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Business Review 2015

Date September 2015
Language English
Last Revision October 1st 2015

Review of IT Security Suites for Small Business

Release date 2015-10-04
Revision date 2015-10-01
Test Period September 2015
Online with cloud connectivity checkbox-unchecked
Update allowed checkbox-unchecked
False Alarm Test included checkbox-unchecked
Platform/OS Microsoft Windows


AV-Comparatives’ 2015 small-business software review looks at security products suitable for a company running either the Foundation or the Enterprise edition of Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2. As can be seen on the Microsoft Website, the Foundation version is suitable for small companies with up to 15 users, while the Essentials version allows an additional ten users. The report thus considers products for a network of up to 25 client PCs, with one file server/domain controller.

We have used 64-bit Windows 7 Professional SP1 as a test client for all products; additionally, we have tested a 64-bit Windows 10 Pro client where this OS is supported by the vendor. These are part of a domain with a Windows Server 2012 R2 system as the domain controller.

Both the Foundation and Essentials versions of Windows Server provide simplified management options, relative to the Standard edition. This recognises companies with 25 users or less that may not have the financial resources to employ a full-time IT administrator. Consequently, some or all of the IT management tasks will be carried out on a part-time basis by staff members who may be very proficient with consumer products, but are not very familiar with business networks.

In accordance with this scenario, we have considered how easy-to-use the products would be for a non-expert administrator. We allow for the option of having an external IT consultant install and configure the software initially, and train the relevant company staff how to use it. However, in a number of cases we have noted that a high level of technical expertise is not needed to set the product up, and that non-expert administrators could perform the task themselves with help from the product manual.

Tested Products

The manufacturers either provided us with the newest versions of their respective products, or confirmed that the latest version was available from their website (as at September 2015). The products tested for the review are listed below:

Award levels reached in this Business Security Tests and Review


Copyright and Disclaimer

This publication is Copyright © 2015 by AV-Comparatives ®. Any use of the results, etc. in whole or in part, is ONLY permitted after the explicit written agreement of the management board of AV-Comparatives prior to any publication. This report is supported by the participants. AV-Comparatives and its testers cannot be held liable for any damage or loss, which might occur as result of, or in connection with, the use of the information provided in this paper. We take every possible care to ensure the correctness of the basic data, but a liability for the correctness of the test results cannot be taken by any representative of AV-Comparatives. We do not give any guarantee of the correctness, completeness, or suitability for a specific purpose of any of the information/content provided at any given time. No one else involved in creating, producing or delivering test results shall be liable for any indirect, special or consequential damage, or loss of profits, arising out of, or related to, the use or inability to use, the services provided by the website, test documents or any related data.

For more information about AV-Comparatives and the testing methodologies, please visit our website.

(October 2015)