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Consumer Products => Avast Free Antivirus / Premium Security (legacy Pro Antivirus, Internet Security, Premier) => Topic started by: igotyerna on January 30, 2020, 06:27:01 PM

Title: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on January 30, 2020, 06:27:01 PM
Ladies and Gentlemen,

My subscription for Avast! Antivirus Free expired back in the Fall of 2019 and it has never reactivated.

Every day (at least) I get a pop-up telling me that my subscription has expired. I click the button that is supposedly meant to initiate the process of reactivation which brings up another window offering me a choice between the premium and free antivirus versions. I select the free version and then I get another window offering me a free trial of premium which I decline. Then I’m good usually for the day. Next day, same thing.

From what I’ve read about the current activation process, when I choose the free version in that second window, that should be the end of it. I don’t even have to supply an email address like I used to. I should be able to go to the My Subscriptions tab in the user interface and see a subscription to Avast! Free AV and how many days remain in the yearly subscription.

I see none of that.

If auto-renewal fails, you are supposed to be able to click on a green “Upgrade Now” button in the Subscriptions tab to manually initiate a renewal.

There is no Upgrade Now button.

Under “Subscriptions On This PC” it reads, “You don’t have any subscriptions. How about getting one?” Following this is a green “Buy Now” button.
Up at the top of this window it says, “Add your Avast subscriptions in one of two ways” and you choose either, “Log into your Avast account” or “Enter a valid activation code.” None of these options are supposed to be required for getting a yearly activation of the Free AV product.

A few days ago I got so sick of the process that I downloaded the latest version of Avast! Free AV (the offline full installer) and installed it over my existing version. I have read that installation of the latest version is necessary for activation success but it made no difference. Exact same behavior.

Then I used the Avastclear utility in safe mode to remove everything and then reinstalled from the same new version download. Except for taking way longer to update, this had no effect. Exact same behavior. No activation.

What am I supposed to do? The product will not activate by itself and it offers me no provision to do it manually. I’ve been using Avast! Free AV for around ten years with no activation problems. If it ain’t broke, why fix it?

If it matters, I am using Windows 7 Pro and Firefox but I also have a Windows 8.1 machine that has the same activation issues.

Thank you for your time and attention.

Grant

Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on January 31, 2020, 05:02:21 AM
-> https://support.avast.com/article/Activate-Free-Antivirus
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Jiří Šamánek on January 31, 2020, 09:10:50 AM
Hi igotyerna,

I am sorry for your troubles.
Activation works just fine in both released builds and the one I am currently testing before release.
Your case will be specific in some way, please use our support tool to collect logs and send them to me (jiri.samanek@avast.com), so I can try to find out what's going on with your client.
https://support.avast.com/en-ww/article/Submit-support-file

thank you,
Regards
Jiri Samanek
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on January 31, 2020, 09:31:36 AM
Asyn, thank you for the response. This is the first article I read when trying to figure this out – which is why I know what Avast says is supposed to happen and how I know that my situation does not follow official expectations.

The departure begins with Step 2 in the Avast instructions: “On the My licenses screen, click the Upgrade now button next to Avast Free Antivirus in the list located under Licenses on this PC.”

As mentioned in my initial post, there is no “Upgrade Now” button to click. There is also no listing of Avast Free Antivirus under “Licenses on this PC”. In fact, it actually states, “You don’t have any subscriptions. How about getting one?” No mention of “Licenses” at all.

The window that displays in Step 3 only appears after I have clicked “Continue” (or similar) in the “Your Avast Subscription Has Expired” pop up window which appears of its own accord on a daily basis. Selecting the “Avast Free Antivirus” column gives me the next pop up window which I’m assuming is the one mentioned in Step 4 which offers me the free Premium Trial: “Click the X icon on the new screen that appears to return to the My licenses screen.” I have closed this window by clicking “No Thanks” rather than simply closing the window from the “X”. It’s hard to believe that this would make any difference, but I’m going to try just closing the window from the “X” the next time it pops up and see whether the outcome is any different.

I will post the results here, one way or the other.

Jiri, just saw your post! If the results are no different going the “X” route (which is almost a certainty), I will take measures to send you the log files.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Jiří Šamánek on January 31, 2020, 09:39:08 AM
Hi again,

I don't think it matters, whether you click "No, thanks" or use "X" button.
In your case, it seems more like a connection issue. Either something is blocking communication to our servers (do you have any kind of firewall?) or windows have trouble verifying certificates.
These are the 2 most common issues.

Regards,
Jiri Samanek
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on January 31, 2020, 11:05:17 AM
Jiri,

Believe it or not, I still use a 56K dial-up connection. This is why I have to download the Avast Offline Installer rather than go with the more common Online Installer option. My connection will not stay up long enough at any one time to download the whole 360 MB Avast application, so I have to use a download manager to resume the download when the connection breaks. This is possible with the Full Installer download. I think that if the connection breaks using the Online Installer, the whole download goes back to the beginning when the connection is re-established. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong on this, but this is how it usually works with these Online installers. I’ve done it for ten years using the Offline Installer and it has always worked with no issues.

The only firewall I use is the Windows firewall, at default settings, that installs with Windows 7 Pro.

How could connection issues prevent the Avast app from recognizing itself in the “My Subscriptions” window? According to the Avast article on product activation, there is supposed to be a “Licenses on this PC” heading under which is listed “Avast Free Antivirus”. In my set up, the term used is “Subscriptions” not “Licenses” and Avast Free AV is not listed at all.

