Avast Fast Fixes

Avast Fast FixesFix broken updates, stop false positives and discover the hidden Repair modeAvast has a real-time scanning mode called Active Protection that checks program launches, sent and received emails and visited websites. If you’ve updated the program this could have enabled new options or ones that you’d previously disabled. You can tweak these options to speed up specific activities, or reduce the program’s optimisation to speed everything up – potentially reducing levels of protection.Click Settings, Active Protection, then either move the various On switches to Off, or click Customize to disable only some aspects. For example, click Customize alongside Mail Shield then remove the tick from ‘Scan outbound mail (SMTP)’, because this feature protects other people’s PCs – not yours. Then click Scan, ‘Scan for viruses’, Settings, then click Sensitivity and click a lower bar on the ‘Heuristics sensitivity’ chart.
No antivirus program is perfect, and Avast will sometimes flag a file or website as unsafe even when it isn’t (known as a ‘false positive’ result). This could affect Word documents containing your own macros, for example. You should always research suspect items using Google, but once you’re certain something is safe, you can add it as an exception to stop Avast from repeatedly flagging it as a threat. Click Settings, General, then Exclusions. To exclude a file, click ‘File paths’ followed by ‘browse’, or to exclude a website click Urls then type or paste the URL and press Enter.
Have you checked that the program is set to apply updates automatically? Click Scan, followed by General, then Update. Under Virus Definitions, click Settings then select ‘Automatic updates’. Click the Update button above that. Now scroll down to Program, click Settings, select ‘Automatic updates’, and click the Update button there. If it still doesn’t update, use Avast’s hidden Repair option. Open the Windows Control Panel, then click Programs followed by ‘Uninstall a program’. Click to select Avast, then click Uninstall. Now click Repair, followed by Continue, then follow the prompts.
This usually happens when files are encrypted or password-protected, preventing Avast from scanning their contents – but there could be other reasons. Click ‘Show results’ followed by Warnings and then look in the Status column to see the problem. If the file was moved to Avast’s Virus Chest, click Scan followed by ‘Quarantine (Virus Chest)’ and then double-click the relevant file. Note down the information displayed in the Properties box, then enter this into Google for more information. If your problem is that Avast won’t scan compressed files, read the next fix.
By default, Avast doesn’t scan the contents of compressed files (such as those with a .zip or .rar file extension), so this isn’t a fault in the program. However, you can change this behaviour by clicking Scan, followed by ‘Scan for viruses’, and then Settings followed by Packers. Tick ‘All packers’ then click OK.
In the free version of Avast the Software Updater must be run manually, so click Scan, followed by ‘Scan for outdated software’, followed by the appropriate Update buttons. If you’re using a paid-for version of Avast, but some programs still aren’t updating, check that you haven’t inadvertently clicked the Ignore Updates link. If so, click ‘Stop ignoring’. If the updates still won’t work, click Settings at the foot of the Software Updater page then click ‘Database reset (troubleshooting)’, followed by ‘Reset database now’ and then Yes to confirm.
Avast’s real-time protection can be a problem when playing full-screen games, because its pop-up alerts interrupt your enjoyment or stop a game from running correctly. The fix isn’t to disable Avast but to enable ‘Silent/Gaming Mode’, as this suppresses the program’s alerts while keeping your PC protected. Do this by right-clicking the Avast icon in the Windows Taskbar and ticking the Silent/Gaming Mode option, or in the General tab under Settings in the main program interface.

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