Back in December I wrote an article about the best internet security suites of 2011 and decided that it would be a great idea to share some free options. Although, I believe that the premium security suites are the best option when it comes to total computer protection and the other computers in your household.
For those that only need simple protection or it isn’t in their budget to purchase a premium security suite, then I recommend to at least get a free antivirus program and a free firewall suite to protect your computers. Today, I will share with you a few free antivirus programs that I found or have used in the past.
Free Antivirus Software
After doing a little research, I found that there are only a few free antivirus programs out there and most of them I have heard of. Below is list of free antivirus programs. Image Source: Artisan’s Tools – Flickr
1. Avast! Free Antivirus 6
Avast! Free antivirus is one of my favorite free antivirus programs. I recommend Avast! to all of my friends, family and clients. I have been using their products for years and I have seen how well the free version can protect your computers. The free version provides the minimum protection that every computer needs.
2. AVG Free Anti-Virus
AVG Free Ant-Virus has been around for years and at one time, I only recommend using AVG and their premium versions. But when I made the switch to visit, I found they didn’t have a compatible version or it kept crashing the system. I really can’t remember. But now they have a great program that has been rated as one of the best free antivirus programs on the market. Both cnet and PC Magazine both recommend using AVG. I still recommend the software and recommend using them if you aren’t interested in Avast!or a premium internet security suite.
3. Comodo Antivirus
Comodo Antivirus has been around a while, but I didn’t know much about them until I had to switch firewalls and move over to Comodo Firewall back when Windows Vista just appeared on scene and they were the only company offering a free firewall that worked with Vista. After that, I found they have great products and believe they put out a great product. As for their free antivirus product, they have a lot of great features and their reviews have been pretty good. Comodo Antivirus would be another free firewall option I would recommend to friends, family, and clients.
4. Avira AntiVir Personal
Avira AntiVir Personal is a simple to use basic personal antivirus software package. Its an entry-level antivirus that protects against malware, worms, rootkits and costly dialers.
5. ClamWin Free Antivirus
ClamWin Free Antivirus is a basic virus scan that has been around for a while. It hasn’t changed much since it came on the scene. It’s a manual scan package, so you will have to manually scan the system each time you want use the scanner.
6. Microsoft Security Essentials
Microsoft Security Essentials will guard against viruses, spyware, and other malware forms. It was designed to be simple to install and easy to run. It will quietly and efficiently in the background.
PC Tools AntiVirus Free protects agains viruses, worms and Trojans that has rapid updates and IntelliGuard real-time virus scan and removal technology. I really do not know much of about this product, but cnet.com did a review on it and they believe its worth looking at. I plan on installing it on a backup computer and see how well it works.
8. Ad-Aware Free Internet Security
Ad-Aware Free Internet Security offers the core protection you need against internet threats. It has real-time anti-malware protection, advanced Genocode detection technology, rootkit protection, and scheduler. It has the power to protect your system online. Ad-Aware Free has a big install file but after the install it’s a very small program. Even though it’s a small program, its big and powerful. It does everything that most of the premium suites do. As an antivirus suite, Ad-Aware is new but as a spyware and ad-ware scanner and removal software package they are great. I have used them for years and at times, I will still use them.
Free eScanAV Anti-Virus Toolkit (MWAV) is a free portable utility that will scan your PC and remove any viruses, spyware or other threats that might be present.
Panda Cloud Antivirus claims to be the first free antivirus from the cloud. It has real-time protection against viruses. It has automatic and transparent upgrades of new engine and program versions. Panda also has URL and Web filtering of malicious, drive-by exploits and phishing sites.
11. Immunet Free Antivirus
Immunet Free Antivirus is fast companion-based antivirus that has basic online protection. It’s a real’-time cloud-based detection. I have been testing this antivirus software for a few months now and I have to say I like it a lot. What I like about this software, is that adds an extra layer of protection. It runs along side your existing antivirus software and its compatible wit most antiviruses. Its also community-based so you can add your friends and closest contacts. Their theory is strength in numbers. Add more people to your network and you are added to the Immunet community. This means if one computer in the community is infected and blocked, the whole community will be protected against the threat.
There are a lot of premium and not so many free antivirus packages out there. But how good are they all? The only real way to know is to read the reviews and read the test results from the different antivirus testing companies. But the real question is to choose from free or premium or going without an antivirus suite. I would never recommend going without antivirus software. You may not have had any problems now, but that doesn’t mean you won’t in the future. The list of free antivirus suites I have listed here are not recommendations, but just what I found on the net or have used in the past. I wrote this article as a way to introduce everyone to the different options available for free antivirus suites.