Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware

Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware

Download Editors' Rating:
4.5
Outstanding
Average User Rating:
3.9
out of 15818 votes

Quick Specs

  • Version:
    8.1.2
  • Total Downloads:
    387,468,757
  • Date Added:
    December 11, 2009
  • File Size:
    1.67MB
  • Downloads Last Week:
    92,412
  • Operating Systems:
    Windows 2000/XP/Vista

Editors' Review

+

One of the first applications built to find and remove malware and spyware, Ad-Aware's reputation is well-justified. The latest version continues the publisher's tradition of adroitly addressing user concerns, but isn't yet perfect.

Building on the improvements made in version 8, former Ad-Aware users should be glad to hear that the program installs faster than it used to. Without a doubt, though, this version of Ad-Aware improves greatly on what has come before. It loads faster during your boot cycle, and scans are faster. Empirical tests noted that while the Quick Scan finished in less than 10 minutes for version 8, the current version's Quick Scan finished in under three minutes. Previous files that had been falsely detected as threats weren't flagged this time around, probably due in part to Ad-Aware's behavioral detection engine. Called Genotype, it's based on heuristics and uses a one-pass scanning system, Genotype isn't directly exposed to users, although you can opt in to anonymously contribute data from the Settings menu. The new version also explicitly calls out in the scan windows what the scan looks for.

New users should note that Ad-Aware Free performs faster than integrated antivirus and antimalware programs in part because only the paid version of Ad-Aware comes with an antivirus engine. Other important features are disabled in the free version. While rootkit detection is present, behavior-based heuristics and real-time registry protection are not. Ad-Aware Free cannot scan networked drives, and even a basic feature like the scheduler remains off-limits to nonpaying customers. The proprietary real-time defender Ad-Watch Live has been reconfigured to run more smoothly in the background, however, and long-time fans will notice the change. Ad-Aware continues to make improvements and seems to be unwilling to rest on its malware-removing laurels, but the free version is undeniably hamstrung.

 
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Publisher's Description

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User Reviews
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  • Current Version

    3.5

    out of 89 votes

    • 5 star 17
    • 4 star 42
    • 3 star 12
    • 2 star 5
    • 1 star 13
  • All Versions

    3.9

    out of 15818 votes

    • 5 star 7490
    • 4 star 4324
    • 3 star 1156
    • 2 star 725
    • 1 star 2123
  • My rating

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1–10 of 89

4 stars

"very usable"

February 08, 2010  |  By ernestw15

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

simple to use.

Cons

found nothing yet to fault.

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4 stars

"seems to work"

January 03, 2010  |  By robmarold

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

The price is right

Cons

I feel that there is still what I call malware on my PC that it overlooks

Summary

maybe a new selection for "optional malware" which some people would like to have and use, but others may find that they dont use it, and it just bogs down their PC.

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5 stars

"very helpful software"

January 03, 2010  |  By lalehan

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

so easy to find the malware

Cons

I cannot say anything as I do not have any reason to dislike

Summary

I like this software, easy and helpful

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3 stars

"very little help for my issue..."

January 02, 2010  |  By diamonddiva1954

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

It downloaded easily.

Cons

Poor instructions. I keep getting a key stroke logger, I think-"adserve.iafrica.com", ad-aware alerts me to the presence, and after running it, will eliminate the bad program, but the next time I turn it on, its back again! Where is an ignore page?

Summary

Ad Aware is so so. I wouldn't recommend you get it, I also wouldn't tell you not to! Here's hoping you don't have issues in the hostsfile section, cos this program is of little to no help after it alerts you to the problem. I'm quite disappointed.

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1 stars

"it did not install?"

December 30, 2009  |  By pedro cosmo

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

none .. I could no isntall it... (vista)

Cons

after an hour of downloadinfg this turkey gave a note that got trouble opiening a file and.. and... that its it! what do I do now> do I hace a 85Megs a junks doenloaded ? where? how I get rid of it? what a joje!

Summary

do not touch it....

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2 stars

"Previous version was better"

December 30, 2009  |  By joarchbr

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

Free - it has Anti Malware

Cons

I believe the previous version was better. Does not pickup spyware.

Summary

It would be a good second spyware software to pickup stuff others don't.

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3 stars

"Helped clean my PC"

December 30, 2009  |  By fire382

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

Quick download, appears to have cleaned my PC of MalWare

Cons

So far, I don't see any problems

Summary

Helped me gain control of my PC

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1 stars

"completely useless"

December 28, 2009  |  By sodiumdodecylsulfate

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

it's free!

Cons

doesn't pick up anything important, only cookies.

Summary

absolutely useless. picked up nothing when spyware doctor (trial version) and spyware terminator both found well over 200 infections. took forever to scan, and ran my computer into the ground. too bad i can't give it zero star.

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4 stars

"Finds the stuff!"

December 28, 2009  |  By jsibelius

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

Finds the spyware that Norton and Spybot miss

Cons

Wish it was completely free?

Summary

Norton only finds cookies. Spybot finds more. This one finds more than that. My computer went from "cold molasses" to ketchup bottle on its second use. That is to say...it's not super fast, but it's certainly much improved.

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1 stars

"Doesn't do much"

December 28, 2009  |  By kuncne

 |  Version: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Malware 8.1.2

Pros

The one star is a courtesy, since earlier versions were very useful. The current one isn't.

Cons

Earlier versions of the software take lengthy periods for full scans -- which was okay. The new one always stalls after scanning only about 3000 files far kless than the promised full scan. It does not solvwe issues earlier versions revolved easily.

Summary

The bnew version seems a waste of time and space. I regret this.

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Results 1–10 of 89

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Full Specifications

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What's new in version 8.1.2
Improvements:
  • New Genotype definitions file format.
  • Logging when scheduled scans are not saved.
  • Fixes:
  • Issue that registry rules are not saved in Ad-Watch.
  • Crash after registeration.
  • Minor issue with the scan progress bar.
  • Process protection so that suspicious processes are blocked after timed-out.
  • Scan freeze with Norton installed on the system.
  • Hanging on startup for some users
  • All notifications will be suppressed when GUI is in simple mode.
  • General
    Publisher Lavasoft
    Publisher web site http://www.lavasoft.com
    Release Date November 18, 2009
    Date Added December 11, 2009
    Version 8.1.2
    Category
    Category Security Software
    Subcategory Anti-Spyware
    Operating Systems
    Operating Systems Windows, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 2000
    Additional Requirements None
    Download Information
    File Size 1.67MB
    File Name Adaware_Installer.exe
    Popularity
    Total Downloads 387,468,757
    Downloads Last Week 92,412
    Pricing
    License Model Free
    Limitations Not available
    Price Free

    Previous Versions:

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