Sophos v9 vs Avast v8 on mavericks

Discussion in 'OS X Mavericks (10.9)' started by georgegates5, May 18, 2014.


Avast v8 vs Sophos v9

  1. Avast v8

    5 vote(s)
  2. Sophos v9

    6 vote(s)
  3. Others (please specify below and reason

    9 vote(s)
  1. georgegates5 macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014
    Sophos v9 vs Avast v8 on mavericks

    Which is the best?:apple:

    Looking in terms for battery life and memory/CPU usage
  2. crjackson2134 macrumors 68040


    Mar 6, 2013
    Charlotte, NC
  3. Sko macrumors 6502


    Oct 17, 2009

    I'm using ClamXav.

    As I pretty often have to work cross platform, I like to check files I'm receiving, working on, and sending back to Windows users.
  4. Graig macrumors 6502


    Aug 23, 2009
    Vancouver, BC
  5. laurihoefs macrumors 6502a


    Mar 1, 2013

    Sophos caused some random slowdowns, so I switched to ClamXav.
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I recommend avoiding Sophos, as it can actually increase a Mac's vulnerability, as described here and here. 3rd party antivirus apps are not needed to keep a Mac malware-free, as long as the user practices safe computing, as described in the following link. If you need to perform a scan for some reason, ClamXav (which is free) is one of the best choices, since it isn't a resource hog, detects both Mac and Windows malware and doesn't run with elevated privileges.

    Also, you can check your firewall settings in System Preferences > Security > Firewall > Advanced to see if any app or process is blocked or is allowed incoming connections.

    If you have it installed, you should leave Java disabled in your browser until you visit a trusted site that requires it. Always update any software from the App Store or directly from the developer's site or from within the app. Never update or install software based on a pop-up on any website.

    Macs are not immune to malware, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on Mac OS X, and there never have been any since it was released over 12 years ago. The only malware in the wild that can affect Mac OS X is a handful of trojans, which can be easily avoided by practicing safe computing (see below). 3rd party antivirus apps are not necessary to keep a Mac malware-free, as long as a user practices safe computing, as described in the following link.
    Read the What security steps should I take? section of the Mac Virus/Malware FAQ for tips on practicing safe computing.
  7. georgegates5 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014

    That is a 2012 article, it does not show sophos v9, that is for sophos v8 and below, any info on sophos 9

    Thnaks for your info on opensource ClamXav but my main reason for not using ClamXav is simply if you test it with alot of website that might have web malwaver injection, clamXav doesnt provide protection.

    It is false to assume mac does not need protection, the simplest case being that malware are using browser as a vector of attack (hence both avast and sophos has web shield that scan the webpage)

    On top of that ClamXav simply is not considered due to slow database updates and the definition are not up to date.
  8. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Sophos still runs with elevated privileges, which creates a vulnerability that other antivirus apps do not.
    ClamXav does have the Sentry feature which automatically scans anything introduced to your Mac.
    I never said Macs don't need protection. That protection can exist in the form of safe computing practices, which have been proven to be more effective than any antivirus software in keeping OS X malware free. There is no antivirus software available that can provide equal or better protection against OS X malware than simply practicing safe computing. There has never been any OS X malware in the wild that couldn't be avoided with safe computing alone.
  9. georgegates5 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014
    True true.

    Thanks for the info on sophos
  10. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    This site does a pretty good annual test of Mac AV options. Might help you decide which product you want to use.
  11. janitor3 macrumors regular

    Aug 11, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    Sophos v9 vs Avast v8 on mavericks

    I use Sophos, supplied by the company I work for, on my Mac mini & MacBook Pro, not had any problems so far.
  12. hologram macrumors 6502

    May 12, 2007
    I use Sophos, too. It's picked up a number of Windows viruses, some trojans, and some malware, and I've never had a problem with it.
  13. NDPTAL85 macrumors newbie

    Jul 25, 2007
    Outdated Advice

    You are making it sound like your actions can be smarter than the hackers that seek to infect your system. This also creates a scenario where you are "blaming the victim" for their system getting infected. While it is harder to infect a Mac it is not impossible even while practicing safe computing practices. Any AV suite is better than none.

    Its completely outdated advice that Macs (and Linux) don't need AV software.

    There are numerous and frequent Java and Flash vulnerabilities that can allow hackers to put viruses, worms, trojans and keyloggers on your machine and you won't know they're there if you don't have AV software installed. Apple's built in malware detection is not as comprehensive as third party tools.

    To find out which ones are the best, click the link below.
  14. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    On my Mac, none of them but if I had to choose, I'd opt for ClamAx.

