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There's a whole range of antivirus testing sites on the web. Some are obviously linked to a certain brands, others far less obvious. I found a range of sites, all giving a rather different view on some of the big ones. They also differ in tested programs (noteably on Vipre, the one I've been looking into but didn't buy yet because of the lack of testing information and contradictory results).

What could explain the differences in "objective" testing of AV/firewall applications? Which sites would you trust / trust not and why?

Some sites (feel free to add your own):

http://www.av-comparatives.org/

http://www.av-test.org/ (I guess the one I trust most, don't ask me why)

http://www.antivirusware.com/

http://www.anti-malware-test.com/

http://www.pcantivirusreviews.com/

magazines :

http://www.pcworld.com/reviews/collection/5927/2011_paid_av.html

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2372364,00.asp

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I tend to ignore them all and go by word of mouth from people I trust, combined with personal testing. The Phoshi-Seal-Of-Quality currently resides with MSE, though I haven't tried out MSE2: MSE harder yet, as part of why I like it is the lightweight-ness. –  Phoshi Dec 20 '10 at 22:05
    
@phoshi Just curious, which over AV did you compare MSE to ? –  Sathya Dec 20 '10 at 22:52
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Over 10 years of using AV software, +1 for MSE –  Moab Dec 21 '10 at 2:53
    
@Sathya; Before that I was using NOD32, before that AVG, and I believe before that Avast! –  Phoshi Dec 21 '10 at 9:08
    
@Phoshi Thanks! –  Sathya Dec 21 '10 at 13:38
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1 Answer 1

My guess is that most of these "tests" are run by marketing organizations, not testing organizations.

I don't know how you'd actually test AV objectively, though - even one that recognizes 100% of known threats would fail on the next new threat. And if there was an accepted objective test, then eventually the products would be designed to pass that test, and not necessarily to protect you.

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+1 Damn good guess. –  Moab Dec 21 '10 at 2:54
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