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ArticleReviewsMcAfee Total Protection Ultimate review (2023) complete protection

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate review (2023) complete protection

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate provides everything you need to protect your devices from online threats, including antivirus, antimalware, ransomware protection, and more.




The powerful and all-around security suite McAfee Total Protection Ultimate does a great job of keeping you safe from all kinds of online threats. It is simple to use and comes with many useful features, such as the ability to find malware in real time, protect against ransomware and phishing, offer parental controls, a password manager, and encrypt files. McAfee Total Protection Ultimate is a good choice for people who want to keep their devices and info as safe as possible.

McAfee is one of the most well-known antivirus companies. In the past few years, the company has put in a lot of work to make its security products more user-friendly, not just for tech-savvy people. A lot of antivirus software uses slang that not many people can understand. That’s why McAfee focused on using language that everyone can understand in the latest version of McAfee Total Protection Ultimate. This also includes the notifications. The old ones could make people confused, but the new ones are much clearer and won’t make anyone panic.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Description

These changes, along with a new look for the Windows app, have made Total Protection a lot easier to use. These days, McAfee+ (McAfee Plus, formerly Total Protection) is one of the best ways to protect your digital and personal data. If you want to protect your devices and digital information from malware, McAfee also has a VPN, identity theft protection, and a lot of other useful tools. One thing we can say is that this antivirus is a good buy, even though it’s not perfect.

Take a look at the list of features that are included below. You can schedule scan times, do a full scan of your hard drive, and also scan custom locations like external volumes. You can also choose what Total Protection does when it finds suspicious files, such as deleting them, notifying you, or putting them in a quarantine. A feature that scans the background in real time is useful and can catch suspicious files as they appear. You can then choose what to do with the found files.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Pricing

McAfee has been known for a long time to offer unlimited licenses, but as was already said, McAfee Total Protection is no longer part of this. You can get a license for one device for $89.99 a year, or you can get three plates for $99.99. Five licenses cost the most, at $119.99. That’s not even close to the old deal of $124.99 for unlimited devices. If you buy three licenses, they cost $99.99, which is more than most other products on the market. The price for a single license is $89.99.

As of now, only Panda Dome Complete and Panda Dome Premium cost more for three licenses. They cost $106.99 and $166.99 each per year. Norton 360 with LifeLock Select costs a little more, $130.99 a year for five licenses. That price, on the other hand, gets you five licenses for the suite, five VPN licenses with unlimited bandwidth, 50GB of online storage for your backups, and LifeLock theft protection.

Key Features Table

A full security suite like McAfee Total Protection Ultimate can keep your devices and personal data safe from online threats with many different features. It has a firewall, real-time protection, and web protection, which are all important parts of a good antivirus program. It also comes with extras like a VPN, a password manager, a file shredder, and protection against identity theft.

Antivirus and anti-malware protectionReal-time protection against known and emerging malware threats, including viruses, ransomware, and spyware.
Web protectionBlocks malicious websites and phishing attacks to protect your online browsing.
FirewallMonitors and blocks unauthorized access to your computer and network.
Password managerSecurely stores and manages all your passwords in one place.
File shredderPermanently deletes sensitive files so they cannot be recovered.
PC optimizerSpeeds up your computer and improves performance.
Identity theft protectionMonitors the dark web for your personal information and alerts you if it is found.
VPNEncrypts your internet traffic to protect your privacy and security online.
Family safety featuresHelps you keep your children safe online with parental controls and content filtering.
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McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Installation

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate

The same thing you do with McAfee’s antivirus: you start by activating your registration code online. After that, you can either install it right away on the device you’re using or send links to other devices to install it. You get a serial number along with your activation code when you download the product. Keep that number safe, because you may need it to reinstall the product.

Once it’s set up, McAfee is ready to keep you safe. There is still a banner at the top of the main window that tells you about recent activities or things that need to be done. You can see six panels below that: Antivirus; Check Your Protection Score; Secure VPN, ID Protection, Tracker Remover; and Protect More Devices. Also, you can see your protection score. The stand-alone antivirus looks almost the same, but Secure VPN and ID Protection are missing. Instead, Browser Security and Secure Apps are there.

