Alternatives to Microsoft Security Essentials for all platforms with any license

  • avast! Free Antivirus icon

    avast! Free Antivirus

    The world’s most popular antivirus software. Space demand on the hard disk: 153 MB. Our avast! Free Antivirus often outperforms our...

    Freemium Mac Windows

  • Avira Free Antivirus icon

    Avira Free Antivirus

    Avira Free Antivirus offers basic protection for your computer against dangerous viruses, worms, spy-ware, trojans and costly dialers....

    Free Personal Mac Windows Android

  • ClamAV icon


    Clam AntiVirus is an open source (GPL) anti-virus toolkit for UNIX, designed especially for e-mail scanning on mail gateways. It...

    Open Source Windows Linux

  • COMODO Internet Security icon

    COMODO Internet Security

    Comodo Internet Security is a free, very voluminous and multi-layered security application that keeps hackers out and personal...

    Freemium Windows Linux Android

  • AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition icon

    AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition

    AVG AntiVirus Free, provides basic antivirus and antispyware protection for home users. Virus database updated every day. Includes...

    Freemium Mac Windows Android

  • ESET NOD32 Antivirus icon

    ESET NOD32 Antivirus

    ESET NOD32 Antivirus is an innovative host-based intrusion prevention system that offers a comprehensive scanning solution. Most...

    Commercial Windows Linux

  • Kaspersky Anti-Virus icon

    Kaspersky Anti-Virus

    Kaspersky Anti-Virus offers protection from a range of IT threats and provides the basic tools needed to keep your PC secure....

    Commercial Windows

  • Windows Defender icon

    Windows Defender

    Windows Defender is built into Windows to help guard your PC against viruses, spyware, and other malicious software in real time....

    Free Windows

  • ClamWin icon


    [Please note that ClamWin Free Antivirus does not include an on-access real-time scanner. You need to manually scan a file in order to...

    Open Source Windows

  • ESET Smart Security icon

    ESET Smart Security

    A Great time online with even better technology! Safer online begins with our proven Antivirus and Antispyware. Inside you find a...

    Commercial Windows

  • Hitman Pro icon

    Hitman Pro

    Hitman Pro is an on-demand malware scanner and removal tool. It will usually do a full-system scan significantly faster than other...

    Freemium Windows

  • Panda Antivirus icon

    Panda Antivirus

    Panda Antivirus offers real-world protection and a USB drive cleaner. Just install it and forget about viruses, spyware, rootkits...

    Freemium Windows

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  • 360 Total Security icon

    360 Total Security

    360 Total Security offers your PC complete protection from Viruses, Trojans and other emerging threats. Whether you are shopping...

    Free Mac Windows

  • Bitdefender Free Antivirus icon

    Bitdefender Free Antivirus Discontinued

    Bitdefender Free Edition uses the same virus detection engine found in other Bitdefender products. It comes with real time scanning...

    Free Personal Windows Linux

  • ClamTk Virus Scanner icon

    ClamTk Virus Scanner

    ClamTk is a graphical user interface (GUI) for using the Clam AntiVirus program. It is designed to be an easy-to-use, on-demand...

    Open Source Linux

  • avast! Internet Security icon

    avast! Internet Security

    avast! Internet Security - the best choise: Active internet users need greater protection for themselves as they shop and bank...

    Commercial Windows

  • Dr.Web CureIt! icon

    Dr.Web CureIt!

    Do you have anti-virus software installed on your computer, but still worry about its effectiveness? Run Dr.Web CureIt!® (no...

    Free Personal Windows

  • Dr.Web Anti-virus icon

    Dr.Web Anti-virus

    Dr.Web Anti-virus is an efficient tool for constant monitoring of system health that blocks attempts of viruses, Trojans, mail worms...

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux Android

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  • COMODO Antivirus icon

    COMODO Antivirus

    Comodo Antivirus eliminates viruses, spyware, and other malware from desktops and networks. Obliterate viruses and malware without...

    Freemium Mac Windows Linux

  • Avira Antivirus Pro icon

    Avira Antivirus Pro

    Avira AntiVirus Pro reliably protects you against all threats from viruses, worms, trojans, rootkits, phishings, adware, spyware...

    Commercial Windows

  • ClamXav icon


    ClamXav is a virus scanner for Mac OS X. It uses the very popular ClamAV open source antivirus engine as a back end and has...

    Commercial Mac

  • BitDefender Antivirus Plus icon

    BitDefender Antivirus Plus

    Antivirus BitDefender - award winning virus protection software for your computer security. Protect your business and secure your PC...

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux Web / Cloud

  • avast! Pro Antivirus icon

    avast! Pro Antivirus

    avast! Pro Antivirus - better protection during web surfing. Full-featured antivirus software. Better than our free antivirus...

