I’ve been a critic of Norton products before. I wish that a company as powerful as Symantec would create software products that work properly as they’re advertised, are easy to uninstall when you find out they don’t work the way they should, and at the very least, don’t break your computer when you want to remove them. Unfortunately, the Norton brand of products (owned by Symantec Corporation) don’t work like this. Almost always, they cost more than what they’re worth and end up causing more trouble than they were advertised as fixing.
Symantec owns the Norton product name and has traditionally tried to keep their Symantec line of products separate from Norton. Symantec products have been engineered for the corporate user and, as a general rule, have worked better than their Norton counterparts. They install easy, run flawlessly and are affordable considering the depth of their features. At least, that’s how I used to feel about them. My opinion of Symantec products has been eroded over time and is now about the same as Norton. I now find myself sounding the abandon ship alarm for Symantec and jumping on the first available lifeboat.
The last straw was this week, after a day long battle against Symantec Mail Security for exchange. You shouldn’t have to battle against software you paid for, folks! Their Mail Security broke an important email server, crippling all email for an entire organization for half of a day. There were no big changes made on the server, no revolutionary updates, just *poof* – one day it works, one day it doesn’t. First, it wouldn’t filter any spam. Even a reboot didn’t make a difference. Next, we couldn’t disable the product on the server and it bounced everyone as spam. Finally, we tried to turn the product off from within the administration panel. It said it was turned off, but even then it made no difference. The only way to fix the server was to completely remove Symantec Mail Security for Exchange, and magically, everything worked great again.
It’s become obvious that Symantec cares more about their fancy marketing schemes than actually making a quality product. Sure, their website is nice, very colorful, well done. But the nuts and bots of their products are beginning to fall off. With that being said, here’s my Symantec replacement list This is a list of Symantec products that I used to use on a daily basis. Heck, I didn’t just USE these products. I would promote them, tell everyone about them, I actually enjoyed them! And over the years, one by one, Symantec slowly but surely let me down by morphing each product from a wonderful tool into a buggy pile of bloatware. Sad! Symantec, are you listening? Start putting some quality control into your junkware!
Instead of Symantec or Norton Anti-Virus: AVG provides a superior anti-virus product, and it’s free.
Instead of Symantec Mail Security & Premium Anti-Spam: Trend Client Server Messaging Security for SMB. Cheaper, more reliable, doesn’t break your email servers!
Instead of Norton Internet Security: Comodo firewall is free, runs faster and does a better job.
Instead of PCAnywhere: Really? Who uses this. It’s built right into Windows XP and beyond, or if you’re really struggling, use UltraVNC.
Instead of BackupExec: No. Especially now that Windows Vista has their complete computer backup that takes an image of the entire drive. Not only that, you can use the free Microsoft Virtual PC to mount those images and copy out files. Otherwise, if stuck in XP just use the built in XP backup utility.
I actually feel pretty bad about all of this, like a kid who has to throw out a new toy to make room for a new one at Christmas time. I liked Symantec at one time. They played a big role in my PC toolkit. Now they’ve let me down again, hopefully for the last time.