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Free antivirus protection for Vista

Question : The McAfee antivirus program that came with my new Vista computer has expired and asks for payment. I have replaced it with the free edition of AVG. I also have CounterSpy installed. Is this adequate for the Vista software ?

Answer : Windwos Vista, while proclaiming tighter security features than previous editions of Windows, does not include an antivirus program.

But because viruses and similarly malicious software can still cause problems for Vista, the system may pester you with an occasional alert if you don't have antivirus software installed.

Uninstalling the free trial version of the antivirus software that shipped with your PC and using a different program should help stave off many virus infections -- as long as you keep the new program updated against the latest threats.

Antispyware programs like CounterSpy also need to be updated regularly with small software downloads from the manufacturer to keep them fortified against new spyware.

Most commercial security programs offer an automatic update feature in the program's settings.

The free edition of AVG Anti-Virus ( availabel for home and non-commercial use at http://free.grisoft.com ) offers basic protection against viruses and can be updated with the Check for Updates option in the AVG Free menu.

Paid versions of the company's security software include more features, like technical support.

Avast is another company that has a free version of Vista-compatible antivirus software.

More information on the software is at http://www.avast.com/eng/free_software.html.


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