To keep safe one should always keep totally up to date with updates for Windows and all the software/hardware you have installed and keep some extra anti-spyware tools handy just in case
So let me get this straight - I need to download all the garbage Microsoft wants to put on my PC, that I either don't want or need, (like Silverlight, and other crap that slows my PC down and puts itself into the startup menu) or else I can't count on McAfee working properly?
This is total BS that I need to run all the Microsoft bloatware just so I can run McAfee. That crappy software seems like its main function it just to accelerate my PC's obsolescence date so I'll have to buy a new machine and
MS Office suite and
anti-virus software on a 2 or 3 year cycle rather than being able to have a machine last 6 or 7 years before the newer and evolving releases of applications I actually need, want, and install myself
overtake the machine's capabilities and the machine's too slow to run them.
I've downloaded and used a couple of those and the "Free Download" versions are usually good for identifying that you've got crap on your system but to activate the removal tools, then you have to pony up another $30 - $50 for the fully functional versions. In marketing, this is called a "Leader" because it leads you into an trap where you have to pay.
As far as McAfee constantly asking for subscription verification or similar pop-ups, that is often caused by the use of registry cleaners, or by a corrupted installation, or one that was done over a much older version in which case a complete removal, cleanup tool use and reinstallation usually fixes it.
I have not used any registry cleaners and this will be the second complete uninstall/reinstall, with the removal tool, that I've done this year, and I also had a tech session in which there was a complete uninstall/reinstall as well so the program should be fairly up to date. WTF?
On the other hand, the Linux install revived a 7-yr old laptop that had been so loaded down with MS bloatware that it wouldn't run or even boot up. It's now highly functional, has a nice graphical user interface with Ubuntu, and works very well as a second machine in my house for when my wife and I both need to do office tasks at the same time. If this Linux experiment continues to go well, I am sooooo looking forward to getting off the Microsofe/McAfee/NAV/etc. boat where everythings a "leader" to get you to pony up $$ later on for more crap and you need a new PC every 2 - 3 years to keep up with the bloatware.
The saying "What Intel Giveth, Microsoft taketh away" is certainly fitting (maybe we should add all the other software apps that make a PC obsolete) and I'm sick of it.