Battle Free Antivirus of the Year 2021 - Nomination Phase

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Software comparison
All free antivirus products
Feature comparison
  1. Ease of use
  2. Impact on hardware performance
  3. Most available features
  4. Core protection (malware and heuristic engine)
  5. Internet protection (web filtering, anti-phishing, anti-spam, browser extension)
  6. Proactive protection (anti-exploit, behavior blocker, IDS-HIPS, sandbox)
  7. Network protection (firewall, anti-botnet)
  8. Ransomware protection
  9. Banking and payments protection
  10. Machine learning and A.I. capabilities
  11. Privacy protections (VPN, anti-tracking)

ForgottenSeer 92963

I would vote for Microsoft Defender with Configure Defender, when Configure Defender is not added I would vote for Avast because they consistantly perform well in comparatives tests.

I agree with @Evjl's Rain that Kaspersky Cloud Free dropped a bit in tests.


Level 4
Aug 16, 2021
1. Windows Defender with Configure defender in High
good points - out of the box protection, simple, no renewals, installs, just silent protection, perfectly adequate for anyone with common sense and a good layered Protection (Security gateway/firewall/IDS... pihole or adbocking at network level.... Firmware & OS updates rigorously maintained, secure randomized passwords on every device and every website)
bad points - not many beginners know how to enable its security features!
bad points2 - relies heavily on the cloud

2. Kaspersky KAV (AV only) none of the other bundled junk..... this is my number 2 is cheap and effective and not so reliant on cloud
good points - light on resources, good detection, cheap!
bad points - messes with https traffic, bundles crappy VPN software, also adds a browser extension silently without asking..... also all your data is trundled off and trusted to Russians.....
bad points2 - is cheap but not free, renewals to deal with etc

to be honest any antivirus nowadays is good.... but IF your antivirus got a hit then there is something seriously wrong with you
no gateway level security, no common sense, no ad blocking/pi-hole, no HIPS, OS or firmwares out of date... no segregation of network (Vlans) getting untrusted devices off your main network!!!
i honestly cant remember the last time I saw a virus pop up.... I would quite happily run without, but its always nice to know its there as the "LAST LINE" of defense, many peoples misconceptions is its the ONLY or first line of defense
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Level 10
Jun 26, 2020
Kaspersky Security Cloud Free, I recommend this solution especially for people that don't like or don't know to work with an AV , it is ready to work out of the box don't need extra configs to work well.


Level 3
Apr 4, 2021
Avast - it gives you a free firewall, a cloud sandbox, pretty good customization options. The product also has great perspectives for the future in alliance with Norton.

It seems unfair to me that Defender is mentioned here with additional utilities. ))

Actually for my mom, I installed Symantec, all the other free solutions I don't like. :cautious:


Level 4
Aug 16, 2021
I wouldn't hesitate to use it at default. You must realize that millions of people already do.
and they are not only "utilities"
they are basically just suggested settings in an easy to implement package

thats the downside with defender, most will just use it at stock settings (which is OK but weak, especially as most people have ZERO clue about basic security or layered security or common sense, and will just click on any link that says FREE SOMETHING)
by default out of the box defender doesn't even block PUA's (again fine for people with common sense but general non security minded people thats a no)

so yes configure defender is a 3rd party util but all that is doing is editing gpedit.msc settings that you can do without the utility.


Level 4
Aug 16, 2021
sorry, my fault. there is no free version
the very first word of the subject of this thread kind of gives this away.

as not to disappoint any f-securians - there is a free for 120 days giveaway though Unlimited Giveaway - F-Secure SAFE - free license for 120 days
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