The Best Free Antivirus for Windows 10

A fundamental dilemma for all computer users is antivirus protection,  that is, which of all the antivirus programs for Windows 10 that exist on the market is the right one for their needs,  and which also perfectly fulfills its fundamental mission. Unfortunately, the great offer of antivirus software to which the user can have access makes their decision difficult, and if we add to this the advertising campaigns in favor of this or that program, it becomes very difficult to have a clear picture of what is really It matters,  that both our computer and our data are safe. The best free antivirus for Windows 10

Although antivirus protection is something that we should not take lightly,  the truth is that if we take a couple of precautions when browsing the web or running a program, we should not have problems,  and with the integrated solution for antivirus defense Included in Windows 10, Windows Defender, should be more than enough for the needs of a careful user.

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Now,  if we are the type of people who do not take too many precautions when downloading files or browsing the web,  or we simply need to feel safe with notifications in the style  “Everything is fine … Your computer is not infected with Viruses”,  then the best remedy for this is the installation of a third-party antivirus.

This returns us to the beginning of the article,  where we ensure that the selection of a good antivirus is quite a complex task,  since the different developers include dozens of features to differentiate themselves from the rest, but that most likely we do not need. In addition, we must take into account that  an antivirus software is a complex program,  and it needs many resources from our system to function, which may slow down our computer, especially if it is a bit old.

To clarify a bit the panorama regarding antivirus for Windows 10, we have divided the post into two parts. In the first of these parts, we will talk about  the best free antivirus for Windows 10  from third-party developers, while in the second part we will know how Windows Defender can be our best alternative to be completely protected against any threat.

Antivirus for Windows 10 The best free antivirus for Windows 10

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Despite the excellent features that this fantastic tool offers, unfortunately the way to finance it is through a few annoying notices to upgrade to the paid version of it, and that appear in the least suitable places and times.

Bitdefender Antivirus  provides protection against viruses in real time , an automatic intrusion detection system that guarantees that the applications or software that we download from the Internet do not include other hidden applications,  anti-rootkit protection and many other options with which to maintain good security .

Avast! Free Antivirus The best free antivirus for Windows 10

Avast! It is undoubtedly one of the  most popular and downloaded antivirus programs for Windows 10, not only due to its high level of protection, but also due to its ease of use and its high level of automation, which means that the user practically does not have to do nothing so that your computer is well protected against viruses and other threats.

In addition to the antivirus capacity,  Avast offers the possibility of protecting our equipment against the threats posed by malwareAlso, Avast! includes various tools with which to combat other types of threats and problems such as browser bars, spyware, and other similar malicious software.

Another of the most interesting features offered by the antivirus, even in its free version,  is the possibility of analyzing the home network in search of any vulnerability  that could become a gateway to cybercriminals, so that we take the necessary precautions.

Panda Antivirus Free

Panda Antivirus is one of the easiest antivirus applications to install and use out of those mentioned in this article, so much so that it only takes a few clicks to have it in working order.

With one of the best virus detection rates on the market,  Panda Antivirus is also one of the ones that uses the least system resources,  without this diminishing in any way its effectiveness and characteristics, similar to that of paid antivirus and much more complete.

It should be noted that when installing Panda Antivirus,  the wizard could try to install other third-party programs  as well as change its home page, but if we pay due attention, it is possible to easily modify it so that this does not happen.

AVG Free Antivirus The best free antivirus for Windows 10

Another of the most popular antivirus, and with a long experience in the field. AVG Free Antivirus, according to many users, is one of the best alternatives for fighting viruses available on the market,  since in addition to antivirus protection, it also offers an antimalware and spyware shield.

These three features are also present in the free version of AVG, making it perhaps  the right antivirus software for all types of users.

It also includes tools for identifying suspicious files that come from Facebook, Twitter and similar services, it also provides the ability to analyze links to check that they do not lead to malicious sites.

Avira Free Antivirus

Avira Antivirus is perhaps the least known of the antivirus programs mentioned in this article,  however that does not mean that it is one of the best, mainly due to its capacity, tools and ease of use.

The free version of this excellent antivirus comes from the factory with the possibility of carrying out a few powerful analyzes, however, these are not its best advantage, since it also incorporates a system that basically  protects us against the software that is installed when we use the wizard for the installation of other applications,  that is to say, those camouflaged programs that if we do not pay attention we authorize them to be installed on our computer.

McAfee Windows 10 Free Antivirus The best free antivirus for Windows 10

A classic of classics, McAfee Free Antivirus is undoubtedly a very reliable product,  even if it is a rather shortened version of its paid brother. The free and compatible version with Windows 10 of McAfee was released to the market after the release of the latest version of the OS, and is in constant development to offer the user increasingly better options and tools with which to combat viruses of all kinds.

Windows Defender

For some versions,  Windows has already included among its tools its own and very effective antivirus protection, called Windows Defender.  Although in its first steps, the antivirus was harshly criticized, the truth is that at this moment it is one of the best alternatives available.

It is also integrated into the system, with all the performance benefits that this entails. But also , unlike other applications of its kind, Windows Defender will not bother us with mountains of warnings and reminders.  For these reasons, and many others, Windows Defender is an excellent alternative to curb the action of viruses, malware, and other malicious programs.

