McAfee Antivirus Review

With the Russians allegedly interfering with the US elections, the international hackers stealing Bitcoins and bad folks planting viruses on our computers just for the heck of it, it is very important to protect ourselves. Does the famous McAfee have what it takes to be our “knight in shining armor” at a reasonable price? Or is it just another well-advertised product without a real bang for the buck? It certainly is one of the most recognized antiviruses today, that’s for sure. And, you always have several options to choose from. This antivirus is easy to use and customer support is great. The process of entering your McAfee login and password is also quite simple.

On the downside, it consumes a lot of system resources, and real-time protection could be better. So, what does that mean for the average consumers? Is it wise to trust this company with protecting your sensitive data or not? Or maybe it’s time to switch your focus to other providers of antivirus packages? Read our detailed McAfee review and you’ll find out!


  • McAfee offers full-featured protection.
  • This is one of the most intuitive and easy-to-use antiviruses.
  • Reliability is well above average, but not superb.
  • Value: above average.
  • MBG (Money-Back Guarantee) is 30-days-long .


Money back Guarantee
Real-time Antivirus
Manual Virus Scanning
USB Virus Scan
Registry Startup Scan
Auto Virus Scanning
Scheduled scan
Email Protection
Chat/IM Protection
Adware Prevention
Easy of use5/5
Personal Firewall
Parental Controls
Gamer Mode
VPN Service
Smartphone Optimizer
Device Tune-up
Safe browser
Live Help
Phone support
Email support
Ticket support

Best For

  • It’s safe to say that if you’re planning on protecting your home and/or business (it can be a tiny enterprise or a huge firm), the McAfee Antivirus is a great pick.
  • Furthermore, because of the smart licensing policy, you’re free to protect as many devices as you want with one single license, which, again, is perfect if you’re running a business.
  • And finally, McAfee offers a line-up of totally free tools that allow you to implement parental control and block the spam that keeps knocking on the door of your email.

The List Of Pros And Cons

Like any other Antivirus out there, this one comes with its fair share of advantages and disadvantages – pros & cons. Let’s take a look at both and find out whether it’s the right choice for us or not.

The McAfee Antivirus is extremely easy to install, use, and change the settings.
The level of protection and the rate of virus detection are well above average.
The viruses are removed from your device 100%, without leaving any traces.
Despite the industry-leading protection algorithms, the above average price compared to the rivals is a big turn-off.
The McAfee Antivirus needs more of your system’s resources to work than some of the other offers on the market.

What About Reliability & Security?

McAffee Real-Time ScanningObviously, the #1 concern when it comes to antiviruses is security. As a general rule, there are two areas where they need to prove their worth. Those include the regular routine of scanning for viruses and the much more advanced and complicated process of real-time protection while data is being copied to your operating system. So, does McAfee impress or disappoint? According to several well-respected third-party companies that specialize in testing various antivirus packages, McAfee security is in the top league for traditional virus detection (that’s true for every single package).

Unfortunately, real-time protection from the evil viruses isn’t its strongest forte. I’m not saying it failed in that test – the results are average – but still not as good as we hoped.

Ease Of Use

McAfee Quick Scan Almost CompleteI can say with certainty that McAfee is among the friendliest antiviruses available right now. The main window is very informative and shows all the necessary information, keeping the users up to date on the current state of things. Auto-scans are super-easy to authorize, while full/quick scans can be scheduled in a couple of seconds. By the way, you won’t have to reboot the antivirus or the device after installation – it will start to work as soon as it’s successfully installed. The user interface allows you to get access to parental control, change something in the anti-spam settings, configure the firewall, and, as I just said, schedule future virus scans (like while you’re at work or sleeping). Navigation is superb, no doubt about that.

I mentioned earlier in this McAfee review that it’s not the fastest offer today and “eats” a lot of resources. It’s worth mentioning that most antiviruses that come with easy-to-understand and user-friendly interfaces usually use a lot more resources than the ones with standard interfaces. If your device is somewhat outdated and you think that it will perform poorly with the McAfee installed, try changing some of the settings in the antivirus. Plus, if you go to the official website of the company, you’ll see that they provide a virus scan that is totally free – it’s called “McAfee Security Scan Plus.” Don’t be shy to take advantage of that!

Package Features – What Does McAfee Have To Offer?

