With current antiretroviral therapy options, eradication of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is not possible, yet. For this reason many patients have to face lifelong treatment. Several epidemiological studies suggest a normal life expectancy for HIV-infected patients with a regular and continuous treatment. The success of treatment can be evaluated by virologic, immunologic and clinical parameters. Viral load is the most important indicator of response to treatment. Today, especially in therapy-naive patients without pre-existing mutations, the risk of treatment failure is very low. All current initial regimens consist of two nucleoside analogues combined with an integrase inhibitor, a boosted protease inhibitor, or nonnucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitor. In this review, treatment of HIV infection is summarized in the light of current guidelines.