Battle Bitdefender Free vs AVG Free (Other Suggestions Welcome) to run with Comodo Firewall?

Arequire

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Since I'm currently unable to use Avast due to a conflict with Comodo Firewall BSODing my PC I'm looking to switch AV's. I generally have issues with most free AVs but if I had to choose two to replace Avast it would be either Bitdefender or AVG, so I'm here asking y'all to decide for me. Feel free to choose something completely different than either of the two I've listed and give your reasons why you recommend it.
I will be pairing whatever AV is chosen with Comodo Firewall which is there to catch any zero-days the AV misses.

Here's a very short, condensed list of issues I have with the free AVs before you cast your vote:
  • Avast - BSOD on shutdown/restart (CF conflict :()
  • AVG - Forced AVG Zen, Dislike their privacy policy
  • Avira - Ugly, outdated UI, full scan gets stuck in a loop, automatic quick scan on malware detection, Forced Avira Launcher
  • Bitdefender - No settings to fiddle with
  • Comodo Cloud - Poor detection, pointless when running CF
  • Fortinet - No PUP detection
  • Microsoft Security Essentials - Poor detection
  • Panda - Bug makes UI disappear
  • Qihoo - False positives and nag heavy (As far as I can tell their HIPS doesn't discriminate between good and bad programs)
  • Sophos Home - No quarantine (Automatic deletion of files o_O)
  • Tencent - Considered a PUP, installs a bunch of other junk with its install
 
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Rolo

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Jun 14, 2015
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I've had a lot of files from legitimate programs blocked when it's on auto-block and that leads to me sat there wondering why something isn't working. ... I'm assuming that some of the files used in the programs weren't digitally signed and that lead to the block, either due to negligence or because they didn't feel it necessary.
It could have been a batch file (.bat). I had this experience yesterday when Zemana blocked batch files launched by Davinci Resolve's installer, breaking the installation.
 

Antimalware18

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in my honest opinion?

Use avast without comodo firewall

Configure it with all settings to max, deepscreen on, hardened mode to agressive and behavior shield on

install some extra ransomware protection such as checkmal's appcheck antiransomware

protect against bundled pups with unchecky and use a secure browser such as chrome with a few choice addons

with that settup why would you need to go through the hassel of comodo firewall? just a bit of overkill and as show recently the added instability of conflict.

EDIT* would just like to add that this is my current setup and things are running fine with no infection.
 

Faybert

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A thousand times free Bitdefender, not just for protection reasons, but AVG Zen is almost as horrible as Avira Connect.
 

Arequire

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in my honest opinion?

Use avast without comodo firewall

Configure it with all settings to max, deepscreen on, hardened mode to agressive and behavior shield on

install some extra ransomware protection such as checkmal's appcheck antiransomware

protect against bundled pups with unchecky and use a secure browser such as chrome with a few choice addons

with that settup why would you need to go through the hassel of comodo firewall? just a bit of overkill and as show recently the added instability of conflict.

EDIT* would just like to add that this is my current setup and things are running fine with no infection.
Not willing to drop Comodo Firewall unfortunately. Avast, even in hardened mode offers nowhere near enough protection to justify ditching it.

A thousand times free Bitdefender, not just for protection reasons, but AVG Zen is almost as horrible as Avira Connect.
True dat. Hate both equally. They should be an optional install in my opinion.
 
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Antimalware18

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Not willing to drop Comodo Firewall unfortunately. Avast, even in hardened mode offers nowhere near enough protection to justify ditching it.

That's fine and that's your opinion.

But just to "punch" my point a bit further home per se....

How many truly "zero hour" threats do you encounter on a day to day basis? I mean, I've had just one malicious url alert in the past two months and haven't had a true "attack" in over two years now.

And even if you were to land on a attack page chances are you wouldnt be compromised as long as you were up to date.

Not trying to argue it I just think alot of people are too paranoid when the chances are in your favor as long as your careful and have a semi-solid setup.
 

Arequire

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That's fine and that's your opinion.

But just to "punch" my point a bit further home per se....

How many truly "zero hour" threats do you encounter on a day to day basis? I mean, I've had just one malicious url alert in the past two months and haven't had a true "attack" in over two years now.

And even if you were to land on a attack page chances are you wouldnt be compromised as long as you were up to date.

