Avira Free Antivirus had about 100 million of users worldwide and was the 4th most popular antivirus on the planet in 2012. The main and most obvious reason for that – it is free. However, without strong functionality, reliable virus detection algorithms and unique security tools, Avira Free Antivirus would be doomed to stay out of top ten at best. And this tool does possess really great capabilities.
Among competitors, Avira Free Antivirus excels in its super-easy-to-use interface. One-click convenience lets you scan your system against malware, worms, and viral contents, while the real-time protection works 100% invisibly humbly showing notifications in the bottom right corner (of your screen) when a certain threat has been eliminated. A powerful and smart heuristic engine attempts to detect new and unrecognized menaces. However, Avira has been reported to show quite a high level of false positives, so you may want to put this option to a lower intensity. This won’t hurt your protection much, especially taking into account that the virus database is updated every 6 hours in Avira, not once a day as many other solutions do.
In addition to superior protection against viruses, malware, rootkits, worms, and Trojans, Avira Free Antivirus features several advanced Internet security options as third-party modules. Avira’s toolbar implements a Browser Tracking Blocker and a Website Safety Advisor. The former prevents malicious sites from tracking your web activity, while the latter reports harmful and potentially dangerous websites in the search results as reported by CallingId. It also prevents web spoofing and phishing ensuring the website you open is what it claims to be.
The program isn’t resource greedy; it operates smoothly and doesn’t interfere with your current work. However, the free version displays an advertising dialog and, while the ads are being loaded, the system seems to experience a minor slowdown.
Summarizing pros and cons, Avira Free Antivirus is a worthy tool to prevent your system from being infected. All kinds of threats are detected and neutralized with minimum effort on your part. A nice minimalistic approach is an apparent advantage of this antivirus solution. At the same time, web security is implemented in Free Antivirus through the Avira browser toolbar only, and since the program doesn’t consume much memory and CPU, overall performance of the utility is average compared to other free solutions.