PC Tools' Internet Security suite for 2010 gets some things right, and frustratingly drops the ball on others. It's hard not to like the feature set, which is robust, and the recent efficacy badge from Virus Bulletin. However, some of the problems in the suite are glaring and will potentially scare aware users who might otherwise find it a good security tool.
The default landing page should appeal to those who like quick glances to ensure everything is running smoothly. Green checkmarks or red Xes make it easy to see if you're at risk. Drilling deeper down to the settings pages could be better, though. Too often, the plain text felt squished by the chunks of white space on the right, and made it unnecessarily hard to parse logs and fine-tuning controls like the firewall or advanced scan settings.
The performance benchmarks weren't horrible, but they didn't impress, either. Falling somewhere in the middle of its competitors, and notably slow especially on computer start-up times, the suite could be much more nimble. Also annoying is that when held up against most of its competitors, the trial version is noticeably hamstrung. You only get 15 days to make a decision with the suite, and it won't remove any threats it detects.
What PC Tools fans will like is that although two earlier tests by Virus Bulletin this year gave PC Tools Internet Security 2009 failing marks, the first test of the new version passed the test on Windows 7. So for those with new computers, PC Tools' slightly lower price point of $50 for three licenses for its premium product may stand out as a good deal. Read the full review at CNET Reviews.