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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've just started re-using an old HP desktop with Windows 7. Suggestions for a free and effective antivirus program?

And does NOT bog down your system?

Thanks in advance,
Mike
 

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I was using avast free....it works quite well...I did upgrade to a paid protection plan for more features, but for free...vast was easy to download, free, and it did the job for many years..I got 2 new computers ...that is why I upgraded
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the quick response guys.:fing32:
 

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I've been using SuperAntiSpyware for years. It doesn't slow down your computer and is good at catching viruses. You don't necessarily need the Pro version, which downloads malware database updates and scans automatically. It is easy to do it manually.
 

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Don is right about loosing support for win7 like my old computer which ran xp. Your system may have the capability to readily upgrade to win 8.1 but probably not win 10, not sure. The win 8.1 upgrade from win 7 may also be free, again not sure. Good luck.
 

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I was using avast free....it works quite well...I did upgrade to a paid protection plan for more features, but for free...vast was easy to download, free, and it did the job for many years..I got 2 new computers ...that is why I upgraded
Same here: (about Avast FREE) and when they say upgrade that means no longer free. They try to hide the FREE version.

Keep a heads up that Microsoft will probably hit your windows 7 computer with the windows 10 upgrade without warning and if you interrupt the download your computer may crash permanently.:tango_face_surprise
 

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Have had Windows 7 since 2013 with Malware Free version. Have never had a problem that I am aware of, but I also do not do banking or any financial transactions online.

Only issue is they keep bugging you to upgrade to the paid version.... which I ignore.
 

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Also, as with XP before, many of the AV companies will stop supporting Windows 7 (maybe not right away). I use Sophos Home and I ran the "free" version and never had any trouble. Since I'm spinning up for starting consulting next year though I've gone to the paid version which takes advantage of their AI engine which is what we use in the county. The free version can be put on Windows, Mac, and Android computers/devices.
 

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Avoid ALL third party AV programs. Every one of them. Do NOT install any of them.

For Win 7, use the Free Microsoft Security Essentials available from their official download link: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/14210/security-essentials-download

Do NOT download from ANY other site.

For additional protection, use Malwarebytes Free Version. They run nags to upgrade, but you can ignore them at no peril. https://www.malwarebytes.com/mwb-download/


Ignore the doom and gloom about Win 7 End of Life. It will be viable for a very long time to come. MS ending their infernal update can be a good thing. Many of those have caused more harm than good.
 

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I,m agree with Obscured_by_Clouds, windows 7 will be viable for a number of years there are tons & tons of computers still running 7 and very few will change next Jan. I,m in that group I still have one XP machine in the shop don't go on the internet but it works fine, as for AV I'll use MS security essentials until next yr also I use Comodo IceDragon as my default browser and it has an anti-virus built in when I first seen it I thought what the heck is this but I researched it and its rated as one of the best so that what I'll use next year. At one time years back I used Avast and AVG but they slow my computers to a crawl now and the constant popups wanting you to upgrade get old very quick
 

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Windows 7 won't be viable as a secure operating system within a month or so after security updates are stopped! Hackers immediately went after XP even before support stopped and they are using these machines all over the globe for botnets. I've personally witnessed a hacker (whitehat) break an XP machine in less than 10 minutes in our network, we don't have them anymore! Will the hackers cause you grief, probably not, they want to use your machine so allowing you to continue using it is in their best interest.

Most reputable 3rd party AV vendors offer free AV for home use and it is as good or better than Microsoft Essentials. The interesting thing is that they now work in conjunction with Essentials so you normally can leave MS Essentials on and add a 2nd layer of AV protection. Will there be a performance hit, yes! So if you are running slow, it will make it run slower. MS Essentials is now a good AV solution though.
 

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As someone who has worked in IT for 20 years, I highly recommend against using Windows 7 once support ends -you would just be giving every piece of information you put on the machine to anyone who wants it.

The best (safest and most cost effective - as in free) way to continue to use an old system is to install Linux on it. Linux Mint is very easy to install and use. It includes Mozilla's web browser and a complete Microsoft Office alternative. I use it on all the computers at my house. (I have 4 kids so I manage 5 desktops, 2 laptops, and 2 servers at the house- using Linux saves me a lot of money. It's almost like having a second full time job.) When I switched my wife's laptop from Windows to Linux Mint, she had no problems getting used to it.

They have pretty good instruction on how to install it on their webpage. Another thing; you can download it, burn it to disk and run it from the cd to try it out, before you install it.
 

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For years I used free AV; AVG, primarily. I did get bitten once, but couldn't say that AVG was "negligent" or anything of the sort. Eventually I upgraded to eset Internet Security. It's a pay program, and I really love it. I've never had a problem with something getting past it, as best as I can recall. But I'm sure that my web-surfing habits have evolved over the years, so that might explain that to some degree.

Actually, just before my latest renewal of eset I contemplated going without altogether. I eventually decided to continue with it, and I have no regrets.

One thing you might consider is asking various AV vendors how the upcoming end of official Microsoft support for W7 will impact you as a paying customer: will they continue to support it?

Personally I plan to continue on W7 well past the official MS support ends. My next OS upgrade I hope to be Linux.
 

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Just remember Linux is not immune to viruses (no Operating System is) and it is recommended that you put a good AV package on Linux now too! If you are using a system that won't upgrade to Windows 8.1 or 10 then I agree with scodyw Linux is a good option. I recently installed Linux Mint in a dual boot on my PC (I can choose either operating system) which is advertised as the "Entry Level to Linux for Windows Users" as it is designed to allow Windows users to navigate it pretty easily.
 

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"Personally I plan to continue on W7 well past the official MS support ends. My next OS upgrade I hope to be Linux."

As or if Linux becomes more popular it will be just as vulnerable as MS.

Walt Conner
 

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I've just started re-using an old HP desktop with Windows 7. Suggestions for a free and effective antivirus program?

And does NOT bog down your system?

Thanks in advance,
Mike
As an IT professional for about 14 years, I would suggest Avast, who also owns AVG, as many others here have suggested. It is light, only gives you about 1 advertisement per day, and works well. I use it on 9-10 physical and a number of virtual machines.
Dave
 

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linux you need to learn it. not just enjoy it
most things you use now will not be on it till you learn it and how to use it

john
 

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I use avast antivirus and vpn tool which I downloaded to my PC from Veepn.com To my opinion vpn can help me to protect my online privacy in social media and it is convenient for playing some video games when I can not get access to game servers.
 
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