Not trying to argue it I just think alot of people are too paranoid when the chances are in your favor as long as your careful and have a semi-solid setup.
You've got a point, and you're completely right; I haven't seen any actual malware on any of my systems in probably over a decade now. Probably ran into less than 10 blocked malware URLs in that time too, but I like to plan for the absolute worst possible situation. I'm sure a lot of people were thinking they'd never get infected too, until they were the first few people to run into Petya or GoldenEye and had their files encrypted, their MBR overwritten and their system become a paperweight. (Which wouldn't be much of a problem on my sub-£400 system but if I were running some £1500+ system, I'd be pretty damn upset I didn't secure myself adequately and wouldn't be able to afford to replace it.)
 
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RejZoR

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avast! 17 will soon receive update for CF issue. AVG has the same privacy policy as avast! since they are now the same company.
 

Arequire

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avast! 17 will soon receive update for CF issue. AVG has the same privacy policy as avast! since they are now the same company.
That's good to hear. I'm just putting up with the BSOD right now so I'm hoping for a fix in the near future.
The difference in privacy is Avast allows you opt out of data sharing that allows them to send "anonymised" data to third parties while AVG only allows you to opt out of their community file submission.
 

Rolo

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... had their files encrypted, their MBR overwritten and their system become a paperweight. (Which wouldn't be much of a problem on my sub-£400 system but if I were running some £1500+ system, I'd be pretty damn upset I didn't secure myself adequately and wouldn't be able to afford to replace it.)

A point and a question:

Losing files to malware? That's what backups are for. A hardware failure or a file-system corruption could have the same effect--and without the benefit of your knowing right away.

How does corrupting files, MBR turn perfectly good hardware into a paperweight? You wipe/reinstall everything--entry-level technician stuff.
 
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Arequire

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A point and a question:

Losing files to malware? That's what backups are for. A hardware failure or a file-system corruption could have the same effect--and without the benefit of your knowing right away.

How does corrupting files, MBR turn perfectly good hardware into a paperweight? You wipe/reinstall everything--entry-level technician stuff.
I was more talking about the general population who don't create file backups or image backups; people who wouldn't know how or think to do so. I'm sure people like us who're experienced in how to protect ourselves from malware and know that backups are the absolute best thing you can do against ransomware, but you hear about these hundreds of thousands of people who're infected with malware while running a singular AV and it's proof enough to me that their zero-day protections simply aren't good enough, and I'd like to think that if some horrifying new piece of malware gets past Avast's signatures and hardened mode that CFW will provide me with a layer of defence that I can truly rely on. (Obviously I don't believe that CFW is perfect; I'm sure there's something that will come along and blow through its defences eventually, but currently I feel it provides one of the best defences against zero-days.)
 

roger_m

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but you hear about these hundreds of thousands of people who're infected with malware while running a singular AV and it's proof enough to me that their zero-day protections simply aren't good enough
The problem is that people are click happy and depend on their antivirus to protect them, when of course the reality is that no antivirus can protect against all threats.

If you keep Windows and the software you use updated, and are actually careful about what files you open, in my opinion, the chance of getting infected is close to zero. In my experience, most infections come from either opening an infected file (e.g. a malicious attachment) or to a lesser extent due to unpatched vulnerabilities. If you keep your system up to date, the chance of getting infected due to a vulnerability is greatly reduced. If you are very careful about what files you open, then it is unlikely you will open anything malicious. If you do regular backups, then in the unlikely event you do get infected, you have a backup to restore from, so you won't lose anything other than files created or modified since the last backup.

I know that personally, the only time I ever get infected is when I open an infected file. If I had been more careful, and realised the file may have been suspicious, I would not have opened it (or perhaps scanned it at VirusTotal to see if it was safe or not) and not got infected, Very occasionally, I get unwanted bundled software installed when I install software, and don't pay enough attention when installing it to notice and uncheck any options to install extra software. But, the reality is that almost always this unwanted software, is just that - unwanted (and at worst an annoyance), rather than being malicious, and can easily be installed from the Control Panel, so it's nothing to worry about.
 
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Rolo

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I was more talking about the general population who don't create file backups or image backups; people who wouldn't know how or think to do so.
Then they aren't going to know or think about security either.

