What is the best free anti-virus and anti-spyware software?

Kay May 10, 2010
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What is the best free anti-spyware and anti-virus software?

  1. Aibek
    July 27, 2011 at 10:57 am

    Good recomendations but instead of AVG i would list Avira.

    Also make sure to check out recommended security software on our Best
    Windows Software page, http://www.makeuseof.com/pages/best-windows-software

  2. Anmeldung
    February 16, 2011 at 12:51 am

    Hey,

    for me (privat user) Avira AntiVir Personal, Ad- Aware and Anti Spyware is OK. It is free and is fit for purpose.
    Kaspersky detects virus itself also usually too late.

    Regards
    Schuenemberg

  3. Charles
    February 15, 2011 at 8:51 pm

    I used AVG for several years and it is a fine anti-virus. Now I am using Avira and like it much more than AVG. For finding things that other malware, spyware, and even anti-virus programs can't seem to locate, I am 110% a believer in Malwarebytes. Having had a 14 yr old boy in the house downloading who-knows-what for four years, Malwarebites saved my computer more than once. Only thing is, if you can find a way to install and run an anti-virus or malware program to a flash drive, you stand a better chance of fixing a really bad infection.

  4. Bobaloub
    January 9, 2011 at 5:48 pm

    I used to work in a repair shop in los angeles...and the best spyware remover we found was Malwarebytes. For antivirus we used several different ones including the online scanners to clean the pc's that came in for repair. If we needed to update a customer's antivirus we would install AVG.

  5. zyxnoid
    November 15, 2010 at 12:22 pm
  6. Marcelo
    October 29, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    norton 360 v4!!!

  7. Shebin
    October 29, 2010 at 11:29 am

    "prevention is better than cure" so i would recommend COMODO Internet Security Premium(it's free jst the name has 'premium'). 3yrs back i got the comodo firewall since then i'm a fan of comodo. I'm using the comodo internet security for 2yr still no virus, malware,spywares etc...even the unknown malware will b detected and notified to the user ....my system is still performing @ its top speed..

    if u prefer jst an antivirus go for AVG or avast 5.0.

    just give it a try guys......

  8. Dabuse
    September 13, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    Free antivirus I recommend AVG. For anti spyware, I use this SpyNoMore. Works great.

    Read info: http://www.makeuseof.com/answers/free-antivirus-antispyware-software/

  9. Anonymous
    September 10, 2010 at 8:42 pm

    MSSE paired with ZoneAlarm free firewall and Threatfire is pretty good.
    malwarebytes and secuniaPSI
    very important not to have 2 active scanning anti-virus apps, I found this out by accident.

  10. Prateek Kumar Singh
    August 4, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    @Bhavik,anurag and all msse users: Are u out of your minds???
    Microsoft Security Essentials is the worst antivirus....
    Well...if all antivirus programs take 20-40MiB of space, how can u expect one to take up only 7Mib of space???
    When it is the most essential part of a computer system.....
    Think about it guys....

    I recommend AVIRA...
    I am a student and have recently passed my 10+2.......
    My system was considered the best performer in the whole class and at lab too because I had, with permission, installed Avira Free Antivirus on my lab system and i was above all problems, for students from all classes stuck their pen drives on my system... Other people came to me to "clean" their USBs at lab..Plus, I got a handful of USBs from colleagues and friends every weekend to "clean"......

    And all this is at no cost, just AVIRA ANTIVIR PERSONAL - FREE ANTIVIRUS......and regular updates....

    Soon, the trend changed, the servers@school also deployed AVIRA and are happy till date and all systems deployed with AVIRA and regularly updated.......

    Hmmm....so the happiest guy out of it is ME......

    Thanx.

    -Prateek Kumar Singh, INDIA

  11. Anurag
    July 7, 2010 at 7:39 am

    original windows OS + microsoftsecurityessential = forget viruses

  12. manish
    June 21, 2010 at 10:43 am

    you can use Avira 2010 antivirus to download this software click the following link
    http://www.free-av.com/en/download/download_servers.php its really good and free.

  13. TheRube
    June 16, 2010 at 2:32 am

    AVAST and Malwarebytes = Superb Quality and both are F-R-E-E!!!

    I use also Outpost Firewall.

    TheRube,

    Brooklyn, New York USA

  14. Swilliam
    June 15, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    I think Eset smart security and Nod32 are the best anti viruses and spy-wares. ESET products are easy to use and now slow down systems. You can easily get 30 days free trial from ESET web for trial.
    You can also check some latest anti virus deals and choose the best offer from them.
    Thanks
    http://www.ezcouponsearch.com/Antivirus-Deals.aspx

  15. fruitgeek.wordpress.com
    June 14, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    I wrote an article regarding this (http://fruitgeek.wordpress.com/2010/06/03/best-free-antivirus/) it covers the best free antivirus, and anti-malware for Mac & Windows

  16. Andy Sergie
    June 6, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    I have been using NOD32 for several years and found that to be the best available. I also have scanned my PC with some of the above mentioned AV software having first cleaned with NOD32 to see whetehr there were untrapped viruses. I never found any and I am assured of a clean PC.