McAfee PC ScanAlright, now it’s time to check out the available packages:

  1. McAfee AntiVirus. This package comes with complete protection, 24/7 customer support, and free optimization tools for one device.
  2. McAfee Internet Security. This one features the same stuff as the first package plus spam blocking for all of your devices (the number is unlimited) and parental control.
  3. McAfee Total Protection. This is the mightiest beast right now. Along with the treats from the previous two packages, Total Protection also provides firewall protection from nasty thieves and hackers plus SM link protection for your devices (again, you can use this on as many devices as you want). Furthermore, you’ll be able to protect the most valuable files using top-notch encryption software and store logins and passwords with the neat True Key application.
  4. McAfee LiveSafe. The final product is almost identical to Total Protection. However, instead of the fancy file encryption option, it offers one gigabyte of online storage on the company’s dedicated servers (everything is encrypted, of course). It’s important to note that McAfee LiveSafe and TP are the only products that one can buy on the official website. So, if you want the less expensive and more basic options, you’ll have to look for them elsewhere (yes, I’m talking about 3rd-party retailers, both physical and virtual).

Checking Out The Price-List

McAfee Pricing PlansAre you keeping up with our McAfee review? Great, now let’s take a look at the costs:

  • The most basic McAfee antivirus is available for $39.99. It’s good for only 1 PC for 12 months.
  • McAfee Antivirus Plus costs $59.99 and can protect up to ten devices. However, please remember that the gadgets on iOS won’t be protected.
  • Internet Security will be yours for $89.99. It’s also capable of simultaneously protecting ten devices.
  • Total Protection is the most expensive product: for 1 device, you’ll have to pay $59.99 ($89.99 for 5 and $99.99 for 10). As for LiveSafe, it generally comes installed on brand-new personal computers and will also cost $99.99 for 1 year.

You’ll be happy to learn that McAfee Plus, Internet Security, and Total Protection come with a McAfee Free Trial period that allows you to use them for 30 days and see whether you like a certain product or not. Moreover, as the company often runs promotions, you can your preferred product with a discount. The 2018 McAfee products work with the Windows 7-10 operating systems. As for the cross-platform bundles, they work with Mac, iOS, Android, as well as the trendy digital watches.

McAfee Support and Customer Service

McAfee Scheduled ScanOn the official website, you’ll find a FAQ section along with an extensive knowledge base. The online chat system is great; you can also go old-school and call support or send an email. Furthermore, the users are able to buy all kinds of support packages. Tech support is available 24/7 (the phone number is toll-free, of course). McAfee support follows the overall policy of the company and does everything in its power to help the customers.


If you think that this is the easiest and most pleasant part, you’re wrong. While writing this McAfee review, I went to the official website to download the antivirus. It took me 50+ minutes to load the damn thing on my computer. In case you were wondering, the McAfee download speed is super-slow, as it usually takes 15 to 20 minutes. Installation failed the first time because of some software that had a “beef” with McAfee Total Protection. So, I had to use their apps to cleanse my OS. Be advised: during installation, you’ll be asked to provide information about your credit card for the auto-renewal of the license. Go to the “Accounts” menu after installation to turn this off.

McAffee Instalation


Now, if you ever feel the need to uninstall this fine Antivirus, the McAfee Removal Tool will help you out with that. Usually, the standard uninstallation routine of the Operating System should suffice. However, in some cases, it can be quite challenging to get rid of it. That’s when the McAfee Removal Tool comes in handy. Remember: before using it, always go through with the standard Windows procedure first. It works for pretty much every single product from this company. It’s a known fact that different antivirus products don’t co-exist well with each other and that can lead to some unpleasant consequences. This is exactly why this tool is so important.


It works with Windows 2000 all the way up to Windows 10. Folks have been complaining that Win 2000 and XP aren’t compatible with the McAfee Removal Tool anymore, though. Make sure you’ve got the latest version of MCPR so that it can recognize the newest antivirus packages. It’s available not only on Win but also on Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android. The entire process is pretty straightforward.

Bottom Line

Without a doubt, McAfee is one of the most respected and trusted brands in the world of antiviruses. It’s capable of protecting your computers and gadgets from the modern-day threats. The 30-day money-back guarantee, 24/7 support and advanced encryption options on the more advanced products turn it into a competitive player on the market. The unfairly high “pressure” they put on your device and the average real-time protection are the biggest downsides of the McAfee products. But again, the prices are competitive. And anti-spam, parental control, and the True Key app only add to the overall appeal.

Written by Author
Steve Johnson
Steve Johnson
Steve the Tech Teacher is your source for common sense advice for the tech in your life. For over 10 years I've worked with technology, so let me work with you.

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