Computer and anti-spyware recommendations?

by Dana_W
29 replies
I have a Mac, and I need to get a new PC for various reasons - including the fact that right now, I am using my children's PCs to run Peter Drew's Twitter software and they're getting sick of it, because, cough cough ahem, Peter does not speak to Mac computers.

(Thanks Peter. Still love ya, but could you cut us Mac owner's some slack????)

Also, I want Camtasia, and I want it NOW!!! And there still is no Camtasia for Macs.

But - I haven't shopped for a PC in five years. Any recommendations for a low-to-mid priced PC? For internet marketing I just need for it to have some graphics capabilities, the ability to run Camtasia - nothing fancy.

Also - I read a thread on here a while back, which basically said that Norton Antivirus is worse than useless for keeping PCs spyware and virus free. Is this true? If so, what is the best alternative?
#antispyware #computer #recommendations
  • Profile picture of the author Richard Tunnah
    Dana,
    Why don't you run windows virtually on your Mac? That's what I do. That way you get the best of both worlds!
    By the way nothing wrong with Norton Antivirus...just it sucks huge amount of resources!

    Rich
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    • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
      Originally Posted by Richard Tunnah View Post

      Dana,
      Why don't you run windows virtually on your Mac? That's what I do. That way you get the best of both worlds!
      By the way nothing wrong with Norton Antivirus...just it sucks huge amount of resources!

      Rich
      My Mac is five years old and I'd also like to have the PC as a backup in case the Mac crashes. It's good to have a backup computer, I think.

      I do love Macs, though, so far my Mac has never given me grief, unlike every PC I've ever had.
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  • Profile picture of the author tommen
    I have a basic Acer laptop (Windows Vista) with 250Gb hard drive and 4Gb of memory.My last laptop was also an Acer so it has been working really well for me.When it comes to an excellent software to remove spyware I recommend "Advanced Systemcare Free", it can be downloaded for free on IObit SystemCare | Computer Scan, Protection & Repair | Powerful PC Maintenance
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  • Profile picture of the author Liquification
    Norton is has actually turned a corner this year. The Latest Norton Internet security is a great product and uses hardly any resources. Just stay away from Norton 360. It's the resource hog.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
      Originally Posted by Liquification View Post

      Norton is has actually turned a corner this year. The Latest Norton Internet security is a great product and uses hardly any resources. Just stay away from Norton 360. It's the resource hog.
      Good to know. So which Norton product is good?
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      • Profile picture of the author Richard Tunnah
        Dana,
        I'd look at Acer then. Used to be very poor but really got their act together over last few years and won numerous awards recently for both notebooks and netbook ranges.

        Rich
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      • Profile picture of the author Liquification
        Originally Posted by Dana_W View Post

        Good to know. So which Norton product is good?
        Norton Internet Security 2009 is the Best Norton Product. It's a Anti-Virus and Firewall in One. I use it and have had no issues or slowdowns. A lot of people dislike Norton because past products and Norton 360 slow your pc to a crawl but, Norton Internet Security 2009 is very light on resources and Is quite a change from past products. I highly recommend it.
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        • Profile picture of the author tkalamba
          Look into an Acer notebook then. Graphic capabilities should be able to handle camtasia, Im running the software on a 4 year old PC so new notebooks shouldnt have any issues with it. Or you could grab another mac and run a dual boot. If you prefer macs, that option would likely make more sense for your purposes. Not only can you use windows programs, but you have a shiney new mac aswell.
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  • Profile picture of the author FlightGuy
    Dana, there are some GREAT free tools available as well. Here are some I use and that have helped me with infections in the past:

    Avast! Antivirus
    Malwarebyte's Anti-Malware
    SUPERAntiSpyware

    I also use a corporate edition of Symantec Antivirus.

    Hope this helps,
    John Dennis
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    Dana if you're looking for something small, go for a netbook. I have a Samsung, dual processor, 10"screen, 160gb hard disk. Perfect for what you need, and small for carrying around as well. Also the battery is about 8 hours on it.

