It’s essential that you run antivirus software on your PCs, laptops and phones these days. The risks are simply too great not to.

Many people still think that installing antivirus will slow down their computer, but as long as you choose your security software wisely, that won’t happen. In fact, Avira Free Security can even make Windows run faster, meaning you benefit from virus, ransomware and other malware protection as well as getting a more responsive computer. Win-win!

One of the reasons why PCs slow down is because there are too many apps and programs installed, half of which are rarely or never used.

In order to launch faster, many of these apps partially load when Windows starts. Individually, the small delay each one causes might not be noticeable, but the cumulative effect can become frustrating.

Similarly, installing lots of apps uses up storage space on your computer’s hard drive. When it’s nearly full, you’ll really notice your computer starting to slow down as there’s not enough room for the temporary files Windows needs to work.

But none of this has to be an inevitability. By installing antivirus software such as Avira Free Security, you not only get great protection from malware: it also includes extra tools for optimising performance and freeing up storage space.

And since it’s free, it won’t cost you anything. That really is a win.

Cleaner

The first weapon in Avira’s Performance arsenal is Cleaner which will help you reclaim precious storage space with just a single click. It automatically searches every corner your hard drive and deletes junk files, invalid registry entries and will even remove traces of your online activities.

So, you’ll have more room for documents, music and other files and your privacy is protected at the same time.

Startup Optimiser

If your PC takes so long to start up that you have time to make a coffee between pressing the power button and seeing the Windows desktop load, it’s time to cull those apps.

Startup Optimiser lists all the programs that start at the same time as Windows so you can monitor exactly what’s going on. It’s easy to remove the ones you don’t need (and restore them if you do) but once you’ve pared back the apps that definitely don’t need to run all the time, your computer should start a lot faster.

Driver Updater

Old or outdated drivers can be the cause of a slow or unresponsive computer. If yours is freezing, malfunctioning or has poor connectivity, fresh drivers can do a world of good.

Driver Updater does the hard work so you don’t have to, automatically updating them to the latest or recommended versions.

Having the latest drivers for components such as the graphics card can also make games run more smoothly.

Duplicate File Finder

This does exactly what it says: it searches your hard drive and removes unnecessary duplicate files, giving you back even more storage space for virtually no effort. Duplicate files are very common and can exist for many reasons. Maybe you’ve accidentally downloaded the same files twice, backed up files to various folders or maybe you have files stored in the cloud and duplicates on your hard drive.

Whatever the reason, Duplicate File Finder will list everything it thinks is surplus to requirements. You still have control over what gets deleted, so there’s no worries about losing important photos and documents.

Battery Saver

As a bonus, if you have a laptop this feature can automatically optimise its battery life so you can use it for longer between charges.

Antivirus protection

Of course, Avira Free Security does a lot more than speeding up your computer. It will detect and block malware and ransomware before it can do any damage, and keep you safe from dangerous websites and links too.

So, there’s no need to choose between safety and speed: Avira Free Security gives you both. And there’s more: it also includes a password manager, a VPN, a file shredder and will block ads as you browse the web.

Best of all, Avira Free Security is available for all your Windows, Android and macOS devices.

How do I get Avira Free Security?

Simply head to Avira’s website and click the button to download Free Security.

There’s really no catch. You don’t have to enter any personal information in order to use it and, in any case, Avira doesn’t sell user data and never will. Nor does it share data with any third parties.

If you need extra protection, more tools and unlimited use of the VPN, then you can upgrade to Avira Prime.