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Customer Discussions > PC Game forum

Does your AV software slow down your frame rates when it is updating?

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Showing 1-16 of 16 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 1, 2012 12:00:44 PM PDT
Avalanche says:
Do you have to suspend your antivirus/internet security software when you are playing games?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 12:24:48 PM PDT
WolfPup says:
It wouldn't surprise me if it could cause minor little hicups here and there while it's actually updating, but updating doesn't happen that often. If I've ever did measure performance in general, it's been years since I bothered, and I just don't worry about it. I leave it on all the time.

Particularly in a multi-player game I wouldn't want it disabled, just in case, but...yeah, I'd rather just leave it running. Performance impact should be negligible, and anymore we probably all have 2 or 4 (or 6 or 8!) CPU cores and probably at least one of them has spare CPU time even when a game is running, since games don't usually use every CPU to 100% perfectly, so maybe there's even less of an impact than there used to be.

Posted on Nov 1, 2012 2:54:28 PM PDT
Shanghaied says:
Many of the lesser known AVs out there are relatively low in terms of resource hogging, but it's something as a gamer that you really need to do your homework on.

I use ESET NOD32, and I don't really notice that much of a memory/CPU footprint. ESET advertises that they run without drastically impacting performance and so far my experiences seem to be in line with that. There may be better options though.

Another I've used with good results is AVAST, but I haven't used it in years so I can't speak to it now. AVG used to be decent as well, but again I'm not sure how it is today.

I've heard high praise for Kaspirsky as well.

When I used to run Norton many years ago, yes, that absolutely made a massive impact.

Don't even try McAffee. Just don't.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 2:56:05 PM PDT
WolfPup says:
I used to use Norton through the version 10 corporate one...after that...yuck.

Used Avira which seemed fine, for years, now use Microsoft's Security Essentials (guess it's renamed Windows Defender in Windows 8?)

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 2:59:53 PM PDT
Shanghaied says:
It's the truth; Windows Defender is actually surprisingly good. I run that along with malwarebytes and ESET NOD32 and things are still pretty snappy.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 3:17:02 PM PDT
Avast runs great, but lately I've been using F-Secure since my ISP provides the full version free.

Posted on Nov 1, 2012 4:37:30 PM PDT
I use Webroot SecureAnywhere. It doesn't update because it doesn't need to and I don't have to set any special modes for gaming because it detects when I'm gaming automatically and adjusts for it (no scans get run during gaming! XD ). It has -zero- impact on my frame rate (as opposed to "not too much") and uses around 5 MB of RAM. I used to turn off Windows Defender while gaming, because it caused asset load stutter, but now I just leave it off all the time with SecureAnywhere and the system is measurably faster. I tried Vipre for a while because it was fast, but I wasn't impressed when it said "Hey, look, I see a virus! It's installing! I see it!! Oh, hey, it installed. It's..." *dead Vipre*

Sure, my system has a good bit of speed up stuff too (RAID5 SSD array pulls about 1100MB/s off the drives, I use about 20GB of my 32GB of memory for a RAMDisk that gets loaded up with game data files for the game I intend to play, I have a GTX 680, FX-8150, etc), but I just use Webroot now because I don't have to worry about it at all. No stutters, no hiccups, no lag. For reference, I play WoW, TF2, SW:TOR, DIII (and DII just for grins), Borderlands 2, Planetside, Planetside 2 beta (which will hopefully be over its own technical problems before release), Secret World, Skyrim, Oblivion, the ancient and venerated Morrowind, and I can't even think of all the single player games I run too. Really, unless Webroot does something weird and loses the huge edge they have right now for gaming, I will stick with them.

Posted on Nov 1, 2012 4:39:57 PM PDT
Greg Davis says:
Why not use an antivirus/antimalware suite that is built by gamers who understand that people do not want to be interrupted when they are playing? Check out the reviews on the 2013 versions of Webroot SecureAnywhere here on Amazon and see for yourself. SecureAnywhere is always up-to-date, uses the fewest System resources, scans for threats quickly and quietly in the background and will not interrupt your game play or work.

Posted on Nov 2, 2012 11:07:55 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 2, 2012 11:14:36 AM PDT
R. J. Satori says:
It used to.

Actually, my previous A/V solution did worse than that. I had McAfee basic commercial version for a couple of years and it wasn't too bad, so when I got an offer to upgrade as part of the renewal I jumped on it. Their higher-end version was a resource-munching nightmare, and their Customer Service personnel unapologetic for what was apparently the normal situation, if not blaming other software, with no way of downgrading back to the outdated lower-end version without paying more. I put up with it, though... stubborn because I'd paid for it already... until the renewal was about to come around again.

Then I uninstalled it and put on AVG's free version, intending just to keep it temporarily. It was pretty good, except for firing up at random when other programs needed every processing cycle. I made a halfhearted complaint, and AVG's Customer Service actually responded and worked with me to determine what was causing my problems... someone using the free version of the software! The next major update, AVG had a "gaming mode" feature that would interrupt updates and other processes while any full-screen application was active. The version after that even allows manual interruption of all functions for as long as you want (with the option accessible through the right-click menu, no less).

