Systweak Review: Quick Expert Summary
Systweak Antivirus is a minimalistic antivirus program for Windows that has an intuitive dashboard and excellent malware detection rates, but not much else. Systweak’s malware scanner detected 98.5% of the malware I downloaded to my virtual PC, which is comparable to some of the biggest names in the antivirus industry.
However, unlike other antivirus brands, Systweak doesn’t come with many extra features. Systweak does have web protections, a firewall, an ad blocker, and a startup manager, but all of these features are either bad or don’t really improve upon Windows’s built-in functions. Systweak also offers a VPN and password manager, but these products are only available as separate purchases.
Systweak is also missing a lot of important features like system tune-up tools, data breach monitoring, or parental controls, all of which are included in the best antivirus programs in 2021. Also, while Systweak offers a free (but basic) Android app, there’s no protection for macOS or iOS.
Overall, if you’re just looking for a simple antivirus scanner, Systweak isn’t a bad option. However, if you’re looking for complete protection for all of your devices, I can’t recommend Systweak. That said, Systweak comes with a risk-free 30-day trial as well as a generous 60-day money-back guarantee, so you have plenty of time to test the program and see if it works for you.
|Overall Rank||#21 out of 62 antiviruses|
|VPN||Yes (separate purchase)|
|Money-Back Guarantee||60 days|
Systweak Antivirus Full Review
I spent weeks researching and testing Systweak Antivirus to see whether or not it can compete with the best Windows antiviruses in 2021.
While I was pretty impressed with Systweak’s antivirus scanner and real-time protection, I was disappointed with its firewall, exploit protection, and web protection. I also dislike that Systweak sells its VPN and password manager as standalone products instead of bundling them together with the antivirus.
But overall, Systweak provides good malware protection for users looking for a basic antivirus scanner, it’s one of the most intuitive programs out there, and it comes with a generous 60-day money-back guarantee.
Systweak Antivirus Security Features
Systweak’s antivirus engine is powered by Avira’s powerful anti-malware technology, so I wasn’t surprised that Systweak performed really well in my testing. Systweak’s scanning engine uses Avira’s massive malware database to identify known malware files, as well as Avira’s Protection Cloud, which uses machine learning, advanced heuristics, and other advanced techniques to detect and block zero-day malware files.
Systweak Antivirus offers 3 types of scans that can be performed manually or scheduled ahead of time:
- Quick Scan. Only scans areas of the system where malware is typically found (cached files, downloads, program files, etc).
- Deep Scan. Analyzes the entire system.
- Custom Scan. Scans a single file, folder, or your whole disk.
For my testing, I downloaded 900 malware files to my virtual PC, including viruses, trojans, ransomware, cryptojackers, worms, keyloggers, and spyware. I hid the malware files among my temporary files, system files, registry, and program files, and then I ran a deep scan.
Systweak discovered 98.5% of my test files, which is really impressive. These results are comparable to some of the top-ranked antivirus programs on the market, including TotalAV (which makes sense, since both Systweak and TotalAV use the exact same technology for malware detection).
However, Systweak’s deep scan took a pretty long time — just over 3 hours. For comparison, Norton and Avira both take under 1 hour to complete similar scans. But, considering how long the deep scan took, I didn’t notice any slowdown in my computer’s performance. I continued to work on spreadsheets and documents, browsed the web, streamed videos, and even played a game without any problems. Some competitors like Kaspersky can cause significant system slowdown during scans, so this is a big plus for Systweak.
Once Systweak completed the full scan on my PC, it automatically sent all of the detected threats to quarantine, so there was nothing more for me to do. I could view all of the quarantined items and restore any false positives, but Systweak didn’t flag any legitimate files as malware.
There’s also an option to whitelist certain files, folders, or parts of your system, so Systweak Antivirus will automatically skip over these items when performing a scan. And because Systweak takes a long time to perform a full scan, it’s great to be able to whitelist programs and cut down the time Systweak spends scanning your system.
Overall, Systweak’s scanning engine is effective at detecting malware and it’s easy to use, but it takes a lot longer than most competitors to perform a scan. It’s also pretty lightweight and doesn’t take up a lot of resources, so it runs quietly in the background without affecting your computer’s performance.
Systweak Antivirus offers four types of real-time protection, including malware, exploit, web, and firewall protections. To test Systweak’s real-time malware protection, I attempted to download the same 900 file malware cache that I used to test the disk scanner, and Systweak blocked 98.5% of the files (same as the deep scan).
While I was impressed with Systweak’s real-time malware protection, I couldn’t say the same for its real-time exploit and web protections. I tested Systweak’s exploit protection against a series of common web-based exploits, and Systweak was unable to identify and block pages containing exploits for Internet Explorer, Chrome, Java, Adobe Flash, and more.
