Lavasoft Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro
Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, Ad-Aware has been around since almost before adware itself.
- Ad-Watch Connect
- RegShield is annoying
In these spyware-infested times, Ad-Watch Connect is particularly useful and, should you be looking for solid all-round protection, that could make the Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro version more tempting than Plus. In general, apart from the poor execution of RegShield, Ad-Aware does a competent job. Its overall performance, however, can be improved upon by alternative antivirus and antispyware programs.
Price$ 45.92 (AUD)
Now celebrating its tenth anniversary, Ad-Aware has been around since almost before adware itself. Its remit has widened somewhat over the years, and while the original Ad-Aware was designed simply to warn you when websites were tracking information on your PC, Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro stretches to such demanding tasks as protecting your system from viruses and spyware, and securing your banking details and files.
Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro actually comes in four flavours (the most advanced Enterprise version is aimed at medium to large businesses). Home users can get a taste of what Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro offers simply by downloading the free version, capable of performing a basic scan on your PC.
If you have an existing antivirus program to team this with, the free version could prove a decent option. You still don't get real-time detection of adware, although such a feature is, happily, available as Ad-Watch in the upgrade, Ad-Aware Plus. This more expensive version also adds (amongst other features) integrated antivirus protection and free technical support.
The Plus version of Ad-aware 2008 will suffice for most users, although Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro, which we've tested for the purposes of this review, comes with a few more advanced tools. These include the rather unexciting command line support and network drive scanning, and the far more dynamic Ad-Watch Connect, which lets you see exactly what programs on your PC (Internet Explorer, Real Player etc.) are communicating with the outside world.
Used in conjunction with the general Processes monitor, these could prove a convenient way of checking that there are no uninvited guests sending information from your PC. As such, this feature is well worth the extra cost of the Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro version.
Long-standing concerns about the lack of clarity in Ad-Aware's interface were fixed in the 2007 edition, with the result that the look and feel of the software was radically overhauled.
Having so recently nipped and tucked the interface, Lavasoft clearly felt no major changes were needed for the latest edition, and those upgrading from 2007 to Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 may be surprised at just how similar the two versions look. This is no criticism though, and the layout works remarkably well.
The Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 interface is clean and straightforward, with most of the detailed options stashed away behind menus. Should you want to closely monitor specific areas, or use TrackSweep to clean the tracks left behind as you cruise the internet, it's easy to access some of the more advanced features.
One annoying aspect of the Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 interface is RegShield. This notifies you whenever changes are made to the registry, cookies etc. Unfortunately, it isn't terribly discreet, hitting you with irritating pop-ups simply for opening a harmless Web page. It takes time to get the program used to your habits, so you can expect your initial experience with RegShield to be an aggravating one.
We had to run Lavasoft Ad-Aware 2008 Pro twice in order to get it to work on our test PC, and it needed over 26 minutes to assess our machine with a Full Scan. Once done, the program then lists the different threats on your machine, according each one a Threat Analysis Index (or, to you and me, a score out of 10) to tell you whether or not you should be worried. It then offered to remove some or all of the threats and, one reboot later, the PC came back with a clean bill of health. Ad-Aware licenses its antivirus protection from Avira, and this engine has a solid reputation, even if it's not considered to be the best in the business.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 Kogan Atlas UltraSlim Pro laptop: full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
Latest News Articles
- Drupal fixes critical access bypass vulnerability
- Hackers use old Stuxnet-related bug to carry out attacks
- Microsoft will cut services to standalone Office users so they’ll subscribe to Office 365
- Microsoft commits to a permament schedule for new Windows 10, Office updates
- OK Google, let's get personal
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSystem Administrator App-VACT
- FTSystem AnalystSA
- TPWeb DeveloperNSW
- CCDocument ControllerNSW
- TPSenior Test AnalystQLD
- CCDevops Consultant - 12 month contractVIC
- FTNetwork EngineerACT
- FTPMO CoordinatorSA
- CCSAP CRM Functional AnalystSA
- CCBusiness AnalystVIC
- FTCRM Technical Specialist (Oracle Eloqua)WA
- FTChange ManagerNSW
- TPSenior Business Analyst - Student Management SystemQLD
- FTSolution Architect - SecurityVIC
- CCTest Capability LeadNSW
- FTMobile Studio Manager/ Mobile UX Manager - GAME CHANGER!NSW
- FTNV1 Cleared Software Engineer (Mid level) - Defence Projects - North Ryde areaNSW
- FTStorage Engineer l HDSNSW
- FTSenior Functional Analyst - FinanceQLD
- FTSecurity AnalystACT
- CCSenior Project OfficerNSW
- CCSolution Architect - Audio Visual/Video DomainVIC
- FTVDI EngineerACT
- TPSenior Project Manager - Life InsuranceNSW
- FTCRM Technical Specialist (Oracle Eloqua)ACT