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Avast Vs. Norton

Avast Vs. Norton

The comparison between Norton and Avast, presented in this article, will help you choose between the two antivirus programs. Read to compare the features and differences between the two.
Omkar Phatak
Being connected to the Internet these days, with no antivirus program installed, is like sailing without life boats. With the range of malicious programs that are launched every day on the Internet, you need a good antivirus program to safeguard your data. Two of the many choices, which you could opt for, are Avast and Norton.
Avast Vs. Norton Comparison
With such a variety of antivirus software programs available in the market, there is a lot of choice available. Avast Antivirus and Norton are two of the leading antivirus software programs that you could choose from. Let us make an objective comparison between the two programs.
Both brands have a range of software packages, that cater to different computer security needs. We will discuss and compare Norton Antivirus 2011 against Avast! Pro Antivirus. These are the two flagship software programs of both companies. A comparison of the two should give you an idea about the rest of their products.
Difference in Installation and System Requirements
Let us talk about installation and system requirements of Norton Antivirus 2011 (USD 39.99) and avast! Pro Antivirus (USD 39.95). Both programs get installed within a minute and none of the two require to go for a system restart after the installation is complete. Avast will immediately run an auto update.
Both installations are breezy on a Windows 7 operating system. Let us see how these two programs compare, head-to-head. There are no special system requirements and both the programs run well on Windows machines with at least 256 MB of RAM. Let us have a look at the features offered by both programs.
Features Comparison
Both programs come with quick scanning and custom scanning features, as well as scheduled scans. Some features offered by Avast Antivirus are antispyware protection, IM protection, email scanning, worm protection, anti root-kit scanning, and Trojan protection. The Avast Sandbox feature lets you run programs that are susceptible to infection, in a protected virtual mode. Other than this, it offers a special gaming mode protection feature.
Norton offers antispyware protection, email scanning, IM protection, worm protection, and anti-rootkit scanning features. It provides Bot protection, which is a feature that is found lacking in Avast. Norton offers a reputation-based scan feature and a Facebook wall scan too. Both programs offer fast and regular updates.
Performance Compared
Let us see how these programs compare, in terms of performance. Performance tests reveal that, with respect to memory usage, Avast is lighter on the system, compared to Norton. The latter uses system resources more heavily and may slow down the computer performance on some systems.
The scanning speed of both programs are comparable and linger around 21 MB/sec. In terms of virus and malware scan, though Norton is heavy on the system, it scores higher in this crucial area, compared to Avast.
It is slightly better at virus and malware scanning, compared to Avast. It is difficult to distinguish between the two when it comes to features, but Norton is certainly ahead of the other, in the virus cleaning department.
At this point of time, based on performance, I would give my vote to Norton, as it is thorough, and has a high virus detection rate, compared to Avast. Otherwise, there is not much to choose between the two programs. Ultimately, the choice is up to you.