Today, more than ever, antivirus software is not only the most sought-after security system of any “OS”, but also one of its main components. And if before the user had a very limited, modest choice, now there are a lot of such programs. But if you look at the list of "Top 10 Antiviruses", you will notice that not all of them are equivalent in terms of functionality. Consider the most popular packages. At the same time, both paid and shareware (antivirus on 30 days) and free applications will be included in the analysis. But first things first.
Top 10 Antivirus for Windows: Test Criteria
Before proceeding to the compilation of a certain rating, perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the main criteria that are used in most cases when testing such software.
Naturally, it is simply impossible to consider all known packages. However, among all software products designed to protect the computer system in the broadest sense, it is possible to identify the most popular. At the same time, we will take into account the official ratings of independent laboratories, and feedback from users who use a particular software product in practice. In addition, mobile programs will not be affected, we will focus on stationary systems.
As for the conduct of the main tests, as a rule, they include several main aspects:
- presence of paid and free versions and restrictions related to functionality;
- regular scanning speed;
- the speed of identifying potential threats and the possibility of their removal or isolation in quarantine using built-in algorithms;
- the frequency of updating the anti-virus database;
- self-defense and reliability;
- false alarm;
- load on system resources;
- availability of additional features.
As you can see from the above list, antivirus software testing allows you to determine the strengths and weaknesses of a particular product. Next, I will look at the most popular software packages included in the Top-10 antiviruses, as well as their main characteristics, of course, taking into account the opinions of people who use them in their daily work.
Kaspersky Lab software products
First, let's look at software modules developed by Kaspersky Lab, which are extremely popular in the post-Soviet space.
No single program can be identified here, because among them you can find a regular Kaspersky Antivirus scanner, modules like Internet Security, portable utilities like Virus Removal Tool, and even boot disks for damaged Rescue Disc systems.
Immediately, there are two main disadvantages: firstly, judging by the reviews, almost all programs, with rare exceptions, are paid or shareware, and secondly, the system requirements are unreasonably high, which makes it impossible to use them in relatively weak configurations . Naturally, this deters many ordinary users, although the activation keys of Kaspersky Antivirus or Internet Security can easily be found on the World Wide Web.
On the other hand, the situation with activation can be corrected in another way. For example, Kaspersky keys can be generated using special applications like Key Manager. True, this approach is, to put it mildly, illegal, however, as a way out, it is used by many users.
The speed of work on modern machines is in the middle range (for some reason, more and more heavy versions are created for new configurations), but constantly updated databases, the uniqueness of technologies for detecting and deleting known viruses and potentially dangerous programs are at a height. It is not surprising that the Kapersky Lab is today the leader among security software developers.
And two more words about the recovery disk. It is unique in its own way, since it loads the scanner with a graphical interface even before the start of Windows itself, allowing you to remove threats even from RAM.
The same applies to the portable utility Virus Removal Tool, which can track any threat on the infected terminal. With him can be compared unless a similar utility from Dr. Web.
Dr. protection Web
We have before us one of their strongest representatives in the field of security - the famous "Doctor Web", who had been at the forefront of creating all anti-virus software since time immemorial.
Among the huge number of programs, you can also find regular scanners, Internet browsing protection tools, portable utilities, and recovery disks. Just do not list.
The main factor in favor of the software of this developer can be called high speed, instant detection of threats with the possibility of either complete removal or isolation, as well as a moderate load on the system as a whole. In general, from the point of view of the majority of users, this is a kind of lightweight version of Kaspersky. Nevertheless, there is something interesting here. In particular, this is Dr. Web Katana. It is believed that this is a software product of a new generation. It is focused on the use of “sand” technologies, that is, placing a threat in a “cloud” or “sandbox” (as you wish, call it that) for analysis, before it penetrates the system. However, if you look, there are no special innovations here, because this technique was used even in the free Panda antivirus. In addition, according to many users, Dr. Web Katana is a kind of Security Space with the same technology. However, generally speaking, any software of this developer is fairly stable and powerful. It is not surprising that many users prefer such packages.