Systweak’s anti-phishing protection was just as bad as the exploit protection — I was able to visit 10 phishing websites without Systweak offering a single warning or blocking a single site. By contrast, Chrome’s built-in phishing protections blocked 7 of these sites, and Norton’s anti-phishing feature blocked all 10.
I also think Systweak’s firewall is less useful than the firewall that is built into all Windows PCs. Systweak’s firewall detected most of the network activity in my testing, but it failed to detect an ARP spoofing test, which Windows’s firewall was able to detect.
Windows’s firewall also has a ton of advanced settings for users who want to fine-tune their network protections — it’s easy to adjust inbound and outbound rules, create protocols for domain monitoring, and determine what network traffic is logged and reported. Systweak’s basic firewall only offers the ability to whitelist certain incoming or outgoing processes, which makes it a much less useful firewall. On the other hand, competitors like Norton provide smart firewalls with a lot of customization options and improved intrusion detection.
Overall, Systweak offers near-perfect real-time malware protection, but its real-time exploit and phishing protections are among the worst I’ve ever tested. Considering that exploit-based attacks and phishing attacks are among the most common threats on the web, I’d really like to see Systweak improve these features as soon as possible. I wasn’t impressed with Systweak’s firewall either, which fails to improve on Windows’s built-in firewall.
StopAll Ads (Ad Blocker)
StopAll Ads is Systweak’s free ad blocking extension — which you can download for Google Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. StopAll Ads uses Anti-Adblock Killer (Lite) and EasyList to filter out ads, but you can also add your own filter lists to block ads and trackers.
Systweak’s ad blocker works similarly to other ad blockers — it automatically blocks ads and tells you how many ads are blocked on each site that you visit. You can choose to disable the blocker whenever you like, which is helpful for websites that can detect when you have an ad blocker.
I compared StopAll Ads to uBlock Origin and visited five websites that are heavy on ads. As you can see in the table below, StopAll Ads performed quite poorly and only blocked around 25% of the ads that uBlock Origin blocked.
|Website||# of Ads Blocked By StopAll Ads||# of Ads Blocked By uBlock Origin||StopAll Ads Success Rate (as compared to uBlock Origin)|
StopAll Ads is a free feature, but there are much better free ad blockers out there, like uBlock Origin. Also, Avira and McAfee both come bundled with premium ad and tracker blocking extensions, which also provide anti-phishing and exploit protection.
Systweak Antivirus includes a startup manager that audits the programs that load when you start your computer, and it also gives you the ability to manage your boot sequence. The startup manager is a nice feature, but it’s not really useful — Windows has a basically identical feature that works well. However, Systweak’s startup manager is super easy to access, so it could be useful for users who want to easily optimize their startup sequence.
Systweak Antivirus is a bare-bones antivirus that only includes an antivirus scanner, a basic firewall, and real-time protection against malware, exploits, and phishing attacks. But users can get Systweak’s VPN and password manager (called TweakPass) as separate purchases.
I honestly don’t like this solution, as competing brands like Norton and McAfee offer all of their extra features inside their premium online security suites. That said, if you don’t mind paying extra for a VPN and password manager, Systweak VPN and TweakPass are decent products.
Systweak VPN is a good Windows VPN that you can purchase as an add-on for Systweak Antivirus or as a standalone app.
The VPN has over 4,500 servers in 200 locations across 53 countries. This is a really good server network, comparable to some of the best standalone VPNs on the market (for example, ExpressVPN has 3,000+ servers, ProtonVPN has 1,200+ servers, and PrivateVPN has only 150+ servers).
Systweak VPN also has all of the essential security features I want to see in a VPN, including:
- 256-bit AES encryption.
- OpenVPN & IKEv2 protocols.
- No-logs policy.
- Kill switch.
- Unlimited browsing data.
Systweak also has good speeds. During my speed tests, my ping did drastically increase and my download speed decreased, but none of this was noticeable while I browsed the web, streamed content, and downloaded torrents. I did have some minor lag while I was connected to distant servers, but this is perfectly normal.
One of my favorite things about Systweak VPN is that it’s able to unlock geo-blocked streaming services. During my tests, I was able to access several Netflix libraries, including Netflix US, as well as Amazon Prime, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer. Even some standalone VPNs like Private Internet Access aren’t able to unblock all of the popular streaming platforms, so I’m really impressed that Systweak has no issues accessing streaming sites.
Systweak VPN is also a good VPN for torrenting as well as bypassing government firewalls in restrictive countries such as China. In my testing, I was able to quickly and seamlessly download torrenting files from BitTorrent and other torrenting clients, and my colleague in China confirmed that he could access censored sites like Google and YouTube using Systweak VPN.
