This is a non-exhaustive list of notable antivirus and Internet Security software, in the form of comparison tables, according to their platform (e.g. desktop and server, mobile, etc.) and their operating systems (e.g. Windows, OS X, Linux, Solaris, Android,  Ubuntu Touch, Windows Phone, etc.)

Antivirus or anti-virus software (often abbreviated as AV), sometimes known as anti-malware software, is computer software used to prevent, detect and remove malicious software.

Antivirus software was originally developed to detect and remove computer viruses, hence the name. However, with the proliferation of other kinds of malware, antivirus software started to provide protection from other computer threats. In particular, modern antivirus software can protect from malicious browser helper objects (BHO), browser hijackers, ransomware, keyloggers, backdoors, rootkits, Trojan, worms, malicious LSPs, dialers, fraud tools adware and spyware. Some products also include protection from other computer threats, such as infected and malicious URLs, spam, scam and phishing attacks, online identity (privacy), online banking attack, social engineering techniques, advanced persistent threat (APT) and botnet Dodos attacks.

Anti-virus software can attempt to scan for rootkits. A rootkit is a type of malware designed to gain administrative-level control over a computer system without being detected. Rootkits can change how the operating system functions and in some cases can tamper with the anti-virus program and render it ineffective. Rootkits are also difficult to remove, in some cases requiring a complete re-installation of the operating system.

Real-time protection

Real-time protection, on-access scanning, background guard, resident shield, auto protect, and other synonyms refer to the automatic protection provided by most antivirus, anti-spyware, and other anti-malware programs. This monitors computer systems for suspicious activity such as computer viruses, spyware, adware, and other malicious objects in ‘real-time’, in other words, while data loaded into the computer’s active memory: when inserting a CD, opening an email, or browsing the web, or when a file already on the computer is opened or executed.

System and interoperability related issues

Running (the real-time protection of) multiple antivirus programs concurrently can degrade performance and create conflicts. However, using a concept called multiscanning, several companies (including G Data Software and Microsoft) have created applications which can run multiple engines concurrently.

It is sometimes necessary to temporarily disable virus protection when installing major updates such as Windows Service Packs or updating graphics card drivers.Active antivirus protection may partially or completely prevent the installation of a major update. Anti-virus software can cause problems during the installation of an operating system upgrade, e.g. when upgrading to a newer version of Windows “in place” — without erasing the previous version of Windows. Microsoft recommends that anti-virus software be disabled to avoid conflicts with the upgrade installation process. Active anti-virus software can also interfere with a firmware update process.

The functionality of a few computer programs can be hampered by active anti-virus software. For example, True Crypt, a disk encryption program, states on its troubleshooting page that anti-virus programs can conflict with TrueCrypt and cause it to malfunction or operate very slowly. Anti-virus software can impair the performance and stability of games running on the Steam platform.

Support issues also exist around antivirus application interoperability with common solutions like SSL VPN remote access and network access control products. These technology solutions often have policy assessment applications which require that an up-to-date antivirus is installed and running. If the antivirus application is not recognized by the policy assessment, whether because the antivirus application has been updated or because it is not part of the policy assessment library, the user will be unable to connect.

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