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[Question] Free Antivirus Apps - Which of 3 are Better?

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  1. AntiVir Personal Edition (Updated)
  2. Avast! Home Edition 4.6.691
  3. AVG Free Edition 7.338

Which of these 3 apps are/gives you..

  1. Most Control (For instance, when you "exit" or "close" the app, it actually shuts down all related processes; Right-clicking on the systray icon gives you access to common actions such as: "disable real-time scanning, and "Shutdown this app")
  2. Auto-updates unobtrusively (meaning the program does not pop-up a dialogue in the middle of a film stating either: "Update Successful" or "Server cannot be located at this time" or something else.)
  3. Integrates with Outlook for email scanning.
  4. Seems to give the least amount of false positives (or gives the best sense of confidence (I know this is subjective but hey, if you feel that one program gives you the best sense of security due to how many updates to it's definitions it performs in a single day.. well, i'd like to hear it ;) )
  5. Has the most class/style?

If possible, please let me know your opinions or experiences with these apps, or, if you know of a better free for personal use antiVirus programs out there.

I know this is a tall order but I know there are some good writers here with some deep experience in this community so i though whynot try to get some guidance? *crosses fingers*

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i was curious about that one, but it concerns me that I could not find the free version "AVG Free Edition 7.338" that is named thus on MajorGeeks, anywhere on the author's (grisoft) website. Am I just blind? Also, do they provide you with the latest application? Or is it a prior generation version? Even though MajorGeeks lists it as version7.338, but there is also this text on the same page:

This version of AVG is completely free! However, Version 7.0 is available for immediate download for $33.30.
And since I cannot find the download for the free version on the author' website, i cannot clarify this detail.
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a-v comparatives does not rate it very well. it is what i use, though, cuz i surf fairly safely and know what i'm doing. i think the most attractive thing about avg is how light it is on resources, especially when compared to 'real' anti-virus programs like norton, which will noticeably slow your system. hey, those 3 are free. try them for yourself and make up your mind which you like best. but, it's avg for me.
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I use Avast, it finds Viruses faster then AVG did (For me anyways) and it's frequently updated, on nice fast servers, AVG's updating used to be sooo slow :(

It's UI is pretty nice too, then again, any UI is nice compared to AVG :P

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i have a mcafee license i run mcafee right now for av and firewall, but i've been thinking about switching to free alternatives for some time...

mcafee is most definitely a resource hog (it's running seven processes right now for a total of ~20,000K) and when it downloads updates it noticeably lags my system.

it's seems that a majority of people seem to think avg is the best free av prog... but what about free firewall progs? the only one i know about is zonealarm. does that (or any other free firewall) have, say, dialogs that come up when a program tries to access the internet asking for your permission, or a list of apps that you can block from accessing the internet, as mcafee does?

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I'm my opinion i think that AVG Free Edition is suberb. I had no problems with it so far and it is very effective. I used to have Norton Antivirus, but had to pay £19 every year to subscribe to their updates. AVG Free Edition does exactly the same job, but better for Free!

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After trying out the above 3 free anti-virus program + Norton, Fprot and Mcaffee I settled on AntiVir. Now it doesn't run completely automated as you wanted but it has a small footprint plus quick boot up time. About detection I remember seeing a few comparison reviews in the past and some were negative about AntiVir and others positive; it seems to do me well.

No real class/style but it's quite functional.

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I am actually transitioning away from McAfee, thanks blankfaze, for the analysis... I agree that McAfee is a bit of a resource hog for my tastes, but then again, that seems to be the case with many of the commercial apps out there.. feature creep maybe? Anyways, McAfee was far less intrusive than Norton has been (I immediately uninstall any Norton related security suites when i get my hands on new PCs (pc's related to me ofcourse ;) )

I hate how Norton does not allow you to properly shut down (completely) it's running processes, infact, you are stuck with that ugly icon in the systray regardless. I have a problem with that.

@lid, between the 3 free programs, were there any that allowed you to end the program from the systray? And what part of AntiVir didn't "run completely automated as you wanted"?

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so i decided just now to switch from the mcafee suite to AVG a/v and ZoneAlarm firewall

and I am pretty happy... both seem to be working very nicely, and i don't seem to be missing any features from mcafee... fewer processes running, and a noticeable memory improvement.

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so i decided just now to switch from the mcafee suite to AVG a/v and ZoneAlarm firewall

and I am pretty happy... both seem to be working very nicely, and i don't seem to be missing any features from mcafee... fewer processes running, and a noticeable memory improvement.

Good choice blankfaze. I have AVE and ZoneAlarm running on my system aswell. I have had no problems with them, they are both very secure.

Here's a useful link to see if your Firewall is doing it's job. https://www.grc.com/x/ne.dll?bh0bkyd2

I also reccomend Microsoft AntiSpyware to, complete your systems security programs. http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/s...re/default.mspx

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After testing several AV softwares, commercial and free ones, I'm sticked on AVG.

It runs well, performed its job nicely, and I've never to touch it, everything is automatic.

That's why I've choosed it, and because it's also plenty of features.

(Avast! is more a "child toy" for me, and Antivir doesn't have automatic update feature...).

If you wish also afirewall, I've taken the same way, and I've stopped my search when I've tried Kerio Personnal Firewall, because it supports NAT protocol in its free version (and this feature is very very VERY useful in a home network to share internet access ^-^ )

For spyware I recommand Spybot S&D: simple, free, with automatic update feature. Beware of Microsoft Antispyware :) It follows the compagny's policy (and Microsoft has discovered that publicity is source of money).

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wow... you all rock!! thanks for the feedback... I think I'm close to picking.. and what bonuses.. some info on firewalls and more..

does anyone know how Kerio Personal Firewall (free version) stacks up to the free version of Zone Alarm? or does Zone alarm have a free version?

And thanks ReidMedia, for the firewall test site!

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Yeah Zone Alarm has a free version. I'm using it now.

It compares very favourably to McAfee Personal Firewall, IMO. Nice, user-friendly interface, comparable to McAfee I think, also, it has the same level of control (i.e. dialogs asking you for permissions for progs to access internet, allowed apps list, detailed stats). As a matter of fact, after I first installed it, ZoneAlarm blocked even web browsers from accessing the internet... I thought my wireless connection was being screwy for a bit ;-P

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Just found out that ZoneLabs released their free version of ZA6 :


Could not find a change log though... and am curious as to how much ram vsmon takes up in this release... but other firewall apps (which I think are free) that other's recommended in other newsgroups are:

  1. Outpost Firewall Free 1.0.1817
  2. Kerio Personal Firewall 4 (limited free edition)

Comparision chart for Kerio

Maybe someone could post their experiences with these firewalls?

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