Antivirus programs are notorious for leaving behind “stuff” that will cause a computer to be slow and unstable. Getting rid of old anti-virus programs is a pain in the neck, but once you know a little secret, it gets a lot easier. The trick is to get rid of any left over drivers from old antivirus programs. So, lets get to it.
1. Remove any currently installed antivirus programs using the control panel or appwiz.cpl, then reboot.
2. Run the removal tool for the antivirus program you just removed, then reboot.
3. Run through the following program to remove any traces of old antivirus software.
4. At an Administrative command prompt, type the following command , and then press ENTER:
5. In the resulting Device Manager, click on View, Show hidden devices. Then expand “Non-Plug and Play Drivers”
Look for obvious names like Symantec, Mcafee, AVG, Trend Micro, Kaspersky, etc and remove them. Reboot the computer, and then reinstall your antivirus software. I recommend Microsoft’s Security Essentials. Its as effective as any (no current antivirus program gets any respect from me, frankly) and is free and doesn’t nag you to purchase it.
The computer as a result will likely be noticeably faster on bootup and general use.