If an user does not have admin privileges or privileges to edit the registry, is there any reason to have antivirus software installed?
Yes, you need it.
While the majority of viruses get in through admin/power user accounts, there's still exploits to be had in the locked down accounts.
The general rule of thumb is "safety first", install antivirus/antimalware/anti-everythingbad software anyways.
While restricting user accounts is one way to decrease the risk, it is not a complete replacement for a good security app.
There are other ways that a virus and/or spyware can gain access to a PC, and restricting the user's privilages is one deterrent to this but cannot be the ultimate answer unfortunately.
Are you thinking about a maintenance standpoint, or from a cost-per-machine standpoint? If it's a cost thing, I believe that Microsoft's Security Essentials are free to use.
I guess you can answer your question with a question: Do you need a lock on your door if no one knows where you live?
I think "reasonable security" (in Windows) can be achieved by using a combination of anti-virus or "internet security" type software, and proper user training.
One major problem with a lot of so-called security software is that if you enable all of its features, you have no CPU cycles left for the user (this in itself, of course, may prevent anything nasty to happen to the machine :-)).
So use something like AVG Internet Security, but don't enable every single bell & whistle, and then tell the user that p0rn.net will not enhance your life ;)
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protected by nhinkle♦ Apr 7 '12 at 3:30
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