I have the feeling that you and your support brethren will need the information provided by that Avast Support Tool to even begin to get a handle on whatever is going on, here. I’ll probably get around to it in the next few days – unless clicking that “X” works some strange Voodoo!

Thanks for your interest!

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Jiří Šamánek on January 31, 2020, 11:35:54 AM
Igotyerna,

Your connection shouldn't be a problem when activating a license. It's a very low amount of data like several KBs.
Text License vs Subscription is just wording, which was changed a while back.
According to your description, it seems like you don't have any license on your pc at all - no license file here - C:\ProgramData\AVAST Software\Subscriptions
That's why nothing is displayed under section "Subscription on this PC".

Sooner or later we will get to the bottom of this. Thanks for your patience.

Regards,
Jiri Samanek
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 02, 2020, 01:57:40 AM
Jiri,

Did you get the zipped folder I emailed you yesterday? I'm assuming that it was what you are looking for from the Avast Support Tool.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Jiří Šamánek on February 03, 2020, 07:19:45 AM
Grant,

No, I didn't receive any emails from you.
did you send it to jiri.samanek@avast.com?
I can also look for the file on our servers if you give me the filename.

Regards,
Jiri Samanek
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 10, 2020, 06:48:27 AM
Okay, I think this issue has me beat.

I finally did get a “lim.log” file to Avast Support (Jiri). He originally wanted the full report file generated by the Avast Support Tool but the attachment refused to send with the email, so he settled for the lim.log, which obviously did attach.

Jiri recommended that I change my DNS settings to Google DNS servers because there were many log entries about connections failing due to an inability to connect with DNS servers. I guess his logic was that my inability to get a new license might be due to poor communication with Avast servers.

As stated in my previous posts, I get a window from Avast every day telling me that my subscription has expired and that lets me choose AFAV as the product I want. This is acknowledged by Avast in the follow-up window I get which thanks me for choosing Avast Free Antivirus and offering me a free 60 day trial of the Premium version (which I decline).

Avast sends me this every day, acknowledges that I have chosen the free version of the product -- which is supposed to initiate a new one-year license -- and still my installed product does not recognize the existence of any subscription/license! And on it goes.

If this is a result of some kind of communication issue between Avast servers and my installed product, why can I update virus definitions/engine or get product version updates -- which require far more extensive communication between Avast servers and my installed product than downloading and installing a 1kb license file?

This is the same connection I have used since my first copy of AFAV some 10 years ago and have never had a licensing/activation issue.

I changed IPv6 and IPv4 DNS addresses to Google public DNR addresses and it made zero difference in my situation.

Grasping at straws, I next tried to go this route: My Subscriptions>Enter a Valid Activation Code>Use a License File, and then selecting a license copied from the Subscriptions folder of another Win7 computer I have which has a working AFAV license, but the license is rejected because it isn’t a license from a supported product!

Next I tried to just copy the license file into the empty Subscriptions folder under Avast\Application Data but I can’t gain access to the Subscriptions folder on the target computer to copy it into even though Windows shows that I have full Administrator privileges over the folder.

So, my installed product will not accept a license/subscription by hook or by crook. I just want to have a working license which by every account Avast says I'm entitled to, but it just ain’t gonna happen.

I can either be content to “renew” the product on a daily basis from now until doomsday, pay for a premium license (would it even recognize that?) or I can find a different free AV product – of which there are several very good ones. I just happen to be used to Avast and I’ve never had issues with it until now.

Unless anyone can come up with something other than:

*Uninstalling/reinstalling the (latest version) product with the Avast Removal Tool in Safe Mode
*Changing IPv6 and IPv4 DNS addresses to Google public DNR addresses
*Adding a valid license through both the My Subscriptions window in the product settings and copying directly into the Avast Subscriptions folder --

I’m done with this, one way or the other.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on February 10, 2020, 07:14:42 AM
Be sure Avast isn't blocked by a firewall and try again.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 10, 2020, 12:19:03 PM
Thanks, Asyn.

All I have ever used is the standard Windows firewall at the default settings. I would imagine that if the current version of AFAV has developed a problem with this, given the number of Windows users who rely solely on the built-in firewall just doing its’ thing, you would be seeing a tsunami of complaints by now.

Weirdly enough, the last new installation that I put Avast Free on was Windows 8.1 a few months ago and it has exactly the same licensing issues. The only things that installation has in common with the Windows 7 installation which I have been writing about here, is the AFAV version and the 56k dial-up internet connection. But, unless someone can argue cogently as to why, suddenly, the dial-up connection should prevent, selectively, the information exchange between the Avast servers and the installed application pertaining to licensing – when everything else seems to work okay (slow, but okay) – I am hesitant to lay the blame there.

These are both desktop computers. Otherwise I could try the initial AFAV installation on a faster connection at a location with free wifi and see if there was any difference with license retrieval.

I have two other Win7 desktops using this same dial-up connection that have current AFAV versions and  valid licenses. The difference here may be (I don’t remember specifically) that I renewed their licenses manually before they expired, so that all that had to be done was to reset the calendar on installed licenses rather than receive and install brand new licenses where none existed (empty Subscriptions folders).

