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Desktop security tools

What are your recommendations for desktop security? The operating system is Windows XP professional running on Novell. What standard applications do you recommend?
In addition to a good antivirus application and firewall application (Norton, McAfee, Trend Micro, etc.), I recommend that you use the guidelines available at the Center for Internet Security and get their free benchmark scoring tool and run it to tighten up your overall operating system. Note that the tool is free for personal use only. The same tool works on Windows NT, 2000, XP and Server 2003. For spyware, I favor CounterSpy, AdAware Pro, WinPatrol, PestPatrol. Microsoft's antispyware tool isn't bad. I also recommend Spybot Search and Destroy for its immunization function. And if you use it -- please send them a donation. The same should be said for any freeware/shareware application. Reward the people who make these things possible.

This was first published in October 2005

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