ESET Antivirus Review

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The international company ESET was founded in 1992. She is a developer of antivirus software, as well as an expert on protection against computer threats and cybercrime. More than in one hundred and eighty countries of the world there are representative offices of this company. ESET was one of the first to create heuristic methods for detecting threats. Using these methods, you can discover both already known viruses and new malicious software.

Antivirus ESET NOD32 many times watered and betrayed criticism. Many still do not consider it a right solution for protection, but even more, people prefer it to everyone else. And, as time has shown, many educational institutions and various organizations install it. Many teachers and professors consider this excellent antivirus protection, especially when a child is at the computer.

Today NOD32 is very decent protection for any user. The quality of security and the scanner are highly appreciated even by professionals. NOD32 can adapt to absolutely any user, thanks to the many add-ons. After all, each user has his requirements – someone needs light protection, and someone needs complete protection against all types of threats. NOD32 is entirely suitable for both!

So, what are the strengths and weaknesses of this antivirus? What are the settings, and how to determine the best? Below we will try to tell and explain everything. And also we will carry out a small test. Ready? Go!

How to install NOD32

Despite which version of the antivirus you select (32 or 64 bit), immediately after the installation starts, the program will automatically check all settings and updates.

Antivirus “tells” you that it will now be installed. It is strongly recommended to close all applications to avoid possible conflicts. And in order not to harm the operating system, you must in a MANDATORY order remove all previous remedies. When all the conditions are met, you can click the “Next” button. A user agreement will appear and, if you agree with it, then select the desired item and press the “Next” button again.

Next, you need to select the installation mode.

The default is “Normal,” which already includes everything you need to work. But since we are not looking for easy ways, we select the “Custom” mode. And now we will customize everything to your liking.

The very first thing we can change is the folder where the program will be installed. Here we do not need to change anything. Next is the configuration of proxy servers. If you do not know what it is, then leave the default values. We will not linger here either.

Automatic updating is also not particularly important. But if you want, you can customize to your liking.

The default settings are elegant. But the following parameters are extremely useful for those who have children.

Antivirus settings can be closed from children. This means that to change any environment, you will need to enter a password. But he is not known to your children. This will ensure the regular and smooth operation of NOD32. Everybody knows the excessive children’s curiosity and desire to click somewhere. After all the settings, click the “Next” button.

ESET Live Grid is a reputation-based system that increases the chance of detecting threats. To ensure continued safety, ESET always monitors the relevance of protective equipment. This is possible by streaming data from the cloud. The reputation of any programs and processes that have been launched, the user can view directly in the program window. There you can see all the additional information from the ESET Live Grid. And since many people believe that the future of antiviruses is “clouds,” we recommend enabling it.

Detection of potentially unwanted software is also an excellent way to protect against various pests. For example, these programs can significantly reduce the performance of your computer: different opening windows, which were not there before. In general, they will do various bad things that interfere with the user. Be sure to include.

After all the settings, you can begin the installation. It can take from two to five minutes. And immediately after the installation is complete, a green “peephole” should appear in the tray (bottom right).

After this, product activation is required. The activation window will open immediately after all the antivirus modules are launched.

To get all the latest updates and full functionality of the program, follow all the recommendations to complete the activation. And, although the installer does not offer to restart the computer, we still advise you to do this.

Description of all components of ESET NOD32

Finally, ESET NOD32 has been installed. Now let’s look at the program interface.

Interface ESET NOD32 Antivirus

Immediately striking beautiful design of the main window. There are six tabs in the window where all the necessary functions are located. These tabs are:


PC scan




Help and support

Now more about each of them.

“Home” – here you can view information about the current state of the PC and which modules were included. To facilitate the work with the antivirus, you can use the “frequently used” actions.

The second tab is called PC Scan.

Quick scan is a quick scan. With this scan, all local disks are scanned, and all threats are removed.

Selective scanning. When choosing this item, you can select which drives or removable drives you want to check.

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. Custom Scan

To do this, enter the path to the file or click on a specific area of ​​the PC and click the “Scan” button. After that, the virus scan in this sector will start.

Setting up a computer scan. With this button, you can customize the scan settings. We return to it a little later, when we proceed to the study of each parameter separately.

Similarly, with the main tab here you can use the service frequently used tasks. We continue …

The third tab is the Update.

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. Update

Here you can update the antivirus database, as well as find out when it was last updated. Also, you can see which version of databases is currently installed. There is also a button to activate the program. With it, you can renew your license. Under the button, you can see the license validity period and its type. Of course, there is information about the version of your program, and the ability to check for updates for it (not for virus databases!).

On the Settings tab, you can independently enable or disable security modules.

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. Customization

If you have NOD32 installed on several computers and you do not want to spend time configuring each of them, then you will be able to easily import and export settings to the configuration file. In advanced settings, you can explore more in-depth settings. To do this, click the “Advanced Settings” button. But back to them later, for this will be a whole section.

