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Free anti-virus software has varying abilities to detect viruses and protect your PC. You must remember that you get what you pay for, and companies who are giving their basic product away for free are performing a service to the community, but will always keep the better functionality for their paid products.

Having said that, has a very good review of the three most popular free anti-virus products currently on the market. Well worth a read before downloading any of these.

Antivir is a good performing anti-virus product that offers a functioning free version as well as a Pro upgrade offer. It updates regularly, reminds you if you haven't updated recently, and scans daily. It also has a good detection rate.

AVG Free is a popular and well known free anti-virus product. It also offers a paid version that has much more functionality.

AVG Free is not available with any OEM bundling software or hardware deals.

AVAST 4 home is also a good performing anti-virus software which is free for home/non commercial use.

PANDA Active Scan is an online virus scanner created by Panda Security.

Housecall by Trend Micro, who also provide the Hijack This log software for free, is another online virus scanner. These online scans can take a while, especially if you have a slower connection, but they provide a good second opinion for your computer, as sometimes an alternative virus scanner will pick up malware your installed virus scanner has missed.