Free Anti-Virus Software is a very common virus solution these days. Lots of PC users, especially home users use free Anti-Virus software. The main reason for that is to save on the yearly license fees.
There is a considerable amount of malware (Viruses and Spyware) including trojans, worms, keyloggers, virusses, spyware and rootkit viruses. This means that AntiVirus software has evolved into malware detection software that will protect your data against these threats.
We take a look at the three Free Anti-Virus Software solutions that I use most in my business. Before I continue I just want to mention that if you download any of these software, please ensure that you remove your old AntiVirus Software before you install the new one and never run more than one Anti-Virus Software on your computer at the same time. The Anti-Virus software listed below is in order that I would recommend them.
AVAST! Free Anti-Virus
AVAST! is by far the best of the Free Anti-Virus Software available at the moment. It’s virus detection rates has improved over the past years.
Realtime Email scanning (Incoming and Outgoing)
Realtime Boottime scanning
Realtime IM and P2P scanning
Includes Sandboxing to disable unwanted and unknown software
AVAST! is very light on resources and which is most of the time just as important as the protection of your data.
You have to register AVAST! after you installed it. Not that it’s really a negative, but people forget to do this and then the software is basically useless.
It plays a sound that says “AVAST! has been updated” every time it completed its virus updates. Again this is not really a big problem as you can disable this function under the software settings.
Avira AntiVir Personal Edition
Avira AntiVir is a very useful Free Antivirus and also has very good virus and spyware capabilities. It does not have all the realtime feature that AVAST! have, but it’s still a very good choice for high risk users. The reason for not being the top Free Anti-Virus is the installation includes the Ask Toolbar that comes with the installation. I recommend that you remove this after installation via your Control Panel. It also includes daily advertisements that are very annoying to say the least.
Very good in detecting malware
Very light on system resources
Does not include Realtime Email scanner
Ask Toolbar that is included in the installation
Advertisements that pop up everytime AntiVir updates.
AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition
AVG is also a very good choice in Free Anti-Viruses. It offers a very high level of protection and also include and spyware blocker that will protect your computer against unwanted software. The biggest down side of AVG Anti-Virus is the high system resource usage. AVG has a daily file scan that is scheduled to run and is configured by default during installation. This daily scan will slow you PC down almost to a halt. There is also the occasional advertisement but this can be disabled within the software.
Daily scan scheduler
Spyware blocker (behavioural blocker)
Easy to install
Very high system resource usage and will slow down your computer.
Occasional advertisement (can be disabled)
No Realtime Email scanner