1. What was the URL where you got your Media Centre download? Like you said, it may have looked like a Microsoft download, but did it come from a Microsoft site?
2. Akamai NetSession is a legitimate application from a reputable company. The only question is why you had to install it.
Akamai NetSession Interface is a tool that can help you you enjoy faster, more reliable downloads from a variety of sources you choose. When you download software from companies like Autodesk®, or other companies offering PDF files, documents, and media streams, there’s a good chance that download is powered by Akamai NetSession Interface.
The NetSession Interface is installed on your computer with your permission and can be removed at any time.
3. The fact that after you installed this "Media Centre" you encountered problems with McAfee strongly implies that the download was a fake. Maybe not, but have you tried to uninstall this download?
4. I distrust any software that comes via a P2P download.
Akamai Netsession uses peer-to-peer (P2P) file-transfer technology that Akamai describes as a "secure client-side networking technology that enhances networking protocols for delivery of software and media, improving the speed, reliability, and efficiency of content downloaded from the Web".
See posts 4 and 8 from
First of all, many thanks for coming back so quickly. In terms of your points:
1. URL was: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/feature-packs. Looked convincing!
2. Exactly so. I didn't want NetSession and wasn't asked permission to install. It wasn't a problem to uninstall, but McAfee going squiffy dated from that point.
3. Uninstalled Akamai, no sign of an uninstaller for anything else. Fished around in Program Files and Program Files (x86) to try to find something fishy from 17th Jan, but nothing was obvious. No restore points (not sure if that was because it's a new machine, or because whatever I downloaded wiped them) so couldn't restore either.
4. Completely agree. Wasn't aware it was P2P until after!
5. Ran Safety Scanner overnight (many thanks for that link). Completely clean. Better still (fairly sure it's happy coincidence), while it was running a upload from McAfee arrived. Installed it and everything works perfectly now! Phew!!
Many thanks again for your help.