Speaking of Top Antivirus, 10, one can not mention another brightest representative of this area - the company ESET, which became famous for such a well-known product like NOD32. A little later, the light appeared and the module ESET Smart Security.
If we consider these programs, we can note an interesting point. To activate the full functionality of any package, you can do in two ways. On the one hand, this is the acquisition of an official license. On the other hand, you can install a trial antivirus for free, but activate it every 30 days. With the activation is also an interesting situation.
As absolutely all users note, for ESET Smart Security (or for a regular anti-virus), on the official website, it was possible to find freely distributed keys in the form of a login and password. Until recently, only this data could be used. Now the process has become somewhat more complicated: you first need a login and password on a special site, convert it into a license number, and only then enter it into the registration field already in the program itself. However, if you do not pay attention to such trifles, it can be noted that this antivirus is one of the best. Advantages noted by users:
- virus signature databases are updated several times a day,
- identifying threats at the highest level
- there are no conflicts with the system components (firewall),
- The package has the strongest self-defense,
- there are no false alarms, etc.
Separately, it is worth noting that the load on the system is minimal, and the use of the Anti-Theft module even allows you to protect data from theft or unlawful use for personal gain.
AVG Antivirus is a paid software designed to ensure integrated security of computer systems (there is also a free truncated version). And although today this package is no longer among the top five, it nevertheless demonstrates a fairly high speed and stability.
In principle, it is ideally suited for home use, since, apart from the speed of work, it has a convenient Russified interface and more or less stable behavior. True, as some users note, sometimes he is able to skip threats. And this does not apply to viruses as such, but rather to spyware or adware, called Malware and Adware. Own module of the program, although widely advertised, nevertheless, according to users, looks a bit unfinished. Yes, and additional firewall is often able to cause conflicts with the "native" Windows firewall, if both modules are in an active state.
Avira is another member of the antivirus family. In principle, it does not differ from the majority of such packages. However, if you read user reviews about it, you can find quite interesting posts.
Many in any case do not recommend using the free version, since some modules in it are simply absent. To provide reliable protection, it is necessary to purchase a paid product. But such an antivirus is suitable for 8 and 10 versions, in which the system itself uses a lot of resources, and the package uses them at the lowest level. In principle, Avira is best suited, say, for budget laptops and weak computers. On the network installation, however, out of the question.
Cloud service Panda Cloud
Free Panda antivirus in its time was almost a revolution in the field of antivirus technology. The use of the so-called “sandbox” to send suspicious content for analysis before its penetration into the system made this application especially popular among users at all levels.
And it is with the “sandbox” that this antivirus is associated today. Yes, indeed, such technology, unlike other programs, allows not to let the threat into the system. For example, any virus first keeps its body on the hard drive or in the RAM, and only then begins its activity. Here, the point is not to save. First, the suspicious file is sent to the cloud service, where it is being tested, and only then it can be saved in the system. However, according to eyewitnesses, alas, it can take a lot of time and unnecessarily heavily loads the system. On the other hand, it is worth asking yourself what is more important: security or increased verification time? However, for modern computer configurations with an Internet connection speed of 100 Mbit / s and higher, it can be used without problems. By the way, and its own protection is provided through the “cloud”, which sometimes causes complaints.
Avast Pro Antivirus Scanner
Now a few words about another bright representatives of anti-virus programs. It is quite popular with many users, however, despite the presence of the same sandbox, anti-spyware, network scanner, firewall and virtual office, unfortunately, Avast Pro Antivirus clearly loses to such grandees as software products Kaspersky Labs or applications using Bitdefender technologies, although it demonstrates high scanning speed and low resource consumption.
Users in this product are attracted mainly by the fact that the free version of the package is as functional as possible and does not differ much from paid software. In addition, this antivirus works on all versions of Windows, including the "top ten", and behaves well even on outdated machines.
