The need for antivirus software is a fact of life for anybody that wants to go online. There is an unlimited amount of Malware out there these days and almost all of it knows how to find the holes in Windows. That means you will need to find the best antivirus software you can.
Fortunately, there are lots of choices for antivirus software and a lot of them are very affordable. Anybody should be able to find a very good security program for under $40. There are also some very good free antivirus programs available for you cheapskates. Although I’d personally recommend that you spend a little money for a good program.
We’ve gone through the antivirus programs out there and selected some of the best for Windows. Although these choices are very good we highly recommend that you do your own research, because it seems that every time we look there’s another really good antivirus program available.
The Best in Antivirus Programs
Here are our choices for some of the best antivirus programs for Windows:
This solution from Germany’s leading computer security company is one the best values for PC security available today. The free version of AntiVir Personal protects computers against the common worms, Trojans and viruses.
Their standard product, the regular version of AntiVir Premium provides a lot of protection for just $29.99 a year. Features include:
- AntiProActiv which can detect new Malware and viruses by their behavior patterns.
- AntiPhishing which provides proactive protection against common phishing scams.
- AntiDrive by tries to keep out malware while surfing.
- MailGuard provides enhanced email protection.
- WebGuard protects against evil websites
Even though you’ve probably never heard of it, Avira’s Antivir provides a lot of protection for your money. You can download the Free and Premium versions of Avira Antivir from:
Avira has been in business for 25 years so its people know what they are doing. Other Avira products include Avira Small Business Suite, integrated products for software designers and cloud-sourced email security solutions.
One good piece of advice for Avira users is to watch their website and updates. They offer a lot of special including some deals that cut the price of Antivir to as low as $25. So it might pay to get the free version and wait for the special.
F-Secure Internet Security 2011
This small company based in Finland (the country between Russia and Sweden), has been attracting a lot of attention recently. Its’ Internet Security 2011 won AV Comparatives Product of the Year Award and a slew of other awards. Both Smart Computing and PC World gave both Internet Security 2011 good reviews.
Internet Security provides a firewall, browsing protection, identity protection, antivirus software, spam and phishing blockers and parental controls to protect the kids from online predators. The only drawback to this product is its price: 24 months of protection costs $99 and a year of protection costs 59.99. It works on all editions of Windows 7 and Windows Vista, Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Home Edition and Windows XP Media Center Edition.
You Can Download F-Secure Internet Security 2011 here:
F-Secure also has a well regarded Antivirus Product called F-Secure Antivirus. F-Secure Antivirus is cheaper but it hasn’t won any rewards.
For $39.99 F-Secure Antivirus provides instant protection against common spyware and virus threats. It does not include such features as a recovery disk.
It can be downloaded here:
There is a free 30 day trial version available if you want to take it for a test drive.
Virus Killer 2010 (Cobra Antivirus)
The Rafu Software Lab based in Bangladesh has won a lot of praise and awards for its Cobra Antivirus/Virus Killer 2010. The 2011 version isn’t out yet, but the 2010 version could be the best bargain in Antivirus software it costs just $10 for a one year license for Windows XP and Windows NT 2000 to 2008. This seems to include Windows 7 so it should work all Windows systems.
You do get a lot of protection for your $10 including: Explorer Protection, USB Protection, Registry Protection with autofix, and directory alert protection. It also scans for specific kinds of malware such as Icon Trojans. Offline and online or liquid updates are available.
You can order Cobra Antivirus/Virus Killer 2010 here:
Rafu does offer a cheaper shareware antivirus solution called Tiger AV. Unlike Avira’s AntiVir there is not a free version available. You will have to pay $2 for TigerAV. TigerAV provides Pen Drive Protection, fast malware scanning, and few other features. You can download it here:
Free Avco Virus Scanner
Rafu also has a basic virus scanner for Windows available the Avco Virus Scanner. You have to remove viruses manually with this product but it is free. It works with Windows XP, Vista and Windows NT to 2008. You can download it here:
“I’m Cobra” is Rafu’s basic security solution which works with most versions of Windows, including Windows 7. Even though it has a very dumb name, I’m Cobra does offer a lot of protection for your money. This product is actually a package that includes Rafu’s Virus Killer, Cobra Power and Internet Alert products. It does offer registry protection, data backup, data management and other services. Best of all it only costs $35. This is a bargain because Internet Alert costs $25 when ordered separately. So it’s probably your best security solution on a limited budget.
You can download I’m Cobra here:
Other products offered by Rafu include Internet Alert a spyware detector that can be integrated with the Cobra antivirus solutions. Internet Alert offers adware detection, hacker detection, USB protection, Directory Alert protection, and Explorer Protection. When purchased as a standalone product Internet Alert costs $24. It is included in the $34 I’m Cobra package which is a better value.
You can download Internet Alert here:
If you are looking for a basic antivirus software at a low price checkout Cobra Power from Rafu. It costs just $14 but includes Virus Killer and offers such features as a network filter, wireless port filter, and script filtering. If you just want to detect viruses or want a good second antivirus program to double check, Cobra Power would be a good choice. It is also part of the “I’m Cobra” Package.
Download Cobra Power Here:
More for Your Money
Even though Rafu’s prices are low they have received 5 stars from Topshareware.com. Rafu also seems to do a good job of tracking viruses and Malware and updating its products to counter the latest threats. Therefore it is probably the best value in antivirus software these days.
All of Rafu’s products can be ordered and downloaded here:
If you want an easy to use hassle free solution: go with Avira it seems to work well and does almost everything. If you have a limited budget: use Rafu’s Cobra products they provide a good level of protection for a low price. For a premium product: go with F-Secure, they provide everyday computer users the same level of protection big companies get.
A final recommendation is to use two different antivirus programs. That gives you two levels of protection which might be necessary given the nature of today’s Malware Menace.