All of the major AntiVirus companies (such as Norton, McAffee, Kaspersky, NOD, AVG etc...) all have Vista compatible versions of their software out at the moment. At launch, some older product versions were incompatible with some elements of Windows Vista.

It is important to note that there is no "best" anti-virus for Vista, but a selection of choices which will all suit different people better. Some people will only use Free Antivirus solutions, and other won't mind paying to protect their PC. For this reason, this article will highlight our current recommendations for different situations.

There is a great resource called AV-Comparatives that tests all of the major Antivirus packages every few months. The results change fairly often, but it is possible to spot providers with good antivirus software from this list.

Free Anti-Virus Software

The major free anti-virus packages are:

AVG Free

All of these choices offer reasonably good antivirus protection, but don't offer an all round security package in the free versions. Our current pick of the bunch would be AntiVir, due to it's performance in recent tests. It is worth reading the features of each application if you are restricted to free software, as each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Paid Anti-Virus Software

There are a great number of paid antivirus software packages, the most popular ones being:

Plus, paid versions of the "free" listings above

Our experience with both Norton and McAffee is bloated anti-virus software, both of which seemed to slow the system down. However, the recent Norton 360 package (offering all-in-one protection) has drawn some more positive comments. These packages may suit either a new computer user or a corporate environment, however computing enthusiasts and power users may want to look at other alternatives.

F-Prot and NOD32 are popular high-end anti virus solutions, with NOD32 in particular being highly recommended by computer experts.

Our own preference for an Anti-Virus package would be Kaspersky Internet Security (a stand along AV solution is also available). This provides all round security with excellent virus definitions and is reasonably priced. For a knowledgeable computer user, this package allows considerable customisation and is light on power usage.
Ian, Feb 18, 2008