Microsoft

Review: Cover all the bases with Malwarebytes

To cover all your bases, anti-malware software is great to have running in conjunction with any anti-virus application.

Anti-virus software is always the first thing that gets installed and run after a fresh installation of Windows, unless you are sticking with Windows Defender in Windows 8 of course. However, software from Symantec, ESET, McAfee and others that cover this area surprisingly only cover half the playing field. Sometimes, a little extra booster shot in security, via anti-malware software, is great to have running in conjunction with any anti-virus, in an effort to cover all your bases.

Malwarebytes

Product Information:

  • Title: Malwarebytes
  • Company: Malwarebytes Corporation
  • Product URL: http://malwarebytes.org
  • Supported OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8
  • Price: Free ($24.95 MSRP for PRO version)
  • Rating: 5 out of 5
  • Bottom Line: Compared to the competition, Malwarebytes offers effective protection against malware that not only complements your current anti-virus, but is also lightweight on resources and snappy in performance.

Anti-malware software is designed by nature to complement existing anti-virus solutions without causing conflicts that can arise from using two similar security products at the same time. Essentially, in the free version, Malwarebytes is an app that is run on demand in order to scan files, determine if anything is amiss, and then provide the proper fix to ensure system security. Sometimes, anti-virus alone might miss something that Malwarebytes is able to detect.

Compared to other applications such as Spybot Search & Destroy and Webroot Spy Sweeper, Malwarebytes is considerably more lightweight on system resources and doesn't feel like a sluggish behemoth dragging its feet. I was able to perform a full-on scan while working on other tasks without so much as skipping a beat the whole time. There is also a quarantine area which contains any suspected malware found in a scan. From here, you can choose either to restore the files or delete them permanently.

Scanner settings

In the scanner settings, you can fine-tune your experience with Malwarebytes by allowing scans in memory spaces, startup, registry, and filesystem objects. For techies looking to read detailed diagnostics after a scan completes, Malwarebytes generates a system scan report, listing all the areas looked into and any objects that were deemed as infected and quarantined. If however, you prefer not to see a detailed report at the end of each scan, you can disable that feature by unchecking the box labeled "Open log file immediately after saving" under General Settings.

PRO

During the product installation, Malwarebytes does offer the opportunity to give the PRO version a try free for 30 days. What makes this particular edition stand out from the free version is the addition of automatic updates, preemptive real-time scanning and premium support. Such features are especially helpful for anyone who wants a worry-free, set it and forget it experience.

Although the price for the PRO upgrade is $24.95 directly from the company website, sites like Amazon and Newegg run promotions for this software all the time. I have seen boxed copies of Malwarebytes go for as low as $11 and it might make better sense to wait for these discounts to surface. The good news is you only pay once and you get to keep the software for life with one freely-transferrable license per machine.

Bottom line

Generally speaking, a safety-conscious web surfer isn't likely to run into malware mischief if they follow best practices for online activity. However, not everyone is likely to be this savvy, particularly those who download gimmicky free toolbars and emoticons, which sometimes end up dumping a spyware payload that basic anti-virus doesn't seem to catch. Used in conjunction with a reputable anti-virus application, Malwarebytes fills an important role in any online user's defense toolkit, working to catch the bad guys before they catch you with your pants down.

Also read:

About

An avid technology writer and an IT guru, Matthew is here to help bring the best in software, hardware and the web to the collective consciousness of TechRepublic's readership. In addition to writing for TechRepublic, Matthew currently works as a Cus...

54 comments
josafdanie123
josafdanie123

Today's infections are forming into instruments that fish for your own particular realities or even your money. Cybercrime has form into a desk wrongdoing that draws in a lot of people with portable computer know-how and careless compunctions, who find the online an uncomplicated method for making money by the spread of infections that they create. The large spread of E-mail has aided this kind of unscrupulous individuals. It is approximated that two hundred new viruses enter the cyber world every single day and Virus Protection

more info spyware removal call us 1-855-205-0915

calvinbrock7351
calvinbrock7351

ESET, McAfee and others that cover this area surprisingly only cover half the playing field. Sometimes, a little extra booster shot in security, via anti-malware software, is great to have running in conjunction with any anti-virus, in an effort to cover all your bases 