360 Security Packages
Before us, probably, one of the fastest antiviruses of modern times - 360 Security, developed by Chinese experts. In general, all products labeled "360" differ enviable speed (the same Internet browser 360 Safety Browser).
Despite its main purpose, the program has additional modules for eliminating operating system vulnerabilities and optimizing it. But neither the speed of work, nor free distribution can be compared with false alarms. In the list of programs with the highest indicators according to this criterion, this software takes one of the first places. According to many experts, conflicts arise at the system level due to additional optimizers, the effect of which overlaps with the execution of tasks of the OS itself.
Software products based on Bitdefender technology
Another "old man" among the most famous defenders of "OSes" is Bitdefender. Unfortunately, in 2015, he gave up the palm to the products of Kaspersky Lab, nevertheless, he is one of the trend setters in the anti-virus mode.
If you look a little closer, you will notice that many modern programs (the same package of 360 Security) in different variations are made precisely on the basis of these technologies. Despite the rich functional base, there also have their shortcomings. Firstly, you will not find the Russian antivirus (Russified) Bitdefender, since it does not exist in nature at all. Secondly, despite the use of the latest technological developments in terms of protecting the system, alas, it shows too high a number of false positives (by the way, according to experts, this is typical for the entire group of programs created on the basis of Bitdefender). The presence of additional optimizer components and own firewalls in general affects the behavior of such antiviruses not for the better. But in the speed of this application can not be denied. In addition, P2P peer-to-peer networks are used for verification, but there is no real-time e-mail checking at all, which many do not like.
Another application that is distinguished by an enviable triggering about and for no reason is Microsoft’s own product called Security Essentials.
In Top-10 antivirus, this package is included, apparently, only because it is designed exclusively for Windows-based systems, which means it causes absolutely no conflicts at the system level. In addition, who, if not experts from Microsoft, know all the security holes and vulnerabilities of their own operating systems. By the way, interesting is the fact that the initial builds of Windows 7 and Windows 8 in the base configuration had MSE, but then for some reason they refused from this kit. However, it is for “Vind” that it can become the simplest solution in terms of protection, although it is not necessary to count on a special functionality.
As for this application, it looks quite interesting. The most popular, however, it has earned in the field of application on mobile devices with all sorts of locks, nevertheless this antivirus behaves no worse on stationary computers.
The program has low-level support for P2P networks when sharing files with Instant Messenger, and also offers 2-level protection, in which the main role is assigned to the WormStopper and ScriptStopper modules. But in general, according to consumers, the functional set is on an average level, and the program itself is focused more on detecting spyware, computer worms and Trojans and preventing penetration of executable scripts or malicious codes into the system.
Combined Antiviruses and Optimizers
Naturally, only the most popular programs included in the Top-10 antiviruses were reviewed here. If we talk about the rest of the software of such a plan, you can mark some packages that contain anti-virus modules in their sets.
Most of them are anti-spyware and anti-advertising utilities, as well as system optimizers. Among them, if you rely on reviews, the most prominent representatives are Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and Advanced SystemCare Ultimate.
What to prefer?
Naturally, all antiviruses have certain similarities and differences. What to install? Here it is necessary to proceed from the needs and the level of protection provided. As a rule, corporate clients should purchase something more powerful with the possibility of a network installation (Kaspersky, Dr. Web, ESET). As for home use, here the user chooses what he needs (if you want, you can even find an antivirus for a year - without registering or purchasing). But, if you look at user reviews, it is better to install Panda Cloud, even despite some additional system load and scan time in the sandbox. But it is here that there is a complete guarantee that the threat will not penetrate the system in any way. However, everyone is free to choose what exactly he needs. If activation does not make it difficult, please: ESET products work fine on home systems. But it is highly undesirable to use optimizers with anti-virus modules as the main means of protection. Well, to say which program ranks first is also impossible: how many users, so many opinions.