Back to Courier Columns Page

by JB Burke

Q. I purchased a new desktop recently, and it came preloaded with Norton Anti-virus. The free trial expired and I’d like to remove it. Is there anything special I need to do to make sure it is completely removed?

A. Norton Anti-virus is a good product, but it is costly (requires an annual subscription) and it loads small bits of software throughout the system. This tends to take up memory, and slow down your system. In addition it isn’t particularly easy to get rid of. You can Click Start and then Control Panel and click on Add or Remove Software (XP) or Programs and Features (Windows 7). Then select the Norton (or Symantec) product you’d like to remove and click Remove. For most programs, that would be the end of it. However, with Norton/Symantec products there’s more to it. You need to perform one more step.

Do an online search on “Symantec removal tool”. Choose the result that starts with or go here. You’ll see a list of possible Norton products that you may have. It’s important to choose the correct one, so you get the program that is specific to your needs. The instructions advise you to save your Norton product key, in case you are planning to reinstall later. Then download the appropriate tool, and run it. It takes a while, but the complete Norton product, with all its far-flung components, will have been removed.

Remember, read the on-screen instructions carefully when doing any maintenance on your system.

Published: Courier 8/15/10 - Page 5C