Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2015 Download:
Review of Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2012
By Jay Andrew Allen | August 26, 2011
It seems that no sooner had we finished reviewing all of the antivirus platforms for 2011 when the new crop of 2012 products began rolling off the assembly line! Our first entrant this year is Kaspersky AntiVirus 2012. Kaspersky's previous release placed fifth in our 2011 antivirus roundup. In its "What's New" announcement, the company claims their latest release delivers significant improvements in virus detection and system efficiency. We ran our test battery against Kaspersky AntiVirus 2012 to put these statements to the test.
1) Features & Usability: 12.5/15
Dashboard: After a painless installation taking only 1 minute and 50 seconds, one is ushered to the greatly improved Kaspersky 2012 Dashboard. The screen is split into a protection window, which displays the current security status of the computer, and a scrollable tools pane, which provides access to Kaspersky's full feature set. Clicking the arrow at the top of the tools pane will expand the pane to occupy the full area of the Dashboard. This enhanced interface is simple to use both with a mouse and with a touch-screen monitor.
The average user won't see most of Kaspersky's new features, but will experience them in the form of greater security and enhanced system performance.
Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2012's most significant enhancement is cloud-based protection (Screenshot 2). Like most other platforms, Kaspersky now augments its virus detection algorithm with information gathered from other Kaspersky users worldwide. Kaspersky's virus scanning, anti-phishing, and Web protection technologies all leverage cloud knowledge to identify potential dangers.
The most notable new feature from a UI standpoint is the Virtual Keyboard, a software keyboard that defeats keystroke logging. Keystroke logging applications are frequently employed by hackers to capture passwords and other sensitive information. While you'd have to be daft to use this as your sole keyboard, it's a useful utility to employ when logging into e-mail or online banking.
Kaspersky 2012 hooks even more deeply into the Web browser. Users of Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Google Chrome will all see two new buttons on their toolbars: one for the Kaspersky Virtual Keyboard, and one for the Kaspersky URL Advisor, which warns users of malicious Web sites (Screenshot 5). Kaspersky defaults to instrumenting all Google and Bing search results with a Kaspersky icon indicating the security status of the URL. Users can elect to display the Kaspersky icon for URLs in any Web page. While this feature is nicely designed, we have to wonder how useful it is, given that Google has been warning users about unsafe Web sites since 2006.
URL Advisor also categorizes Web sites with "questionable" material, such as violence. However, it does nothing with these categories except display them in a pop-up window when you hover over the Kaspersky icon. This feature feels like little more than an upsell for Kaspersky Internet Security, which sports a strong Parental Controls feature.
Beyond that, most of the features are holdovers from Kaspersky 2011: gamer mode, reports, and a tools menu with four ancillary applications for detecting security and performance problems with Windows.
Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2012 supports four major scan types:
Scan Speed: On our reference computer*, Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2012 clocked an initial scan speed of 34.4 MB/second, and a subsequent scan speed of 284.4 MB/second. Kaspersky chewed through our 1GB test file matrix in a mere 29.8 seconds.
Updates: Kaspersky updates its virus definition database an average of 12 times daily. This is above average for number of updates per day when compared to its competition.
*Reference Computer: Windows 7 Home Premium running on a Toshiba Pentium Dual-Core T4200 (64 bit), with 3GB of RAM and a 210GB hard drive.
2) Performance Testing: 7.5/10
Kaspersky's "What's New" documentation for Anti-Virus 2012 boasts that it has optimized performance and reduced system impact, especially when watching videos or playing graphically intensive games. The company's claims were buttressed by our tests, which show clear gains over last year's version.
3) Effectiveness: (Virus Protection) 18/20
4) Help & Support: 3/5
We had to ding Kaspersky in the help department because its help manual and inline assistance still suffer from poor English. Even the "What's New" announcement from Kaspersky is clunky and unclear.
Fortunately, Kaspersky's live support is better. Support from the Kaspersky Dashboard consists of three options:
»Quick Support Links:
All Live Support Options
While there is no single "gee-golly" feature in Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2012, the platform is an across-the-board improvement. With measurable performance gains, improved virus protection, and a slick new interface, Kaspersky has established itself as a contender for the 2012 antivirus crown.
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Kaspersky AntiVirus 2012 Screenshots
Kaspersky AntiVirus 2012 System Requirements:
Microsoft Windows 7 & Vista: 1 GHz 32-bit /64-bit Processor, 1 GB available RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit).
Windows XP: 800 MHz Processor or higher, and 512 MB available RAM memory.
Required for all Installations:
600 MB available hard-drive space
Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 or higher
Microsoft Windows Installer 2.0
Internet connection for product activation
CD/DVD drive for installation of the program from the CD
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