When the word 'free' is mentioned our ears always prick up. Whether it's to enhance your office systems or just keep you busy during down time, the web, it would seem, has the answer to it all - and a bulk of this veritable treasure trove is free.

But how do you decide what will stay true and serve its purpose? And how do you avoid something that will crash and burn, taking your expensive system along with it?

Fortunately you don't have to. Here we give you a list of the greatest, must-have free software and the best services on the internet.


AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition

This ever-popular antivirus has stood its ground over the years and is still a favourite with most computer users. It is light on system resources and for an app that is small in size, it packs in most of the features that other expensive apps offer to give you rock solid protection.

It runs in the background and only springs into action when needed and is very unobtrusive. An email scanning ability other than the normal hard drive scan, automatic updates, schedule scan, Windows Explorer integration, and real-time protection through AVG Resident Shield make this a very impressive antivirus tool. It even has an option for creating a rescue disk to scan your computer in MS-DOS mode for a situation when you cannot boot into Windows.

AVG download Anti-Virus Free Edition here.

Spyware Terminator 2.1

Spyware Terminator stands out among the free antispyware apps because of its comprehensive features and it has been giving other expensive antispyware apps a run for their money. Think of any feature that an antispyware should have and you will find that Spyware Terminator has it all, which is impressive for a completely free antispyware tool.

Besides providing normal protection for detecting and removing known spywares, it even has a tool, Host Intrusion Prevention System (HIPS), for protection against unknown threats. It has an antivirus (ClamAV) integrated into it for scanning and removing viruses. The web security guard protects you from potentially dangerous websites.

The most remarkable thing is that Spyware Terminator 2.1 provides real-time protection against spyware and other malware which other free antispyware apps don't include. The other essential features such as scan customisation, auto updates and scheduled scan are included which make this a fully-featured antispyware tool.

Download Spyware Terminator 2.1 here.

Spyware Doctor Starter Edition is another impressive tool for weeding out spyware from your PC, providing you efficient protection without putting too much of a burden on your system.

See also:

15 fabulous, free PC security programs

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