Adaware and Spybot are both excellent spyware removal programs, but which one is THE best at getting the job done? To find out, I loaded up a virtual PC with spyware and tested both programs. Let's check out the results...
The one other thing I would like to have seen from this expirement is to run the opposing tool after the first one and see how much they pick up after each other. That could help give a better feel if Adaware got everything that Spybot did plus more, of if they both got a lot more diverse set of spyware. Hope that makes sense and maybe it is doable still.
That is a good idea, I'll have to re-run the tests to try that fact. I'm my experience, however, Adaware will generally take out more spyware than Spybot will. If I do either program on someone's computer first, then run the other, there is also more spyware to remove than one program has done.
You're idea is a good one, I'll be adding to this article soon.
2014 is going to be a good year. More content, more streamlining. Be a part of history!
Adaware version 5.9 destryoed windows xp networking. adaware didnt remove news.net right... You cannot install networking again 100% in xp. So, re-install. Ms have solutions in their site. Didnt work for me, neither numerous other solutions.
Spybot works and dont mess your computer. Adaware have once failed, spybot never.
I prefer the Ad Aware. Has always worked for me. As for these programs messing up the XP networking code, I have run into this. I went to the Microsoft web site and downloaded a TCP\IP networking patch. I ran it and everything was fine. I did have to restart twice though.
Before running these programs, I recommend going into the Add\Remove Programs utility and removing anything that looks odd. Some of these programs require you to be connected to the internet in order for the uninstallation to be successsful. Then run the Ad Aware or Spybot utility, they will work much better.
Just wanted to say I enjoyed your article about Ad Aware and Spybot. I use them both. Also, the error you recieved after cleaning your machine, the one about bridge.dll, it is a leftover from that Golden Casino thing. It can be found in the registry under -- hkey_local_machine\software\microsoft\windows\current version\run. Just delete the reference to it over on the right. I have been hit by this thing at least three times and have to do this every time.
jadawin - your problem with Adaware was related to using a VERY old version with the new definition files. This problem is detailed on Adaware's website, and has been known about for sometime. It occurs on pretty much all Windows systems: if you use the old Adaware with the new defs, it destroys the TCP/IP stack and Winsock.
I recommend you RTM and try again with the latest version of Adaware, 6.181.
I use a 'combo' effort of 'Pest Patrol' (won right here) and 'Spybot', what one seems to miss the other one catches.
I am seeing more and more computers coming in for servicing that are just 'choked' with spyware, my record machine had 1467 pieces of spyware on it, no wonder it refused to connect to the internet anymore.
I hate to smash your record, pal...just two days ago I witnessed a machine with more than 4000 pieces of spyware. it took spybot ages to finish the scan...the machine was a pIII that worked like a 486 with 16mb memory and win95.
anyway, to the serious part: the only problem I've had with spybot, adaware (and also with hijackthis, but since it's not part of the review, I'll drop it...) is that something becomes really messed up after you use them. adaware in particular tends to mess my system over and over, so much that I don't use it anymore. spybot doesn't mess up that much, but tends to get "stuck" in the middle of a scan, each time it's around 2700 "known threats" area.
so, my question is this: isn't it actually smarter to reinstall every once in a while then mess with all those pests for so long? or at least create a known restore point in winXP and bounce back to it whenever your PC gets to hogged. I work with win2k, and I hate to say I haven't found a decent solution yet.
"isn't it actually smarter to reinstall every once in a while"
I think it's smarter not to install the crap in the first place (by not installing any of those 'nice' helper applications), the second smarter thing is use the 'auto defeat' (in Pest Patrol, or auto immunize in Spybot) to keep strays out.
I don't have any slow downs here, yes it does slow down on a system too 'light' in the ram, or too small a swap file size.
I won't beat around the bush - most of us do use Kazaa (or something similar) and other various applications that are known to carry spyware with them. is there a safe way to immunize yourself agains all those GAIN crap-apps and other spyware but still keep it all working?
btw, I never insatalled ANYTHING blindly - e/g/ toolbars of any kind or browser plug-ins etc. all spyware I caught came either through programs I found usefull or self-installing active-x crap or whatever...
I would suggest that you take both the systems and once you run the check, keep both open and compare. Look at the spybot and find each one on Adaware. If it isnt present then you lnow Adaware doesnt track it. This may be tedious but it will tell you a whole lot. I personally use both. You also mentioned that you use other softwares. Are those free and if so what are they? Good hunting! Cya.
Great article! I just found your site linked from [H]ard|OCP for the Safe Mode Comics. I loved the comics and started to explore your site more, great stuff, I bookmarked and registered this site and intend to check it daily now. I know over 25 people that I NEED to show this site too... make them read the comics and the spyware articles... I'm constantly preaching "Safe Computing" but people just don't see to get it! It drives me nuts to have to explain to them that THEY DID NOT win a free vacation and those extra toolbars in IE are not USEFUL OR COOL! Keep up the great work!
I personally do not use much for Windows OSs (just at work) but as I work as a tech guy (who knows what my proper job title is) who must fix them, I know that one is not enough. It is also no contest - I have seen personally at least 12,000 in AdAware to that persons 4000, like anyone cares - as it counts every single cookie belonging to their blacklisted sites as a seperate "attack" or what have you. Also, how people can have these break their systems instead of fixing them is beyond me.
I personally do not like the "Spyware" word craze Gibson started as not all of this software actively "spies;" that term is rather vague - and even those that do have different levels. But, seeing as a lone person cannot quite change peoples minds, it stays... Anything-ware is overused, ..might as well use it again for marketing malware ;p
Also, just another thing - if you consider Virtual PC so great, ...*sigh* :/ ..but that is left to another debate...