Systweak VPN’s interface is very easy to use — you can connect to the recommended server with a single click, or you can select a different server from a convenient drop-down menu. While Systweak provides information about the speed of each server once you’re connected to it, I’d like the VPN to display this information before you actually connect to a server. With thousands of servers to choose from, it would be a lot better if Systweak displayed the speed or load capacity before you selected a server (like how CyberGhost does it).
Overall, Systweak VPN works really well and I’m impressed with its ability to bypass geo-restrictions. Systweak VPN is fast, has thousands of servers, and is a good choice for both streaming and torrenting. My only complaint is that the VPN isn’t bundled with Systweak Antivirus, but other than that, I think this VPN is a pretty good deal.
TweakPass (Password Manager)
TweakPass is a secure but basic password manager that’s also available as an addition to Systweak Antivirus or as a separate purchase. TweakPass works on Windows, Android, and iOS, and there’s also a browser extension for Google Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Opera. An app for Mac isn’t available yet, but Mac users can use TweakPass as a browser extension — just not on Safari!
TweakPass offers the following features:
- 256-bit AES encryption.
- Multi-device synchronization.
- Auto-save and auto-fill.
- Password generator.
- Secure notes.
- Biometric login (mobile only).
After setting my master password at setup, I was able to quickly and easily import all of my passwords from my browsers. I then downloaded TweakPass to my Samsung Galaxy and all of my logins automatically synced across my PC and Android.
TweakPass’s Android app is pretty good — it’s really simple to use and gives users the ability to log in with just a fingerprint, which is super convenient. Its functionality and performance are very similar to the Windows app and browser extension.
The TweakPass browser extension offers auto-save, auto-fill, and a password generator. During my tests, the browser extension detected new logins each time, asked me if I wanted to save newly created logins, and seamlessly auto-filled my credentials whenever I wanted to log into a saved online account. TweakPass also accurately filled out my address, email, phone number, and credit card number in basic web forms (but for filling out complex web forms, I recommend RoboForm).
TweakPass is an ok password manager, but it lacks some important features that the best password managers have. It doesn’t offer 2-factor authentication (2FA), password breach monitoring, password vault auditing, or encrypted password sharing — standalone competitors like LastPass and Dashlane offer all of these features for a similar price to TweakPass. However, if you’re just looking for a basic password manager for your Windows, Android, and iOS devices, TweakPass is a decent option.
Systweak Antivirus Plans and Pricing
Systweak offers 3 plans, including:
It is very important to note that Systweak states on its website that the Multi-Device and Family plans include “Home Network Security” and the Family plan also includes “Complete Family Protection”, but this isn’t true. All of the plans are exactly the same, and the only difference between the plans is the number of devices covered.
When I contacted customer support about this discrepancy, they explained that “Home Network Security” and “Complete Family Protection” aren’t features, but that they describe the level of security and protection that Systweak provides — which is simultaneously infuriating and hilarious to me.
Systweak’s plans and pricing overview is pretty misleading, and I’m pretty disappointed that Systweak doesn’t offer any additional features with its more expensive plans. Competitors like Norton or Bitdefender add a wide range of extras with their top-tiered plans, so this is something I’d definitely like to see Systweak do as well.
I honestly think that Systweak is a little overpriced considering that it lacks so many of the helpful additional features provided by its competitors. But Systweak offers a 30-day free trial and a 60-day money-back guarantee, so there’s no risk in trying it out.
Systweak Antivirus Ease of Use and Setup
Systweak Antivirus is really simple to install and use. The whole installation process took less than 5 minutes on my virtual Windows PC, and once everything was set up, I found it very easy to use all of Systweak’s features.
Systweak’s dashboard is very intuitive. There are 3 scan types to choose from, and to initiate any of the scans, all you have to do is press a single button. Scheduling scans is just as easy — just set the day, time, and frequency of the scans, and Systweak will do the rest.
The main dashboard gives you helpful information about your last scan, your scanning schedule, and what protection layers (malware protection, exploit protection, web, and firewall protection) you have turned on or off.
The “Settings” menu allows users to access quarantined files, whitelist certain files, schedule scans, or adjust scan settings with just a few clicks. You can also look at logs of past malware scans and turn on automatic software updates from “Settings”.
All in all, Systweak is a simple user-friendly antivirus that doesn’t have any complicated features or settings. I recommend Systweak for users looking for a basic antivirus program that doesn’t require any technical knowledge to use.
Systweak Mobile App
Systweak Anti-Malware Android app is easy to use and has a clean interface — but it’s not very good. The app includes the following features:
- Deep Scan. Scans apps for malware.
- Security. A list of the secure settings available on your phone.
- Privacy. An audit of different privacy concerns.