    Commercial Windows

  • Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+ icon

    Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+

    Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+ combines the legendary Anti-spyware engine with a super fast, free Antivirus. It now features download...

    Freemium Windows

  • F-Secure Anti-Virus icon

    F-Secure Anti-Virus

    F-Secure Anti-Virus provides advanced protection against viruses, spyware intrusions and infected e-mail so you can surf the Web...

    Commercial Mac Windows

  • Dr.Web LiveDisk icon

    Dr.Web LiveDisk

    Dr.Web® LiveDisk is an anti-virus solution which enables restoration of a operating system when high virus activity has rendered...

    Free Windows Linux

  • Sophos Antivirus icon

    Sophos Antivirus

    Sophos Antivirus offers protection for your laptops and desktops running on Windows, Mac, Linux or virtual platforms. Get everything...

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux

  • Baidu Antivirus icon

    Baidu Antivirus

    Baidu Antivirus is a professional antivirus and ultrafast cloud security software. Baidu Antivirus protects your computer against...

    Free Windows

  • Clam Sentinel icon

    Clam Sentinel Discontinued

    Clam Sentinel is a system tray application that detects file system changes and scans modified files using...

    Open Source Windows

  • Ashampoo Anti-Virus icon

    Ashampoo Anti-Virus

    With powerful automated real-time protection and frequent updates, Ashampoo Anti-Virus 2014 offers reliable protection against all...

    Commercial Windows

  • VIPRE Antivirus icon

    VIPRE Antivirus

    VIPRE Antivirus is the light-weight and highly effective antivirus program that does not slow down your PC. Using next-generation...

    Commercial Windows

  • Zone Alarm Antivirus icon

    Zone Alarm Antivirus

    Scan and remove viruses fast - Removes viruses others miss. Prevent Viruses before they infect your PC - Online updates mean no more...

    Commercial Windows

  • Winpooch Watchdog icon

    Winpooch Watchdog Discontinued

    Winpooch is a watchdog for Windows (2000, XP, 2003, but only 32-bits). It detects modifications in your system, so as to detect a...

    Open Source Windows

  • AVG Anti-Virus & Anti-Spyware icon

    AVG Anti-Virus & Anti-Spyware

    Real-time protection, automatic updates, low-impact background scanning for on-line threats, and instant quarantining or removal of...

    Commercial Windows

Microsoft Security Essentials Comments

It's easy and fast

Positive Comment by realnabarl
about Microsoft Security Essentials Nov 2012

I don't want to config an anti-virus application a lot to make it work well so MSE is my choice.


Mixed feelings

Comment by joshas
about Microsoft Security Essentials Jul 2011

I've tested MSE on several computers for over two months - is seems to be a bit lighter on resources and interface is decent (why does every antivirus MUST have some custom interface with ludicrous colors and interface styling?).
On the other hand, to complete removing a virus from USB flash drive - you have to reboot (this is not very convenient). And finally, one of the computers caught some bogus fake antivirus malware, which somehow bypassed MSE and removed it from startup.


Real-time protection seemed to hog a lot of CPU for me (up ...

Comment by bjornhallberg
about Microsoft Security Essentials Jun 2011

Real-time protection seemed to hog a lot of CPU for me (up to 20-25% on a Q6600) while scanning. RAM usage was also high (70-80 MB).


By far the best free anti-malware program available.

Positive Comment by JonM33
about Microsoft Security Essentials and Avira Free Antivirus, AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition, avast! Free Antivirus Jun 2011

By far the best free anti-malware program available. It's easy to use, a single interface, virus signatures updated daily and very light weight on system resources. I cannot recommend this highly enough. Better than AVG, Avast and Avira.
Also, this software wasn't made by Microsoft. It was made by some security software companies that Microsoft acquired.


Lightweight, ad-free, free and easy to manage

Positive Comment by Furgelnod
about Microsoft Security Essentials and Avira Free Antivirus, AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition Jun 2011

Lightweight, ad-free, free, and easy to manage oh, and it has rootkit protection. Frankly, Security Essentials beats AVG and Avira in my opinion, despite it being created by Microsoft (possibly the only drawback).


Fast, free, and gets out of your way.

Positive Comment by newmania
about Microsoft Security Essentials and Norton AntiVirus Jun 2011

Fast, free, and gets out of your way. It's the polar opposite of Norton/Symantec. Wonderful app.


Seems to be a decent light on the resources Anti Virus.

Comment by Elmernite
about Microsoft Security Essentials Jun 2011

Seems to be a decent light on the resources Anti Virus. If you want a whole suite of tools, this isn't for you. If you need something to put on your Grandparents computer who don't understand Anti Virus software and don't want to spend the money, then it's perfect.