I’m a bit(!) disappointed that all that Avast support has been able to come up with has been to recommend changing DNS settings. To me, that’s like going to the doctor for a broken arm but the only thing red-flagged in your diagnostic work is an electrolyte imbalance, so the doctor concludes that the electrolyte imbalance caused the broken arm and recommends drinking Gatorade to fix it.

For me, this has all devolved into voodoo, and although I hate losing, I also hate beating my head against a wall.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on February 10, 2020, 12:28:02 PM
Hi Grant,

Did you try to turn Windows Firewall off before Avast activation..?
Any other security related software installed..?
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Lloyd_au on February 10, 2020, 01:51:57 PM
I have had the exact same issue for a while now.  Maybe a couple months, I forget.  Win 7, no extra firewall.

It isn't an isolated issue.  It happens on all four of my home computers.  Every time I first connect to the internet, and I go through the process described.

I have been running Avast Free for maybe 10 years (guessing - could be more or less) and have never had this problem.

I cannot believe that anyone associated with computer security would recommend turning off the Win firewall.

Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on February 10, 2020, 02:10:12 PM
I cannot believe that anyone associated with computer security would recommend turning off the Win firewall.
Well, we're troubleshooting here, so it's worth a try.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 10, 2020, 07:16:46 PM
Lloyd_au! My Man!

A bummer for you, but it’s somehow nice to know that I’m not alone in my vexation!

It seems that I was a little premature in my feelings of abandonment. Jiri sent me a private email while I was posting here and he has a few more suggestions, including disabling all the Avast shields while going through the daily series of pop ups I get starting with the “Your Avast Subscription Has Expired” notification. Also suggested was disabling IPv6 in my Networking Properties and trying an alternate ISP – which I can’t do as explained earlier.

He also offered a suggestion that might let me gain access to the Subscription folder to insert a working license. At this time I won’t go into that because I don’t know whether it’s sensitive information or not and I don’t want to jam him up. My guess is that it isn’t some big secret, but if it comes to trying that again and it works, I’ll only say what he told me with his permission. I’ll try the other stuff first.

Asyn, I haven’t touched the Windows firewall but it wouldn’t hurt to disable it for a minute or two the next time the “Your Avast Subscription Has Expired” train pulls into the station.

Going through each of these new conditions, one at a time, in response to the license renewal pop ups will take a number of days and I’ll report back here whether any of it made a difference.

In the meantime Lloyd_au, if you run across anything that helps your situation, I would be happy to know about it.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 21, 2020, 06:47:57 AM
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I’ve tried all the suggestions to try to get my Avast Free AV product to recognize/accept a new license after my subscription expired.

Short ‘n sweet, nothing has made any difference.

I figured that the license copying route – putting an active copy of an Avast Free AV license from another Win7 computer into the empty “Subscriptions” folder of the problem computer -- would do something, but nope. According to Jiri, this worked for him. But, when I restarted the computer after copying (as Jiri instructed) the Subscriptions folder would show as empty again.

As an experiment to see whether my installation would respond to anything of an “activation” nature, I was given an activation code for Avast Premium, which is the paid upgrade version of Avast Free AV and I had no issues getting an active license from Avast.

I was told that the validation/activation/license generation for this uses a different group of Avast servers than the ones responsible for generating a brand new license – like I needed to have done when my previous license expired.

Jiri said that most – if not all – of the red flags he found in going through some of my products’ logs involved communication errors/failures between my computer and the relevant Avast servers. Problems that I’ve never had before. It could be that if it were practical for my situation to try the activation process through a different ISP/network that these communication failures would not be there. So, if you have similar issues to mine and it is doable in your situation, this might work for you. In fact any of the stuff recommended to me might work for you. Everyone’s set-up is different.

To recap, the possible remedies I’ve tried are, in no particular order:

*Uninstalling Avast with the Avastclear utility in Safe Mode and reinstalling.
*Attempting to get a new license via the “Your Avast License Has Expired” dialog box when it appeared for that day with:
(1) The Windows Firewall disabled
(2) All the Avast Shields disabled
(3) Both of the above at the same time
(4) Changing the DNS settings – both IPv6 and IPv4 -- in my Network Properties from automatic to Google servers (Google has a page explaining this)
(5) Disabling IPv6 altogether
*Copying the active license from another Avast Free AV installation with the same OS as my problem computer (I don’t know whether the OS version really matters) onto a thumb drive and copying that into the empty Subscriptions folder on the problem computer. I eventually managed to get the license into the target folder but it would disappear during reboot.
*Getting an activation code for Avast Premium – the only thing that worked for me. Technically not a fix for my original problem, but it was provided by a Senior Avast Engineer as an experiment as mentioned earlier.

So, there we are.

If you have a similar issue and would like to provide input to give the engineering team a better handle on how to address it successfully, please post about your experience.

Thank you for your kind attention. And special thanks to Jiri, who pursued this matter far beyond the boundaries usually established for users of an unpaid product version.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 21, 2020, 01:01:52 PM
It's the free version. It doesn't end and will eventually renew on it's own.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on February 21, 2020, 01:51:40 PM
It's the free version. It doesn't end and will eventually renew on it's own.
There's an easy way to check it, click here: http://web-shield-test.avast.com
If you get a warning from Avast, you're protected (no matter what the UI says).
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 22, 2020, 10:45:45 PM
Bob3160 wrote: “It's the free version. It doesn't end and will eventually renew on it's own.”

