Author Topic: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird  (Read 14474 times)

Offline gadgetfan

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Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« on: October 23, 2013, 11:13:44 PM »
I just received the 2014 update this morning, and now I find that Avast and Thunderbird aren't playing nicely.  I now routinely (though not every single time) receive an Avast error message when I start Thunderbird, advising that it couldn't scan my SSL email, and that I may need to configure SSL manually.  The text of the message reads "The avast! Mail Shield encountered a problem with the secure connection to your mail server.  You may need to configure the SSL scan feature manually."  It's followed by a prompt to open Avast's SSL settings.

Ok, that's fine.  Tell me how to configure it manually.  The Avast help simply says that you check the box if you want Avast to scan SSL email.  Exporting the Avast-provided SSL certificate and importing it into Thunderbird doesn't seem to change anything.  The error message still appears.  I know Avast 2014 does things differently than prior versions.  Is there a walkthrough for exactly how to set up Avast and Thunderbird using SSL?

I'm using Avast 2014.9.0.2006 and Thunderbird 24.0.1 on Windows 7 (64-bit).

Thanks.

Offline Pondus

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2013, 12:11:52 AM »
Quote
Is there a walkthrough for exactly how to set up Avast and Thunderbird using SSL?
lots of info in the FAQ section

http://www.avast.com/en-eu/faq.php?article=AVKB91#artTitle

« Last Edit: October 24, 2013, 12:22:50 AM by Pondus »
Chief Wiggum: Uh, no, you got the wrong number. This is 9-1…2.


Offline gadgetfan

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2013, 01:45:35 AM »
Quote
Is there a walkthrough for exactly how to set up Avast and Thunderbird using SSL?
lots of info in the FAQ section

http://www.avast.com/en-eu/faq.php?article=AVKB91#artTitle


Those only go up through Avast 8.  My setup worked fine in v8.  With this new version, they've apparently changed something and now it doesn't work properly.  The error message I receive is not covered in the FAQ at this point.

smartin

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2013, 10:39:06 AM »
Hi,

I got the same problem and have to say, that the error message is absolute rubbish. It just says "Uh, something does not work.". So what now? There are no settings to change and the mail certificate is up to date. It worked absolutely perfect with avast 8 and now suddenly it doesn't. Sorry, but how do you test your new versions?! Not at all?

So long.

Offline KrisM

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2013, 10:43:07 PM »
same problem here - I had to install 2014 for 8.1, and then prob started.

doktornotor

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2013, 10:44:34 PM »
same problem here - I had to install 2014 for 8.1, and then prob started.

Please, stick to your thread and post the requested info. You are not helping to get your problem solved by complain left and right without providing any information.

http://forum.avast.com/index.php?topic=138169.0

smartin

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2013, 05:19:48 AM »
Funny that, I just downgraded to Avast 8 and now it works without any problems. So I'll stick to version 8 until this stupid message box is changed in a way that it is helpful.

Offline Avax_7

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2013, 05:53:33 PM »
Hello,

I would like to add my own experience...

I too have the same problem, i.e., from time to time (not always) I can see the following Avast! pop up window:

[img]http://postimg.org/image/w40fnztn5/[img]

(saying: "The avast! Mail Shield encountered a probelm with the secure connection to your mail server. You may need to configure the SSL scan feature manually.
Click OK to open the Mail Shield Configuration page.")

The strange thing is that in Statistics, Mail Shield seems to work (along with the others).

In view of the advice on this thread, I followed two different approaches/procedures:

a) the procedure (by the letter) described here: http://www.avast.com/en-eu/faq.php?article=AVKB91#artTitle.
   
Yet, the problem remained... So, I deleted the installed Avast! certificate in Thunderbird, in "Authorities" tab, (the "Servers" tab was empty from any Avast! entry, anyway) and (since I have Avast! version: 2014.9.0.2008) I followed procedure:

b) Settings > Active Protection > I chose "Mail Shield", clicked on Settings (i.e., Mail Shield Settings) > SSL Scanning (the "Scan SSL connections" was already checked), I chose "Export Certificate" (which, in contrast to the procedure in a) produces a certificate with .der -instead of .cer- format). The exportation was successful and, I imported the new one -as described in a).

Once again, the problem persists.

So, clearly it seems that there a kind of conflict between Avast! and Thunderbird, therefore, I was thinking (as a workaround, and until a final solution is found) what if someone un-checks the "Scan SSL connections" ? I mean, that still the computer is protected, is not it?

Info: Avast! 2014.9.0.2008 and Thunderbird 24.1.0 on Windows 7 Professional @ 64-bit.

Thank you in advance.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2013, 07:31:59 PM by Avax_7 »

Offline Erroneus

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2013, 07:04:18 PM »
Hello,

I would like to add my own experience...

