Best Antivirus list for Windows

This article was modified on 2012-08-28 17:53:15

The following list includes several antivirus solutions. There are actually two lists – the first one contains the free versions and the second one – the shareware ( paid ) versions. We do not believe in security suites as all of them are trying to combine a traditional antivirus engine with an integrated firewall. Others are also suggesting that they deliver a better spyware protection.

Important: If it`s possible and you have the money, go for the paid version as the best antivirus developers will offer more protection features for their paid solutions. If you don`t have the money for them, I guess the free versions are way better than ``nothing``. Now that we know the main difference between a free and paid version, you should also remember that for your own protection it is an excellent idea to use at least one anti-spyware application. The following article ``Best anti spyware tools for Windows`` should be a good reference and worth to be read. You will be able to increase the security level of your computer when using the right anti spyware tools with one of the following antivirus products.

Note: the following list may change anytime without any warning depending on our consideration. We have tested for years and currently using the following programs. We do not recommend security suites, only the traditional antivirus programs either free or paid. We did not included products from McAfee, Panda, F-Prot, ZoneAlarm, Symantec and others but we may delete or add products on this list depending on several factors.

Please remember: depending on your computer configuration such as hardware, operating system and programs installed you may evaluate each product on a different scale. Just make sure to test the trial versions for the full versions which are fully functional for 30 days before you will decide upon which solution you choose. Make sure that you always use only one antivirus product at a time, otherwise you will experience computer freeze issues, bad interactions, unpredictable behavior and unknown errors.


Avira Free

The best part at Avira Antivirus is the impact on your system resources, I always considered that it`s using little resources and most of the time did a pretty good job in keeping the viruses away. You will probably hate their annoying ad that will appear from time to time…pretty rare which tells you to upgrade to the paid version least it`s free. Not to mention that Avira Free now offers protection against spyware too ( at least that is what I understand from this phrase ``  viruses and spyware `` ). Not a long time ago it was available only to paid versions.  This is a major step and a huge benefit if you would like to stick with the free version, that`s why it`s the first product on this list. When someone asks me about a free antivirus I always recommend Avira Free. It works for me so it should for others too. It`s also true that I also recommend everyone to purchase Avira Premium. It`s not the security suite that I am recommending here so try to stick with the Premium version as it should be enough. Download Avira Free

AVG Free

Some people fell in love with this antivirus and the free version does a good job for millions of users. It is working fine and should provide a decent protection like any other free solution. If you like the free version you can consider the paid version but only after you will test the trial version. Regarding the free version, you might want to turn off the feature called ``LinkScanner``. This feature attempts to scan each page that you`re visiting for phishing and malware. It`s not a bad idea but it will definitely affect your browser performance. Download AVG Antivirus Free

Avast Free

I love a product that doesn`t change very much. I am talking about the design and that`s what the free version of Avast did. It`s like a Porsche car, the design won`t change that much in 30 years but the engines and other things do. The developers focused on improving the antivirus and this is a great alternative to other antivirus products. Good antivirus and antispyware protection and other features that will please most of the users. One of the best feature and probably the first free antivirus that came with this idea is the AutoSandbox which is great as all suspicious files can be run in this environment minimizing the risk of an infection. Some people will complain about the scanning speed but if he does his job well who cares about the speed ? At the time that I am writing this article Avira Free seems to be more popular in Europe while Avast Free seems to be more popular in United States, I just checked the number of downloads. This situation may change in time but the great thing is that a lot of people rely on this product and that`s usually a good sign. Download Avast Free


Avira Premium

The main difference between the free and the premium version is the extended access to different areas. It`s more customizable which means that for experts or advanced users they can change the way this antivirus interacts with their system. Another feature available at the Premium version is the protection against phishing. The security suite comes with three main features: privacy protection in Wi-Fi hotspots, the automated backup of your files and the ability to monitor your children online. Regarding the Wi-Fi privacy protection I doubt it`s more useful when compared with a VPN or let`s say that most of the users are not traveling a lot. Also the back-up it`s quite useless if you`re using your own back-up simply don`t need it. Try Avira Free and if you`re satisfied, you can try the premium version for 30 days. Download Avira Premium

Dr Web Antivirus

Also known as Doctor Web is a powerful antivirus developed by a Russian company – the first that offered antivirus solutions in Russia. Started in 1992, is now the market leader for Russian ISPs and provides security services for different businesses, governments and personal users.  They sell their antivirus products via a network of partners in 90 countries and they are being regarded by many professionals as one of the most powerful antivirus products. If I would stop using Avira or Kaspersky products, this would be my first choice. If you need to try Dr. Web, there is a free trial that will work as a full version for 30 days. Keep in mind that it`s Dr.Web Anti-virus Pro version that I am talking about – not the security suite. Download Dr. Web

Kaspersky Antivirus

A great antivirus, it will work well and offer a solid protection especially if you`re just a regular person that will surf on the Internet, visit websites, check emails and so on. The main problem with Kaspersky Antivirus is not with his protection level but more to how it handles the updates as sometimes you may experience some slow periods due to their update servers. It also may depend on which region and to what server you`re connecting to. I always considered that Kaspersky is one of the pioneers in the world of malware. When other solutions were pure crap this antivirus was the first that opened my eyes back in 2003. Now I hate the shiny interface and all the marketing stuff which replaces the traditional versions 1,2,3…with years…Antivirus 2012...2013 and all of them. It`s not used by Kaspersky, all their competitors are using this ``marketing strategy`` so I guess it`s not that important, it`s just a marketing strategy. However, it is a good antivirus, get the trial version for 30 days and if it works great on your computer…buy it or move on. Download Kaspersky Antivirus

Nod32 Antivirus

Nod32 is well known for the light usage of your computer resources and mainly for virus scan speed. I also like the clean interface which is really intuitive and easy to use. It doesn`t implement all kind of features such as an internal sandbox but it delivers good protection using his own heuristic technology. A new version should be released soon so we will see the improvements. A lot of people use this antivirus ( millions ) and if you tried all the others you may also want to test Nod32, it will work exactly as a complete version for 30 days. Download Nod32 Antivirus

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