From what I’ve read, the time period between a free license expiration and auto-renewal (no special user intervention, it just happens) is a few weeks, not 6 months.

It could be that if I just ignored responding to the “Your Avast License Has Expired” notification and closed it out, things might have proceeded as usual – except for having to close out the notification every day. But I have noticed times when the link in the Windows system tray for updating the program is greyed out and returns to normal after I have gone through the whole response process that begins with the “Expired” notification.

I don’t know that much about how this stuff is supposed to work, so I wondered whether that meant I wouldn’t be able to update the program version (should a new update be made available at that time) and whether my continued ignoring of the “Expired” notification might result in my being blocked from getting definition updates as well.

It seems to me that there must be some sort of penalty exacted by not having an active license – or what’s the point in requiring a license in the first place?

In fact, that brings up an interesting point: What is the purpose of requiring the free version to be licensed at all? Avast used to require an email address but now they say you don’t need to provide anything to get a license. So why have one? I’m sure there’s a reason, but it escapes me.

It’s because my Avast installation was not behaving as Avast said that it should that I posted on this forum. The way I figure it, if the description of my situation with license activation fell within expected parameters, I would have been told so and to just “wait for it” to resolve itself. Instead, an engineer working on the development of the product became interested because my situation was apparently not normal and he wanted to find a cause and correct the problem.

This is why I encouraged others who have been experiencing similar activation/license renewal problems over an unreasonable amount of time to say something about it – either how they fixed it or just what they’ve tried. The less information there is about a problem the less likely there is to be a fix.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 22, 2020, 11:11:18 PM
Since the free version doesn't really expire, you'll still receive program updates.
There hasn't been an official program update for quite a while.
Some of us are currently beta testing what will eventually wind up as the next program update.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on February 23, 2020, 09:52:02 AM
In fact, that brings up an interesting point: What is the purpose of requiring the free version to be licensed at all? Avast used to require an email address but now they say you don’t need to provide anything to get a license. So why have one? I’m sure there’s a reason, but it escapes me.
Marketing stuff. ;)
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on February 23, 2020, 11:47:27 AM
*Uninstalling Avast with the Avastclear utility in Safe Mode and reinstalling.

I would be in your place, I would perform the uninstall procedure a second time with the tool in safe mode.
I would also make sure to download the offline avast free version again (and not the one you have already downloaded).
That avast free requires you to upgrade to a paid version is one fact, but that it doesn't reset the counter to 365 days for free after a clean installation is another.
This can be explained by the fact that instead of downloading the free avast installation file, you downloaded the installation file for the paid product.
Edit:
Quote
My connection will not stay up long enough at any one time to download the whole 360 MB Avast application
However, you seem to have downloaded the free version of the software. :-\
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 24, 2020, 05:36:22 AM
chris said,
Quote
However, you seem to have downloaded the free version of the software.

I just take Avast at its word when I download from a link that is labeled as “Avast Free”.

I would be surprised if there is any difference in the downloaded contents of the “Free” or “Premium” version. I have the impression that the free version contains all or most of the features of Premium, the difference being that the Premium features are unavailable without a paid key.

In the near future, I’ll be installing Avast Free on a new Windows installation. I’m betting that I’ll see the same problems with licensing that I had on this computer. If so, I’m lucky that the Activation Code I was given for Premium is good for more than one computer.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on February 24, 2020, 11:21:42 AM
chris said,
Quote
However, you seem to have downloaded the free version of the software.

I just take Avast at its word when I download from a link that is labeled as “Avast Free”.

I would be surprised if there is any difference in the downloaded contents of the “Free” or “Premium” version. I have the impression that the free version contains all or most of the features of Premium, the difference being that the Premium features are unavailable without a paid key.
Even if you seem to have downloaded the free version, you are wrong  saying that there is no difference between the downloaded contents of the "Free" and "Premium" version(1) and that the free version contains all or the features of the Premium version(2).
(1)The weight is 360Mo for one and 371Mo for the other.
(2)Just have a look on Compare (https://www.avast.com/compare-antivirus) starting with the missing firewall on the free version, is that a detail for you? :-\
Add to that, shields:Real site,Sandbox,Anti Spam,Ransomware,Webcam,Data shredder,Auto SU....Details for you but probably not for everyone.
Quote
the difference being that the Premium features are unavailable without a paid key.
This is why I reacted by wondering if you have downloaded the free version file because if you had downloaded the premium version, you must enter a paid key, ..., to activate a free key, you must uninstall premium and install free.
Quote
In the near future, I’ll be installing Avast Free on a new Windows installation. I’m betting that I’ll see the same problems with licensing that I had on this computer. If so, I’m lucky that the Activation Code I was given for Premium is good for more than one computer.
In this case, it's like betting that the millions of avast users can't activate the free version on their computer. ;)
Until proven otherwise, that's not the case and you seem to be isolated with this problem.
I'm thinking more of a procedural error or an isolated problem on your computer.


Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 27, 2020, 11:06:15 AM
Chris said:

Quote
Even if you seem to have downloaded the free version, you are wrong  saying that there is no difference between the downloaded contents of the "Free" and "Premium" version(1) and that the free version contains all or the features of the Premium version(2).

This is probably why there was some minutes gap between my insertion of the Premium activation code and when Avast wanted me to restart the computer. The installed free version had to download some missing premium pieces. If it just had to activate already existing features, the process would have only taken a few seconds.