I tested the anti-malware scanner on my Samsung Galaxy. I completed a scan of my device and was quite surprised that Systweak scanned only 51 files — this is because the Systweak Anti-Malware app only scans the apps on your phone. It doesn’t scan any other files on your system, which is problematic as malware can hide in various parts of the phone and not just in the apps.
The surprisingly unhelpful Security tab lists the “Secure Settings” on your phone, but if you click on any of these settings, you’ll just be taken to your phone’s settings. I’m really not sure what the point of this feature is, as it doesn’t do anything that you can’t do on your own by simply opening your device’s settings.
Systweak’s only mobile security feature that I really like is the Privacy feature. It scans all of your applications and tells you which apps are using your location, have access to personal information, can monitor calls, etc. This is pretty similar to Avira’s Privacy Audit feature.
Overall, while I like the privacy-focused feature of Systweak’s Android app, I wouldn’t recommend this app for users looking for good antivirus protection — at least not until Systweak starts scanning other areas of Android devices, and not just the apps.
Systweak Antivirus Customer Support
Systweak Antivirus has the following customer support options:
- Website FAQs.
- Website form.
- Email support.
Systweaks FAQs are very basic. They’re more like educational blurbs than actual troubleshooting guides — one of the questions answered in the FAQ is “What’s the difference between Malware and a Virus?” If you’re looking for answers to specific technical questions about Systweak’s products, or are curious about plan details and money-back guarantees, you won’t find anything useful in Systweak’s FAQs.
On the other hand, I like Systweak’s email support. Systweak’s email support team was very helpful and responded to my question within 1 business day. I also tested out the website form, but I couldn’t submit my question.
Systweak’s support options are minimal. There is no telephone support or live chat, which many other brands offer, including Norton. While I’d really like to see Systweak add live chat support to its list of customer support options, I was pleased with the company’s email support team — the reps were friendly, responsive, and helpful, and they answered all of my questions relatively quickly.
Does Systweak Antivirus Offer Good Protection for Windows?
Systweak Antivirus is a minimalistic Windows antivirus with near-perfect malware detection rates. However, its real-time exploit and phishing protection are among the worst I’ve tested, the firewall is pretty weak, and Systweak doesn’t offer any of the helpful extra features found in 2021’s best antiviruses, including data breach monitoring, identity theft protection, parental controls, or even Mac and iOS protection.
Systweak offers a really good VPN and a basic password manager, but these products are only available as separate purchases. While I’d like to see the VPN and password manager bundled with Systweak Antivirus, I would recommend Systweak’s VPN, as it’s fast, has a big server network, unblocks Netflix, supports torrenting, and works in China. The password manager is ok, but it may be too basic for some users, as it doesn’t have password sharing, password security auditing, or any other extras.
Considering that Systweak Antivirus doesn’t have any additional tools, I don’t think it provides good value. Antiviruses like Norton, McAfee, and Bitdefender have better malware detection rates and come with a wide range of additional features for a similar price to Systweak.
On the other hand, Systweak is one of the most intuitive antivirus programs on the market. All of its features are incredibly easy to use, and even inexperienced users shouldn’t have any problems using the software. Plus, Systweak comes with a 30-day free trial and a 60-day money-back guarantee, so you can try it out for yourself and see if it fits your needs.
Systweak Antivirus — Frequently Asked Questions
Is there a Systweak Antivirus free trial?
Yes! Systweak offers a 30-day free trial for all of its plans, as well as a 60-day money-back guarantee, which gives you a total of 90 days to try out its antivirus and see if it’s good enough for you. Systweak’s VPN also comes with a 7-day free trial, and its password manager (TweakPass) includes a 30-day free trial.
Is Systweak Antivirus only available for Windows?
Yes, Systweak Antivirus is only available on Windows computers. However, an anti-malware app is available for Android, and the free StopAll Ads ad blocker is available on Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Opera.
If you’re looking for an antivirus that can protect Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices, you can check out our list of the best antivirus products on the market in 2021 (or just download Norton, which is #1 on the list).
What’s the best Systweak package?
This depends on the number of PCs you want to protect. The only difference between Systweak’s packages is the number of devices they cover. If you’re only looking to protect one PC, the Individual plan is right for you. If you want coverage for 5 or 10 devices, then you should check out the Multi-Device and Family packages, respectively.
I find it pretty irritating that Systweak charges significantly more for its higher-tier packages without providing additional protections. Antiviruses like Norton and McAfee offer valuable extras like identity theft protection, unlimited VPN usage, and other tools with their premium packages.
Is Systweak Anti-Malware mobile app the same as its Windows application?
No, Systweak Anti-Malware mobile app doesn’t provide the same protection or have the same functions as the Windows application. The mobile app only protects Android devices from suspicious apps, but it doesn’t check other areas of your phone. Systweak Anti-Malware is available for free, but it’s not very good.