  17. Bhavik
    June 4, 2010 at 9:25 am

    in windows 7 i use Microsoft essential security ,it is best performance giving

  18. Victor Dugas
    June 3, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    Well, I have studied virii and scanners for years (more then 10) and if I were to make a list of the best antivirus software available, Norton, Mcafee, Bit Defender I would put at the top of my worst antivirus choices, however at the top of my best antivirus list I would have to put Avast. AVG would definitely hit #2 on this list. Avast was able to detect and clean more then AVG plus Avast has the added feature of audio alerts which tell you if there was a virus found or that your definitions have been updated. One person using AVG above mentioned that they have not had a virus in years. I apologize, however...I prefer antivirus software that reports that a virus has been found vs assuming that I have not had a virus in years. The problem there could very easily be that the scanner did not detect anything in years. I have a computer shop which I have done virus cleaning for the better part of 15 years and have customers with all known antivirus products and any one of them who have not come to see me in 12 months will have several unhandled viruses. Please do no be fooled by your antivirus software not reporting a virus and assuming this means that you do not have any virii. This is fooling yourself because especially under a windows OS, no antivirus program ever made will keep you 100% clean all the time. It just is not possible. Also, I was a little dismayed to not see Spyware Terminator in your antispyware list. This product is also free, and can be a little annoying at times with permissions, but if you use this product your chances of spyware and a limited number of virii (especially with the clam plug-in) are diminished greatly. Another good company for free antispyware is IOBIT. They have Advanced System Care and IOBIT 360. Both are antispyware products which do other functions that once you try them most would not want to be without. But 360 has a very nice feature, it will scan for windows vulnerabilities and patch any found with the appropriate hotfix. Something to think about.

  19. jshm2
    May 31, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    Depends on usage. AVG is worse than useless for me as it doesn't pickup malware. Avira fared a bit better - but I use a paid solution instead. If your doing free then ensure you get Threatfire on there and/or Panda cloud antivirus on there and malwarebytes to shore up your digital defences.

    For a run down you should look at an independent site like av-comparatives.org

  20. Greg Rickson
    May 31, 2010 at 5:33 am

    Vote = AVG

  21. Martin Minnebo
    May 30, 2010 at 11:12 am

    Sorry AVG-users, it's NOT the best anymore. Nowadays you really get better scan results with Avira and Avast. Avira has the reputation of finding the most viruses (when compared) and still does. Unfortunately they also have the reputation of having the most false-positives... In latest versions this issue's gotten better, but there is still room for improvement.
    The latest version of Avast has the best overall package of the two; a little less good in scan results, but also less false-positives and more features. Here's a good comprehensive comparison between Avira, Avast and AVG to help you decide. http://j.mp/d8aEFu
    From what I have read about Microsoft Security Essentials, this also seems te be a good free alternative, but it's really a basic security solution. You might give it a try.

    A great objective resource with test-results on AV-solutions is AV-Comparatives.org

    As for Anti-Spyware software, i agree with the already mentioned before.

  22. mtnmedic
    May 29, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    Microsoft Security Essentials. It has a very small footprint and is not, contrary to what you've read above, a "memory hog". It's routine scan is actually pretty fast. The "full" scan will take quite a while, but it's the same with just about all of the others. The nice thing about MS Security Essentials is it's EASY to set up and EASY to use. Nothing complex about it at all. I used AVG Free Edition for years but it's grown into bloatware and has caused issues. I've replaced it in all of my machines with MS Security Essentials and am very happy I made the switch. My customers who have Windows-based machines are also very happy with it. Give it a try. It's 100% free to people whose machines are running a genuine istallation of Windows. Those who say it's a "memory hog" are those who more than likely have a LOT of crap going on in their systems that competes for resources with ANY security-oriented software.

  23. Lisa
    May 29, 2010 at 5:16 am

    Comodo. After many hours of research online I finally found Matousec.com. Comodo was the Only one to receive a 100% rating. AVG and Avira are so at the bottom of the list it's ridiculous!!

  24. timmyjohnboy
    May 29, 2010 at 4:02 am

    I was recently reading a PC magazine article (I forget the name) and it was all about the top 10 antivirus programs, free and pay, and I was AMAZED that AVG didn't even make the list! I too swear by AVG, if you're at all wondering:)

  25. Sean Geary
    May 28, 2010 at 11:51 pm

    Using Avast atm, but Avira is very good too. Threatfire is also good as a top up real time addition.

    Find Online Armor a very good free firewall for the more paranoid!

    I swear by MBAM, but Adware and SuperAntispware (free version) is also very good.

  26. gary
    May 28, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    try avast anti virus home found at http://www.avast.com, registration is free for a year, then renew it, protects your system very well, blocks spyware and malware in one package.
    beautiful user interface, very easy to set up.
    I've used it for years on my laptops never have had a virus infection

  27. Tony
    May 22, 2010 at 4:36 am

    I agree with Aibek. Try Avira.

