected this new file which did not have a reputation yet.

However what Norton AntiVirus 2012 doesn't offer is a full blown security suite so you do need additional programs to use this software package. For example, Norton AntiVirus 2012 doesn't come with a firewall but you can use the Windows Firewall or download a free third party version .

Norton does however do a good job at protecting against web exploits. I also like the inclusion of Norton Management which basically monitors all your subscriptions with Norton and the security status of all your devices and the licenses. It's a great central management system.

Norton AntiVirus 2012 also offers links to other services such as Norton Online Backup and Norton Mobile Security 2.0. Another bonus in this package is the ability to install Norton Safe Web lite which basically warns users of any unsafe or potentially unsafe websites.

Final Thoughts?

All in all, Norton AntiVirus 2012 is a sturdy security package that we would happily recommend to users looking for protection for their PC's or laptops. With a recommended retail price of around $39.95AUD, this program is not only affordable but does the job intended remarkably well.

System Requirements

Supported Operating Systems

  • Microsoft® Windows® XP (32-bit) Home/Professional/Tablet PC/Media Center (32-bit) with Service Pack 2 or later
  • Microsoft® Windows Vista® (32-bit and 64-bit) Starter/Home Basic/Home Premium/Business/Ultimate with Service Pack 1 or later
  • Microsoft® Windows 7® (32-bit and 64-bit) Starter/Home Basic/Home Premium/Professional/Ultimate

Hardware Requirements

  • 300MHz for Microsoft Windows XP, 1GHZ for Microsoft Windows Vista/Windows 7
  • 256MB of RAM
  • 300 MB of available hard disk space
  • CD-ROM or DVD drive (if not installing via electronic Download)


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