Avast Free Antivirus
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Full user review
"User-friendly, FREE!, and thorough."
-This program isn't memory-intensive as Norton, McAfee, etc. are. They are good programs, but they will slow an older computer down drastically when it comes to RAM usage.
-Ease of use is a big factor here; the controls are lain out for the novice consumer and though the freeware has limitations on what's included, they're--in my opinion--minor. Easy to navigate, does its job well...'nuff said!
-Catching what a paid version of Norton never did was a surprise to me. This FREE program caught TONS of spyware that my PAID Norton 360 allowed through somehow, numerous registry errors, and back door files (that allow access to your computer without your knowledge by a remote computer...like what hackers and the law agencies use, for example) plus a Trojan horse file. All I can say is, wow.
-This program keeps itself up-to-date and checks at log on with an internet connection.
-Connection to the internet for updates every time you log on to your computer will cause some slower start-up time for you. I ran this on XP, now on Windows 7 with a newer computer, so it's no longer an issue. I was on a 7+ year old laptop using Windows XP (SP3), current on all my driver/software updates, and Norton crashed the computer, basically thanks to lack of memory or the capability to upgrade it past 512 MB PC-133. Avast would run fine on this same computer, minus the initial log-in drag when it checked for updates.
-I really have found no other bothersome cons to this program, especially since it's FREE!
I like the program, think it would be best for the novice user, at least gives the feel of a thorough program to protect your computer, and it's easy to use. It clears more than most paid anti-virus programs, and pairs well with Advanced System Care 5 at the time to keep everything running smooth. It gets a 4.5 out of 5 from me as I believe there is always room for improvement, and the freeware doesn't come with the full share of goodies, but not everything can be fully-loaded and free, right? Hope this review helps those considering the download. I also believe that if nothing else, freeware should be on your computer to keep this virus/spyware/adware bombardment under some control...why wouldn't you? Protect yourself!