Author Topic: Boot-Time Scan freezes computer  (Read 2840 times)

Offline oldcodger

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Boot-Time Scan freezes computer
« on: August 29, 2012, 01:39:10 PM »
I guess that I have two questions: 1) Will I hurt anything if I power off the computer in the middle of an Avast boot-time scan?  2) What could cause the computer to freeze during an Avast boot-time scan?

I’m running XP sp3 with Avast 7.  I started a boot-time scan about 3 hours ago and verified that it was running all right before leaving it.  Two hours later I found the computer frozen.  The hard drive indicator light is on solid (no flickering at all).  The monitor indicator light shows that it is not receiving a signal from the computer and the monitor is blank.  The mouse and keyboard are unresponsive.  I did not get to the options screen where the boot-time scanner asks how I want to dispose of any found problems (vault, delete, etc…). 

Any thoughts would be welcome.

Mike

Offline DavidR

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Re: Boot-Time Scan freezes computer
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2012, 03:13:30 PM »
Just start by pressing the Esc (Escape) key, that stops the scan and should boot into normal windows mode.

Sounds like something is blocking it as you should get a screen showing it is running and the options screen if any detection, see images (click to expand) are you seeing any of these screens ?

What other security software do you have installed (e.g. anti-spyware, firewall, etc.) ?
How much data is on your system as a boot-time scan is pretty thorough ?
Why was it that you ran a boot-time scan ?

The boot-time scan also scans archive (zip) files that would be inert/dormant and scans for PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs).

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Offline oldcodger

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Re: Boot-Time Scan freezes computer
« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2012, 04:11:17 PM »
Thanks for the thoughts. 

In all fairness I realize that my Subject should have been Computer freezes during Boot-Time Scan. 

The keyboard is unresponsive.  Pressing ESC does nothing. 

Initially, I did get the screen showing that the Boot-Time Scan was running.  (I made sure that Avast was scanning through the files before I left.)  However, when I returned a few hours later the monitor was blank.  I can not say whether the option screen came up and then it froze or whether it froze before the option screen appeared. 

I have no other anti-malware programs running during the boot up. 

I do have a considerable amount of data on my 300 gig drive.  However, normally, when I run Avast, the HDD indicator light flickers.  The indicator is now on solid.  It has now been over six hours since the scan began. 

I was getting some kind of updater PUP (I forget the name) that kept coming back after two other Boot-Time Scans (the first log had three instances and the second log had one instance) so I decided to run it again and see if the log came back clean.

My two questions remain: 1) Will I hurt anything if I power off the computer in the middle of an Avast boot-time scan before the options screen appears?  2) What could cause Avast boot-time scan to freeze?

Thanks,
Mike

Offline DavidR

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Re: Boot-Time Scan freezes computer
« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2012, 05:08:52 PM »
Normally when avast finishes it would boot into windows normal mode, so if it locked up I would expect it still to be on the scan screen. So it may be that it completed but for some reason failed to boot into windows (if you have a black screen).

If the scan is running and you have the screen up, using the Esc key is the best/recommended option, I have never used the power button to try and back out of a scan, so I can't say if it could be harmful or not. But I guess it could have the same potential for file corruption of you use the power button to shutdown in windows as windows is partially running (required) when the boot-time scan begins.

That is why I asked the questions about what other security software you had as it is possible something else might be running that conflicts.
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Offline oldcodger

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Re: Boot-Time Scan freezes computer
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2012, 08:16:34 PM »
I decided to go ahead and power off the computer.  It appears to have rebooted successfully.  Since I did not authorize it to deal with any discovered threats (on the options screen) I am hopeful that Avast didn’t make any changes to my hard drive.  I’ll probably run a thorough chkdsk to look for fragments or damage.

Thanks,
Mike

Offline DavidR

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Re: Boot-Time Scan freezes computer
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2012, 08:52:15 PM »
You're welcome.

My thoughts weren't so much what avast might do (but the potential windows problems) as you say it shouldn't have done anything without input on a decision.

Though it is possible to set an action in the boot-time scan settings (see image), which I don't think are advisable I always prefer to be in control over any decision made. So as long as you have it on Ask you make the decision on any action to be taken.
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