Bitdefender vs TotalAV

Finding your ideal antivirus software can be daunting, yet Bitdefender and TotalAV emerge as leaders. But which one takes the crown?

I’ve simplified this task by narrowing the competition to Bitdefender and TotalAV.

This article dives into a comparative analysis of both software, examining their pricing, features, malware protection levels, and overall performance. I’ve run my own malware and performance tests and will compare these findings with the latest data from independent antivirus test results.

Eager to know the victor? I tip my hat to Bitdefender. Its superior malware defense, user-friendly interface, and robust feature set make it a standout choice. Whether you’re an avid or occasional internet user, Bitdefender is a valuable asset for safeguarding your digital treasures.

Got some time on your hands? Keep reading to delve deeper into the comparison.

Summary: Bitdefender vs TotalAV

Bitdefender Premium Security

  • Protection against ransomware
  • Password manager
  • Unlimited and secure VPN

TotalAV Antivirus Pro

  • Ransomware protection
  • System tune-up
  • Cloud scanning
No valueBitdefenderTotalAV
Antivirus and Antispyware
Web protection/anti phishing
Parental controls
Password Manager
Webcam protection
PC Cloud Backup
Ransomware protection
Banking and Payment Protection
Network Attack Protection
Secure data encryption
Automatically update apps
File Shredder
Performance Optimization
Identity Theft Protection
Best deal (per month)$4.16
Get 50% OFF!
SAVE 80% on TotalAV Pro

BEST DEAL FOR BITDEFENDER:Save 56% on a one-year subscription and get premium security and privacy tools for up to 10 devices.

BEST DEAL FOR TOTALAV:Save $80 on a TotalAV subscription and get 24/7 live support and a 30-day money-back guarantee.



Founded in Romania in 2001, Bitdefender has over 500 million users all over the world. It offers innovative ways to help keep consumers safe online. It’s not just home users who trust Bitdefender, but many businesses depend on reliable protection too.


TotalAV has become a world-renowned antivirus software provider. With an array of awards already collected for its malware protection and features, TotalAV antivirus has become one of the leaders worldwide. More than 25 million users currently trust this software to keep them safe online. It is owned by Group Limited and is presently registered in the United Kingdom.

Pricing and compatibility

Prices vary across antivirus software. There are many options to choose from, including free versions. Although it’s tempting to consider free alternatives, these don’t offer the same protection level that their paid counterparts include. The table below shows the pricing options available with Bitdefender and TotalAV. It is interesting to see that Bitdefender and TotalAV offer free antivirus software, but this will only protect you from the most basic threats.

As you can see above, Bitdefender has various plans to suit your needs. Prices range from free to $159.99 per year. The highest-priced version offers protection for up to 10 devices. You also have the choice of a family pack, a small business plan, or the latest Bitdefender BOX.

TotalAV’s pricing structure is quite simple. The company offers free and paid versions, with the paid version allowing you to protect three, five, or six devices.

If you still can’t decide what the best antivirus software is for you, both have offers to help you. Bitdefender offers a free 30-day trial, so you can try it before you buy. You don’t even need to submit any payment information. TotalAV additionally offers a free 30-day trial on all of its software.

At the time of writing, both brands offer first-year discounts. Bitdefender Premium Security costs $49.99 for the first year while TotalAV offers a huge 70 percent off its paid version. This means that TotalAV Antivirus Pro for three devices costs $29 for the first year. After the first year, you will be charged $99 for a subscription.

Both Bitdefender and TotalAV are compatible with all major operating systems, including Windows, Android, and macOS devices.

Effectiveness against malware

Malware protection is the main factor to consider when purchasing antivirus software. Malware constantly evolves, creating more sophisticated threats over time. It’s vital that you have the best antivirus software to combat these risks. I conducted some tests to find out which was the best at tackling these issues.

For the first test, I downloaded four test malware files from the European Institute for Computer Antivirus Research (EICAR). I then turned off real-time detection to see how they compared. The second test saw me using some live samples to see how well the software blocked them. The results are shown below.

