Avira Free AntiVirus 2015 is a reliable antivirus engine which does a great job of keeping your PC malware-free.

Installation is simple and straightforward. Unlike the competition, there are no demands to remove competing products: we had Norton Internet Security installed on the test PC, and were able to run both packages alongside each other without problems.

Once the program is running it provides all the features you'd expect: files you access are checked for threats in real time, you can carry out on-demand antivirus scans on any part of your system whenever you like, and a capable scheduler allows you to set up regular scans to run automatically and unattended.

The 2015 release adds new installation options. Avira Browser Safety keeps you safe online, Avira SafeSearch prevents you from reaching malicious sites, and there's a chance to install Dropbox, too (all can be bypassed if you're not interested).

If this isn't enough power for you, Avira provides a couple of alternative solutions.

Avira Antivirus Pro 2015 has everything in the free edition, and adds identity/ credit card theft protection, blocking of email threats, and free technical support.

Avira Internet Security 2015 takes all these features and extends them with encryption tools, PC maintenance options (free hard drive space, increase performance), and more.

What's new in "update 12"? New features:

- Updated Open SSL libraries
- WMI in Antivirus Pro allows also modification dependent on the configuration setting
- Windows Action Center messages are not popping up anymore during setup and licenses change
- Update status is now shown in Status Page of Control Center
- When a silent scheduled update is running, a click on start update will show the update GUI of the currently running update
- Other updater improvements
- The Antivirus 2015 Kit size has been reduced by 10%
- Improved Win10 migration flow

Verdict

Avira Free AntiVirus 15 is distinctly short on new features, but the core engine is still excellent, and it's probably the best free tool around.