Quote
In this case, it's like betting that the millions of avast users can't activate the free version on their computer. 
Until proven otherwise, that's not the case and you seem to be isolated with this problem.
I'm thinking more of a procedural error or an isolated problem on your computer.

I wasn’t entirely clear when making the statement referenced here. I didn’t mean that I was installing Avast on someone else’s computer, to be activated on their connection. This is a notebook computer of mine to be activated on my dial-up connection just like the other computers I’m having activation troubles with. This is why I said that I would probably see the same problems.

Interestingly enough, I ended up taking that notebook to a local library a few days ago where I could use their wifi and ran Avast on it there and I got the free license without difficulty. At first, I couldn’t get any license, just like at home, but then I noticed that a new program version had been released. Once I updated the program I then received the license.

Back home later, I updated another desktop (not the one onto which I earlier installed Premium) with the new Avast and cannot get a license. Now, instead of getting a pop-up notification every day, the “Your Subscription Has Expired” is permanently on display on the “Status” page of the new Avast. It gives me the same follow-up windows as the previous version when I try to get the yearly license but the process stops working when it comes time to actually download a license, exactly as before. I still have the green pop-up notification in my system tray telling me that “You Are Protected,” so I guess I still have real-time protection.

Jiri, the engineer, told me that he figures my problem is with communication with the Avast servers which are responsible for generating new licenses from scratch. Why just those servers? He doesn’t know. But that notebook I got licensed was using different everything to get online, which makes some link in the chain of my home internet access look guiltier than ever.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on February 27, 2020, 01:27:06 PM
.... my insertion of the Premium activation code ...
Freshly installed free Avast does not need to ask you for a license number of any kind, if it asks you for one, it is either that you have clicked on "upgrade" (you shouldn't have to  :-\ ) or that you have installed the premium program.

Quote
Jiri, the engineer, told me that he figures my problem is with communication with the Avast servers which are responsible for generating new licenses from scratch. Why just those servers? He doesn’t know. .... which makes some link in the chain of my home internet access look guiltier than ever.
I don't think it's a server problem, I think it's a problem because you're still using a phone dial-up connection with a 56k modem.
Let's wait for an answer from Jiri, but I'm not sure that avast is fully compatible with this type of connection.(At least for activation)
e.g. Windows services such as remote desktop service must be enabled.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 08:06:56 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 09:16:10 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 09:29:09 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?

No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 09:30:54 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?

No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
What operating system? What version of Avast?

Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 09:33:09 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?

No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
What operating system? What version of Avast?
Windows 10. Latest version. Would be stupid if it would update itself to any other.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 09:39:39 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?

No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
What operating system? What version of Avast?
Windows 10. Latest version. Would be stupid if it would update itself to any other.
Have you looked under Menu> My Subscriptions? What does it say?
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 09:42:26 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?

No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
What operating system? What version of Avast?
Windows 10. Latest version. Would be stupid if it would update itself to any other.
Have you looked under Menu> My Subscriptions? What does it say?
"Add new subscriptions..." "Login or enter activation code" and "Buy now" below.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 09:45:41 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?
No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
What operating system? What version of Avast?
Windows 10. Latest version. Would be stupid if it would update itself to any other.
Have you looked under Menu> My Subscriptions? What does it say?
"Add new subscriptions..." "Login or enter activation code" and "Buy now" below.
See if this helps you, https://youtu.be/Gdf-U45nrQc
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 09:48:05 PM
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?
What same problem? Are you also on 56K dial up?
No, I can't activate the damn thing after an update I just did. Avast makes me choose which protection I want to use, I select Free, close that window with some special software and nothing is reactivated. There is some key on avast website, but that doesn't work either.
What operating system? What version of Avast?
Windows 10. Latest version. Would be stupid if it would update itself to any other.
Have you looked under Menu> My Subscriptions? What does it say?
"Add new subscriptions..." "Login or enter activation code" and "Buy now" below.
See if this helps you, https://youtu.be/Gdf-U45nrQc
It doesn't.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 09:52:21 PM
It doesn't doesn't give me any clue. You seem to forget we ren't sitting in front of your computer.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 09:54:49 PM
It doesn't doesn't give me any clue. You seem to forget we ren't sitting in front of your computer.
Well, I see those messages from the video, but closing them, doing exactly like in that video dozen of times and in other ways doesn't do anything, I still have that Subscription expired message. Even tried to reboot. Twice!
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 10:00:11 PM
It doesn't doesn't give me any clue. You seem to forget we ren't sitting in front of your computer.
Well, I see those messages from the video, but closing them, doing exactly like in that video dozen of times and in other ways doesn't do anything, I still have that Subscription expired message. Even tried to reboot. Twice!
What's "and in different ways" It's either done as shown in the video or it isn't. I don't know what you mean by in different ways.
You can also simply wait and eventually it auto-renews or, you can do a clean install.

Clean Install of Avast:
https://goo.gl/4Ptzkf
If you need additional help with the Clean Install, watch this:
https://youtu.be/p-h3myRD51A
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 10:05:11 PM
It doesn't doesn't give me any clue. You seem to forget we ren't sitting in front of your computer.
Well, I see those messages from the video, but closing them, doing exactly like in that video dozen of times and in other ways doesn't do anything, I still have that Subscription expired message. Even tried to reboot. Twice!
What's "and in different ways" It's either done as shown in the video or it isn't. I don't know what you mean by in different ways.
You can also simply wait and eventually it auto-renews or, you can do a clean install.

