Stay Fully Protected Without Using An Anti-Virus Program – Part I

This article covers on How To Stay Completely Safe on the web.

From a very long time I wanted to share with you the fact behind our over dependence on anti-virus, anti-malware programs. It is one of the reasons why malware continues to disease the computer world. Malware includes computer viruses, worms, trojan horses, spyware, dishonest adware, crimeware, most rootkits, and other malicious and unwanted software.|Wiki|

hacker man

Everyday hundreds, if not thousands of new malware are created intentionally. Anti-virus programs are constantly upgrading their virus signatures to protect their users from the latest infections. And the average user is convinced that the computer system is now protected with the newly updated anti-virus. They are totally unaware of something called ‘Zero Day viruses’ who exist like space black holes are wandering somewhere invisibly in the cyber space and attack the victim without the victim’s knowledge. A Zero day virus is a previously-unknown computer virus or other malware for which specific anti-virus software signatures are not yet available.|Wiki|

Nowadays there are anti-viruses that are designed and structured to protect the system from zero day attacks too. But, again they come at a price. Not every body prefer spending money on buying anti-virus products.

Now, i am sharing a tutorial to you that will help you keep your system fully protected, including from zero day viruses without any “realtime” anti-virus protection for FREE.
Freeware tools needed:

  • Malwarebytes (This program “will not” run in your memory and automatically protect the system, but you can use it to scan directories and files for infections)

Points to Remember before we start:

  • Use this method for experimental purpose. If you are not comfortable implementing it then stop using this method right away and use an anti-virus program to stay safe.
  • Take responsibility for websites you visit, links you click on and things you download, if you wish to stay safe.
  • No virus can harm your system unless it is executed and running.
  • This article has nothing to do with using a firewall. If your computer is connected to any network like the internet itself, then it is 100% important to use a firewall.
  • Smarter techniques always require some effort for implementation.
  • Use Malwarebytes freeware as it does not run in the background thus saving your resources and use it to scan new media like USB drives, CDs, DVDs, e.t.c
  • Skills required to understand and implement this guide: Intermediate to Experienced user.
  • This tutorial is suitable only for Windows Operating Systems: Windows XP and later.
  • This tutorial will teach you to set up your computer to “not use anti-virus protection is background” and in such a way that you run applications, whether infected or not, in a safe and fake environment and whenever your end up executing a infected program, you can easily stop and reverse the actions of the program with just closing it.

Benefits of implementing this method:

  • You won’t have to buy anti-virus, anti-malware programs.
  • Your computer would be much safer than what you would get with the anti-malware programs.
  • Your computer will run faster as more RAM will be available without the anti-virus running in the background.

The Tutorial:

  • Perform a re-installation of windows or if not, you can still continue using the same windows setup, though i recommend a re-installation to stay clean.
  • Now that your system is ready, install the freeware Malwarebytes program, update the malware definitions and perform a full system scan.
Screen 1

Watch the video demonstration of Sandboxie:

  • Run any program of your choice inside Sandboxie. Lets consider running an internet browser, since majority of the malware spread through the internet.
sandboxie 2
Screen 2
sandboxie 3
Screen 3
  • Even if you are surfing a malicious website that intends to infect your computer, you can easily ignore each downloaded file from bring copied to your “real system”. As soon as any file is downloaded into the “fake browsing environment” you will be asked for a path to recover the downloaded file, in case that file is important for you. If not important,  select ‘Don’t prompt again…’ and close the recovery box. Any file downloaded from this browsing session will be simply deleted from the “fake environment”.
sandboxie 4
Screen 4
  • That is all to it!

Primarily, this article has a lot to cover and adding more factors and situations will make this article more lengthy and uncomfortable to read. This article might also be difficult to understand for some. If you have any questions about any part of this article, please drop in a comment. I will be  happy to help you.

So, I am wrapping up the Part 1 of this tutorial and will introduce other possibilities and configurations to deal with in the 2nd part soon.

Stay tuned. 🙂

  • Thats a nice post raj.. very informative … but let me make you aware on a couple pointers :-

    Firstly, i know about sandboxie since almost 2 years and its not the ideal software for virus protection. What Sandboxie does is that it prevents any harmful software from being installed on your computer, by actually installing and testing it in its own environment first — it acts like a BlackBox – “somewhat.”.

    90% of Viruses are spread through the internet and 10% through software applications , so in this case Sandboxie wont be an ideal choice unless they come with an online system of isolated testing for web applications and emails.

    And lastly, many people would prefer having an Anti Virus suite , especially me as the processes are fully automated and you dont have to worry about anything. Its saves in a lot of time. The above mentioned tools will never gurantee anyone 100% security.

    I would always recommend people to go in for Anti Viruses, if not paid then atleast the free versions. Memory consumption is there, but then your computer is also fully protected at the same time.

    Sandboxie is an ideal tool for software testing before deploying it in the actual computer environment, but not good enough for viruses, spyware and malware.

  • Hi Neville, i never said it’s an ideal method. It’s rather an alternative method and it can be used as a replacement for anti-viruses, though not completely. This is why i have also mentioned to use Malwarebytes to scan suspicious content. It won’t run in the background and give a realtime protection, but will help the user stay clean from doubt. The rest will be avoided from sandboxing.

    And of course, not everyone will prefer this method due to it’s manual nature. But, sandboxing is loved by those you want to say away from anti-viruses.