Symantec Norton 360 2.0's basic specification is unchanged: it offers comprehensive protection against spyware and virus malware, data loss, identity loss and phishing, thus covering most if not all current security risks.

One year on and it's time for a revamp of Symantec's premier home security product, Norton 360.

Norton 360 2.0's basic specification is unchanged: it offers comprehensive protection against spyware and virus malware, data loss, identity loss and phishing, thus covering most if not all current security risks.

Click here to download a free trial of Symantec Norton 360 v3.0

Norton 360 2.0 will also tune-up your PC, getting rid of digital 'fluff' clogging up your hard drives and defragging it along the way.

We all know that spam is not only a major irritant but also a common attack vector for malware. For some inexplicable reason, antispam protection is not installed by default in Norton 360 2.0, and you have to download it (along with parental controls) as add-on – maybe it really should be called Norton 330 until you do.

Version 2.0 brings with it a laundry list of improvements (several filched from Norton Internet Security 2008 - review here), both in terms of improved usability and new features.

Symantec has taken on board the issue of resource hogging which has dogged its security products in the past. Norton 360 2.0 now has a much lighter footprint than its predecessor; it now waits for 'quiet periods' before performing CPU intensive tasks such as scanning. That said, it came unstuck on our PC when some errant software grabbed 100% of CPU cycles, causing an AV scan to take all night long.

There's now protection against the major risk of drive-by downloads and support for Firefox. With Norton 360 2.0 you can back up to high-capacity devices such as Blu-ray discs, (reducing the necessity for multiple disc backups), plus iPods.

You still get a free 2GB online backup allowance. Zero day protection against malware continues to be provided by SONAR, which also manages Norton 360 2.0's two-way firewall.

Norton AV products continue to get top VB100 scores so you need have no qualms about Norton 360 2.0's protection against malware.

NEXT PAGE: Pricing and upgrading, images and our expert verdict > >

Visit Security Advisor for the latest PC security news, reviews, tips and tricks

Norton 360 2.0's basic specification is unchanged: it offers comprehensive protection against spyware and virus malware, data loss, identity loss and phishing, thus covering most if not all current security risks.

Existing users of Norton 360 should automatically - get the new version by responding to the prompt from LiveUpdate.

The retail price remains unchanged at £60, which is poor value if you just have one PC but good VFM if you own three – Norton 360 2.0's licence permits installation on three PCs.

We couldn't help noticing that Norton 360 2.0 sells for about £40 in the US, though, so seekers of value might want to buy it abroad.

Norton 360
Norton 360

Visit Security Advisor for the latest PC security news, reviews, tips and tricks

Norton 360: Specs

  • 300MHz or higher processor
  • 256MB of RAM
  • Windows XP/Vista
  • 300MB hard disk space
  • IE6 or higher
  • POP3-compatible email client
  • 300MHz or higher processor
  • 256MB of RAM
  • Windows XP/Vista
  • 300MB hard disk space
  • IE6 or higher
  • POP3-compatible email client

OUR VERDICT

A raft of small but useful improvements make Norton 360 2.0 a useful addition to anyone's utility tool bag. It remains powerful and yet very easy to use. At the same time, it's not dumbed-down enough to deter power users.

Find the best price