“Utilities,” this is the tab where the useful and straightforward utilities built into the NOD32 antivirus are placed.

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. Utilities

These programs are elementary, so consider them in brief.

Log files Here you can see the past actions of the antivirus, which are recorded in the log — for example, removal of infected objects, and so on.

Scheduler. Useful utility. With it, you can add tasks to be performed at a set time. For example, you can add a job to update virus databases at 6:00, and scan at 6:20.

Protection statistics. Shows the number of infected files found and how many of them have been cleared.

Quarantine. Infected files detected by the antivirus should be sent to quarantine. This is a safe place for dangerous objects, from which, if necessary, you can recover any file almost instantly. Ask for what? Here, for example: after you double-checked the quarantine, a record was discovered the antivirus mistakenly identified that as dangerous. To restore it, press just one button, and it is ready to work again.

Monitoring Here you will see only the graph of the counted and recorded objects. And nothing more.

ESET SysInspector is a utility that thoroughly checks all system components: drivers, network connections, registry entries, and installed programs. After that, the application creates analytical reports. Using these reports, you can understand the reason for the strange behavior of the system — for example, software incompatibility or virus infection.

Running processes is a mini-application that analyzes all system processes and verifies them through the Eset Live Grid cloud. After the check, the program indicates the degree of danger of the process, for how many users it is running the time when it was noticed for the first time.

Submit a file for analysis – this program allows you to check any file on your computer for the presence of virus code, with the help of professionals in the ESET antivirus laboratory.

To do this, you need to specify why the file was sent, select this file and enter the email address. Mail is required if the laboratory will need to find out more detailed information about the infected file.

ESET SysRescue. If your PC is infected with a virus, but NOD32 is installed on the second computer, then you can quickly burn a recovery disk. And then, with his help, to cure your computer. Unusually high utility rescues in such cases.

In the “Help and Support” tab, a novice user can find information about how ESET NOD32 works.

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. reference

If you were unable to find the necessary information here, then you can refer to the forum, or the “Customer support” section. When you click the “About Antivirus ESET NOD32” button, you can find out how much time is left until the end of the license, as well as find out the current versions of the program modules. And a lot of other things.

Configuring ESET NOD32 Antivirus

Antivirus NOD32 has a large number of settings. Moreover, the system of tinctures is made so that each person can easily configure the antivirus to your liking. Here is the main settings window:

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. Settings

The number of settings items is frighteningly huge. But do not be afraid, we will not change them all – look only at the most important ones. First, let’s “conjure up” over the real-time protection settings.

So, the first – we raise definitions from dangerous objects.

Computer -> Virus and spyware protection -> Real-time protection -> Setup

In the settings, it is worth changing only a couple of points. Find the tab “Methods” and put a check against the end “Potentially unwanted software.”

ESET NOD32 Antivirus. Settings

Installing such software may adversely affect the performance of your computer. And since we do not need it, it is better to entrust such matters to the antivirus. And in order not to lose our valuable time to delete each infected file, we will allow the antivirus to delete them itself. And immediately after the discovery!

To do this, you need to go to the tab “Cleaning.” Then you need to drag the slider to the position “thorough cleaning.”


And finally, the promised trial of ESET NOD32 Antivirus.

First, we will conduct a standard self-defense test for all antiviruses. Let’s try to close all NOD32 processes. To do this, we will use the program Process Hacker 2.27 and its Terminator function.

This function very quickly enumerates all possible ways to close the process. So let’s see what our antivirus is good for. Let’s get started.

At first, we will try to close the primary process – ekrn.exe. This is the process that protects us.

As a result of the “terminator’s” launch, the process with no resistance left. But! Do not rush to conclusions. Because almost immediately after unloading, the process recovered again. We do not know how justified this method of protection is, but the idea is beautiful.

From the attempt to destroy the second process (egui.exe – NOD32 shell), we expected the same scenario as the first one. But we were mistaken because, after the closure of the process, he never recovered.

Nothing critical here, of course, no. And although the process is easy to restore, running NOD32 through the “Start” button is still unpleasant. Let’s count as a minus.

Conclusions: it is challenging to solve something unequivocally. Processes are elementary to unload. But the main module of the program is almost instantly restored. And this means that the computer continues to be completely safe. If it were not for the complete closure of the graphical shell, we would put the highest possible score. Unfortunately, self-defense is far from perfect, but at the proper level.

On-demand test

Judging by the user reviews, NOD32 Antivirus detects a massive number of threats. And how really? Now let’s check … We accidentally discovered a test archive with five hundred, partially infected * .exe files, and the same number of * .dll libraries. The settings that we used in the test are identical to those described above. Specifically, in the “Settings” tab.

After checking the folder with * .exe files, there are 188 files left – not bad enough, as a result, we have 62.4%, but there are already 353 * .dll files left. We calculate the result as a percentage:

(500-353) / 500 * 100 = 29.4%

Pretty little – 29.4%.

