I would consider antivirus protection for your computer system as essential software. There are viruses and malware threats all over the internet, and trojans and ransomware are becoming more common and widespread. These unwelcome intrusive programs can greatly damage your system’s performance, not to mention cause aggravation and loss of productivity on your part. In addition, the time needed to get back your precious system to normal operation can be time consuming and complicated even to a seasoned tech person. Windows 8 and 10 come with Windows Defender built in, but this is just a basic front line defender that will not work against the latest threats, known as “zero day” attacks, to your system. It is essential that you have some kind of antivirus protection installed in your system.
Aspects of antivirus software change every year. The top dog antivirus of one year might not be the top dog next year. AVG was a top free antivirus software in the early 2010s, until it was discovered it was using third party tracking software that you couldn’t uninstall (Read about it here). And Zone Alarm used to be good until it became a resource hog, and malicious software was able to bypass the program. In fact, AV-Test Institute and AV-Comparatives are independent organizations that test antivirus programs every year to see what is best.
Here are some reasons that affect the strength of antivirus software:
- The amount of resources it requires to run, which can slow down your computer
- The detection ratio, or the ability to detect malicious files
- The ability to classify malware, such as is it a threat coming from the internet or a program in your computer?
- Identify false positives – the ability to identify a real threats versus a valid program that kind of behaves like malware
- Other programs that are bundled with antivirus such as PCTuneup (Yuck, do not need)
- Support – does the company that makes the antivirus active and keeping up with new threats
So the award for the best free antivirus software of 2017 is …..Drum roll please….Avast Free Antivirus 2017.
Why? Good scores from independent labs and offers more bonus content over other free antivirus programs, such as password manager and network security scanner. In fact, SE Labs gave Avast free version a highest rating of AAA in January-June 2016, the only free version to get this rating (Read about it here). For games, it has a mode that will shutoff popups and reduce system load on games that need a lot of processing power. It is the number one PCMag Editor’s Choice and the 2nd top pick of techraadar.com and pcadvisor.co.uk. It is also in the top five 2017 antivirus program in such websites as thebalnce.com and tomsguide.com. So, considering the overall data and reports on free antivirus programs, Avast Free Antivirus is the 2017 recommended FreeAltSoft.com’s Editors’ Choice.
IMPORTANT: YOU NEED TO DISABLE WINDOWS DEFENDER. You should not run two antivirus programs at the same time. Windows 10 will automatically disable Windows Defender when a new antivirus software is installed; however, users have indicated that Windows Defender would turn on dispute this feature. Click here to find out how to disable Windows Defender.
To the download with you!!
Click the download button below to go to download page.
Click this button on Avast’s download page:
Wait for the download to be completed, then find the download (Click Here to see FreeAltSoft’s Aside on how to do this) and run the installation file as demonstrated below:
Click “Yes” when you get the User Account Control window below:
It will take a minute to load and you are given the option to install or Customize as pointed by the green arrow below.
If you click Customize, your are presented with the screen below; however, I would not disable any of the options as these help provide real-time protection to your system. So, just click on install to proceed and go grab a snack, it will take about 5 to 10 minutes.
When the install is completed, you will see the below icon, or shortcut, on your desktop and you are done!
I lied…sorry, you are not done.
You have to register your copy of Avast Free version with an email address within the first 30 days after installation (I said an email, I did not say your email..hint, hint,…wink wink).
So to do that, click on the green “REGISTER” button as shown below.
Enter your email in the box that appears. That’s it..you are done!
Ummm, I lied again…
Why don’t you take your brand spanking new antivirus software, that you got for free, for a spin!
Run a scan to check if you system is clean and free of any unwanted intruders.
To do this; open Avast, click on the scan button at the top, and click on the “Run Smart Scan” button.