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Effect of Anti-virus programs?

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What exactly can the effect be on FSX with various anti-virus programs.  Years ago, I discovered that Norton AV was affecting my FSX performance.  NOW, I use ESET NOD 32 as my program.   I heard that with the new Windows 10, the Windows Defender program is "sufficient" for all possible virus types.  I don't know if I really believe that.

 

During many flights, FSX encounters a problem and has to shut down (that's the message).  Could this be attributable to an AV program doing its thing behind the scenes  i.e. updating the virus database?  Finally, would a simple program like Windows Essentials be all that is necessary, and perhaps be less intrusive in the background? 

 

I'm curious about this and would like to hear what other forum members feel about AV programs and possible FSX performance violations.

 

Stan

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As a dev, we highly recommend that you do not use any AV during download and or install of our products as some AV's detect a false positive.  This sometimes happens even after install (norton and kapersky) has been done so, yes, getting your AV to not scan the FSX directory is a smart move.

 

We have asked multiple AV vendors for an "exemption" but they have never responded.  Not even once.

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I always add the Software installer exe to my Exclusions Zone on my BitDefender.  When i have my Software installed i add the entire folder into my Exclusions Zone.  

 

Aslo i have added my whole P3D folder into my Exclusions


This has payed off well for me 

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I have had no problems running Eset and plan to keep doing so. I do not trust Microsoft to completely protect my computer. Many years of experience has taught me not to.

 

 

Bill W

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For the last year or so, I've had no AV software on my main (FS) PC!!! I did this purely as an experiment, knowing the risk involved, and making sure I ALWAYS had more backups than usual. Finally, a few weeks ago the PC started acting very strange, and after making various checks, I found malware and some stuff i couldn't identify. I then discovered that my brother had used this PC in my absence, and a quick look at the browsing history brought up some VERY dubious sites - some extremely explicit. I'm certain that's the only time the PC suffered in any way from having no AV.

 

It's Windows7(64), with Defender and UAC completely disabled. Method of connection is via a router.

 

I'm sorely tempted to leave it like this, but I doubt I will.

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Avira Free - yay.

Windows Defender - nay.

 

(Things got quite slow in FSX with WD.)

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I use Bitdefender Internet Security. It's consistently rated in the top three in antivirus tests and has a negligible system impact. It goes into an automatic game mode when running FSX and seems to have no effect on FPS. Highly recommended!

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Interesting.  So, is there an AV program that is the absolute best with FSX?

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I use Avast at it has a silent/gaming mode, which I use.

I can not see a performance difference in FSX whether I am running Avast or not.

I am now on Windows 10 for FSX.

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I use Avast at it has a silent/gaming mode, which I use.

I can not see a performance difference in FSX whether I am running Avast or not.

I am now on Windows 10 for FSX.

I too use Avast Free

Never had any issues with P3D, and now having just re-installed FSX-SE, in Windows 10, still no performance degradation. I just let it run in the background.

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Most AV products by default scan files when they are read, written, changed or executed and good AV products should let you change those settings for individual files, folders or drives via an exclusion option.

 

Like others I use Avast free and have set various exclusions, including the FSX folder. I also have Avast set to silent/gaming mode and notify me when updates are available which means it doesn't automatically download updates and the silent setting means it doesn't notify me about updates.

If you set updates to notify you but don't set Avast to silent mode it will pop up a message to tell you updates are available so the silent mode just turns off that pop-up.

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Hi,

 

I am with Dougal,For well over a year now I have not run my AV program at all.In the UK

 

I am the only user of this machine and whilst I use it also for general items I have never come across any problems,(Touch wood).

 

I am using Win 10 and turn off real time scanning at the start of each FS session too.

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Define those exclusions and never rely solely on Windows Defender or Microsoft Security Essentials.

 

That is ABSOLUTELY correct.

 

Security Suites contain three essential parts, an Antivirus, Software Firewall, and advanced security features.

 

Time after time, the top three rated security suites are Bit Defender, Kaspersky and Nortons. I also recommend SpyBot be used in conjunction with a full security suite.

 

Some rsecurity suites can affect the overall performance of one's computer, however I'm very impressed by lack of impact of the programs mentioned above. I have experience with all three, and I've never noticed them running or had them affect FSX  -  and that's 8 computers which run the full security suite while FSX is running.

 

Absolutely good advice to exclude the FSX/P3D folder. I also recommend excluding any scenery folders you may have outside of the FSX folder, as well as any other flight simulation related folder (there can be a number of them.

