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[Review] Element TotalProtect

{rw_text}Software reviewed in this article:

Element TotalProtect [1]

Version reviewed:


Supported OS:

Windows XP or higher


$6.99 (USD) but you can get it for free for a limited time at Giveawayoftheday.com [2]!

Software description as per the developer:

Element Software, the creators of the Element TotalProtect™ product line, provide unmatched anti-virus research and response capabilities that support Element Software’s range of security products and services. With dedicated developers around the world, Element Software is able to respond very quickly and effectively to new malicious and potentially unwanted software threats wherever and whenever they arise.

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{for=”Ease of Use” value=”9″}Very easy to use. However there isn’t really much documentation on some of the features that need explaining, so something go unexplained.
{for=”Performance” value=”3″}The virus database is very rarely updated and the “identity protect” doesn’t seem to do anything… at all.
{for=”Usefulness” value=”7″}With so many tools – and at such a low price – I can see many people (potentially) finding the program useful.
{for=”Price” value=”9″}Extremely low price.
{for=”Arbitrary Equalizer” value=”3″}This category reflects an arbitrary number that does not specifically stand for anything. Rather this number is used to reflect dotTech’s overall rating/verdict of the program in which all the features and alternatives have been considered.
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Element TotalProtect is a software that aims to be your one-stop-shop security suite for your computer.

This is what Element TotalProtect’s main program window looks like:


As you can see, there are four main aspects to ETP (Element TotalProtect):


ETP provides users with anti-malware (anti-virus, anti-rootkit, and anti-spyware) protection, and a firewall. The anti-malware has a live-protection component to it, and an on-demand scanner. The firewall is based off WIPFW [5], an open-source project that originated from Linux. You are allowed to turn off the live anti-malware protection, but you can’t “turn off” the firewall.

With the on-demand scan function – “Run Scans” you see above – you can run a full system scan, scan for rootkits only, or “immunize” your computer (you are allowed to “unimmunize” at any time):


I am not particularly sure what “immunizing” your computer involves (the developer is not very clear on what it does), but my educated guess is that it does similar things as Spyware Blaster [7].

The anti-malware protection is signature based, drawing from ETP’s signature database. The only problem is the signature database is rarely, rarely updated. Here is a screenshot from the developer’s website showing the “latest threats” that were added to the database:


Notice that in the past 6-7 months, only 15 threats were added! This point is enough, in my opinion, to be a huge red flag to “stay away” from ETP. (Note: The screenshot above is as of the time of this review is written. The developer may “update” the database after reading this review, or he/she may not – I don’t know.)




ETP has a file backup feature which allows you to backup/restore your files. The file backup is not very advanced in the sense that it doesn’t allow you too many options (i.e. you can’t select compression, you can’t backup more than one location at a time, etc.). I also am not particularly sure what it means by “Automatic Backup and Restore is on” because the developer does not have very good documentation with the program nor could I prod out what this feature does. My educated guess is that this feature allows your to run your backup tasks automatically; the only problem is I did not find any sort of schedule where you can control when the backups are run nor did I find any option to turn off the automatic backups.


“PC Tuneup” is a feature that allows you to “tweak”/”tuneup” your computer. The “tuneup” part involves ETP doing things like making registry tweaks and such. When you click on “Run tuneup” you are prompted with “how you use your computer” so ETP can make the tweaks most relevant to you:


In addition to the tuneups, ETP also comes with a disk defrag (click on “Optimize hard disk(s)).

Unlike the backup feature, it is fairly clear what the “Automatic PC Tuneup” feature will do and you are allowed to turn it off (I will talk about how to turn it off later on).


“Identity Protection” is a fancy name for website adviser; think of it like ETP’s version of WOT or SiteAdvisor. In other words, “Identity Protection” installs an addon to Internet Explorer/Firefox (only those two browsers are supported) and tells you the websites you visit are clean or not:



The only problem with this feature is that it doesn’t seem to do anything at all. Every website I visit is listed as “green” and “tested” – even an empty tab and known malware/fake AV websites. Furthermore, there is no real indication that there have been through tests done on the websites in question – no information is given as to when it was investigated, what was found, etc. like how SiteAdvisor (or WOT, to an extent) gives. All this feature does is say “visit stopbadware.org for detailed analysis”.

Going back to the main program window, clicking on “Tasks and Settings” will gives you a few other features you can mess around with:


In particular, you want to take note of “Advanced Settings”…


…which allows you to disable/enable real-time anti-malware protection…


…tweak firewall settings…



…and enable/disable automatic tuneups:


Also take note that the “Rescue Center” is just an interface for Windows System Restore:


This review was conducted on a laptop running Windows XP Professional 32-bit. The specs of the laptop are as follows: 3GB of RAM, a Radeon HD 2600 512MB graphics card, and an Intel T8300 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo processor.


Please refer to my article Prevention, detection, and cure: 12 programs that will provide the best all-around security for you and your computer – for free [24] for more information on free alternatives.

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{rw_verdict2}When it comes to security software, trust is as important as performance. Element TotalProtect, being an unknown entity, fails in the trust portion and fails in performance. Thumbs down – stay away from this software. If you are looking for excellent computer security for free, please refer to my article Prevention, detection, and cure: 12 programs that will provide the best all-around security for you and your computer – for free [25].
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