McAfee Internet Security 2009 packs a lot of features and all are accessible under the main window. The features are hierarchically grouped under “Computer & Files", “Internet & Network", “E-mail & IM" and “Parental Controls" headings. Virus protection, spyware protection, system guard, Windows protection and PC Health are under “Computer & Files", Firewall and Identity Protection are under “Internet & Network" and E-mail Virus Protection, Spam Protection, instant messaging virus protection, e-mail spyware protection, and instant messaging spyware protection are under “E-mail & IM" section.
These are the main features offered with the normal view. If you switch to the advanced view by clicking on the “Advanced Menu" at the bottom right of the window, you will be able to access additional features offered such as the backup and restore functions. Just as a note, to use the backup and restore functions you need to have at least .Net version 1.1 installed.
What I personally liked about McAfee’s overall features is the instantaneous updates. The software always communicates with the master database in McAfee labs. When the program finds out a suspicious file with its heuristics and built-in malware signatures it sends the file to the McAfee labs and receives updates in a couple of minutes. This, in my opinion, is better than Norton’s 5-minute updates. This also works the other way around; if McAfee labs detect a threat, the program is updated immediately. This two-way communication ensures protection against the zero-day threats, but there is a question mark: does it work as it should?
The known malware detection rates are very high and McAfee always took the top positions in the competition but not the first place. In terms of unknown malware detection, McAfee’s successful detection rate stays below 15%. As I have asked in the previous paragraph, the question whether or not you can rely on McAfee for the malware detection remains.
The on-demand scan times are high and cannot be considered as short. Although there are false positives, I can safely say that it is agreeable.