Review of Avast Free Antivirus for Mac
Avast is one of the most popular free antivirus programs, and they have a version for Mac OS X. Avast Free Antivirus for Mac offers most of the same features, is free to download, doesn’t include advertisements, and is generally unobtrusive. But, how well does it work? We’re reviewing Avast Free for Mac to find out.
What Is It?
Avast Free Antivirus for Mac is a free antivirus program with a virus scanner, firewall, and various features that you can turn off or on. The program is free, but will request payment for some features, which means that you can’t expect everything in the features section to be free.
Avast Free Antivirus for Mac offers numerous, configurable features. The free features include an antivirus scanner, a firewall, reports, and that’s it.
Scan – Avast offers a free antivirus scanner that you can use to scan files, folders, hard drives, and your computer. This is actually a very versatile scan because you can use it to scan your full system, removable volumes, custom files, folders, or drives, or your network. This makes it extremely useful for finding network based viruses which are on another computer and spreading to your own. Interestingly, the network scan will also tell you every device currently on your network. If you find a virus on your computer, you can also upload it to Avast’s online database.
What’s the catch? The full system scan isn’t as accurate as some of it’s competitors, and it can take a very long time to do a full scan, even when you don’t have much on your computer.
Shield – Shield (Not S.H.I.E.L.D.) is Avast’s firewall and it works to protect you from the web, files, and email infections. The firewall is passive, meaning that you don’t have to run it, doesn’t require a great deal of system resources, which makes it a great choice.
Virus Chest – The Virus Chest is simply your system quarantine
Reports – You can see an up-to-date log of all system scans, infected files, etc.
One of the best things about Avast is that it is highly configurable, and you can update everything from the notificaitions to the Firewall. Use what you want, and nothing else. Under ‘Preferences’ you can find a number of configuration options. For example, you can disable any one of the firewall settings. You can also change popups or even turn them off, set your updates to how you want them, and even remove the Avast Icon from your toolbar.
Avast Free for Mac includes what is essentially an advertisement for Avast’s premium software. You have a “tools” section which includes a VPN and Avast Online Security. You will have to pay in order to use these features. You will also occasionally see popups or reminders about these features. However, if you do want them, they work well.
Review of Avast Free Antivirus for Mac
Avast Free Antivirus for Mac has a lot to offer for those who want a low-system impact, don’t necessarily need maximum quality protection, and who want customization. The program is slow for full scans, but you will rarely need a full scan, which means that this doesn’t impact the program too much. However, Avast doesn’t detect as many viruses as other programs like AVG or Bitdefender, which means you will be sacrificing some quality. That aside, Macs aren’t a huge target for viruses anyway, so you’re likely still safe without maximum protection.
Should you get it? If you’re worried, AVG still makes a better option, but Avast is well worth trying out. If you’re looking for customization and light system impact, it could be the way to go. To help you decide before you buy it, we recommend that you try the trial version of Avast. It’s good for 30 days which should be long enough to feel it out. Let us know what you think of it if you have it or you try it!
Avast Free for Mac works well, offers a lot of features for a free antivirus, is highly configurable, and has a very light system impact.
The antivirus scanner isn't as good as some free competitors, takes some time to perform a full system scan, and offers features that aren't available unless you upgrade to the premium version.