SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 Some say, “The best things in life are free.” Others opine, “You get what you pay for.” Who’s right? In regard to SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 ($29.95, direct), it’s hard to make a case for either position. This antivirus product has the same limited ability to remove malware as the corresponding free product. The paid edition adds real-time protection that’s even less effective.
Despite the reference to spyware in its name, SUPERAntiSpyware isn’t limited to protecting against spyware, no more than products with antivirus in the name protect only against viruses. The company’s Web site says it works against spyware, adware, viruses, Trojans, rootkits, keyloggers, rogues, and more.
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SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 Specifications
- Business, Personal, Enterprise, Professional
- OS Compatibility
- Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 7
- SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 Tech Support
SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 Same Limited Cleanup
As noted, the malware cleanup scanner in this product is identical to that ofSUPERAntiSpyware Free 5 (Free, 2 stars). Please see that review for full details. I’ll summarize the bad news here.
SUPERAntiSpyware set new record lows for malware detection rate and overall malware cleanup. It tied for low rootkit detection rate withMalwarebytes’ Anti-Malware PRO 1.51 ($24.95 direct, 3 stars).
The only area in which SUPERAntiSpyware scored at all well was rogue antivirus (scareware) removal. Like most recent products it detected 100 percent of these samples. But where half of the recent products scored 9.5 or better for scareware removal, SUPERAntiSpyware lagged with 8.8 points. For a full description of my testing methods and the way I derive these figures, see How We Test Malware Removal.
SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 malware removal chart
SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 Scheduled Scans and Updates
Upgrading to the paid edition gets you automatic updates (both of antivirus definitions and of the program itself) and scheduling of updates and scans. The scheduler is actually quite elaborate. To start, you can specify which days the task will run on. For program and definition updates you can optionally set it to check anywhere from ever hour to every 12 hours.
You can set any task to run without displaying the user interface and to wake the computer from sleep if necessary. For scan tasks several other options become available. Among these are the ability to quarantine threats automatically, to reboot if necessary, and to shut down the system when the task finishes.
SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 Real-Time Protection
Automatic updates and scheduled scanning are nice, but you could use the free edition and just set yourself a reminder to do those tasks manually. The real benefit of upgrading to the professional edition is the ability to enable real-time protection.
When the real-time protection system detects a threat, it blocks it right away. By default it displays a popup notification of what it did. You can suppress that popup if desired, or make it more noticeable by adding an audible alert.
Most antivirus products with real-time protection scan files for malware on any access. In most cases the minor access that occurs when Windows Explorer checks the file’s name, size, and attributes is sufficient to trigger a real-time scan. SUPERAntiSpyware holds off its real-time scan until the file actually starts to launch.
SUPERAntiSpyware Professional 5 makes some sense to wait for execution. After all, the program can’t do anything until it actually launches. However, if the antivirus crashes or gets turned off, a file that wasn’t scanned on access could possibly launch and do its dirty deeds.