Symantec Norton 2000 Beats Six Competitors to be Named Reviewer's Choice by Government Computer News
Reviewers Conclude Norton 2000 the Best Choice for Serious PC Testing
CUPERTINO, Calif. - January 25, 1999 - Symantec Corporation
(Nasdaq: SYMC), the world leader in utility software for business and personal computing, today
announced that Norton 2000 won the Reviewer's Choice Award from Government Computer News (GCN). In
the review published January 11, 1999, Norton 2000 outperformed all six competitors, including
Network Associates' (Nasdaq: NETA) McAfee 2000 ToolBox.
"Being awarded this designation from Government Computer News is truly an honor," said Enrique
Salem, vice president of Symantec's Security and Assistance Business Unit. "The U.S. Federal
Government has taken the lead in bringing Y2K issues to the public's attention. Now, by sharing the
results of its thorough testing and analysis of Y2K PC solutions, it is once again demonstrating not
only its comprehensive understanding of Y2K-related issues, but its unwavering commitment to
reducing potential century date problems on all fronts."
GCN Testing and Results The GCN Lab tested seven Y2K solutions for desktop PCs, using the National
Software Testing Laboratories' Ymark2000 testing utility. Test tools were rated according to ease of
use, features, accuracy, and thoroughness. The Lab judged ease-of-use on simplicity of installation
and interface. Reviewers examined features including, but not limited to, the operating systems
supported, reporting method, user advice, and corrective patches. To be judged accurate, a utility
had to identify all problem areas correctly, particularly in the BIOS. Thoroughness required that
the software examine at a minimum all date-related issues within the hardware and BIOS, including
The Ymark2000 utility tested each product at five levels: Layer 1-hardware, Layer 2-BIOS, Layer
3-operating system, Layer 4-applications, and Layer 5-data. According to the report, while most of
the products tested correctly at the hardware and BIOS levels, "Norton 2000 merited its Reviewer's
Choice designation by performing admirably in Layers 4 and 5, especially under Windows 9x." The
review continued, "The amount of scanned date information from any actively used PC can be
overwhelming. Norton 2000 lassoed it into an easily understood format that mostly listed
spreadsheets and databases with two-digit year fields as problematic. Although Norton officially
supports only Windows 9x and NT, a handy component under Windows 9x creates a bootable floppy that
can test Layers 1 and 2 under almost any OS on an Intel-based or compatible system."
Other reviewed products failed to meet GCN's stringent requirements in various areas. For example,
in comparing Norton 2000 to Check 2000 PC Deluxe, from Greenwich MeanTime-UTA L.C., reviewers wrote,
"Whereas Norton intelligently chooses which files to scan, Check 2000 PC Deluxe might spend a long
time scanning every file on the hard drive."
McAfee 2000 ToolBox also fell short of GCN's requirements, causing the writer to comment, "McAfee
2000 ToolBox seems to have been pulled together from separate applications . . . It performs
diagnostics backwards: data, virus, applications, and then hardware and BIOS. McAfee advertises
updates to 2000 ToolBox on its web site, but I could not get the patch without registering for a
secret code. I also couldn't get the live-update features to work. McAfee 2000 ToolBox also installs
WinGauge Lite, which tests system tuning, but an obnoxious alert frequently warned that the hard
drive was 9 percent fragmented even after complete defragmentation. I finally disabled it."
The review concluded, "If you need a serious tool for PC testing, Norton 2000 is the best choice."
How Norton 2000 Works
Norton 2000 1.0, an effective Year 2000 solution that protects valuable
desktop and laptop PCs. By addressing both hardware and software Y2K issues, Norton 2000 makes it
easier for PC users to effectively reduce the threat of downtime resulting from non-compliant
components and applications.
Norton 2000 offers users a powerful tool that allow users to be proactive and guard the
mission-critical data residing on desktop and laptop computers. Designed and created by the world's
most experienced utility software engineers, Norton 2000 scans data, applications, and hardware and
alerts the user to non-compliance problems that may lead to financial losses, liability issues, and
incompatibility with co-workers', customers', clients', or partners' systems.
One of the most critical issues consumers and small businesses face with the approach of the next
millennium is how to monitor spreadsheets and databases that are continually changing. One serious
issue involves dates that fall close to a "cusp" point. Excel version 4, 5 and 7 assume that year
values from 00 to 19 represent 2000-2019 and year values from 20-99 represent 1920-1999. Excel 8
extends this cusp point to 29/30. As a result, dates in a spreadsheet with years close to these cusp
points may be incorrectly interpreted. In addition, the cusp point will change across a simple
software upgrade and cause erroneous processing of dates. All of these types of errors can have
widespread implications for both small businesses and off-site employees of larger corporations.
To address those issues, Norton 2000 includes a data scanning component that not only discovers Y2K
problems in these complex files, but also generates a customizable report detailing findings. Norton
2000 scans the following files: Excel, Lotus 1-2-3, Access, dBase, Clipper, FoxPro, and Paradox. For
recent Excel spreadsheets, Norton 2000 color-codes and annotates the spreadsheet to highlight and
explain Y2K issues in each affected cell. Many competitive products simply scan file extensions.
Norton 2000 also audits other popular software applications for year 2000 compliance and tests those
applications against a database of known year 2000 problems. The application database is kept
up-to-date using LiveUpdate, Symantec's powerful utility program that locates and helps install
hardware drivers and software updates specific to the user's system. LiveUpdate gives consumers and
small business owners easy and quick access to the most reliable information on compliant software
through to the millennium.
In addition, Norton 2000 uses a boot floppy to test and fix system clocks and the BIOS, where
possible, thereby preventing users from inadvertently destroying data and program configurations
during testing. For added convenience, Norton 2000 also offers a Windows-based System Date Test.
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.