No valueBitdefenderTotalAV
Eicar Sample 1BlockedAllowed
Eicar Sample 2BlockedBlocked
Eicar Sample 3BlockedAllowed
Eicar Sample 4BlockedAllowed
Live Sample 1 (Adware)BlockedDetected
Live Sample 2 (Trojan)BlockedDetected
Live Sample 3 (Trojan)BlockedDetected
Best deal (per month)$4.16
Get 50% OFF!
SAVE 80% on TotalAV Pro

As the table shows, Bitdefender detected and blocked all four EICAR samples, while TotalAV only blocked one EICAR sample and allowed in the other three. All live samples were detected by TotalAV but not blocked from being downloaded.

Even with these findings, I wanted to back them up with results from independent tests.

AV-Test is a testing organization that evaluates the protection provided by antivirus software. Some of the latest results from July/August 2023 showed that Bitdefender scored an exceptional 100 percent in protection against 0-day malware attacks, inclusive of web and e-mail threats (Real-World Testing). It also scored 100% for Detection of widespread and prevalent malware discovered in the last four weeks (the AV-TEST reference set).

TotalAV scored slightly less for the same period, with 97.9 percent protection against 0-day malware attacks, inclusive of web and e-mail threats (Real-World Testing). It scored 100% detection of widespread and prevalent malware discovered in the last four weeks (the AV-TEST reference set).

I also looked at AV-Comparatives, another independent test website. The most recent real-world protection test from September 2023 presented Bitdefender with a score of 99.6 percent. TotalAV scored a little lower, with 9.2 percent.

AV-Comparatives also show results for false alarms. These false alarm tests highlight how accurately a file is identified depending on whether it is an actual threat or safe to use. A lower score is better. Bitdefender came in among the top five performers in the test, picking up two false alarms. TotalAV fared slightly worse, recording four false alarms.

Impact on PC performance

An important factor when purchasing antivirus software is the effect it could have on your PC’s performance and speed. The last thing you want is to spend money on software only for it to slow down your PC. Below are the results from tests I carried out to see if my PC was impacted. 

No valueBitdefenderTotalAV
Full Scan Time (minutes)110199
Number of scanned objects42000001200000
Full Scan CPU Utilization %56100
Full Scan Memory Utilization %8182
Full Scan Disk Utilization (seconds)3577101
Control CPU Utliization % (no scan)3281
Control Memory Utilization % (no scan)7475
Control Disk Utilization (seconds) (no scan)65332
Quick Scan Time (seconds)3381740
Quick Scan CPU Utilization %5694
Quick Scan Memory Utilization %81154
Quick Scan Disk Utilization %355775
Best deal (per month)$4.16
Get 50% OFF!
SAVE 80% on TotalAV Pro

The table above summarizes the full and quick scan functions on both Bitdefender and TotalAV. Bitdefender took 110 minutes to complete a full scan in comparison to TotalAV’s 199 minutes. Bitdefender also scanned an impressive 4,200,000 items, far more than TotalAV. TotalAV’s quick scan took 1,740 seconds, making it one of the slowest quick scans I’ve seen.

So, how did these scans affect the PC’s performance?

The table above also highlights the effects Bitdefender and TotalAV had on my PC when no scan was present and when a full scan was in motion.

As you can see above, Bitdefender had very little impact on my PC’s performance when a scan was not taking place. In comparison, disk and memory utilization were both much higher with TotalAV, resulting in a larger impact on the PC’s performance.

I wanted to compare my results with AV-Comparatives’ findings. The test outlines the impact antivirus software has on PC performance when running these eight common tasks:

  • Downloading files
  • Browsing websites
  • File copying: first and subsequent run 
  • Installing and uninstalling applications
  • Archiving and unarchiving
  • Launching applications: first and subsequent run

In the October 2023 test, Bitdefender scored an extremely fast rating overall. The exception was launching apps on the first and subsequent runs. TotalAV scored well except for installing and uninstalling applications, archiving/unarchiving files, and first run performance.

As you can see from my own tests and independent tests, Bitdefender outperforms TotalAV in terms of its performance and impact on the PC. TotalAV scored admirably, but Bitdefender shines as an excellent malware protector whilst having little impact on your device.


There are more features to think about other than the antivirus scanner itself. These will help enhance your PC’s protection when using the internet. I have chosen some of the stand-out features from both Bitdefender and TotalAV to help give you an idea of which one offers the most protection for the best value.

