Malwarebytes Anti-Malware has an excellent reputation, and many consider it to be one of the best security solutions available on the market these days.
Part of the success comes from the fact that it is offered as a free and commercial version, and while the free version is limited somewhat -- it does not support real-time protection for instance -- it is often used as a second opinion scanner instead.
Today, the first public beta of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware 2.0 was made available, and boy does it introduce changes. The first thing that you will notice right away is that the interface has been changed completely.
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware 2.0 has a new interface, and while that is a good thing mostly, it is a bit irritating that some of the buttons -- scan now for instance -- look very similar to ads that you come across on the Internet.
Those are not advertisements on the other hand, rest assured.
The new interface displays the most important information right on the front page. It tells you if your system is protected, if the database is up to date or outdated, what type of license you have, and whether real-time protection is enabled or not.
You can run a scan right from the window, or click on the scan button at the top instead. What you will notice is that Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit has been integrated into the scanner. It is not enabled by default though, so if you want the program to scan for rootkits as well, select Settings > Detection and Protection, and enable scan for rootkits there.
Another tool that has been integrated into the new version of Anti-Malware is Chameleon Driver. It is only available as part of the premium version, and needs to be enabled under Advanced Settings. It has been designed to provide self-protection for the program.
The Malicious Website Protection has been improved as well for client systems running Vista SP2 or newer. It offers better performance, options to exclude processes, IP addresses and individual urls.
Improvements have also been made to the program's detection and removal technology, including native 64-bit scanning, detection and malware removal.
There have been changes to the business side of things as well. The major change here is a switch from a one-time payment model to a subscription model. The program will be offered for $24.95 per year when it launches, instead of a lifetime license that you get for the same amount currently.
The company will honor all lifetime licenses. Considering that you can still get one, now may be the time to purchase a license of Anti-Malware Pro to avoid the yearly subscription costs.
The new subscription model allows customers to use the software on up to three PCs, which is an improvement over the 1 PC use of the old.
You can try the new Anti-Malware 2.0 right now. Download and a test license key are offered on the official forum.
The improvements and changes that have been announced improve the software further. The move to a subscription model on the other hand may not be appreciated by all users of the software.
The free version has not been mentioned in the announcement. It is however likely that it continues to exist.