Rating What's Hot:
The user interface for iola AntiVirus is relatively clear and appears professionally done. The icons are clear (iola AntiVirus has the coolest looking product icon I've seen in a while), and the layout makes sense for the most part. It uses a single dialog box for everything and switches between "pages" to expose various aspects of the UI. The main info page is busy but readable. It offers actions along the larger, left-hand side of the screen and information boxes along the right. The information boxes can be "minimized" to reduce the amount of clutter on the screen although having them expanded isn't that muddled. The UI is rounded out by a toolbar across the top that exposes links to settings and a link to update the virus definitions.
Because all the UI elements are on one screen, the interface could benefit both from breadcrumbs and by implementing a browser-like back button. When clicking through the various screens of the UI, I had to click the cancel button on each page. The UI does implement a "Home" button which brings the UI back to the main page which works since most functions are launched from this screen anyway. Thankfully, The UI wasn't deeply layered. Every needed element of the UI was generally available in a click or two.
The UI is not extensive and I think this is a plus. Besides the scanning screen, the only other major UI element is the Settings screen. This element uses a tabbed metaphor which functions very nicely.
A couple of links, like the ThreatCenter link and the virus definition encyclopedia will take you to the iolo web site. This makes for a bit of a discontinuous experience but the features that launch these web pages are marginal so the impact probably won't be too intrusive for most users. The UI also includes a taskbar icon which allows users to shut down the virus scanner completely or snooze the real-time scanner. The snooze option comes with the ability to re-enable the scanner after a set amount of time.
The help file is a local CHM and appeared to be adequate and well laid out. There was no context-sensitive help. When help is launched, the user is brought to the home page and has to search for the content they're interested in.
The iola AntiVirusUI seemed a bit sluggish. Some refreshes were not instantaneous, status messages didn't always update as expected, and some screen changes took longer than a second (clicking the "Settings" link for example took 2-3 seconds to load the settings screen).
A couple of times, I accidentally clicked the "Perform Full System Scan" link which promptly started a scan. The scan can't be stopped until the memory and boot record have first been scanned which took around 30 seconds. This was a bit irritating. Perhaps a confirmation box (with the option to supress) would be better before a full system scan is launched. The UI is full of hotlinks which increases the chances of unintended web browsing.
The UI doesn't support hover tips. In order to discover how some of the more obscure features or settings function, a visit to the help file is necessary (what does it mean to "use artificial intelligence"?). This modest feature actually brings quite a bit of usability to any UI and iolo AntiVirus would benefit from it.