Clean Install of Avast:
https://goo.gl/4Ptzkf
If you need additional help with the Clean Install, watch this:
https://youtu.be/p-h3myRD51A
Other ways: From try - RMB -> Registration info (or whatever its called in english); Clicking "Choose your protection" (or whatever its called in english); doing the same from notifications; checking my subscriptions; entering the free key posted on avast site. I think thats pretty much it.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on February 27, 2020, 10:17:25 PM
The key posted has nothing to do with this version of Avast or Windows 10.

Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Martin00 on February 27, 2020, 10:19:28 PM
The key posted has nothing to do with this version of Avast or Windows 10.
Well, it was worth a try.

Yeah, I am doing clean install each time Avast releases new version, because they always manage to screw something up and every time I ask for a solution here, every time I get a final answer "Do a clean install" because there is no one on this forum that knows any solution to the problem, so the only answer always must be "Do a clean install". I don't even know why I even bother asking...
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on February 28, 2020, 10:03:23 AM
Martin00,

I feel your pain…

As you might know from earlier posts, the only thing that got me a new license on Avast Free was to run the activation from a different ISP. There seems to be an undefined issue between my default method of accessing the internet and the Avast servers responsible for issuing this type of licensing.

I have a Win8.1 desktop using only my home connection which cannot get a license, but I also have a Win8.1 notebook which did manage to get a license through a different network – the free wifi at the local library. If it’s practical for you to hook your computer up to a different network, try running the activation sequence from that network.

In my case, I also got the last program update at the library. Does that matter? Who knows? This is all voodoo as far as I’m concerned.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on February 28, 2020, 11:44:39 AM
I remembered that in the old versions (or using "old settings" of version 19.8), there was the possibility to choose its connection with a telephone modem.
I don't know if the fact that you re-installed avast cleanly didn't disable this possibility?
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: rocksteady on February 28, 2020, 12:57:13 PM
I remembered that in the old versions (or using "old settings" of version 19.8), there was the possibility to choose its connection with a telephone modem.
I don't know if the fact that you re-installed avast cleanly didn't disable this possibility?
Chris is correct, At the moment "Old Settings" are back available in V20 via UI Troubleshooting menu. The Dial-Up Modem tick-box is still there. EN screenshot attached.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on March 08, 2020, 09:04:50 AM
I had no idea that the old UI with the dial-up tick box was there!

Turns out that in my case it doesn't matter, as ticking the box and then going through the whole Your Subscription Has Expired process made no difference. But, like chicken soup, it couldn't hurt.

I think that the old UI also had a Registration option on the left side which is missing in this version. Undoubtedly it handled the registration process differently than the way it's handled now -- not least of which is that it actually worked to get me a license.

I have no idea what the statistics are for posts on these forums from people unable to get a license for the free version now, as opposed to, say, a year ago, but I've seen numerous posts just today on my way to this thread where that is the main issue. If this is a relatively new trend, then maybe the developers ought to take a look at making the whole free licensing process more bullet-proof.

Jiri, at one point in our conversation, said that he doubted that the restrictive bandwidth of 56k dial-up had anything to do with my licensing problems since I never had these difficulties before and given that the license file itself is only 2-3kb -- hardly significant even for such a connection.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on March 08, 2020, 02:17:29 PM
It may not be indeed a problem with your dialup connection, as you point out, there are already several cases listed on this forum (in the French part too) where the license does not want to reset and remains "expired" even after a clean install.
So, Can you verify what Jiri said(just after uninstalling):
According to your description, it seems like you don't have any license on your pc at all - no license file here - C:\ProgramData\AVAST Software\Subscriptions

Regards,
Jiri Samanek
Is there or isn't there a "license.avastlic" file ?
Jiri seems to be saying no, but there might still be your old file with the expired license which would prevent you from renewing it for another year
From my recent experience , I noticed that a clean install in safe mode doesn't remove the path "C:\ProgramData\AVAST Software\" and all or part of what it contains.
You should delete it "by hand" after uninstalling, at least the file "license.avastlic" if it remains.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on March 09, 2020, 08:14:07 AM
Quote
Is there or isn't there a "license.avastlic" file ?

No. The computers that cannot get a new license have no "license.avastlic" in the Subscriptions folder. In fact, I thought to manually copy the active license file from another computer whose subscription was still valid into the Subscriptions folder of the problem computer to see what would happen, but I couldn't get access to the Subscriptions folder to insert the license. Jiri got me past that and said that he tried it himself and it worked for him. Jiri told me to reboot the computer after the license file was inserted and I did so. In my case, the license file never survived the reboot. I tried this several times but the Subscriptions folder always came up empty again after the reboot. I also tried going through the whole subscription renewal process while the Subscriptions folder still held a license (no reboot after transplanting) but it made no difference to the outcome. The donor license was from the same Windows OS version as the problem computer uses.

