There are several malicious software waiting to attack your computer the moment you get a little low on your defense. A computer on the Internet without an antivirus is very likely to be infected. The same is the case with adware. These are programs that show ads whenever you click on links or anything. They pop up out of nowhere and you do not even know how to deal with it if your antivirus cannot identify them. It is always advisable to use the second line of defense on all computers. One should be a regular antivirus and the other should be a complementary anti-malware that can co-exist with the anti-virus.
One such defense is Reason Core Security. – now called Reason Essential. This free software offers it’s Standard Protection free of cost and comes to you from the makers of herdProtect and Should I Remove It.
This review of Reason Essential free version helps you understand if it is worth using. Reason Core Security is lead by Andrew Newman, who was the co-founder of GIANT Company Software, which was acquired by Microsoft.
Reason Essential Core Security review
Reason Essential comes in two versions: Free and paid. Irrespective of which version you download, you get one full month of all functionalities as a trial. The installer will show you that you are downloading a trial version. If you downloaded the free version, some of the protections will stop functioning after the period of 30 days is over.
The free version does not include real-time protection and automated scanning. You can still continue to use it for scanning your Windows computer manually for second opinions. The real-time protection expires after the first 30 days trial period if you do not pay for the license. Likewise, the real-time protection against potentially unwanted programs too is removed from the free version if you fail to upgrade. You can scan for both adware and PUPs manually though.
The software does work well when detecting adware. When you install it, it runs an initial scan to see if the computer is infected. If any are found, a full scan is recommended by the program and it can take much time if your primary drive is huge. It scans all the possible programs and places that are targets for adware and presents you with the results at the end of the scan.
We ran a scan on a system infected by adware. The computer’s browsers were directing links to different advertisements upon clicking links. Upon running Reason Core Security, it found some 20 instances of adware and removed it on its own.
Coming to the potentially unwanted programs, when you try to install programs laced with PUPs, it gives you a warning. But this area of the program needs improvement. While trying to upgrade Java, which always has an unwanted Ask toolbar, there was no interference from the program. That means the Reason Core Security failed to detect the Ask toolbar or maybe it is programmed to accept the Ask toolbar as a normal program.
One useful feature of the program is the list of Startup items displayed. You can get it from the Tools options in the main window of the Reason Core. This is a bit dangerous for starters. I would not recommend anyone to use it unless they know what they are doing. Unlike other programs that just show the items listed in the Startup group, this program shows all applications – including Windows secret programs, Windows Services, and more. It detected some 700 plus items on my computer (See image below). Messing up here may cause your system to become unstable and you may end up having to reinstall the entire operating system again – so be very careful here!