Avid readers may recall that not too long ago, I have written an article on Norton Internet Security 2010. I am happy to hear that Norton continues to be light and secure, does not require much tweaking (“set and forget” is their design philosophy), and in this new Norton 360, it has a new reputation service, improved anti-phishing, improved scanning performance, a new download insight, web-based access to backup files, as well as improved startup manager. To be honest, my previous Norton installation seems very fast and safe in my book. I can hardly feel the difference for this new product, which is great of course. Still fast, still safe. It better be!
What are improved, I observe, are the PC tuneup function and the online backup option. For the technologically inclined, PC tuneup may not be crucial. But for someone like me who is a regular PC user, PC tuneup is a great place for me to (1) decide which are the programs I wish to run at start-up and in what priority, (2) clean up my file system including registry, (3) optimize my hard disk (defragmentation), and (4) run a diagnostic report on everything I wish to know about my computer – from hardware to software. And I can say it with conviction PC tuneup has helped me a great deal. My computer startup time has improved. Seems to run faster too.
Online backup is an interesting feature. Norton 360 v4.0 comes with a 2 GB online storage. You can back up your Document directory or any directory in your file system securely online. And restore if need to. It does take some time for the first backup to complete, especially if you have a large backup set. At home, I have a Network-attached Storage and an external backup device permanently attached to my computer so, this online backup service may not be something that I rely solely on (no harm having extra backup, having said that). I can imagine that if you do not have a regular backup, this online backup can be useful.
Of the many great features that Norton products have, one of my favorite ones is Norton file insight (see below with file name masked). Whenever I download an executable from the Internet, Norton prompts me on how trusted this file could be. And based on the insight, I can make an informed decision on whether or not I shall risk running it. One time, while I was downloading the latest video driver from ATI website, Norton warned me that the file may not be trusted as not many users have downloaded that and it was very new. It turns out that that version of the file was corrupted.
I have got asked a lot how much the Norton products that featured in my website cost. For this particular one, the suggested retail price is SGD 129 for the three PC license.