In this article we are going to learn how to  activate, deactivate, run and configure this spectacular antivirus program.

Since the arrival of Windows 10 on the market,  Windows Defender has become one of the most interesting antivirus alternatives, due to capacity and performance.  Very reliable, it can be used as more than effective protection. Most of the users who have tried Windows Defender removed the rest of the third-party antivirus that they had installed on their computers,  since with the features and options offered by Microsoft’s antivirus, they did not need to have third-party tools installed. Without a doubt, a very good indication of the capacity of the program.

Setting up and using Windows Defender The best free antivirus for Windows 10

Windows Defender, as we mentioned above, was already present in previous versions of the operating system,  but from the last one, it is fully integrated into the system, including its configuration panel,  which makes it much easier to use than ever.

The program’s user interface has a lot to do with it, very simple and with all the controls well arranged. All so that the user can have the feeling of really controlling what happens with the antivirus security on their computer. In this interface we will find four elements:  “Antivirus and threat protection”, “Antivirus and threat protection settings”, “Virus and threat protection updates” and finally “Protection against ramsonware”.

The first thing we need to know is that Windows 10 antivirus is part of a larger security package, called “Windows Defender”, which also includes other tools such as firewalll and account control.

To run Windows Defender, we look for it this way in the start menu. Once the application appears, click on the first option, “Protection against viruses and threats.”

On the main antivirus screen  we will find  information about the status of the antivirus protection and the status of the database updates. In addition, we will find, within the section “Antivirus and threat protection”, with the options to perform the analysis of the PC, including a button to perform a quick examination of the computer, a link “Exam options” where we can configure the type of analysis, and a link called “Threat History”, which is where the antivirus will show us all the information related to the threats and viruses it has found.

The first option a basic and fast analysis of the equipment and the second option a more complete analysis, but much slower. In the third option  “Custom”,  we can tell the program which directories it should analyze and which not.

In the second tab,  “Update”  we will find all the tools and information necessary to keep  the virus definition databases updated.  In this tab, the most prominent element is the  “Update definitions” button , which will allow us to download and install the latest available virus definitions.

In the third and last tab  “History”,  we have all the elements that have been detected, in addition to the files that we have allowed despite some warning. We will also find the tools to  allow, delete or keep in quarantine certain elements of these lists.

Windows Defender Settings

Now that we know what the program’s tabs are for, we must move on to the configuration issue, which is very simple,  which allows us to fully understand what we are doing.

To open Windows Defender settings, we can follow any of these methods:

Method 1

Through Windows Defender’s own user interface

This method allows us to  access the Windows Defender configuration directly from its own interface . Once the program is run, click on the “Settings” link  ,  located in the upper right corner of the application.

Method 2

From Windows 10 application settings

This method consists of pressing the “Win + I” key combination  ,  which will immediately open the “Settings” window  After that , click on  “Update and security “, and then, in the left panel,  click Windows Defender.

Method 3

Using Cortana search taskbar

We can also directly access Windows Defender settings through Cortana. To do this, all we have to do  is type “Defender” in the search box located on the task bar,  and when the results appear, click on the one that corresponds.

Option settings

Once we have accessed the  Windows Defender configuration,  we will find the necessary tools to configure the following options:

  • Real-time protection
  • Cloud-based protection
  • Automatic sample submission
  • Add an exclusion

The first option is basically a way to interrupt the antivirus surveillance. This means that if we deactivate it, the real-time protection will stop and we will be exposed to viruses and other types of threats.

The second option,  “Cloud-based protection”  offers the possibility for the system to send information about the elements that the software considers suspicious to Microsoft’s servers, where they will be analyzed in greater detail.

The third option,  “Automatic sample submission”,  enables the system to send samples of the items it considers suspicious,  in order to help the company do a better job.

The fourth and last option,  “Add an exclusion”,  is a link that takes us directly to another configuration window, in which we will find the tools to control.

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Offline Antivirus

As all those users who have ever had to fight a virus or malware know,  not all of them can be eliminated with the operating system running.  Many times it is necessary to start the computer without the OS starting to combat them.

Fortunately, this is an option found in most antivirus software today. The same happens with Windows Defender,  since it provides the necessary tools to carry out the process in a comfortable and simple way.

Before, users had to download and use a special tool to remove the toughest viruses,  but as of the latest builds of Windows 10, Windows Defender offers the option for this feature to be fully automated.  This means that every time Windows Defender comes across a virus or malware that is difficult to remove, it will alert the user that they must run the scan and subsequent removal of the virus offline, that is, without loading the operating system.

How to run and use Windows Defender in offline mode

To make use of this fantastic possibility, we must follow a series of steps, which are described below.

Step 1

The first thing we have to do is open the Windows Defender configuration using one of the methods described above.

Step 2

Once we access the system configuration, click on  “Update and Security”.

Step 3

After that, click on  “Windows Defender”.

Step 4

Finally, we scroll down to see the Windows Defender Offline section. Here we click on the “Offline Scan”  button  so that the system restarts the computer to start the antivirus scan without starting Windows,  eliminating all viruses and threats that cannot be eliminated otherwise.

It should be noted that once the analysis begins, there is no way to cancel it,  so we must be patient until it is finished.

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