You'd have a hard time convincing me of helpless ignorance, with a few reasons being:
  • Mass media who's sole purpose is fear-mongering
  • Is there really anyone left who doesn't know a computer-savvy person?
  • These people buy mass-market PCs that come bundled with security and backup software nagging you to buy after the free trial runs out
  • Windows nags about backups until you comply or tell it to shut up
  • The real world has thieves, crooks, scams, murderers, etc. The Internet is part of the real world

Technology can't fix stupid: to not rely on judgment first is like one wearing a bullet-proof vest thinking one is invulnerable. iddqd doesn't work IRL, heh.

(I've run out of creative ways to say "I told you so" a looong time ago...it isn't helpless ignorance; it's wilful)
 
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Arequire

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The problem is that people are click happy and depend on their antivirus to protect them, when of course the reality is that no antivirus can protect against all threats.

If you keep Windows and the software you use updated, and are actually careful about what files you open, in my opinion, the chance of getting infected is close to zero. In my experience, most infections come from either opening an infected file (e.g. a malicious attachment) or to a lesser extent due to unpatched vulnerabilities. If you keep your system up to date, the chance of getting infected due to a vulnerability is greatly reduced. If you are very careful about what files you open, then it is unlikely you will open anything malicious. If you do regular backups, then in the unlikely event you do get infected, you have a backup to restore from, so you won't lose anything other than files created or modified since the last backup.

I know that personally, the only time I ever get infected is when I open an infected file. If I had been more careful, and realised the file may have been suspicious, I would not have opened it (or perhaps scanned it at VirusTotal to see if it was safe or not) and not got infected, Very occasionally, I get unwanted bundled software installed when I install software, and don't pay enough attention when installing it to notice and uncheck any options to install extra software. But, the reality is that almost always this unwanted software, is just that - unwanted (and at worst an annoyance), rather than being malicious, and can easily be installed from the Control Panel, so it's nothing to worry about.
Yeah, I'm not exactly click happy and I do follow best practices so my chance of getting infected is probably pretty darn low. I don't think I've seen a piece of malware for over a decade now in fact, but I just prefer to prepare for the worst and I think a layered approach is best way for me to do that. I could go further obviously but at that point I think there'd end up being conflict or it would require a lot of manual configuration that I really can't be bothered with.

Then they aren't going to know or think about security either.

You'd have a hard time convincing me of helpless ignorance, with a few reasons being:
  • Mass media who's sole purpose is fear-mongering
  • Is there really anyone left who doesn't know a computer-savvy person?
  • These people buy mass-market PCs that come bundled with security and backup software nagging you to buy after the free trial runs out
  • Windows nags about backups until you comply or tell it to shut up
  • The real world has thieves, crooks, scams, murderers, etc. The Internet is part of the real world

Technology can't fix stupid: to not rely on judgment first is like one wearing a bullet-proof vest thinking one is invulnerable. iddqd doesn't work IRL, heh.

(I've run out of creative ways to say "I told you so" a looong time ago...it isn't helpless ignorance; it's wilful)
Agreed. At the end of the day it's on them for not following best practices. I've had friends and family infected for the stupidest reasons; clicking on links and opening attachments in spam email even when the sending isn't even trying to impersonate a company or government branch, and then you end up reading it and it's the most poorly-worded, most obviously spammy thing you'd ever read and they decided to go ahead and check it out anyway, even when I've specifically told them not to.

I think the problem is that shoring up their security and following those best practices requires some user intervention (even something as simple as connecting a portable hard drive and running a backup of your most important files once a week) and they feel that's too much of a compromise on what they want to be a fully automatic process that requires no user intervention on their part.
 

Rolo

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Jun 14, 2015
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I think the problem is that shoring up their security and following those best practices requires some user intervention (even something as simple as connecting a portable hard drive and running a backup of your most important files once a week) and they feel that's too much of a compromise on what they want to be a fully automatic process that requires no user intervention on their part.
Even better: Windows' File History. It keeps versioned backups of all user files.
 

giants8058

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Jan 26, 2016
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I'd have to go with BitDefender free. Better signatures and much lighter on resources while AVG is bloated, buggy and detection rates aren't really that close. Yeah BD free has pretty much no configuration settings, but I still think it's better overall. Combine it with CFW with its HIPS and other components, it's a solid option. Personally I don't care much for Comodo due to its impact on resources, but to each his own.
 
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