There is also a Licenses subfolder in "C:\ProgramFiles\AVAST Software\Avast" which contains numerous files but no license file per se. I never changed anything there and Jiri never suggested messing with it.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on March 09, 2020, 01:56:21 PM
I still don't know if you've ever done a clean install of Avast.
You replied that you did other things.
There should definitely be a license file as stated by Jiri
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on March 09, 2020, 06:51:05 PM
I still don't know if you've ever done a clean install of Avast.
You replied that you did other things.
There should definitely be a license file as stated by Jiri
normally yes , with offline installer.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

My subscription for Avast! Antivirus Free expired back in the Fall of 2019 and it has never reactivated.

Every day (at least) I get a pop-up telling me that my subscription has expired. I click the button that is supposedly meant to initiate the process of reactivation which brings up another window offering me a choice between the premium and free antivirus versions. I select the free version and then I get another window offering me a free trial of premium which I decline. Then I’m good usually for the day. Next day, same thing.

From what I’ve read about the current activation process, when I choose the free version in that second window, that should be the end of it. I don’t even have to supply an email address like I used to. I should be able to go to the My Subscriptions tab in the user interface and see a subscription to Avast! Free AV and how many days remain in the yearly subscription.

I see none of that.

If auto-renewal fails, you are supposed to be able to click on a green “Upgrade Now” button in the Subscriptions tab to manually initiate a renewal.

There is no Upgrade Now button.

Under “Subscriptions On This PC” it reads, “You don’t have any subscriptions. How about getting one?” Following this is a green “Buy Now” button.
Up at the top of this window it says, “Add your Avast subscriptions in one of two ways” and you choose either, “Log into your Avast account” or “Enter a valid activation code.” None of these options are supposed to be required for getting a yearly activation of the Free AV product.

A few days ago I got so sick of the process that I downloaded the latest version of Avast! Free AV (the offline full installer) and installed it over my existing version. I have read that installation of the latest version is necessary for activation success but it made no difference. Exact same behavior.

Then I used the Avastclear utility in safe mode to remove everything and then reinstalled from the same new version download. Except for taking way longer to update, this had no effect. Exact same behavior. No activation.

What am I supposed to do? The product will not activate by itself and it offers me no provision to do it manually. I’ve been using Avast! Free AV for around ten years with no activation problems. If it ain’t broke, why fix it?

If it matters, I am using Windows 7 Pro and Firefox but I also have a Windows 8.1 machine that has the same activation issues.

Thank you for your time and attention.

Grant
@igotyerna
I don't know if we've talked about it in this long post, but haven't you ever had another antivirus installed on this computer?
In that case, it may not have been uninstalled thoroughly and may cause a problem with avast
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on March 09, 2020, 07:01:05 PM
There has to be something that we aren't aware of that's causing this.
We don't have access to the users computer and without remote access, we may never find out the underlying cause.





Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on March 10, 2020, 01:06:46 AM
Quote
I don't know if we've talked about it in this long post, but haven't you ever had another antivirus installed on this computer?
In that case, it may not have been uninstalled thoroughly and may cause a problem with avast

The problem computers being discussed are fairly recent installations and have only had Avast Free AV on them. In fact, the Win8.1 desktop which displays the perpetual yellow ! attention-getter along with the Your Avast Subscription Has Expired notification on the Status page of the Avast UI has never had a license. I initially installed the last 2019 version available and then updated to the new 2020 version, neither of which has been able to install a license. The Win7 Pro computer at least had a license at one point, which expired and then was never able to get a renewal license.

I have done a number of clean installs including uninstalling from Add/Remove Programs, rebooting and then uninstalling with avastclear in safe mode before reinstalling.

Quote
There has to be something that we aren't aware of that's causing this.
We don't have access to the users computer and without remote access, we may never find out the underlying cause.

Agreed. I've used the word voodoo several times in this context. Barring some type of divine revelation I don't expect to ever find out what the exact problem is in my case.

Jiri settled on the general notion that something in the network path which allows my computer to access the internet was not playing nicely with the Avast servers responsible for allowing the generation of free licenses from scratch, rather than than there being an issue with the severs themselves or my computer's internal environment. I was able to get an active license from Avast, on this same network, when I entered an activation code for Avast Premium which he said used a different set of Avast servers. I also managed to get a license for Avast Free AV on a notebook computer when using a different network (library wifi connection) instead of my home internet access. So, it seems to me that he is right about there being some issue between my home internet access and a particular group of Avast servers. What that exact problem is and how to address it will likely remain a mystery, since finding out would require unfettered access to my computer by an Avast engineer -- which ain't likely to happen. Advanced troubleshooting like that would only be warranted if the issue under investigation was far more widespread than one guy's problem on one network.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on March 14, 2020, 10:13:34 AM
Jiri,

Believe it or not, I still use a 56K dial-up connection. This is why I have to download the Avast Offline Installer rather than go with the more common Online Installer option. My connection will not stay up long enough at any one time to download the whole 360 MB Avast application, so I have to use a download manager to resume the download when the connection breaks. This is possible with the Full Installer download. I think that if the connection breaks using the Online Installer, the whole download goes back to the beginning when the connection is re-established. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong on this, but this is how it usually works with these Online installers. I’ve done it for ten years using the Offline Installer and it has always worked with no issues.
.....
Can you tell us if your 56k dialup modem was connected at the beginning of the offline installation or only afterwards?

I can't remember where avast said that, but I seem to have read that for the past few months the installation of avast (whether online or offline) requires you to be connected during installation.

