Many gamers believe that running antivirus software slows down the game. But the truth is that checking it is quite difficult since traditional methods of performance analysis tend to focus on the impact that the game has on computing resources.
Therefore, studying the dealings of the game and the antivirus (two irrelevant operations) is a much then difficult assignment.
But this did not stop our team, who have come up with a rather interesting method to do it.
They took a gaming PC and five resource-intensive games and examined the impact of three security solutions on the game process in a wide variety of usage scenarios.
They chose a fairly modern gaming PC: Intel Core i7-12700K with Nvidia RTX 2070, Samsung 850 Evo 250GB SSD, and 2 x 16GB G Skill Intl F4-3200C14-16GTZKW modules each on an Asus TUF GAMING Z690-PLUS WIFI D4 motherboard.
Next, they assembled a “ golden image ”: a master copy of the hard drive with a freshly installed Windows 10 system and five games.
After each series of tests, they restored the state of the drive from the golden image so that each run would take place under the same conditions, on a fresh operational strategy with no antiques left behind by previous software structures.
The first series of tests was carried out on a clean system, without any security solutions; At least as far as possible, since if you don’t install an external antivirus in Windows 10, the built-in Windows Defender is automatically activated. Therefore, for this experiment, we used:
1. Windows Defender
2. Kaspersky Internet Security
3. Norton 360 for Gamers
The selected games were:
- Red Dead Redemption 2 (action-adventure)
- Far Cry 5 (first-person shooter )
- Dota 2 ( online multiplayer battle arena )
- Shadow of the Tomb Raider (action-adventure)
- Counter-Strike: Global Offensive ( first-person, tactical, multiplayer shooter )
These games already have what is learned in the gamer world as benchmarks: preset conditions that automatically load computing help to check compatibility with that computer.
That is, they show the relative performance of the game on specific hardware within a specific environment.
Built-in benchmarks ensured that the game engine performed the same in all tests. But, if real gamers had participated in the study, it would have been impossible to get the same impact on the device in each test.
The tests were carried out in different conditions: simple game, with video recording, and streaming. The researchers measured the frame rate per second ( FPS ) to see what impact security fixes had on default game settings.
It turns out that antivirus software has practically no effect on the game. This was stated by the researchers: “The tests did not reveal any impact on the gaming process”. All registered variations fell within the size blunder.
Furthermore, the tests yielded the same results for both our product (intended for general personal use) and our competitor’s dedicated gaming solution.
Read This Article: How To Work With Personal Data Securely
What Else Can The Antivirus Interfere With?
So antivirus software doesn’t slow down games, but what other negative effects can it cause? Seasoned gamers know that a security solution running in the background can interrupt them at the most critical moment by:
- Launch a database update. What happens if, during an online session, the antivirus decides to update its databases, thus overloading your internet connection? This will cause a slowdown, which would significantly harm your online game.
- Show notifications about intercepted threats. Suddenly, your antivirus might decide to boast about stopping a threat. Imagine that just when you are about to kill the final boss, Casca, the notification appears.
- Scan hard drive. You’re so engrossed in the game, you’re not even aware of the passage of time until it starts a full hard drive scan scheduled for 7 in the morning and messes everything up.
You might wonder why our researchers didn’t also look at the impact of antivirus on the game in these situations.
The answer is simple: Kaspersky products have a special game mode that is automatically activated when you start playing, postponing antivirus database updates, notifications, and regular disk scans (including scheduled ones) until that you end the session.
In turn, it provides uninterrupted (and imperceptible) protection in the background. This means that:
1. The system is fully protected against any malware attack, either by old ransomware methods or unexpected file-less malware.
2. Links you click on in a chat room are immediately scanned for scams, phishing, and other online threats.
3. Your data is continuously monitored for leaks, even on the dark web.
4. All passwords and keys are stored securely and encrypted, protecting your accounts and all your content (whether cryptocurrency or skins) from cyber criminals.
5. A VPN connection hides your IP address, protects data in transit, and improves ping (latency) if you choose the fastest server.
6. Your home Wi-Fi is safe from intruders.
7. Registration, autoloading, and other system parameters are optimized for gaming, so you don’t waste a single millisecond.
In addition, Kaspersky Premium delivers access to amazing services such as Priority Hotline, PC Health Check Services, and Remote IT Services.
It also allows you to optimize the performance of your PC by cleaning duplicate and large files, managing applications and activities, and much more.