There is a simple row of icons on the left side of the main window that say Home, My Protection, Protection Score, Account, Help, Settings, and Feedback. When you click “My Protection,” a menu with all of the protection options will appear. The options are split into four groups: “Protect Your PC,” “Protect Yourself on the Web,” “Protect Your Identity,” and “More Security.” When you buy this suite, the features in the first and last groups don’t change.

SafeVPN is added to the group of web protection tools in the suite. The Password Manager and ID Protection apps are in the identity group. In order to finish setting up, follow the on-screen instructions to add McAfee’s WebAdvisor to your default browser, which should be Chrome, Edge, or Firefox.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: User Experience

Except for real-time scanning and scheduled scans, you’ll be interacting with McAfee’s app a lot to use its features, so we’ll describe the app’s experience. The installation wizard checked our system for requirements and other programs that could interfere with the installation. It detected Bitdefender VPN, which we were testing, so we disabled it and continued. The rest went smoothly, and McAfee was up and running quickly.

A clean home screen greeted us when we launched the program. A brief status report was at the top. Below it were PC, Web, and Identity protection shortcuts. Bottom button leads directly to scan interface. We liked how neatly organized the features were, but if you’re in a hurry, the gear icon at the top right opens all feature settings. The color-coded features—green “on” icons for on features and red “off” icons for off features—were also nice. As with traffic lights, it was clear which features needed attention.

Warning: Web Protection changed our default search engine without our consent. McAfee Secure Search powered by Yahoo became our default search engine after we installed it. We usually use Google. We didn’t like this because Yahoo isn’t as good as Google as a search engine. Naturally, we returned to Google after learning. Fortunately, we learned that to do a private search, we just need to type “McAfee” into the URL bar and hit space. Doing so temporarily enabled McAfee Secure Search, which is better than using it as our default search engine.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Protection

We need to do more than just keep our devices safe from malware and viruses to be digitally protected. The web is a big part of this change. Our digital life is now connected to other parts of our lives because we use online services like social media and connect our devices to the internet. With McAfee+, the newest and most complete digital security suite from McAfee, you can protect yourself from malware, among other things.

  • PC: It uses antivirus software and a firewall to protect users’ devices from viruses, malware, spyware, and ransomware.
  • Web: It keeps people safe from cyber threats while they browse the web. It gets rid of cookies and other trackers that websites might use and lets users know when they’re about to visit a dangerous website. A virtual private network (VPN) is also available with all plans.
  • Identity: It uses a variety of built-in tools to try to stop and find identity theft. One thing it has is a password manager. It also looks for signs of identity theft on the internet and the “dark web.” The most expensive plan also includes insurance against identity theft.

Our tests were mostly about protecting PCs because we wanted to see how well McAfee’s antivirus software did its job. This is a review of an antivirus program, after all.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Performance

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate is a complete security suite with many features, such as antivirus, antimalware, ransomware, web, and identity theft protection. It’s also one of the lightest security suites on the market, so it won’t slow down your system much. The latest performance test by AV-TEST gave McAfee Total Protection Ultimate a perfect score of 6/6 in all three categories: protection, performance, and ease of use.

Over 10,000 samples of malware were put on a system as part of the test, and McAfee Total Protection Ultimate was able to find and remove all of them without giving any false positives. The test also looked at how McAfee Total Protection Ultimate affected system performance. It was found that the software had almost no effect on the time it took to boot up, open applications, or access files.

Here is a more in-depth look at how well McAfee Total Protection Ultimate worked in different areas:

🛡️ Protection from viruses and malware: McAfee Total Protection Ultimate protects your computer from viruses and malware in a number of ways, such as through real-time scanning, on-demand scanning, and protection in the cloud. The software can find and get rid of both known and unknown types of malware, including ransomware.

🌐 Web protection: McAfee Total Protection Ultimate’s web protection feature stops phishing attacks and dangerous websites. It also checks downloads for viruses before you put them on your computer.

🕵️‍♂️ Help with identity theft: McAfee Total Protection Ultimate has many features that can help keep your identity safe from being stolen, such as monitoring the dark web, social media, and your credit report.

🚀 Performance: One of the lightest security suites on the market, McAfee Total Protection Ultimate has very little effect on how fast your computer runs. In the AV-TEST test, McAfee Total Protection Ultimate had almost no effect on the time it took to boot up, open programs, or access files.

