The best free antivirus and firewalls for Windows and Linux

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The best free antivirus and firewalls for Windows and Linux

I have had some request the other day to help and secure a Windows PC since it was blocking the Internet connection from time to time or some links just failed to load. Yes, some viruses or malware do cause these symptoms.

My very first thought of course was to scan the computer using a virus or malware scanner. From past experiences I’ve found the software malwarebytes to do an amazing job at cleaning and fixing most issues on the system. This also comes in a free and paid version like most softwares at the moment.

Windows best free antivirus and firewalls

Next in my list of free antivirus are

  • Avast antivirus
  • Free bitdefender antivirus
  • Free Norton antivirus (30 days to 6 months free)
  • Microsoft security esenstials
  • AVG Antivirus free
  • Avira
  • Comodo

Most of them do really well, especially Avast, Bitdefender and Norton antivirus. I’ve used myself avast for a great deal of time back when I was still using Windows, it did its job and I hardly had any issues.

Performance wise, Norton antivirus was in my past experience the slowest, while it had a lot of fancy features, it had a big downside when it came to performance. Combining features with system performance, I would say Bitdefender would be the winner, however, please no hard feelings for those fans of either softwares, these are just my past experiences.

Ok, what about firewalls? I’ve used two or maybe three firewall applications so far on Windows, one would be the Windows firewall which should be there by default, then there is Comodo firewall and lastly I’ve also used Nvidia¬†ActiveArmor Firewall that came with the network card driver. Yes, maybe not too many and also not so fancy. Do keep in mind though, some antivirus softwares like Bitdefender or Norton came bundled with a firewall, so I was also using a firewall along with the antivirus, downside is that these are not available in the free version.

Linux best free antivirus and firewalls

Well on linux you mostly have it simple, good thing is that there are not so many viruses that can affect a Unix box, but for those who wish to have a more peaceful mind, there are a few softwares you can use, although just so you know, on linux system you do not protect yourself to be infected, windows viruses are practically useless on linux. However, for those who uses some file services or email services, they can receive infected files from other windows machines, what the antiviruses do is just clean the files or remove them to avoid other windows machines being infected.

Personally I’ve used ClamAV antivirus, its a free software and one of the most used on linux system with a high virus definition available and updated daily. You do need to know though, linux has been design in such a way that unsafe commands that require root access to not work using normal privileges. Selinux or AppArmor is also in affect to protect your system by default.

For firewalls, Linux has the built-in firewall iptables, however this needs to be manually configured, but there are a few softwares that have been created to ease this for those who are most used with a GUI interface.

  • ClearOS
  • IPCop
  • Monowall
  • PfSense

There are a few more out there, but these 4 have been tested and working nicely.

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