Create a bootable antivirus disc with ESET SysRescue Creator

ESET

ESET SysRescue Live Creator is a handy tool for creating a bootable antivirus rescue CD or USB key.

There’s no shortage of competition in this area, of course, but Live Creator has one or two useful touches that you might appreciate.

This starts with the download itself. There’s no bulky ISO here, just a single 8.8MB executable which is ready to run whenever you like.

The program opens with a simple wizard, asking if you’d like to create a bootable CD or USB key. Conveniently, there’s also an option to use a previously downloaded ISO image. (We wondered if this could work with any ISO, as a general way to create bootable USB’s, but sadly not. It’s strictly ESET-only.)

ESET SysRescue Live Creator then downloads its bootable image (a 324MB ISO), and prepares your CD or USB immediately afterwards. In another thoughtful touch, you’re give an option to create another CD/ USB, or save the ISO for reuse later.

Booting ESET’s rescue environment reveals more welcome extras in tools to check your RAM and system drive for defects. Hardware issues can cause odd malware-like problems, so it’s worth trying these if you can’t find anything else.

The ESET SysRescue tool is the real star here, of course, and it has more options than some similar tools. You’re able to download the latest virus signatures, and check your system with various scan types. The core antivirus engine gets mixed results with the independent labs -- AVTEST’s April results found it had an above-average 100 percent detection rate for known threats, a below-par 93 percent for zero-day attacks -- but there’s more than enough power here to be useful.

When it’s all done, you can keep the USB key around for reuse later. But if you need it for something else, ESET SysRescue Live Creator is also able to wipe the drive in seconds. Just connect the drive, start the program again and click "Erase existing SysRescue USB": another useful feature which you won’t always find elsewhere.

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