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Microsoft Gives Anti-Virus Another Try

Duty calls this week from the mother ship (Redmond magazine), so we're going to have to keep RCPU short and, hopefully, fairly sweet.

Anyway, after the fairly unmitigated disaster that was Windows Live OneCare, Microsoft is apparently back in the anti-virus game this week -- today, even, with the release of Security Essentials. We loved this quote from this Stuff.co.nz story:

"Windows business group manager Ben Green says the software alone will not protect against all web threats, but when used with a secure web browser such as Internet Explorer 8 and a fully updated Windows operating system will provide a total security solution."

That reminds us of the old TV ads for sugary cereals. The bowl of cereal was always "part of this complete breakfast," with the complete breakfast usually including bacon (we're going back a ways here), eggs, toast, orange juice and some sort of fruit. In other words, it was kind of incidental as to whether the growing kid ate the cereal or not.

Security, however, is not incidental, nor is it something users can afford to scrimp on or experiment with. Given Microsoft's record (or lack thereof) of releasing quality anti-virus wares, we're not quite ready to scarf down Microsoft's free bowl of sugary Security Essentials, and we figure that most partners and users won't be, either.

What's more disturbing here, of course, is that Microsoft seems once again to be trying to undercut some of its most important partners and dominate yet another market. In this case, though, Symantec, McAfee and friends aren't likely to be too worried about Redmond's play -- for now. Still, it's not the nicest gesture Microsoft ever made to its third-party partners, but then Microsoft didn't get where it is today by being nice.

What's your take on Security Essentials? Will you use it? Sound off at lpender@rcpmag.com.

Posted by Lee Pender on September 29, 2009 at 11:55 AM


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