Bitdefender Premium Protection

  • Unlimited VPN traffic
  • Priority support
  • Device optimizer
  • Window, macOS, Android, and iOS protection 
  • Parental control 
  • Multi-layer ransomware protection 
  • Protection against malware, spyware, adware

TotalAV Antivirus Pro

  • Ransomware protection
  • Protection against phishing scams
  • Protection against adware and spyware
  • Free up system space
  • System tune-up
  • Web shield extension
  • Browser cleaner and manager
  • Cloud scanning

Here are the feature highlights of both:


  • Unlimited VPN Traffic: VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. This is a vital tool that protects you online. By encrypting your internet traffic, the VPN protects your online presence and secures things such as passwords, bank details, and personal downloads. 
  • Multi-layer Ransomware Protection: This safeguards all your documents, videos, pictures, and music against malicious ransomware through a multi-layered approach.
  • Device Optimizer: If you’re not a fan of software sending you unnecessary notifications, this is a very helpful feature. It will halt those annoying popups by detecting when you are working, playing, or watching a movie on your device.


  • Cloud scanning: Want the quickest protection against zero-day malware threats? Cloud scanning will do this by scanning your device regularly and protecting it quickly.
  • System tune-up: System tune-up finds any possible areas that could help boost the performance and speed of your device.
  • Protection against phishing scams: This tool is fantastic at blocking the latest phishing URLs. This helps protect you against harmful malware and scans on your device.

You’re spoilt for choice with Bitdefender and TotalAV, thanks to their additional features. Nevertheless, Bitdefender’s VPN and multi-layered tools can’t be ignored. They block malware and provide ultimate protection against any threats.

Signup and installation

The signup and installation process should be straightforward for all users, whether you’re a novice or a seasoned pro. Bitdefender has a clear and simple design on its homepage, clearly showing what product you have chosen, your discount, and the plan type purchased. Bitdefender also plainly states that your plans are on auto-renewal, but it doesn’t show a subscription length option.

TotalAV is very easy to use. Once you’ve selected a product, you are taken straight to the checkout page. As with Bitdefender, TotalAV clearly shows the amount you are saving to reassure you that it’s the right choice. ‘Free additional devices’ and ‘free tune-up’ are noted alongside the amount you save on these features. The option for monthly payments isn’t available, which is a bit disappointing as TotalAV’s prices are somewhat more expensive than Bitdefender’s. 

How easy is the interface to use?

Antivirus software is something you will use quite regularly, so it’s important you find it easy to operate.

Upon opening Bitdefender’s dashboard, it immediately informs you if you are safe. There is a quick scan option and the option to open the VPN and access the safe pay section. The left panel gives you easy access to additional features with an option to use support if required. What stood out to me was the color scheme of gray and green. I found this very appealing to the eye, making it easy to read all the information.

TotalAV has a very simple design. For those who are less experienced in using antivirus software, this could be a welcome sight. Once you open the software, you are informed that your PC is protected, and you have the option to run a simple smart scan. As with Bitdefender, the left-hand icon is very helpful in letting you navigate to malware protection, adjust your personal settings, and use many more features.

Customer support

All the best antivirus software providers offer reliable customer support. Bitdefender offers 24/7 assistance through telephone, online chats, and a ticket system. There is a large online support hub to help solve non-urgent issues, with very helpful how-to videos, too.

TotalAV also offers 24/7 live chat support via its website. This is quick and easy to use and often the most popular method of communication with customers. There is also the option to contact TotalAV via email or phone. Comprehensive FAQs and other support documentation are available on the TotalAV website.

Bitdefender vs TotalAV Conclusion

There are many great features included with Bitdefender and TotalAV. Overall, Bitdefender has come out on top. By comparing two of the top antivirus software providers on the market today, it’s clear that Bitdefender has one of the best performance rates in the antivirus world. 

Offering exceptional malware protection, Bitdefender will keep your details private with additional features like a VPN. TotalAV offers a great first-year discount but is a more expensive option in the long run and offers fewer features than the Bitdefender suite. Nothing is more important than your privacy and protection, and Bitdefender is a leader in this class.

See also: