Panda Free Antivirus

6 months ago 108

Easy to usage and with 1 oregon 2 absorbing extras, but extortion rates are lone average, and it's not arsenic configurable arsenic immoderate rivals.


  • Easy to use
  • Simple and appealing interface
  • Process Monitor diagnostics tool


  • Mixed results from the investigating labs
  • Short connected configuration options

Easy to usage and with 1 oregon 2 absorbing extras, but extortion rates are lone average, and it's not arsenic configurable arsenic immoderate rivals.


  • + Easy to use
  • + Simple and appealing interface
  • + Process Monitor diagnostics tool


  • - Mixed results from the investigating labs
  • - Short connected configuration options

Panda Free Antivirus is simply a no-strings escaped antivirus instrumentality from the Spanish multinational, Panda Security.  

Panda Free Windows' variation is mostly focused connected its halfway antivirus engine, with minimal extras. The objection is simply a Hotspot Shield-based VPN, but the escaped variation limits you to conscionable 150MB of information transportation a day, making it virtually useless for each but the simplest of tasks.

If you request more, Panda's commercialized plans screen everything from a basal antivirus merchandise for Windows, Mac and Android, to a afloat information suite with parental controls, banking and buying protection, other anti-ransomware capabilities, encryption, a password manager and unlimited VPN use. There's a just magnitude of powerfulness here, but prices are supra average, with adjacent the astir basal program priced astatine $44.24 for twelvemonth one, $58.99 connected renewal, for a azygous device.


Panda Free Antivirus' installation process (Image Credit: Panda Security) 


The Panda website doesn't supply a large woody of low-level item astir the company's escaped antivirus, but it is astatine slightest casual to find, and if you're successful a hurry you'll find the Download fastener successful a precise fewer seconds.  

Surprisingly, Panda past redirected america to CNET's dowload page to yet download the file. Presumably Panda gets paid for this arsenic they're directing postulation to the site, but we would inactive overmuch alternatively download delicate bundle specified arsenic antivirus from the developer, alternatively than via an ad-packed third-party page.  

After a straightforward installation, Panda Free Antivirus asked that we 'activate' it, which fundamentally means providing an email to make a escaped Panda relationship oregon log successful to 1 you person already. This isn't antithetic - companies specified arsenic Bitdefender and Kaspersky bash thing akin - but Avast, Avira and a fewer others let utilizing their bundle without providing immoderate idiosyncratic details.  

If you're blessed to motion up, Panda Free Antivirus runs a precise speedy archetypal scan, pops up its console to show the results and is instantly acceptable for use. 

Panda's installation was amazingly lightweight connected our trial PC, adding nether 250MB of files. There were 5 inheritance processes, but they utilized minimal resources (typical RAM requirements were nether 75MB, adjacent erstwhile the console was open.)

Panda does a bully occupation of defending its codification against malware, too. We tried assorted ways to adjacent processes, delete files, intermission oregon delete services, but couldn’t compromise our information successful immoderate way.


You tin easy motorboat each of Panda Free Antivirus' features from its location surface oregon adjacent adhd your ain (Image Credit: Panda Security)


Panda Free Antivirus has a good-looking but quirky interface, wherever your information presumption and 10 enactment buttons are overlaid connected a desktop wallpaper-type representation of mountains and a lake. This works amended than we would person expected, and you tin adjacent alteration the inheritance representation to thing other if you prefer.  

Tapping the Scan fastener gives you entree to critical, afloat strategy and customized scan types. The Custom enactment is constricted - you lone get to take a people folder - but different the scans are elemental and speedy, with our captious scan dropping from an archetypal six minutes to astir a infinitesimal by the 3rd run, and study accusation kept to the essentials only.  


Panda Free Antivirus settings (Image Credit: Panda Security)

A abstracted Antivirus conception offers a small much control, including options to scan a customized acceptable of locations connected your system, configure a fewer basal settings and docket the scan to tally automatically. This is casual to use, but can't statesman to vie with the powerfulness and configurability offered by Avira and Avast's escaped products.  

Real-time extortion blocks chartless files from moving (for up to 30 seconds) until Panda receives a verdict from the cloud. This tin beryllium annoying if there's a delay, but it does marque you much secure, and if you're impatient you tin chopped the maximum hold to 10 seconds.

A Rescue Kit enactment could assistance you region much stubborn threats by creating a bootable USB thrust oregon installing and launching a abstracted escaped tool, Panda's Cloud Cleaner.  

Built-in USB extortion tin 'vaccinate' USB keys to connection immoderate extortion from autorun malware. 


Panda Free Antivirus adjacent includes a escaped VPN powered by Hotspot Shield (Image Credit: Panda Security)

A built-in Hotspot Shield-based VPN volition link you to your nearest determination successful a mates of clicks. Panda Free doesn't let you to take different location, though, and with a information allowance of conscionable 150MB, it's not going to beryllium overmuch usage to anyone.

Process Monitor

Find retired precisely what your strategy is up to with Panda Free Antivirus' Process Monitor diagnostic (Image Credit: Panda Security)

Our favourite bonus diagnostic is Process Monitor, a useful module which lists processes which person tally connected your system, highlights their information status, whether they're digitally signed, erstwhile they appeared connected your PC, wherever you downloaded them, and shows you however galore HTTP connections they person open.  

What's absorbing astir Process Monitor is it doesn't conscionable amusement moving processes, Task Manager-style. You tin filter the show to amusement a past of what's tally connected your PC successful the past day, week, month, oregon since Panda Free Antivirus has been installed. It tin adjacent grounds the URL of each HTTP transportation the process has made, an incredibly utile diagnostic for knowing what the exertion is doing. If you're acrophobic astir a imaginable malware infection, this enables looking backmost successful clip to possibly find the root of the occupation and get immoderate clues astir what truly happened.

Elsewhere, a My Devices conception points you to Panda bundle for different platforms (Android, Mac) and enables viewing and managing their extortion from 1 cardinal console.  


With Panda Free Antivirus you tin take betwixt moving a afloat scan, customized scan oregon conscionable scanning your system's captious areas (Image Credit: Panda Security)


AV-Comparative's Real-World Protection Test is simply a pugnacious appraisal of however antivirus performs erstwhile faced with a scope of malware. Panda had immoderate precise inconsistent scores passim the 2nd fractional of 2018, and the institution rated a disappointing thirteenth retired of 18 successful the July to November 2018 summary report.

It's a akin communicative successful AV-Comparatives' Performance Test, wherever the institution measures the interaction assorted antivirus packages person connected your system. Panda doesn't bash badly, but it's besides acold from topping the table, this clip standing eleventh retired of 18 for its strategy impact.

AV-Test's December 2018 Windows Home User report gave tenable results successful the Protection test, wherever though Panda didn't rather negociate 100% protection, it did good capable to people a maximum 6/6. But determination was worse quality from the Performance tests, with Panda reporting slower downloads and installation of frequently-used applications, and slower web copying of files.

To effort and get a clearer representation of Panda Free's abilities, we ran our ain customized ransomware simulator connected the reappraisal system. Would the bundle beryllium capable to halt it? Well, nary - it paid nary attraction astatine each arsenic our trial menace encrypted thousands of files.

Our simulator wasn't existent malware, and this doesn't successful immoderate mode mean Panda Free can't halt caller ransomware - the laboratory results amusement that it tin - but galore antivirus products person done better, with immoderate of the champion - Bitdefender, Kaspersky - not lone stopping the simulator, but besides recovering immoderate files it had managed to encryrpt.

Put this each unneurotic and though Panda Free tin execute good successful immoderate situations, it doesn't look to person the accuracy of the champion of the competition, and that makes it hard to recommend.

Final verdict

A decent escaped antivirus, chiefly targeted astatine novice users, though its Process Monitor has a batch of adept appeal. It's a likeable product, but immoderate caller investigating laboratory scores suggest it lone offers mean accuracy.

Mike began his vocation arsenic a pb bundle developer successful the engineering world, wherever his creations were utilized by big-name companies from Rolls Royce to British Nuclear Fuels and British Aerospace. He present covers VPNs, antivirus and each things information for TechRadar, though helium inactive has a concealed emotion of quirky open-source and freeware apps which find marque caller ways to lick communal problems.

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