I'm hoping this doesn't sell out as quickly as I think it will.
As I've said before, I have mixed feelings about security and utility software. Sometimes I think they do more harm than good. On the other hand, the latest versions of certain programs are vastly superior to their slow, clunky, trouble-causing forebears.
What's more, I always love getting something for nothing, especially when it's a software bundle worth $190.
Fry's is offering Norton Internet Security 2011 (three-user license), Norton Utilities 15 (three-user license), and Norton Ghost 15 absolutely free--if you're willing to jump through a couple hoops, that is.
Here's the deal: If you purchase these products separately at their list prices, they would run you $189.97. Fry's sells them as a bundle for $65. But you can get the bundle for a grand total of $0 (shipped!) by redeeming a pair of mail-in rebates.
To get rebate No. 2, you need to supply proof that you're upgrading from an earlier version of "any Norton or Symantec software or another company's antivirus, firewall, antispam, antispyware, utility, or backup software product."
What constitutes proof? You name it: a receipt, the first page of the manual, an e-mail confirmation, or even a screenshot of the software's Help/About screen. It shouldn't be too hard to scrounge up one of those.
Both of these rebate offers are available until April 29, but there's a good chance Fry's will sell out before then. That's what happened last time, so if you're interested in this, act fast.
By the way, CNET
gave Norton Internet Security 2010 fairly high marks, and PC Magazine awarded it an Editors' Choice. I haven't found any worthwhile reviews of the other two apps, but both products have good reputations.
Bonus deal: Calling all gamers: Valve's Steam service is offering Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Game of the Year Edition for $14.99. This is the PC version, naturally, and it's delivered via download. Find out why GameSpot called this game "a fantastic package."