i use Norton 360, it works in the background and does what it needs to do, it runs its own scans, updates itself, and deletes what it needs to delete and popups occassionally to tell me so. It costs, which im not crazy about,
but to be honest there is more than just viruses,
more than just spyware,
more than just rootkits,
or browser re-directs,
or false ads that look like your anti-virus software telling you that you are infected and need to download an update to protect yourself,
more than directx calls,
or malware embedded in picture files,
or macro's that run in documents,
or ads that pop up asking you to update your profile, with account and credit card information,
more than im messages from people you dont know,
with messages or attachments that aren't what we think they are,
more than worms that wreck havoc,
or hackers hacking away at our firewall, or lack thereof,
or foreign governments spreading kill-ware,
or criminals that build sites selling "whatever" to get your name and address and ssn, so as to impersonate you and get a loan, or a home, or a spending spree in your name with the bill delivered to your door two months later.
There is a "LOT" of mean and crazy stuff out there,
And alot of freeware doesnt even "see" the rootkits or the keyloggers, or the file that sits in some folder down on the hard drive that copies itself over and over again.
The commercial stuff may not catch it all, but the freeware catches even less.
Buy or not the program you want, but we all get what we choose, for better or worse. But thinking that all i will get is spyware or viruses is pretty blind to all the other stuff that is out there.
One woman last year had a bot that ran her computer as a zombie, didnt even know it was there, it kept downloading porno when she connected to the net. She had so many hits that of course things slowed down, alot, but she didnt know why. She still didnt know anything until the FBI showed up on her doorstep and confiscated the machine.
Not too cool.
Anyway, I pay for the commercial Norton, it does a decent job, and im ignorant of what it doesnt. But with anything else i wouldnt even be protected from what i do know. But get what you think is best, and hope that it is enough.
Just my take on things,