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Windows 7: Windows Defender v Avast Free Anti virus

22 Jul 2015   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x 32 bit
Windows Defender v Avast Free Anti virus

I run both Windows Defender and Avast Free Anti Virus but I am wondering if I really need both of them running at the same time. Can I safely remove Windows Defender and rely on Avast Free to do the same job?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jul 2015   #2

W7 Pro x64 SP1 | W10 Pro IP x64 | W8.1 Pro x64 VM | Linux Mint VM

No you shouldn't run two AVs at the same time, it's asking for trouble. I'm surprised Defender didn't turn off automatically when Avast was installed. But yes, uninstall one. Just make sure it's Avast you uninstall and keep Defender, Avast is well known for causing BSODs whereas Defender doesn't.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2015   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x 32 bit

Many thanks Boozad. As a matter of interest, I will get rid of Windows Defender because I have run Avast for many years and never had a problem with it. Whereas Windows Defender is a complete CPU hog when it runs on start up or when it's downloading and I sometimes have to wait 10/15 minutes to use my Browser which I find very annoying. :)
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Jul 2015   #4

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64 +Linux_VMs +Chromium_VM

Windows Defender is not an Anti-Virus program in Win 7 (and Vista), it is an "Anti-Malware" program.
Windows Defender is an Anti-Virus in program Win 8.x and Win 10.

In Win 7, Microsoft Security Essentials is the MS Anti-Virus program available, optionally installed, not built into Win 7.

I haven't used Win 7 Windows Defender in so many years, i can't comment on it's performance.
You could try setting up exclusions in Avast and Windows Defender to see if that helps, if you want to use Windows Defender with Avast.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2015   #5

OEM Windows 7 Ult (x64) SP1


This pinned topic at one of the busiest computer fora contains lots of helpful information:

Answers to common security questions - Best Practices

And there is always passionate, vigorous debate about the "best" anti-virus or security software combination here:

What's the Best Anti-virus?
Wilders Security Forum

There is no "best" product for every computer and every user. Every product has strengths and weaknesses. And each user and his/her computer and computing practices are unique.
But the advice already offered -- to run in real-time only 1 robust AV alongside only 1 robust anti-malware as part of a layered defense -- is sound.
(IMHO Windows Defender in Win7 is not a very robust anti-malware. But the better ones are not free.)

"More" is sometimes "less" when it comes to running multiple real-time security applications simultaneously: crashes, hangups, conflicts, slow-downs, other performance/stability problems and LESS security.

And, as many experts have said, the first and last line of computer defense is the component between the chair and the keyboard.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jul 2015   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x32

(IMHO Windows Defender in Win7 is not a very robust anti-malware. But the better ones are not free.)
I 'll second that. I'll take the other freeware versions of the popular AV's anytime other than trust Windows Defender. You can just turn it off and use Avast Free or if you fancy there is:

Avira Free
Bitdefender Free AV
360 Total Security
SecureAPlus 3.4.0 (new kid on the block)

It is also worth the while to state that any AV cannot do it alone for you because any program or software needs user input. If your settings arent good enough or lame then you will get infected. Your behavior also using the AV in relation to your pc usage is also a factor there. If someone is not careful and tends to ignore pop-ups thrown by the AV (who warns you of something) then it's game over. In the end there is really no best as MoxieMomma has put it. It is you who will be the one to decide what is "best" for you based on your usage and acceptance of the product. So it maybe best to try it first and let it grow on you. But before trying out a piece of software make a system image backup first. So if and when you do not like it and want to try another or go back to the old setup you can just recover from that system image backup.

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 Windows Defender v Avast Free Anti virus

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