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Symantec's Norton Ghost Outperforms Imagecast in Ziff-Davis Independent Lab Tests

Norton Ghost Surpasses Competitor in All 18 Tests of Comprehensive Competitive Analysis

CUPERTINO, Calif. - February 22, 1999 - Symantec Corporation (Nasdaq: SYMC), the world leader in utility software for business and personal computing, today announced that Norton Ghost version 5.1c beta release 2 outperformed Micro House International, Inc.'s Imagecast IC3, version 3.1 in an independent, comprehensive 18-test competitive analysis.

According to the report, "Norton Ghost outperformed Imagecast in each of the 18 tests we conducted. Norton Ghost demonstrated a clear performance advantage in compressed image creation. Norton Ghost also achieved a 4 percent to 5 percent higher rate of compression than Imagecast, while maintaining this speed advantage. Norton Ghost showed a 35 percent advantage over Imagecast for all Windows 98 imaging and a 47 percent advantage over Imagecast for all NT 4.0 imaging."

The tests were conducted by Ziff-Davis Testing and Analysis Group (ZDTag), the independent testing lab for technical powerhouse publications such as PC Magazine, PC Week, PC Computing, and Inter@ctive Week. Completely independent of all ZD editorial testing groups, ZDTag brings ZD's top-quality, objective, lab-based research and analysis directly to the user community.

"ZDTag's testing and analysis services are unparalleled in quality and scope," said Enrique Salem, vice president of Symantec's Security and Assistance Business Unit. "As a result, we are very pleased that Norton Ghost has been proven to be the market's top disk cloning solution. The tests also prove that Symantec is providing its customers with solutions that make them more productive."

The ZDTag test team established a meticulous testing methodology that would ensure equitable evaluation and timing of both products. According to ZDTag, the team followed this methodology rigidly for both products and used the same testbed hardware for all tests. For the client systems, the team used two identical 450MHz Pentium II desktop PCs. They loaded one system with Windows 98 and the other with Windows NT 4.0 Workstation. They then installed typical office applications on each operating system, including an office suite, a web browser, and an e-mail client. The team created all of its test images from their original installations; this process ensured that they used the same software configuration and the same total platform size for testing across both products. For network imaging and to conduct the multicast testing, they used TCP/IP over a standalone switched Fast Ethernet LAN. They chose a dual 450MHz Pentium II system as the testbed server. The team ran each test twice and averaged the results.

Test Results
In local image creation tests, Norton Ghost created an uncompressed image of the Windows NT system 95 percent faster than Imagecast, with a time of 60 seconds compared to Imagecast's 117.5 seconds; Norton Ghost created a compressed image of the same system 49 percent faster than Imagecast, with a time of 123.5 seconds compared to Imagecast's 238.5 seconds.

In the same tests using the Windows 98 system, Norton Ghost created an uncompressed image 12 percent faster, at 70 seconds compared to Imagecast's 79.5 seconds; in creating a compressed image, Norton Ghost was timed at 137 seconds compared to Imagecast's 224.5 seconds-a 39 percent advantage for Norton Ghost.

Norton Ghost restored the Windows NT system from an uncompressed image 43 percent faster, taking just 63 seconds compared Imagecast's 110.5 seconds. From a compressed image, Norton Ghost restored the same system 36 percent faster, with a time of 71 seconds compared to Imagecast's 110.5.

In the same tests using the Windows 98 system, Norton Ghost restored the system from an uncompressed image 22 percent faster-91 seconds compared to 116 seconds for Imagecast. From a compressed image, Norton Ghost restored the system 10 percent faster-106 seconds compared to 117.5 for Imagecast.

In network image creation tests, Norton Ghost created an uncompressed image of the Windows NT system 74 percent faster than Imagecast-81.5 seconds compared to Imagecast's 303 seconds; in creating a compressed image of the same system, Norton Ghost was 82 percent faster-136 seconds compared to 732.5 for Imagecast.

In the same tests using the Windows 98 system, Norton Ghost created an uncompressed image of the system 48 percent faster, at 94.5 seconds compared to 179.5 seconds for Imagecast. Norton Ghost created a compressed image of the same system 76 percent faster, at 153.5 seconds compared to Imagecast's 634 seconds.

Norton Ghost restored the Windows NT system from an uncompressed image 19 percent faster than Imagecast, at 137 and compared to Imagecast's 168 seconds. From a compressed image, Norton Ghost restored the Windows NT system 27 percent faster, at 101.5 seconds compared to Imagecast's 139 seconds.

In the same tests using the Windows 98 system, Norton Ghost restored the system from an uncompressed image 8 percent faster, with a time of 171.5 seconds compared to 185 seconds for Imagecast. From a compressed image, Norton Ghost restored the same system 5 percent faster, at 145.5 seconds compared to 152.5 seconds for Imagecast.

From an uncompressed image, Norton Ghost multicast the Windows NT system 69 percent faster than Imagecast, at 82 seconds compared to 259 seconds for Imagecast. In the same test using the Windows 98 system, Norton Ghost multicast the system 58 percent faster, taking 112.5 seconds compared to Imagecast's 262.5 seconds.

About Norton Ghost
Norton Ghost is the industry's leading disk-cloning technology. Norton Ghost enables users to copy the entire contents of one disk to another or to a disk image file. They can, in turn, use the image file as a template to create copies of the original disk. Norton Ghost reduces the time to install a typical 300MB Windows 95 system from an hour-with substantial operator input-to just five minutes-with no operator input required. Multicast allows multiple workstations to be installed at the same time, which further improves efficiency. Norton Ghost can make complete backups of disks, even copy "in-use" system files that are missed by other backup utilities.

Norton Ghost continues to earn praise and recognition as a superior disk-cloning solution. Most recently, PC Computing magazine awarded Norton Ghost its top five-star rating and Windows Magazine named Norton Ghost to its esteemed WinList of recommended products.

About Symantec
Symantec is the world leader in utility software for business and personal computing. Symantec products and solutions help make users productive and keep their computers safe and reliable anywhere and anytime. Symantec offers a broad range of solutions and is acclaimed as a leader in both customer satisfaction and product brand recognition. Symantec is traded on Nasdaq under the symbol SYMC. More information on the company and its products can be obtained at www.symantec.com.

NOTE TO EDITORS: If you would like additional information on Symantec Corporation and its products, view the Symantec Press Center at www.symantec.com/PressCenter/ on Symantec's Website.

Brands and products referenced herein are the trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders. All prices noted are in US dollars and are valid only in the United States.

@Symantec