    I run Avast on my windows machines and that seems to score highly on the independent reviews. I have no idea how well it does on the Mac however.
  15. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    The presence of vulnerabilities doesn't mean exploits exist in the wild. There is no OS X malware in the wild can't be avoided by prudent user action. If a Mac is infected, it is because the user introduced, by action or inaction, the malware. As for hackers, the likelihood of an average Mac user's computer being attacked by a hacker is so infinitesimal as to be virtually non-existent. In over 7 years of reading "my Mac got hacked!" posts in this forum and elsewhere, not a single one ever was.
    Third party tools are not completely comprehensive, either. No antivirus app has 100% detection rates. Just because you have one installed doesn't mean there's no malware on your system. It only means the app can't detect any malware. Practicing safe computing is a more thorough and complete protection than that offered by any antivirus software. It's not outdated advice. Safe computing is just as effective today in avoiding 100% of all OS X malware in the wild as it has been since OS X was released. Nothing has changed that fact.
  16. NDPTAL85 macrumors newbie

    Jul 25, 2007
    Practice Safe Computing is like telling people to "Practice Safe Existing" so that they never catch a cold or flu in real life. You're assuming that all of this is controllable by the user, its not. If someone hacks a commonly visited website and uses a Flash or Java vulnerability your machine will be infected through no fault of your own.

    You are right that no anti-virus tool is 100% effective. I never said they were. But by using one or two of them along with Apple's built in XProtect you're well covered. I do small scale IT consulting for small businesses and self employed individuals and I can tell you that I have seen Macs infected with viruses and keyloggers. Especially now a few customers who use Bitcoin. Its unrealistic to continue the long time view that Macs are safe as long as you "Practice safe computing".
  17. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    There's a big difference. In computing, you can identify and defend against all OS X malware in the wild. You can't defend against colds or flu unless you live in a ziplock bag.
    Yes, it is. All OS X malware that has ever existed in the wild can be, and has been, successfully avoided by practicing safe computing.
    That's not true. You clearly haven't read the safe computing tips, which include things like installing software only from reputable sites, such as the developer, and disabling Java in your browser, unless you visit a trusted site that requires it. Java isn't even installed on OS X unless a user installs it.
    Again, not true. There have been instances in the past when no antivirus software was able to detect malware that safe computing avoided.
    If you saw a Mac infected with a virus, it was running Mac OS 9 or earlier. There has never been an OS X virus in the wild since OS X was introduced. There is no way a keylogger gets on a Mac unless the user installs it or gives access to their computer to install it.
  18. NDPTAL85 macrumors newbie

    Jul 25, 2007
    So here's some links that show that OS X Malware does in fact exist in the wild that will still infect you even if you practice "Safe Computing Tips"






    Now current AV suites will remove those infections now that they've been discovered but the idea that if you simply do the right things you won't be infected is patently absurd. In any case with tens of millions of users worldwide "Safe Computing Tips" are not going to be followed by everyone anyways. Its much safer to just install and use the anti-virus product of your choice then to hope that all Mac users everywhere will be "perfect" enough to never get their Macs infected.
  19. Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030


    Nov 8, 2014
    Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
    Neither. They slow down the PC and there is no need to have any of this software on a Mac.

    Having said that, I have ClamAx and AdwareMedic installed, just to be on the safe side.
  20. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    It's apparent that you haven't read the safe computing tips, because following them would result in successful avoidance of all of the malware you linked to. For example, disabling Java in the browser (it's not even installed by default in newer versions of OS X) would eliminate the threats you linked to that rely on Java vulnerabilities.
    That's not true, either, since no antivirus app has a 100% detection rate. You can run whatever antivirus app you want and if you don't practice safe computing, your Mac could still be infected.
  21. Donfor39 macrumors 65816


    Jul 26, 2012
    Lanarkshire Scotland
    avast though version is now 10.6

    no probs since 2012:cool:
  22. Traverse macrumors 604


    Mar 11, 2013

    I have ClamXav from the Mac App Store that I occasionally use to scan downloaded files, but running a full AV program will only impact performance for unneeded protection.
  23. SlCKB0Y macrumors 68040


    Feb 25, 2012
    Sydney, Australia
    Whilst I agree with you in principle and never employ AV or malware protection, I think that you drastically overestimate the capabilities of the average user to determine what is prudent or safe computing whilst underestimating the power of social engineering to otherwise overrule a users good judgement.
  24. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Certainly there are some users who don't even know how to use Finder and need help composing an email. However, for anyone who has progressed beyond that neophyte stage, practicing safe computing isn't a complex or tedious thing to do. Make a one-time adjustment to a few settings and avoid doing very specific risky things, such as installing pirated software (the majority wouldn't even know where to look to find pirated apps). It's really not difficult for anyone who's advanced enough to know how to install an app or enter a password.

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