girlsdoporn
arridesoft.seo
arridesoft.seo

Malware bytes is a big problem for the computer and computer users that create hurdles in there works. you have to install an antivirus software to protect pc from viruses & errors- www.arridepcoptimizer.com 


andrew peterson
andrew peterson

I was also encounter the same issue, I tried so much to resolve this but I was not able to do that. At last I just visited http://goo.gl/NzgZdh where i get the suitable answer for the removal of this trojan

kamal gaba
kamal gaba

Anti-virus software is a program or set of programs that are designed to prevent, search for, detect, and remove software viruses, and other malicious software. 

johnsondell
johnsondell

I was also facing same issue, I tried a lot to fix this however I was not able to do that. At last I just visited http://computervirusremoval.us.com/ and made a call on their toll free. I got instant help for my computer by a certified technician.


Techevolution79
Techevolution79

I use malware -bytes to supplement Microsoft Security Essentials and super-anti spyware. I usually scan my system once a month; then make sure my firewall is on. This usually works for me.

rjkelleyjr
rjkelleyjr

About 8 years ago I got a nasty trojan via a data CD that was a back up for my team's work at our office. At the time I was running on of the better(?) commercial AV programs on my PC. The commercial AV never detected it but I knew something was wrong with my PC because a lot of very strange things started to happen, especially with IE. So I loaded up a one of the better freeware AV programs and still nothing. To make a very long story short, I eventually found Malwarebytes on the net via my work computer [i](because my home computer would only take me where the trojan wanted me to go on the internet, it didn't matter if I was using IE or Firefox)[/i]. I took it home installed it and it found the trojan deleted it and on reboot cleaned it out completely. The first place I went after reboot was the Malwarebytes site and bought the program. I've change AV programs a couple of times since then but I always load malwarebytes and have it running, [b]always[/b]. It is one of the essential programs you must have in your toolbox.

Kevin Morrison
Kevin Morrison

This is a great tool to set side by side with whatever flavor of AV you use. I strongly encourage everyone to get the pro version so you have the benefit of this tool catching the issue before it becomes a problem. Its far easier to prevent the problem then it is to try and fix the system after it has been infected!

gleason1951
gleason1951

Unfortunately, not everything works as planned on every computer. We had this program installed on 30 PC's. We also had a networked inventory program running on Windows 2008 R2. We found out that we had to disable Malwarebytes "on windows startup" because it kept crashing the inventory program. After shutting off the program on all 30 PC's, no issues were experienced from that point forward. We investigated every setting available to avoid turning off Malwarebytes, but unfortunately there was no other option. At least the program is installed if and when it may be needed.

Prentom
Prentom

I have purchased the pro version for our business network, with a mix of Win7 and Xp, all machines are running MBAM and Sec Essentials have had no problems at all. Have even setup a large number of customers in the same way and no probs either. Nothings perfect but as a strarting point this is a winner.

frylock
frylock

In Chrome the download page demands I disable my extensions (I already did a temporary allow all in ScriptSafe). In my bone-stock IE9 the download never starts, and when I click on the restart link nothing happens. This just isn't worth the trouble. Can nobody make an un-gunked downloads page?

eric_s
eric_s

All my customers have a combination of Malwarebytes and one of the free AVs (Avast!, Avera, AVG) and a short list of "How Tos" to keep themselves free of all the CR@P out on the Internet.

Tfixer
Tfixer

I load MBAM on all my clients' computers, too, and it is the first thing I run when they report "weird things" happening. I haven't had it loaded at startup, however, believing that multiple anti-malware programs would be likely to be in conflict. That brings me to MY conflict: Matthew seems to be distinguishing "virus" from "malware," and several of the comments seem to indicate that others are confused as well. Ever since the term "malware" came into use, I have thought of it as a handy generic term that included viruses, trojans, key-stroke loggers, phishing, drive-by insertions, and any other generally malicious 'ware, whatever the source. Actually, I've found it very handy because I can use the one collective term to explain the need for Anti-Malware programs to my customers. Meanwhile, back in the commercial world, programs like Norton lump viruses, trojans, spyware, adware, rootkits, etc. (all of which are malicious, in my book) into the definition of "anti-virus." So, while it is nice to know that MBAM can coexist with some of the other anti-virus programs, I use it to find viruses, trojans, and any other malware that the other programs miss, which it does do. So, to have what MBAM does distinguished from what anti-virus programs do is a bit confusing. Am I missing something? Tom

mswift
mswift

I used to use MBAM until I had a few instances of Security Essentials finding things that MBAM did not.