 

We have 8 guys making about 14 flights per week in shared cockpit, which requires a direct connection to another computer.  Given that, we have a Security Policy (reviewed and approved by someone who does network penetration testing for a living) to which all our members must adhere. As I mentioned above, they run all the software concurrently with FSX without any problem. This security policy isn't just for shared cockpit, I believe it's something anyone (flight sim or not) should use.

 

If you're interested, you can read the security policy and the recommended Security Suite settings HERE.

 

Happy Flights my friends!

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My current OS has been without ANY AV program (not even MS Security Essentials) for around 5 years and I am not having any problem. On a personal computer, I don't see the point of AV program other than annoying you with all the false alarms and deleting harmless files for no reason.

 

I mean, you have to do something to get the system infected. Either opening some exe file or place a dll in some folder, or clicking on something unsafe. Just don't download/open suspicious files, and you will be fine. Actually, the last time my system got infected I had AV installed.

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My current OS has been without ANY AV program (not even MS Security Essentials) for around 5 years and I am not having any problem.

Then you've been very lucky. Also, how do you know that you haven't been infected? Many trojans have no visible effect but just lurk waiting for something to trigger them. The minimal effect a modern antivirus program makes to your system is more than worth it to prevent potentially having to reinstall the entire OS. Just because it hasn't happened to you yet doesn't mean that it won't soon. The odds are definitely stacked against you, particularly with a broadband/always on connection.

 

A quick rant. One thing that really annoys me are the software vendors who tell you to disable your antivirus program when downloading and/or installing their software because they know that it may cause false positives. They should either fix their software or get it whitelisted by the antivirus companies. The antivirus software is just doing it's job - they should do theirs! Rant over.

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Just because it hasn't happened to you yet doesn't mean that it won't soon. The odds are definitely stacked against you, particularly with a broadband/always on connection.

 

Yeah you may be right, but don't worry, my OS and all files are routinely backed up to an external HD. Reinstalling FSX is not fun at all.

 

If some day the amount of false positives is dramatically reduced, I'd definitely use AV again. But for now it seems that I will switch to a newer OS before the current one get messed up by malware.

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If some day the amount of false positives is dramatically reduced, I'd definitely use AV again.

In the 3 years I've been using Bitdefender, I've only had 2 false positives and they were both from FSX add-ons which were known about by the vendors. In its "autopilot" mode (appropriate for FSX!) you don't even realise it's there.

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A quick rant. One thing that really annoys me are the software vendors who tell you to disable your antivirus program when downloading and/or installing their software because they know that it may cause false positives. They should either fix their software or get it whitelisted by the antivirus companies. The antivirus software is just doing it's job - they should do theirs! Rant over.

 I don't think you're living in the real world. I know personally of at least three developers, who've been constantly and repeatedly, asking the AV comppanies to 'white list' their installers. None of the three have to this day, even received an acknowllegment from them.

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My current OS has been without ANY AV program (not even MS Security Essentials) for around 5 years and I am not having any problem. On a personal computer, I don't see the point of AV program other than annoying you with all the false alarms and deleting harmless files for no reason.

 

I mean, you have to do something to get the system infected. Either opening some exe file or place a dll in some folder, or clicking on something unsafe. Just don't download/open suspicious files, and you will be fine. Actually, the last time my system got infected I had AV installed.

I'm with you David.  I've never had an anti-virus program installed permanently on my computer systems since August 1991.  I have over the years used an anti-virus program to scan my system in the event I think I have been hit by a virus but the programs have never ever identified a virus.  The anti-virus companies have everyone scared to death and they intend to keep it that way.  When evil people develop a new virus, does the anti-virus programs protect you?  I don't think so!  The anti-virus companies will deploy a "fix" once the virus is identified and they figure out how to stop it from attacking your system.  Meanwhile, if there really is a real virus problem, your computer system is being destroyed.  If you are surfing from a major corporation like Microsoft or a big government office like the US government, then an anti-virus program is highly recommended as hackers love to break into those systems and destroy them and it costs corporations and the government lots of money to repair the systems and there could be a lot of data lost.  I understand that need.

 

I do employ Malwarebytes but only beginning late this year as I was hit by the ransomware malware once.  I was able to find out how to remove the malware manually but Malwarebytes prevents those attacks and fixes the problem if the malware gets on board.  What is interesting is that Microsoft Essentials and their anti-malware program does NOT stop malware attacks or at least it never stopped the ransomware malware!

