Your home computer doesn't necessarily require professional security options. As such, the free edition of Avira Antivirus seems to be the right choice for many users who are searching for an anti-malware solution with very good performance results and regular software and virus definition updates, just to be sure infections stay away from their precious data.
Unlike many av products, Avira Free Antivirus is easy to install, as user assistance is minimal. However, since the program comes with its own real-time protection module against malware, it will most likely conflict with any already existing antivirus tool. Therefore, users should either disable or uninstall the other av utility, in order to prevent any Windows stability issues.
As for the interface, the developers have always opted for a clean look and intuitive options, and their latest Avira version makes no exception. While beginners can apply the app's default configuration and enable/disable any major component with one click, experts are free to tinker with each part of the system scanner, real-time guard, quarantine, scheduler, reports and events.
Avira promises to protect computers against viruses, worms, Trojans, rootkits, spyware, adware, backdoors, dialers, PUPs, phishing, and other threat types. Its scanner can cover the entire hard disk or only removable drives, the Windows system directory, personal documents, active processes, rootkit and active malware infections, or any custom-defined locations. Moreover, scan tasks can be scheduled.
The scanner's configuration is quite extensive. Advanced users may toy with settings regarding cloud protection, file extensions, boot and master boot sectors, archives, exceptions, heuristic analysis, offline files, integrity checkups, the registry and scanner priority, to name but a few.
When encountering suspicious or infected files, Avira can prompt the user for action or execute commands automatically by taking into account a primary and secondary action (in case the first one is not possible) between repairing, renaming, quarantining, deleting or ignoring the files in question. The quarantine allows users to further examine files and decide whether to keep or delete them.
Avira integrates extra functions to provide Internet protection by modifying Windows Firewall options regarding the private and public network, application rules, and advanced settings. Other customization properties focus on the different types of threats to look for, app password protection and permissions, autorun security, notifications and acoustic alerts. Events and reports may be configured and consulted.
The antivirus program's functionality can be enhanced via its child safety feature designed for social networks, and by monitoring Android smartphones in case of loss or theft.
Thanks to the fact that notifications can be hidden and scans may run silently in the background, Avira is capable of becoming non-intrusive. It leaves a small footprint on system resources and has demonstrated very good scan speeds and virus detection ratio in our and others' tests. First-time and experienced users alike may resort to Avira Free Antivirus if they're not looking to make any purchases to successfully block security breaches.
Those looking for enhanced features may test and/or purchase Avira Antivirus Pro, Avira Internet Security Suite or Avira Server Security.