nibby059
nibby059

ummm, this software has ben recommended to rid users of the infamous 'skype' trojan, and is it just a coincidence that microsofts skype is ailing and miraculously this software appears. Am I just jaded and too cynical for words?

nerdy_gurl
nerdy_gurl

I can't tell you how many times MBytes has saved computers I am responsible for at home and work. I've been using it for quite a while, and every version gets better. It's also easy to use which AV's often are not. Even the free version does a great job. Their support forums are a gold mine of fixes and information. And I agree with the previous poster the the combination of MBAM and Avast AV s a great team! Since I put that combo on my husband's and another relative's machine, things have been uneventful. Now I better go knock on some wood!! :D

JCitizen
JCitizen

When they went to the new blue icon, and interface, they also changed the way MBAM works. I'd swear they did a lot to make MBAM more resistant to malware manipulation by hardening the kernel space for this solution. In XP, Avast will report the installation of the new MBAM as a root kit, which is a false positive of course, but it is also an indicator of how powerful it has become! :O

belfield
belfield

Very good software - I've been using the free version for malware removal for some time, and I've bought the pro version for home use - small, effective, efficient, all in all a very good piece of software... Andy

rwbyshe9
rwbyshe9

I have been using this program for years now. Ever since I first found out about it I started using it. I definitely recommend the "free" version for every person's computer that I work on. I tell them that if they can afford the "pro" version then by all means get it! I've used Malwarebytes to resolve so many customer's malware infections that I couldn't begin to give you an accurate number. It works and it does it's job exceptionally well. The only recommendation I'd give you, that this article itself doesn't cover, would be to boot the PC or Laptop up into the "Safe Mode" first and then run a Full Scan with Malwarebytes. I've found that in a few cases, I couldn't run a complete scan or any scan by booting the pc/laptop in the normal mode, so I always use the Safe Mode. Addidionally, what I do is run the Full Scan and then delete anything that Malwarebytes finds. Next I shut off the System Restore utility to delete all older Restore Points, and then I reboot the pc/laptop. I now turn on the System Restore utility and I create a new Restore Point so that I know the computer has a clean restore point to go to. I also make sure when I label the new Restore Point that it includes some word to indicate that it's clean. Malwarebytes has made my having to fix peoples computers a simple task in many, many cases. It's a great tool and you should convince any of your clients to adopt using this great little package of anti-malware!

mckinnej
mckinnej

I've only been bitten by one piece of malware in the past decade. (It was one of those fake antivirus things that was sent to me from a friend's infected machine. I was instantly infected when it hit my inbox.) My traditional anti-virus product was totally and utterly ineffective against it. Not only did it fail to protect me from the inital infection, it was blissfully unaware of the infection. It never came close to detecting it. I read several recommendations for Malwarebytes on a forum. I downloaded a copy and ran the scan. It cleared the infection out of my system in short order. It has also cleaned several co-workers' machines in my office which were infected in spite of an enterprise anti-virus solution. It is by far the best anti-malware tool I have encountered, and I've tried quite a few. It is so good I would recommend foregoing a traditional anti-virus product (or just run something lightweight like MS Security Essentials to make Windows happy) and buy the pro version of Malwarebytes to get the real time protection. In my experience that setup provides much more effective protection than McAfee, Norton, et al.

mashatomic
mashatomic

I'm running a "sandboxing" tool on my Windows PC. And Malwarebytes is good to go either.

Mark W. Kaelin
Mark W. Kaelin

Do you run an anti-malware application in conjunction with your normal anti-virus software?

Editor's Picks