 

Several years ago, HDD's failed a lot.  I think they are getting more and more efficient but they still can fail.  I have seen so many people say they were attacked by a virus when their HDD fails.  Anti-virus companies love failed HDD's/SSD's as it looks like a virus attacked their system and destroyed their HDD.  Highly unlikely.

 

I still believe in security and I would never ever go on the Internet without the Internet Firewall employed.  Don't ever disable the firewall.  I've actually seen a lot of people disable their firewall and get hit with Malware almost immediately. My sister was hit in less than 20 seconds and she used an anti-virus program.

 

What I hate about anti-virus programs and malware programs like Malwarebytes is the fact they have too many false positives and, when you download a safe program like the iFly747 from a secure website/store, it identifies false positives like the iFly.dll.  It places it into quarantine and when you start up the program you have no EFIS display and you wonder why.  Then you look in your Malwarebytes program and see it has quarantined the module and then you have to go through a procedure to make sure your whole FSX/P3D/FSX-SE/X-Plane folders are excluded from any scans from your anti-virus or malware program so you can enjoy your new software.  I think the anti-virus programs do this on purpose to make it look like their anti-virus program is really working.

 

I backup my personal files, like all my photos and stuff that would be hard to replace.  All my software programs and the Windows OS can be reinstalled, including FSX/P3D and Microsoft Office, Outlook, etc., if I'm ever hit.  So, so what if a virus might accidentally hit?  It would be a pain in the butt to have to reinstall everything in the unlikelihood I was hit by a virus or malware but I would still have my personal stuff.  Now, with places like Google Cloud, you can store all your sensitive and personal stuff there. I personally think the anti-virus companies are the biggest scam operations in the world but they are here to stay as their virus scare tactics are unrelentless.

 

Best regards,

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I've never had an anti-virus program installed permanently on my computer systems since August 1991.  I have over the years used an anti-virus program to scan my system in the event I think I have been hit by a virus but the programs have never ever identified a virus.  

Lol 1991, I wasn't even born at that time. It's great to know I am not the only one who hate AV programs. I totally agree that backup > anti-virus, because if anything get broken it's easy to recover.

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I don't think you're living in the real world. I know personally of at least three developers, who've been constantly and repeatedly, asking the AV comppanies to 'white list' their installers. None of the three have to this day, even received an acknowllegment from them.

 

If the vast majority of developers have no problems with false positives from their software, it would appear to be a poor choice of installer by the very small minority who have an issue.

 

I totally agree that backup > anti-virus, because if anything get broken it's easy to recover.

That only works if you know your system is clean when you back it up. A friend of mine never felt the need for antivirus up until about 6 months ago. He sent me an innocent-looking email with a photo attached which contained a virus (intercepted by my antivirus software). Up to that point he had no idea he had been infected and because he doesn't use email much it could have been for some time since it had happened. This also highlights the fact that you can go to previously safe sites or receive emails from friends and still get hit. When I helped him clean up his system we found that his backups were also infected. It took a long time to sort it out and all because he didn't see the need for antivirus protection. Antivirus software has progressed a long way from where it was just a few years ago and the best modern antivirus programs have no noticeable hit on the system and my experience is that they produce very few false positives (2 in 3 years for me - hardly a problem). That said, if you feel safe without it, best of luck to you!

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If you are surfing from a major corporation like Microsoft or a big government office like the US government, then an anti-virus program is highly recommended as hackers love to break into those systems and destroy them and it costs corporations and the government lots of money to repair the systems and there could be a lot of data lost.  I understand that need.

 

You have it backwards - you absolutely should have UAC on, and an anti-virus running. In most cases you don't need a firewall on your PC.

 

Most malware isn't "targeted". A lot gets distributed by dodgy ad networks and is designed to ensnare anyone who views or downloads it. Because of this, you absolutely need to have your browser running at lower permissions that cannot modify important files. That's the point of UAC, and it's why every modern OS has the vast majority of software running with lower permissions. Windows had a problem for years in that everyone essentially ran as an admin; UAC is a way to finally fix that problem and I do not know why people disable it.

 

Second, if you're behind a NAT gateway, you don't need a firewall - because it's impossible for someone to connect to your machine without your PC initiating the connection. The IP is non-routable, and NAT gateways reject anything coming from outside.

 

If you run with no UAC, no anti-virus and a firewall, I don't see what protection you have - it won't stop much, because once your browser and machine is hijacked the firewall will all consider it legitimate browser traffic.

 

Cheers!

 

Luke

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