PROS / A game mode allows you to divert resources from Spyware Doctor to whatever resource-heavy application you’re currently running.
CONS / Sluggish PC performance is common with this application, and its detection capabilities are better than its malware removal.
VERDICT / There are too many complaints about Spyware Doctor's publisher, PC Tools, for us to be able to recommend it.
Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it is no longer available. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this product’s information.
Spyware Doctor, published by PC Tools by Symantec, is designed to detect all types of known spyware and malware including suspicious ActiveX objects, keyloggers and phishing frauds. Since anti-spyware removal is a much more difficult task than simply detecting it, it comes as no surprise that this software’s detection capabilities are better than its removal performance. The anti-spyware software also frequently updates to ensure it can continue to protect your PC against emerging threats as well.
If you are running a newer PC or laptop with 4GB of RAM, you will notice little slowdown with this anti-spyware application. However, if you are gaming, watching a movie or doing another resource-intensive activity, Spyware Doctor has a game mode that allows you to disable the software temporarily so it does not unnecessarily use system resources. You can also set the anti-spyware software to scan when you are not using your computer. Sluggish PC performance is also likely if your computer is only equipped with 2GB of RAM.
While top-tier antispyware software works hard to protect all points of entry on your PC, Spyware Doctor primarily focuses on potential browser exploits. To keep your PC even safer, it might be better if the software were able to scan email attachments and removable media such as USB drives for potential threats. Also missing from Spyware Doctor’s functionality is the ability to run reports.
If you run into trouble either installing or running the software, PC Tools provides online documentation and a knowledgebase that you can peruse. Unfortunately we could not discover any way to contact the publisher for technical support, so if you are used to being able to receive direct customer support, you should probably stay away from PC Tools. It is difficult to find any user with something nice to say about PC Tools.
Spyware Doctor clearly isn’t the best anti-spyware software to remove malware infections from a PC; its removal capabilities are limited and a lack of features restricts what you can actually do with the software.