  28. Anonymous
    May 22, 2010 at 2:59 am

    use SUPERantispyware :)

  29. Oron Joffe
    May 16, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    I agree with all the posters above. I would add SpywareBlaster from JavaCoolSoftware which provides extra protection with practically no impact on performance. Note that this is ADDITIONAL to any of the above and not a replacement!

  30. Anonymous
    May 13, 2010 at 5:23 am

    In Windows machines that I use, I install Avira (though the pop-ups is annoying). But the safest way to protect your computer might be to install Linux (Ubuntu is my choice) and use it as a screener. So all incoming files (mostly from USBs) should be copied under Ubuntu.

    A little bit unpractical, but worth the time if you are really paranoid about viruses.

  31. Sonny Bass
    May 13, 2010 at 12:51 am

    You also need to have a good firewall. I have had good luck with Zonealarm free,I am sure others have their own favorites.

  32. N Navin Raj
    May 12, 2010 at 6:09 am

    you have to consider the resources in your computer if you have a lot to spare then AVG, Avast are good
    but the quickest i know is AVIRA
    As far as antispyware is concerned you could just be a little more careful when installing or use Sandboxie. then again super antispyware is pretty good

  33. Taty
    May 11, 2010 at 5:56 pm

    I also recommend AVG free. Just make sure you search for the free version, since they will (for good reasons) try to sell you the paid version. It's light weight, so doesn't slow down your computers and very effective. I had had mixed experiences with Ad-aware. Find it invasive and bulky at times. I also agree that Microsoft essentials can be an excellent option that is overlooked a lot ( like a lot of other Microsoft products they never bother to advertise)

  34. woenfney
    May 11, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    AVG

  35. Anonymous
    May 11, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    I have been using AVG free for years and swear by it. I also use Spyware Terminator. Both programs are free and work great. On a side note, I always have MBAM (malwarebytes antimalware) installed as a just in case. I work on a lot of other people's computers cleaning up viruses and spyware and I can always count on these programs

  36. LaShiqua Matthews-Collins
    May 11, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    I use microsoft essentials. I also install it on pc's i do monthly maint. on. My customers love it.

    • vicky
      June 3, 2010 at 8:39 am

      u can use quick heal 2010 internet security its the best

      • Andreas
        March 16, 2011 at 6:57 am

        it sounds fake. anyone can make a program and recommend it under a fake name. I only trust renowned Antivirus software.

  37. Brandina Vines
    May 11, 2010 at 1:14 pm

    I was having all kinds of trouble until I saw a post from Make Use Of with a list of the best free anti-virus programs. Following their advice, I installed Microsoft Security Essentials, which has helped tremendously. I also downloaded Malwarebytes to my external drive and I run it about once a week to catch anything that MSE didn't. I haven't had any trouble since.

  38. zachishi
    May 11, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    If you are looking for something light and effective i would go with Microsoft Security Essentials. It is very non-invasive and i have had it running on multiple machines since it came out and who would know more about their own OS than Microsoft.

    http://www.microsoft.com/security_essentials/

  39. Sonny Bass
    May 11, 2010 at 7:56 am

    I agree with Tina & Steve And would also add Ad- Aware as one of the Anti Spyware it has very fast ,effective scans. Ad-Aware is by LAVASOFT

  40. Steve Campbell
    May 11, 2010 at 4:34 am

    I agree with Tina's answer 100%. If I were to pick one antivirus program, it would have to be AVG. It's the only one I use and I haven't had a virus in years! *knocks on wood*

    • Aibek
      May 11, 2010 at 5:24 am

      I'd recommend to go with Avira instead. Used AVG for about two years but
      then switched to Avira.

      Aibek

    • Siddhant
      May 29, 2010 at 12:29 pm

      If u have to use an antivirus then I would recommend you to go for Quick Heal Total Security 10 in one pack thats the best antivirus I have ever seen.I was using it for one year after it got expired and now I am using MS Security Essentials.Both are good.But Quick heal is the best.

  41. Tina
    May 11, 2010 at 3:51 am

    Kay,

    please have a look at the answers to these questions.
    Can you recommend a free virus protection program?
    How many security programs do I need?

    Let me sum it up for you...

    Antivirus
    AVG
    Avira AntiVir Personal
    Avast!

    Microsoft Security Essentials

    Make sure to install only ONE antivirus program, although Microsoft Security Essentials does not count.

    Anti Spyware
    Spybot
    Malwarebytes

    You can install and use multiple anti-spyware tools.

    For Aibek's recommendation regarding security setup, read his article 7 Essential Security Downloads You MUST Have Installed

    Fresh suggestions welcome!

    • 220VOLTS
      May 29, 2010 at 10:31 am

      I found one problem found with MS Security Essentials, it's a memory hog. I use AVG only.

      • Siddhant
        May 29, 2010 at 12:22 pm

        man i m also using it.Its nt at all a memory hog

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