I could be wrong but it's the remark made on this other subject (https://forum.avast.com/index.php?topic=232630.msg1538826#msg1538826) where the member couldn't activate his free version (expired too) that made me think about it.
Quote
I did not expect that the offline installation package also needs to be connected to the Internet to install it properly.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on March 22, 2020, 06:09:29 AM
Quote
Can you tell us if your 56k dialup modem was connected at the beginning of the offline installation or only afterwards?

Quote
I can't remember where avast said that, but I seem to have read that for the past few months the installation of avast (whether online or offline) requires you to be connected during installation.

I can't swear to it, but my money is on NO. I probably wanted to install Avast before any online connection was made. This just makes sense -- unless there is a stipulation that you need to be online during the installation for the activation to work properly. I've never heard that one before.

If being online during the installation from the offline installer was crucial to licensing success, why would that not figure prominently in the installation instructions? In fact, the whole notion of requiring an online connection for activation of a product installed via an offline installer makes little sense. Some people are going to use the offline installer because the target computer is actually offline and never will have any direct connection to the internet. The offline installer should be self-activating.

Anyway, the notion is interesting and I think I might get around to uninstalling Avast on my 8.1 desktop and reinstalling with the latest offline installer (while online) as soon as I can get to the library again with my notebook and download the offline installer and the offline definitions database. The library closed last week due to the coronavirus panic, but the day I discovered this, I found that I could still get a usable wifi signal in the parking lot. Haven't been back since, so I don't know if the network is still up, but I guess I'll find out.

Grant

Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on March 22, 2020, 09:39:20 AM
I think I'm a bit confused although zony in the quoted link seems to say that you have to be connected from the beginning, I found the information I was looking for but it seems to concern XP users.
https://forum.avast.com/index.php?topic=214357.0
However, for other OSes, you still have to log in at some point to activate the license.
Even with an OFFLINE installer and by downloading the VPS on another support I think it is not possible to use avast without ever being connected (at least once).
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: igotyerna on March 23, 2020, 09:54:44 PM
Quote
I think I'm a bit confused although zony in the quoted link seems to say that you have to be connected from the beginning, I found the information I was looking for but it seems to concern XP users.
https://forum.avast.com/index.php?topic=214357.0
However, for other OSes, you still have to log in at some point to activate the license.
Even with an OFFLINE installer and by downloading the VPS on another support I think it is not possible to use avast without ever being connected (at least once).

Just to be clear on what you mean, here, "log in" usually refers to a formal process of identification involving the establishment of a user name and a password. It was my understanding that there is no requirement to establish an Avast account in order to activate the free version. It does appear that there needs to be an online connection at some point so that the installed product can request a license from Avast. The appropriate Avast servers then must send something to the installed product -- authorization to self-generate or the actual license file, I'm not clear on the exact process -- in order for licensing to take place.

How it used to go before I started having all these licensing issues (Avast Free AV prior to 2019) was that I would install the application from the previously downloaded offline installer, then connect online to get database updates. Usually I was not prompted to go through an activation process, I had to initiate it from a "Registration" page from within the Avast UI where I would provide an email address and then receive a new license in a few minutes.

This new system for activation has been the one that does not work for me. So I'm still not really sure whether, under the new system, you need to be online during the installation process when using the offline installer or simply at some point thereafter for successful licensing to occur.

Grant
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: chris.. on March 24, 2020, 08:09:53 AM
You probably received a license from your own computer (file not deleted) as long as your license had not expired.
Now your license has expired and you have performed a clean installation with the tool, and it may be this file that you can no longer retrieve.
Quote
So I'm still not really sure whether, under the new system, you need to be online during the installation process when using the offline installer or simply at some point thereafter for successful licensing to occur.
I don't know either, a confirmation from avast would be required.
The member whose post I'm quoting seems to be saying that you have to be logged in from the beginning, ... but nothing is certain
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: benodet4 on March 24, 2020, 11:31:12 AM
Bonjour
existe t-il un forum en Français?
tank
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on March 24, 2020, 12:03:52 PM
Bonjour
existe t-il un forum en Français?
tank
-> https://forum.avast.com/index.php?board=23.0
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: benodet4 on March 24, 2020, 03:25:32 PM
thank you
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: Asyn on March 24, 2020, 03:40:40 PM
thank you
You're welcome.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: lovell306 on October 18, 2020, 06:17:13 AM

You can also simply wait and eventually it auto-renews or, you can do a clean install.

Clean Install of Avast:
https://goo.gl/4Ptzkf
If you need additional help with the Clean Install, watch this:
https://youtu.be/p-h3myRD51A
[/quote]

Hey Bob, I had the same problem as the original post on Windows 7 (64B) and I followed the clean install instructions you provided and that worked (although it was work).  Thumbs up.
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: wtsxdev on October 18, 2020, 10:09:18 AM
im not able to Activate it too  :-\
Title: Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
Post by: bob3160 on October 18, 2020, 03:13:45 PM

You can also simply wait and eventually it auto-renews or, you can do a clean install.

Clean Install of Avast:
https://goo.gl/4Ptzkf (https://goo.gl/4Ptzkf)
If you need additional help with the Clean Install, watch this:
https://youtu.be/p-h3myRD51A (https://youtu.be/p-h3myRD51A)

Hey Bob, I had the same problem as the original post on Windows 7 (64B) and I followed the clean install instructions you provided and that worked (although it was work).  Thumbs up.
Thanks, Happy to help.