Tuesday, June 3, 2008

AVAST anti virus

ALWIL Software
Type: Personal
Free: Yes
OS Compatibility: Windows Vista, Windows XP
Notes: Professional Edition for commercial use costs

Avast Home Edition guards your PC and the network with multiple shields that scan executables and files. You can select parameters for scanning, and even choose wildcards to exclude specific file types. You can adjust the sensitivity level for the program's detectors when it comes to scanning downloaded files, instant messages, e-mails, and a host of P2Ps. Its efficient interface opens up window after window to tweak its settings to your liking, for novice to advanced level protection.

Though it took quite some time to run, we're impressed with this application's boot-time antivirus scan. Fortunately, if you're in a pinch you can bypass it. If malicious contents are detected, Avast comes to the rescue with handy virus cleanup tools. Some decent PC controls are even handed out here. You can block certain URLs and file operations, such as writing to files or even renaming, deleting or formatting them. With immediate real-time protection, clockwork updates, and much more, this free software is highly regarded in our book.

When the version number of a new software release is just 0.1 higher than the old one, I expect a ho-hum incremental update. So I was pleasantly surprised to find that avast! antivirus 4.8 Home Edition adds significant functionality: It now protects against spyware, rootkits, and other forms of nonvirus malicious software. Best of all, it's free for personal use.