Jul
13
2012

Avast Free Antivirus

 

Avast Free Antivirus 

The bottom line: Avast continues to push the envelope of top-shelf free security features with hybrid update tech, file reputation analysis, and more. It’s independent benchmarks are a bit weak, but more than 150 million people trust Avast to keep them safe.

Review:
Looking to compete with both paid and free security suites, Avast wants to create a unified approach to your computer security. Long gone are the days of the quirky interface. Avast is accessible and robust, with an impressive list of free features and strong, though hardly stellar, performance benchmarks.

 

Avast has improved its installation process so it’s faster than before. It’s not the fastest on the market, not by a longshot, but a standard installation took us about three minutes.

Some items of note during the installation that will come up later in the review: to avoid the new Windows 7 and Vista desktop gadget, or the new WebRep browser add-on, you must choose the Custom install option and uncheck those here.

Automatic installation of these features is frowned upon, although Avast does provide a clear method for uninstalling them. It’s just not as simple as a check box that gets its own installation window, since you have to go through the Customize menu, which makes the auto-install sort of surreptitious.

The current versions of Firefox and Internet Explorer both block forced add-on installation. When you run one of those browsers for the first time after installing Avast, they’ll ask you if you want to allow the new add-on.

On the plus side, installing Avast doesn’t require a reboot, and using its uninstall tool we detected no remnants in the Registry or on the desktop. Avast has said that the installer has shrunk for all three versions by about 20 percent, although it’s still a large download at around 70MB for the free version.

A new Avast installation option, available only from the custom install menu, lets you sideload Avast as a secondary security program to supplement your main one. We’re not big fans of this option from a security point-of-view, because it can bog down your system resources without actually making you safer. However, for seeing if you like Avast, it’s not a bad thing as long as you remember to choose one security suite to go with.


About the Author:

+Rijad Haxha

Leave a comment

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 129 other subscribers