What AV to chose?

  • Bitdefender Internet Security

    Votes: 35 34.0%
  • AVG Internet Security

    Votes: 5 4.9%
  • Avast Premium Security

    Votes: 9 8.7%
  • F-Secure Safe /Total

    Votes: 26 25.2%
  • Sophos Home Premium

    Votes: 6 5.8%
  • Microsoft Defender

    Votes: 31 30.1%

  • Total voters
  • Poll closed .


Level 5
May 9, 2019
Hello fellow MT'ers

I have for the moment a license for Sophos Home Pro but it is almost time to renew it. I got an offer from Sophos to renew it for €66 for 2 years.

Since version 3.3.0 I have an issue with ADguard and the new improvement are rather disappointed. Their support is still great but maybe it is time to go for an other AV-solution.

My possible new choices are:
  • Avast or AVG IS
  • F-secure Safe or Total
  • BitDefender
  • Windows Defender
or stick with Sophos.

The last couple of weeks I have tested all the mentioned AV-suites. I only had 2 issues with Bitdefender (very slow updates and bug in GUI).

I combined all the AV-test (AV-test, AVLab, SE LABS, MRG and AV-Comp) results from the last 2 years and my own tests. The totals are:

Sophos Home Premium93,31%
Windows Defender89,08%

I tested 240 samples (exe's, vbs, js, dll, docs, xls, ps).

AVG IS95,61% (blocked by ML: 5,20%)
Bitdefender IS92,88% (blocked by ML: 0%)
F-Secure92,35% (blocked by ML: 3.75%)
Sophos82,61% (blocked by ML: 2,08%)
Windows Defender82,28% (blocked by ML: 2,67%)

So I am curious about your opinion and your choice?


ForgottenSeer 85179

Defender is called Microsoft Defender instead of Windows Defender since some time already ;)

I vote for Defender because of less attack surface, internal integrated and works best with other Windows security features.


Level 24
Top poster
Feb 25, 2017
I voted for F-Secure but just because I can't vote for two. I think Microsoft Defender would be just fine, I might try it soon too. The only reason why I don't rely on built in security is the fact, that I just have the Windows Home version without some useful features/modules.


Level 3
Apr 4, 2021
I think that if you have enough RAM, then Bitdefender is a great choice for protection that does not require any attention from the user. On the other hand, Avast has quite a lot of interesting settings and a sandbox, I would choose it from the listed products, and the level of protection of Avast, if properly configured, it should be higher than that of F-Secure or Sophos. I also like Norton for its reputation-based firewall, but it's not on your list. :)


Level 55
Top poster
Content Creator
Apr 24, 2016
First before buying anything do a full trial to see how that software behaves on your system and works for you.
Microsoft Defender coupled with Andy's tools (Configure Defender and Simple Windows Hardening) is a great option.
I find it just a tad too heavy on older systems and prefer F-Secure SAFE (with Simple Windows Hardening on my system) for its lightness and Mikko Hypponen :D
Bitdefender is a hit or miss depending on your system, so definitely do a trail first.
I just don't like Avast (or AVG) anymore, so no real opinion on them.
Was an Avast user when it still looked like this:
Last edited:


Level 10
Aug 27, 2020
I voted for Bitdefender, as I have BTS on my system without any problems with AdGuard Desktop or AdGuard VPN.
Good Hunting! (y)
My Windows version is Pro with the latest updates.
And I have chosen to harden my system with Simple Windows Hardening(default settings). :)


Level 44
Feb 23, 2014
After being infected with Malware when I was younger I took it as a chance to learn and use Common Sense and that's been enough for me. I've tried various products over the years and found that they only bring more issues. Some people are going to swear by the products they use and that's fine. I think we should teach people to use Common Sense rather than relying on something that's not going to detect everything malicious.

Out of everything on that list I would pick Microsoft Defender paired with Common Sense.


Level 26
Top poster
Sep 13, 2018
Since the ones you have listed are all capable, why not give each one a trial spin for a few days or a week? It shouldn't cost you anything. Nowadays, I go by performance issues (or lack thereof) since I use 2 tiny hardening programs with Defender plus I'm not risky and clickity-click prone. The second something messes with the performance/slows it down, I look for replacement/s.

Isn't 66 euros for a 2 year extension of Sophos a little steep? davisd in post #4 has a more sane-looking cost. Does anyone know offhand if SerialCart has any decent Sophos deals?

PS: why not use the free version of AVG plus a hardening program like H_C?


Level 26
Top poster
Sep 13, 2018
Since AVG free doesn't have a Firewall of its own, I was thinking of the H_C Firewall Hardening module. I should have put this in the above post.

But yes, Defender is most amenable to any of several really nice hardening programs--like H_C, for one. (y)


Level 6
Jun 21, 2020
Microsoft Defender does a good job, though I personally am charmed by F-Secure and Sophos. Out of the options I voted Sophos, in the end, just for the simple reason of "Why fix it, if it ain't broken" philosophy. If you got time before the renewal discount expires, do a trial run with F-Secure and the built-in Microsoft Defender and see for yourself whether its worth switching.

I use Emsisoft, but that is not an IS suite product and detections with in-house engine alongside it are quite similar to that of Bitdefender. There is also Eset if you are open to look at other options.