Overall, McAfee Total Protection Ultimate is a great security suite that protects you completely and works very well. People who want a security suite that won’t slow down their system and can protect it from a lot of different threats should choose this one.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Mobile apps

As with all security software, the McAfee Mobile Security apps for Android and iOS have different features. However, both have the standard stuff, like protecting you while you browse the web (including phishing) and letting you locate and wipe your device from afar. There’s also Thief Cam, which lets you take pictures of the person who takes your phone.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Windows app

Last year, the Windows app got a new look. Because it’s not too crowded with details, it’s big and easy to see if everything is okay. It’s still nice and clear after more changes. A message carousel at the top works a lot like Bitdefender’s. It gives you tips and alerts about features that aren’t set up yet or, in this case, apps that are out of date. There are six tiles below that. Some of them show you the status of your antivirus, VPN, ID protection, browser security, and tracker remover at a glance.

You can click on the three dots to learn more about them or on the arrow to get to that feature and use it. There is no separate VPN app; the VPN is built in. You can pick which country to connect to. As was already said, you can use as much data as you want as long as your subscription is set to automatically renew. This is a big plus compared to competitors who usually charge extra for unlimited use. The main problem, which is normal for a VPN that comes with antivirus software, is that it won’t let you access your favorite streaming service. This is because the VPN is for security, not fun.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Android and iOS app

In addition to testing the McAfee antivirus for Windows, we also tested the mobile app version. McAfee Mobile Security is the name of the app for iOS. This app is called Mobile Security: VPN Proxy & Anti Theft Safe WiFi on Android. McAfee is known for making simple apps that protect your computer from viruses, malware, and other threats. Both of these apps did just that. People have given both apps high marks for this reason—4.7 stars on iOS and 4.6 stars on Android.

An independent IT security institute called AV-Test also gave the apps high marks in lab tests. The researchers came to the conclusion that the McAfee antivirus for Android caught 99.6% of malware attacks in real time and all of the widespread Android malware that had been found in the previous four weeks. McAfee did a great job with those results—they’re the best available for Android antivirus software.

Safe VPN works on all four platforms, but not exactly the same way on each. It only uses the trusted WireGuard protocol on Windows and iOS. On the other platforms, it doesn’t. The feature for safe reconnect only works on Windows and Android. A feature on Android only called “App level protection” works the same way that split tunneling does in many other products. Since VPN support for macOS is still pretty new, it’s not a surprise that Mac users don’t get any of these high-end features.

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate: Pros and Cons

McAfee Total Protection Ultimate protects you from a wide range of online threats. It keeps your devices and personal information safe with strong antivirus, firewall, and privacy features. Its support for multiple platforms makes sure that all of your devices are safe, making it a great choice for full digital protection.


  • Very good phishing protection
  • ID protection service
  • No-limits VPN
  • Nice features like file shredder and home network analyzer


  • Spam filtering and parental control no longer present
  • No kill switch in VPN

Final Words

Total Protection finds and gets rid of a lot of different kinds of possible threats and unwanted software activity. It works on Macs, PCs, and mobile devices. During our tests, we did notice that it slowed down our Mac, but overall, it did its job well and wasn’t too bothersome.

McAfee is a great security suite. A VPN, file shredder, app update checker, and home network scanner are some of the nice extra features that come with this good security software. The price is also very reasonable. Some things bother me about McAfee, like the VPN bandwidth limit and the way the app is designed, but all in all, it’s still a great choice.

Amy Hinckley
Amy Hinckley
The Dell Inspiron 15 that her father purchased from QVC sparked the beginning of her interest in technology. At Bollyinside, Amy Hinckley is in charge of content editing and reviewing products. Amy's interests outside of working include going for bike rides, playing video games, and watching football when she's not at her laptop.


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The powerful and all-around security suite McAfee Total Protection Ultimate does a great job of keeping you safe from all kinds of online threats. It is simple to use and comes with many useful features, such as the ability to find malware in real time, protect against ransomware and phishing, offer parental controls, a password manager, and encrypt files. McAfee Total Protection Ultimate is a good choice for people who want to keep their devices and info as safe as possible.McAfee Total Protection Ultimate review (2023) complete protection