Avast has been my recommended "free" antivirus program for years. It is still by far, the fastest, or I should say "less intrusive" antivirus program on the market that simply won't interfere with your normal day to day computing.. that being said, there are a number of things that need to be done in order for you to actually enjoy this product without wanting to chuck it and your computer from the rooftop!
It is Free but then again, NOTHING on the internet is truly free. It wasn't back in 2013 either! You will pay for it in some way, whether that be through a banner advertisement that runs within the program, or you get annoying nag screens every once in a while tempting you to upgrade to the pro version with "special deals" they make available. In general these are nothing more than nag screens that you can close. However the latest tactic is to install the software by default or automatically during a normal program/virus definition update and, upon restarting of your computer you are now greeted with a new icon on your desktop. The most recent would be the Avast Safezone Browser.. which is CRAP! Just like two thirds of the available software Avast makes available upon installation, only 3 items are really what you need, as well, they are truly the only "free" items you will get to use all the time. Everything else is nothing more than Trialware and then after the trial period is up you are nagged in a big way to pay up. In fact they make it so damn difficult, if you let it go that far down the road, that you will most likely end up completely uninstalling Avast, restarting your computer and then reinstalling it just to get it to work in the 'free mode' once again.
The key here is to always choose CUSTOM install when you start. Then simply de-select EVERYTHING except the first three items which would be:
"File Shield", "Web Shield" and "Mail Shield". Everything else is only going to slow your computer down and/or is trialware and you will eventually have to pay up for this and you don't want to, even if it sounds like a good idea because most everything else is already covered by your operating system or by things like the Chrome web browser.
If you are unsure as to what the current status is of your Avast, you can simply go to the add/remove programs and click CHANGE on the AVAST program. Then choose MODIFY when the program opens and there you will see the window above.
One final thing to note, if you visit the Avast website FAQ's about the Safezone Browser, of course it will make it sound so great and will even say that it is not installed by default and won't be working if you don't pay but that is simply not the case. The trick with any software is to get the people using it and then make it so that they think they can't live without it. A little website started out this identical way by the name of Facebook. it is free too.. and oh by the way, I've learned that there is money owed to me by someone in Africa but I first have to send money in order to reap my big reward.. what do you think should I get out my wallet? Come on people, stop falling for this crap!