I too have the same problem, i.e., from time to time (not always) I can see an Avast! pop up window saying that  it couldn't scan my SSL email, and that I may need to configure SSL manually (unfortunately, I did not take a snapshot of it). The strange thing is that in Statistics, Mail Shield seems to work (along with the others).
Having the same problem.
Lenovo x230 - Apple MacBook Air 13
Homebuild machine - Intel I5 3570K@4,2 Ghz
Windows 7 Enterprise 64bit: Avast IS 9 Licensed

Offline Callender

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2013, 07:57:41 PM »
Had the same problem. Here's the solution that worked for me (from memory):

Start Thunderbird and in the left pane click on your email account then click "view settings for this account"

Server Settings: Make sure that connection security is set to "SSL/ TLS" and "Normal Password"

Then in the left pane click "Outgoing Server" then click on your email account in the window then click "Edit"

Apply the same settings as before.

Click Ok and shut down Thunderbird. Maybe reboot to be on the safe side.

There are no setttings to configure in Avast - just tick the boxes in the mail shield settings.

Start Thunderbird and if you get a warning - I don't remember the exact wording but something like "unusual activity or a connection security warning" just allow the connection if prompted. If you're asked to add a certificate and security exception - go ahead. It will allow Avast to scan your email and everything should then work fine.


Offline Callender

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2013, 08:22:07 PM »
I've just remembered some useful stuff regarding Avast scanning email in Thunderbird (or any other email client) on Windows 7.

Thunderbird additional settings:

Tools> Options> Security> Antivirus

Tick the box to allow antivirus to quarantine incoming messages.

Probably it will now quarantine anything loaded with a dodgy script. However Windows 7 isn't configured by default to call antivirus programs when opening attachments. (Believe it or not!) So that means that if you attempt to open an attachment and for some reason Avast fails to scan it - you will still be able to open the attachment. There's a way to ensure that if an attachment scan fails then the ability to open that attachment will be blocked by windows.

What you need to do is use Group Policy Editor to ensure that Windows 7 notifies antivirus programs to scan attachments:

    Type gpedit.msc in the Start menu’s search box and then press Enter.
    Navigate to User Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, and then select Attachment Manager in the left column of the Group Policy Editor.
    Double-click Notify antivirus programs when opening attachments in the Settings section of the Group Policy Editor.
    Select Enable and then click OK to save the changes.

Group Policy Editor is not available in some Windows 7 editions (Home Premium, Home Basic and Starter). Only Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate editions come with Group Policy Editor installed.


If you'd like to add Group Policy Editor to the Home Premium, Home Basic or Starter version of Windows 7 there's an installation guide and download link here and it works:

http://www.askvg.com/how-to-enable-group-policy-editor-gpedit-msc-in-windows-7-home-premium-home-basic-and-starter-editions/

Offline olddog

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2013, 11:17:07 PM »
Group Policy Editor is not available in some Windows 7 editions (Home Premium, Home Basic and Starter). Only Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate editions come with Group Policy Editor installed.

It's my guess that a large majority of users would not be comfortable editing Group Policy settings, even if their particular version of Windows has that facility, and they should not have to.

The settings necessary to have Avast work properly with mainstream email clients like Thunderbird should have been properly documented in either the help file, or a FAQ specific to the 2014 version before the product was released to the public. Maybe it is somewhere -  I'm still looking.
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Offline ahwphx

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #12 on: November 15, 2013, 03:01:52 PM »
I have the same problem with Thunderbird and SSL scanning. However I get the Avast popup  occasionally when coming out of standby mode with Thunderbird active. My guess is a timing problem between Avast and Tbird. The mail scan does work, the Avast complaint about the certificate is a nuisance. My OS is Windows 8 x64.

This same configuration worked flawlessly with Avast 8.x

As a workaround I disabled SSL scanning...

Offline Avax_7

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #13 on: November 15, 2013, 04:14:27 PM »
@ Callender

Regarding your first post: everything was already adjusted as you said (so, not a workaround for my case).
Regarding your second post: I am extremely reluctant to play with those Windows utilities. On top of that, I totally agree with olddog's reply.

@ Olddog

Thumb up

@ Ahwphx

I tend to believe that what you did (and which was one of my thoughts) is (probably) the only realistic workaround -at least until a proper adjustment/solution from Avast! appears.

Offline Callender

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Re: Avast 2014 and SSL email in Thunderbird
« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2013, 05:29:26 PM »
Sorry that it didn't work for you. Perhaps consider fully removing Thunderbird then reinstalling. There's no guarantee that it would solve the problem!

As for the Group Policy settings - I just posted that "for information only" and didn't intend to suggest that it would be a good idea for inexperienced users to mess about with it. It's just that I'm aware that a standard windows 7 installation has numerous security misconfigurations that could be fixed/ improved and that's just one of them.

Picture the following scenario: Another user has access to your machine and disables the Avast mail shield in order to download and open an attachment that is blocked. They can do that no problem but with the fix in place it's impossible. Of course this shouldn't concern you if you're the sole user.

 

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