The package includes all the features you'd expect — an antivirus engine, real-time download and email scanning, web filtering to block malicious links — and doesn't have any ads, restrictions or significant limitations designed to force you to upgrade. AVG products now use the same technologies as Avast, but they have their own mix of features, and very different interfaces. Avast Free has more extras than Avast, but the varying look and feel means you might want to check out both.
Check out the website here If the free build isn't enough, AVG Internet Security extends the feature set with a firewall, webcam protection, secure DNS to avoid fake websites, folder access control to thwart ransomware, and a welcome bonus in AntiVirus Pro for Android.
A neat Customize Installation option gives an unusual level of control, with the ability to disable behavioral monitoring, web filtering, real-time file checking and more.
If the installer detects another antivirus during setup, it doesn't demand you remove that tool, instead installing AVG with real-time protection turned off. This significantly reduces the chance of any conflicts, while still allowing you to use AVG for on-demand scans. And if you're sure the programs will run together, or you're willing to take the risk, you can tell AVG to turn off Passive Mode in a couple of clicks.
There's another big installation plus in the lack of any need to register the program. You can sign up to create a My AVG account if you like, and it could help you monitor several AVG-equipped devices from one place, but that's not compulsory and you're able to use the program without providing any personal details. Setup is very straightforward, then, and the program doesn't even demand that you reboot your system. One click on the Scan Computer button tells the program to check your system, or you can choose from six scan types.
Computer Scan is the equivalent of a regular quick scan, and Deep Scan is a full system scan. The Schedule Scan option looks like it's going to be just another way to automate a quick or full system scan, but that's just the start. You can also use the feature to create multiple custom scans which do almost anything you want.
You can have the scan check running processes, for instance. It can examine specific files, folders and drives. You can even set up a scan which prompts you to choose a target at run time. You're able to define the files to be scanned, archive types you'd like to be checked, performance optimizations to be applied, the actions to perform on any threats, and how to handle reporting. Despite this feature being called Schedule Scan, you don't have to set up your custom scan to run automatically.
Create something to, say, scan your Downloads folder and unpack any archives, and it will be listed under the other scan types. You can add other custom scans in the same way and run them on-demand. Experienced users who like to fine-tune their security will love the control this gives them. If you're happy with the standard Computer Scan, it delivers reasonable protection at very high speed.
The initial scan may take several minutes, depending on your system and the files to be checked, but we found subsequent checks were usually complete in seconds. A final report highlights any discovered malware, as well as checking browser add-ons, a welcome extra touch. The core antivirus engine still detects and blocks web threats, though, and will also scan any downloads you make, so you're still well protected. A Performance check highlights the amount of junk files on your PC, any broken Registry keys, startup programs which might be extending your boot time, and any 'PC health problems'.
There's no check for missing software updates, unfortunately, and our report had a significant error, warning that our PC was 'vulnerable to unwanted changes' because User Account Control was turned off in reality, it was on and set to the highest level of protection. That's a significant issue, especially as the performance report is really just advertising.
There's a small bonus feature in AVG's File Shredder, a simple tool which securely deletes files or folders to ensure confidential data can't be recovered. It's useful, and there's no harm in having it available — as long as you don't accidentally shred something important, anyway — but AVG's version is basic, and there are far more capable freeware shredders available. Turn it on and whenever you're running a full-screen application, the package will now hide notifications from Windows and other apps, as well as its own.
AVG's final highlight is its Settings dialog, which gives vast control over almost every area of how the program works. Choose the File System Shield, for instance, and you can define what the program does when you open, write or execute a file, when removable media is connected to your system, the files to scan or exclude, the actions to perform when a threat is found, any report file to generate, and more.
How many of these settings you'll use is open to question, but we still applaud AVG's effort in giving you this level of customization. If nothing else, it allows you to see exactly how the program behaves, and a little fine-tuning could enable optimizing your setup for performance or security. AVG Protection AVG and Avast now use the same engine which combines the best of both companies' antivirus technologies, and although independent testing doesn't always give consistent results, the products generally perform very well.
Can't do much better than that. AVG may not quite offer market-leading performance, then, but in our experience it's more accurate and reliable than most of the competition, and leaves even some high-priced commercial products trailing in its digital wake. Final verdict An accurate antivirus and strong all-round performer.
This is a smart choice for AVG fans, though Avast Free could be better for everyone else — it offers the same core protection and even more features. We've also highlighted the best free antivirus software Free to Access, Read and Share Build Your First Website eBook In association with GoDaddy Techradar Pro has teamed up with GoDaddy to produce a website-hosting tips eBook, looking at how to plan your website, picking the right domain name and great ways to promote your website.
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The package includes all the features you'd expect — an antivirus engine, real-time download and email scanning, web filtering to block malicious links — and doesn't have any ads, restrictions or significant limitations designed to force you to upgrade. AVG products now use the same technologies as Avast, but they have their own mix of features, and very different interfaces. Avast Free has more extras than Avast, but the varying look and feel means you might want to check out both. Check out the website here If the free build isn't enough, AVG Internet Security extends the feature set with a firewall, webcam protection, secure DNS to avoid fake websites, folder access control to thwart ransomware, and a welcome bonus in AntiVirus Pro for Android.