I wouldn't be all fired up about using AdAware as the main
anti-spyware, you would be opening yourself up, but at the same time I wouldn't say to not use it at all.
They are removing adware/malware from their definition list. Could be due to legal reasons. Could be financial. Could be a combination of the two. They aren't saying, but they are doing it (and not telling you they removed anything), along with Aluria and eTrust, although eTrust did realize the situation that was arising and straightened their act out-post haste. Aluria, on the other hand, happily crawled into bed with one of the adware companies-WhenU, and added their anti-spyware program to WhenU's web site. Here's the clincher; When you run the anti-spyware offered by WhenU, it installs their adware while running the anti-spyware.
Here's a kicker in the whole mess. Lavasoft is removing stuff from their list but at the same time they offer uninstallers for the stuff they're removing.
Now, I ain't the brightest bulb in the pack but it seems to me (and a whole bunch of other folks) that if you run AdAware and it doesn't find one or more of the adware/malware de-listed items, how are you going to know to go to their web site to get the uninstaller, and if they removed that particular adware/malware from the list, how can we be sure that the uninstaller will actually work?
Another point to make against Lavasoft is their frantic attempts to hide this whole story from the public. Most of the threads in the Lavasoft forum discussing this matter get deleted. The responses Lavasoft has come up with in other forums has left folks with a felling that Lavasoft is very condescending to their customers as well as beating around the bush with what few comments they have made. They've already lost thousands of dollars from corporations that have dumped them in lieu of something else.
I would strongly suggest using more than one. SpyBot will find the stuff the Lavasoft is removing. So far I haven't read of anything that Lavasoft finds that SpyBot doesn't.
Another highly recommend tool is Spy Sweeper, but it's payware, and believe it or not, another one that ranks high on the list of good guys is Micro$oft's Windows Defender, which is freeware, but it won't find the spyware installed by Micro$oft (yes-Micro$oft does install spyware on your computer, especially with Vista).
BTW! All this info can be found in the thread at the link in my first post.
Of course the final call is yours.
I haven't removed AdAware, but I have installed Window's Defender and Spy Sweeper, both of which seem to be unconcerned about whatever it is that's prompting Lavasoft and Aluria to play with the bad boys. At this point I'm only on page 20 of 40 in that thread but Pest Patrol still seems a bit undecided how they're going to act.
Edit 1: One more thing I'd like to add here. I can't specifically verify the quality of any of the above mentioned anti-malware programs simply because none of them have found any nasties on my computer, and I've run all four of them.
Edit 2: Ya' know what really scares me about all this is the fact that lawyers and judges are giving advertisers the ability to force us to put up with their crap. Not too long ago advertising lobbyists attempted to pad the right pockets in DC to get lawmakers to pass a law that would have made it a federal offense for owners of Tivo and other such recording devices to skip over commercials.
To the best of my knowledge that law hasn't passed--yet, but it's still a scary thought.
Personally, I make every effort to avoid buying products that are advertised in any way other than the old tried 'n true 'word-of-mouth'