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<9 free antivirus programs for Windows ⁄ >




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Keeping your Windows computer virus-free doesn't have to cost you a lot of money. Heck, it doesn't need to cost you any money. There are plenty of good options available for those of you on the hunt for free antivirus software.

Wait - free? Don't companies like Norton make a good business out of selling antivirus protection? Why would someone give it away? Developers of free antivirus solutions like Avast and AVG are counting on a couple of things. First, that you'll like the free offering enough to want to buy an upgraded version of their product. Second, that if enough home users talk about how much they love it that their "computer guy" at work might want to use it on the company's systems.

The free options listed after the break offer the same kind of protection as the boxed software you can buy at the store.

Two things to keep in mind:

First, as with other free software, some of the developers ask for support in the form of a toolbar install. They're all optional, so make sure to un-tick the checkboxes during the install if you don't want the toolbar.

Second, a number of the developers offer a non-free version on the free version's download page via a service called TrialPay. The totally free version is normally on the left, the TrialPay offer on the right - make sure you're clicking the link you actually want.



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