    If you want to read some reviews on the netbooks, take a look at the ones Rob wrote on Recommended Products-How To With Boysbach
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    • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
      Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

      Dana if you're looking for something small, go for a netbook. I have a Samsung, dual processor, 10"screen, 160gb hard disk. Perfect for what you need, and small for carrying around as well. Also the battery is about 8 hours on it.

      If you want to read some reviews on the netbooks, take a look at the ones Rob wrote on Recommended Products-How To With Boysbach

      I am also thinking of a netbook - actually I really lust for a Macbook air, but the Netbooks are cheaper and they look so portable and convenient. But the netbook would be separate, I don't think most of them have enough graphics capability and I don't like typing on them as much as I do on a regular full sized computer, so a netbook wouldn't be a good PC substitute for me - it would be a good traveling companion.
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      • Profile picture of the author tkalamba
        Netbooks havent decent graphics capability. By no means are they graphics powerhouses like say a gaming machine, but they can do basics. They should be able to render video from camtasia, but it may take some time compare to a graphics optimized computer. With camtasia, you probably dont need to powerful of a graphics card, rather just decent processor and a good chunk of ram. A netbook usually sits at abou 1gb of ram, and can be upgraded depending on which one you buy. I had a Dell mini 9, with 2 gigs of ram, but that uses a SSD for storage, and its capacity was only 8 gb. Theres a few models with 160 gb HDD's that could probably do the job.
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        • Profile picture of the author bgmacaw
          Here are some ideas for you.

          Assuming that you have a network setup at your house you could buy an inexpensive refurb desktop PC from Tiger Direct or other discounter for about $200-300 and hook up to it from your Mac using Remote Desktop. That way you can have your Mac and PC and use them together or separately.

          If you want a PC laptop, I just bought a HP G60 a few weeks ago for $449 on sale at Best Buy. It's my backup/travel system. I've really enjoyed using it so far. Just make sure you get the one with the Intel, not the AMD, processor.

          As for anti-virus, I use AVG and it's what I recommend for the home and small business environment. Of course, you'll want to use Firefox for the majority of your browsing and avoid downloading executables from questionable sources. If you do that you'll be safe from around 99% of PC based nasties.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
    Sounds like Acer is the main recommendation here.

    I do prefer Macs but part of the reason to also get a PC is in case my Mac ever crashes - My Mac is great but it's five years old and even a Mac can't last forever - I have another computer immediately available as backup. Otherwise, I'd follow the recommendation of Brian "Copy Daddy" McElroy and Richard "Blankety Blank" Tunneh and just have a virtual PC on my Mac.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dan C. Rinnert
      Originally Posted by Dana_W View Post

      I do prefer Macs but part of the reason to also get a PC is in case my Mac ever crashes - My Mac is great but it's five years old and even a Mac can't last forever - I have another computer immediately available as backup. Otherwise, I'd follow the recommendation of Brian "Copy Daddy" McElroy and Richard "Blankety Blank" Tunneh and just have a virtual PC on my Mac.
      But, if your backup machine is a PC, you cannot run your Mac programs, so it's a limited backup at best.

      If you just need a computer as a backup, why not look at a Mac Mini? Run Mac and Windows on it. Use your existing peripherals. Doesn't take a lot of desk space either.

      BTW, I'm still running 12 & 14 year old Macs. I also have 20+ year old Macs that still run, though you can't run modern software on them, of course.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    The Samsung one is great, you will be able to do all the graphics you need on it. I have photoshop on mine and have no problems.

    Keyword this is the advantage of the Samsung one, the keyboard is 93% the size of a normal keyboard, so you will hardly notice any difference.

    I only use my netbook now, and I like you type a lot on it. My HP doesn't get used very much. I have bought an external hard disk so have everything on there as well.

    I can't speak highly enough of it. When you check out the netbooks, compare them all with the Samsung and you will see the difference. It was only released worldwide in January which is why there are not so many reviews about it.

    Any questions send me an email
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    • Profile picture of the author Richard Tunnah
      I got a Acer Aspire One netbook (which I'm typing on!) about 8 months ago. It's great for carrying around and surfing. It's very light. Like the Aspire Samsung n10 has won many awards. I guess it depends what you want it for Dana?