The paid version of AVG may still lack a few features that McAfee had, but it's been the opposite experience dealing with this software and company. Although it's supposedly not the fastest updated database in the business, I've not had anything get past AVG to date. And it doesn't interrupt your games for updates, or cause the system to crawl at startup or any other time you don't want it stealing processor cycles.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2012 11:42:35 AM PDT
WolfPup says:
Geez, that's hilariously inept of more to downgrade!

Didn't Intel buy them? You'd think they'd make it a better product with Intel owning them now... unless I'm thinking of the wrong company.

Wow, that's seriously impressive about AVG! Geez, yeah, after that I'd be willing to pay for it!

Posted on Nov 2, 2012 3:13:14 PM PDT
I honestly won't touch AVG since they advertised "Almost as good as many paid AV programs!" That and the number of people I've had to disinfect who used AVG runs in the "many more than most other programs". By comparison, when I've moved people to Webroot, even repeat offenders that I've disinfected multiple times a month normally have failed to keep an infection on their system long enough for me to have to look at it. (Some got some, but Webroot caught them and completely removed them within hours and before I could schedule to see them.) Even more disturbing that AVG's answer to Gaming Mode is to not do updates and turn off realtime shields. So if something new hits while it's not updating during a marathon FPS shootout, I'm not covered?

But with gaming, I'll still stick to Webroot. Besides the fact that they beat out everything in performance testing at AV Comparatives ( ) and knocked it out with Passmark testing ( ) (227 score, while the next best was Norton at 184. AVG got a mere 136)... But it also doesn't need me to make any decisions about turning stuff off or how long to have it off or remember to turn it on or anything.

Webroot just works and stays out of my way. I can solidly ignore it and know it's doing the right thing. Since it doesn't need to do any definition updates and the program updates take a fraction of a second, I don't even worry about being unprotected while gaming just so the games go faster. I don't need to tell it to turn stuff off or on. Seriously, that's what I like hearing from my people and customers too: "It just works and doesn't slow down anything" and "It never bugs me about stuff". :)

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2012 3:56:32 PM PDT
If you think "pay more to downgrade" is bad, you should've seen Trend Micro a few years ago. I stuck to the 2006 product 'till the bitter end. Which happened to be me renewing the 2006 product in December of a given year ($59.99), then being told by it in January that it was no longer supported and I had to buy the new 2009 product now at full price because my protection just died yesterday despite being renewed at full price a month earlier. Couldn't stand the 2009 thing and couldn't get a refund on EITHER of the payments from Trend or Digital River (who they went through for sales). Ended up just contesting the charges. It was a headache. :(

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2012 3:58:50 PM PDT
WolfPup says:
Good'd think a company who does that as their primary product would be bright enough to stop letting people renew a full year before they quit supporting it! I mean DUH!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2012 4:18:37 PM PDT
No kidding! I stuck with Trend Micro for over a decade from the mid-90's when they first proved that they could protect a system better than McAfee and Norton simply because you couldn't just tell Windows to terminate them and get away with it. When Trend pulled that on me, and worse, their 2009 product suddenly "found" a whole bunch of infections on my machine... That were all samples I had submitted to them back in 2001 or earlier... I went looking for something better.

AVG bogged everything down back then, Norton was right out (Bog!!!! OMG BOG!!!!). I looked for the "fastest and lightest" at the time and found Vipre, which also had their cool Sunbelt sandbox system, but it got killed by the TDSS infection I mentioned above. XD

I went to Webroot then because they used the Sophos engine and definitions in their AV as well as SpySweeper. Both of them were already great (Sophos is enterprise-class AV) and they had a decently-working Gamer Mode from the start. Then SecureAnywhere came out and I've just been in seventh heaven since while gaming. *Drools* As many years as I have in the security industry, it's just nice to see something that works so disgustingly well and doesn't make me miss a shot or wipe a raid. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2012 4:23:50 PM PDT
@Shanghaied - ESET got the second best score on AV-C if I recall correctly so it's on my watchlist if I decide to switch. :)

Kaspersky seems to do very decently on detection, and their TDSS removal utility is great, but I haven't seen good things regarding a balance when gaming or doing intensive stuff.
Norton made a HUGE focus on reducing their impact recently, but seem to be slipping back into their old habits anymore. :( Even if the "live" impact is lesser in testing, can they POSSIBLY take up more space?!?! I mean fer goodness sake, does security REALLY need to take up nearly a gig of disk?

Posted on Nov 4, 2012 11:29:17 AM PST
I use Microsoft Security Essentials and schedule my full scans during times when I know I won't be playing. If it's doing a full scan, it slows everything down a little bit. Otherwise there's no discernable impact to my fps during gaming.
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Discussion in:  PC Game forum
Participants:  8
Total posts:  16
Initial post:  Nov 1, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 4, 2012

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