Do you have a computer that is much slower than it once was, and seems to pop up regularly with inexplicable problems? Even if you’re diligent about running security software and scanning for infections, you can still end up with rogue problems, especially if you’re on a Windows PC. I had a Windows PC at home acting like this, and reached for some of my standard tools to clean it up, but I was pleasantly surprised by a (mostly) free download I found, and the cleaning job that it did: Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware.
Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware is free, although if you want to keep a full version that does scheduled scanning and real-time protection, it costs $24.95.
One piece of advice before you run this program: Go into any browsers you have loaded on your system and delete any saved temporary Internet files (available through the Tools menu of the popular browsers). The reason is that Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware does a highly thorough scan of your files even if you choose its Quick Scan choice instead of Full Scan.
When I first ran it, there happened to be a browser on my system that I hadn’t used in a while that had stocked up a lot of temporary Internet files. It took a long time for the program to look through all those files, and that time would have been saved if they had been deleted up front.
After about a two-hour scan of the older Windows system I was cleaning up (not my primary computer), Malwarebytes found over 50 files that it deemed to be suspect. I know for sure these weren’t all malware and viruses, just suspect, but I chose to delete them all.
After a reboot, the system was much snappier, and even booting itself went faster. Apparently, I’m not alone in finding that this application roots out some problem files that many other products won’t find. If you look at the user reviews on Download.com here, you’ll find a lot of comments along the lines of: “Trend didn’t find anything wrong, but Malwarebytes Anti-Malware cleaned my system,” and “best product of all products I have ever tried.” It’s currently number 11 on Download.com’s most popular downloads list.
Malware is a moving target, and even though I use standard security software, I try to experiment with other tools as I have time to. This application is a good find, and I now have it on all my Windows PCs.