      Rich
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      • Profile picture of the author Intrepreneur
        Good to be on the lookout for the secuirty of your PC.

        If you get stcuk choosing, holla me and I'll help you out..
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      • Profile picture of the author tkalamba
        Originally Posted by Richard Tunnah View Post

        I got a Acer Aspire One netbook (which I'm typing on!) about 8 months ago. It's great for carrying around and surfing. It's very light. Like the Aspire Samsung n10 has won many awards. I guess it depends what you want it for Dana?

        Rich
        Ive got one of these aswell. Great little netbook. I find mor reliable than my old Dell mini 9, I say old, but it only lasted me 2 weeks, and took it back to bestbuy and exchanged it for the Aspire One. its perfectly capable for using camtasia for capturing video and whatnot, but you would have to stick to small resolutions for that use. The processor is decent but video rendering can be taxing on a system.
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    • Profile picture of the author Richard Tunnah
      Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

      The Samsung one is great, you will be able to do all the graphics you need on it. I have photoshop on mine and have no problems.

      Keyword this is the advantage of the Samsung one, the keyboard is 93% the size of a normal keyboard, so you will hardly notice any difference.

      I only use my netbook now, and I like you type a lot on it. My HP doesn't get used very much. I have bought an external hard disk so have everything on there as well.

      I can't speak highly enough of it. When you check out the netbooks, compare them all with the Samsung and you will see the difference. It was only released worldwide in January which is why there are not so many reviews about it.

      Any questions send me an email
      Already won a load of awards though Bev. I would have gone for it myself if I didn't already have my Acer netbook.

      Rich
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  • Profile picture of the author JoMo
    I would go with Toshiba or Dell for a notebook. I have been hearing good things about acer lately, but I repaired PC's professionally more many years, and I learned to really hate acers over that time. Both Dell and Toshiba have made quality products for years now.


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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    I almost got the Acer because of your reviews of it. But, when we got to the store, Samsung had just released their worldwide. Weighs about a kilo as well which is nice for flying

    Dana and if it's important the Samsung now comes in different colours including pink. Mine is cream..... I don't do pink
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    • Profile picture of the author Intrepreneur
      I didn't answer in choosing a laptop but your choices shouldn't only be on spec it should be based on support provided by the company.

      Personally I've found HP to provide the best support out of any, and that's why I will always choose them.

      With Acer I've found their support to be awful.

      By support I don't just mean the availability of a customer service agent, I mean how accesible everything is that you need for your system.

      i.e drivers..

      Driver availability is probably the worst ever support flaw with many corporations.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
    The netbook would mainly be for writing and checking email. I write press releases, articles, web content, etc., so if I am travelling or if I feel like taking the kids to the beach for a few days or whatever, I need to be able to check my emails, do my writing for my clients, interact on social networking platforms, etc.

    But I get the impression that a netbook is not ideal for, say, shooting and storing and editing camtasia videos, which I want to start doing, so I couldn't have that as my main PC.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
    Hey, did I use up all my thanks today or something??? I can no longer thank people! Anyway - intrepreneur - thanks for the heads up on customer support. You're right, that is VERY important, because I'm not that tech savvy and if I'm having a problem I need to be able to call and get it fixed.
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  • Profile picture of the author wilkyu
    I believe any PC's nowadays can run camtasia smoothly. yes even the $299-399 ones.
    Personally I've been using avg free edition for a while and have a free firewall from zonealarm and I haven't had any troubles. I believe its the firewall that gives you the first line of defence.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dana_W
    Interesting idea - the Mac mini. Is it reasonably powerful?

    Wow, 20 year old Macs. Yes, those things do really hold up! I've NEVER had a PC last more than a few years.
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  • Profile picture of the author tim254
    For a laptop, I would get anything by Dell. If you can, get a 3-year warranty.
    For Antivirus/Antispyware, get AVG Free, use WinPatrol, and PC Tools free firewall and you won't have any issues. Avast is also another great option and is free as well.
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