Symantec has told customers of its consumer security products that they should disable a feature in the software before upgrading to Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3), or risk crippling their computers. In a post to a Symantec support forum, Reese Anschultz, a senior manager with the company, said users of Norton Internet Security, Norton AntiVirus and Norton 360 - the firm's best-selling consumer security software titles - should switch off the "SymProtect" feature before trying to install XP SP3.
“After a lot of testing, we've reproduced a number of different cases where applying the XP SP3 upgrade adds additional registry keys within already-existing Symantec registry keys,” said Anschultz. “We have determined that the SymProtect feature is involved, though this issue is not exclusive to Symantec customers. To help prevent this issue from occurring, you should disable SymProtect prior to installing the Windows XP SP3 upgrade.” Anschultz also provided instructions for disabling SymProtect in various Norton-labelled titles.