And find out the overall detection result:

(1000-541) / 1000 * 100 = 45.9%

Since the test archive is fresh, this is quite an expected result. Bottom line: NOD32 copes with .exe much better than with .dll files.

ESET NOD32 SmartSecurity

ESET NOD32 Smart Security is an intelligent, comprehensive solution for securing your home computer from viruses, Trojans, worms, spyware, adware, rootkits, hacker attacks, phishing attacks, and spam.

ESET NOD32 Smart Security contains the following security components:

  • Antivirus
  • Antispyware
  • Antiphishing
  • Antispam
  • Firewall
  • Anti-theft
  • Parental control
  • USB control

Benefits of ESET NOD32 SmartSecurity

Safe work on the Internet

Fast and accurate malware detection. Permanent protection of your computer against sophisticated threats, infected sites, and cybercrime attacks

Intelligent Data Protection

The combination of modern technologies ESET ThreatSense® and ESET Live Grid allows you to assess the reputation of all applications before their launch and provides a reliable data protection system

Secure communication

Communicate on social networks, download files from the Internet, compete in online games – cybercriminals will not be able to access your computer and use your data for fraudulent transactions

Child safety online

Protect your child from unwanted information on the Internet and control access to sites of specific categories

WI-FI Security

When working in a public network, the computer will be reliably protected from an unauthorized remote connection of the attacker.

USB control

Intelligent content scanning, identification and control of removable media by name, serial number, size, and other parameters

Protection of settings

All rules and settings can be password protected.


Intelligent email verification and unwanted email filtering

Intrusion Prevention System (HIPS)

Allows you to configure additional security rules and block programs

High speed

Instantly finds and neutralizes malware without slowing your computer’s performance.

Ideal for laptop

Determines when the computer is running on battery and automatically switches its work to power saving mode

Game Mode

Automatically switches to a particular mode and economically consumes system resources when launching games and various full-screen, resource-intensive applications (viewing videos, photo galleries, presentations)


After the end of the on-demand scan, the computer will turn off automatically.


ESET NOD32 Smart Security monitors all program updates and downloads them without user intervention.

Startup Scan

Online security check immediately after turning on the computer

Graphical interface

Modern design and intuitive navigation are as user-friendly as possible.

Easy to work

A particular widget in the “Start” line reports the status of computer protection.

Free technical support

For all questions regarding the installation and configuration of products, you can turn to ESET specialists around the clock.

ESET NOD32 Cyber ​​Security Pro

ESET NOD32 Cyber ​​Security Pro – multi-level protection against cross-platform threats, malicious attacks, and unwanted sites

ESET NOD32 Cyber ​​Security Pro contains the following protection components:

  • Antivirus
  • Antispyware
  • Firewall
  • Parental control

Main features

  • Reliably protects your computer from attempts to steal confidential data
  • Protects Mac OS platform from malicious applications.
  • Detects threats designed to infect third-party operating systems, including Windows and Linux
  • Scans removable media, USB, IOS devices, CDs and DVDs, FireWire ports

ESET NOD32 Cyber ​​Security Pro provides the maximum level of protection for a computer running the Mac operating system and allows you to protect yourself from potential threats and cybercriminals.


New opportunities

ESET Live Grid® cloud technology is a single analytical center that manages all workflows of antivirus software.

Parental control is a useful tool for blocking sites containing potentially hazardous materials for children. Parents can limit access to resources by custom categories.

Firewall – scans all network traffic and protects the user from a remote connection to a computer when a Wi-Fi connection in public places.

New design – a completely redesigned interface has become even more understandable. There are additional settings and easy navigation.

ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Linux Desktop

ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Linux Desktop – adequate protection of a computer running Linux OS against malware and Internet threats

ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Linux Desktop contains the following protection components:

  • Antivirus
  • Antispyware

Main features

  • Reliably protects your computer from attempts to steal confidential data
  • Detects threats designed to infect third-party OS, including Windows
  • Provides thorough inspection and control of removable media
  • Checks email for malware
  • Runs the system check immediately after installing the program without rebooting.

Bottom Line


  • friendly interface;
  • high detection rate;
  • flexible configuration of protection mechanisms;
  • high performance;
  • good level of self-defense.


  • Without NOD32, Smart Security cannot cope with all the latest security threats.

Very easy for the system, with an intuitive interface and a high percentage of threat detection – cannot help but like. But do not forget that this is only an antivirus – it cannot guarantee comprehensive protection. Therefore, in addition to it, you still need to install a firewall, or you can install NOD32 Smart Security (the firewall is already built into it).

As mentioned earlier, NOD32 loads the system very weakly, about 60 megabytes. The system did not slow down at all, although there was minimal RAM on the computer on which our testing was conducted. NOD32 is fully compatible with a wide variety of proactive defense mechanisms, and compatibility problems should not arise.

ESET NOD32 is not inadequate for protecting your home computer, and if you also install a third-party firewall, it is generally good! Now I understand why he is so popular among many users.