Author Topic: Unexplained Avast connections  (Read 9523 times)

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Offline CraigB

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #15 on: August 27, 2013, 05:53:11 AM »
Isn't that the purpose of the "Enable streaming updates" option?
You are correct, shows you how often I look in the avast settings ;D

Yes it could possibly be related to the licence check, there is also the emergency update service which is a separate process from the normal updates so it could be that :-\

Offline bob3160

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2013, 12:08:19 PM »
bob3160: In the original post it clearly says "and (temporarily) disabled updates."

My primary concern is simply that there's no clear reason for it to be doing this at all. There may be potential privacy issues, but I've no reason not to trust Avast, it's more an issue of control and resources (the same reason I'm currently trying out Avast in favour of my previous AV). I get the feeling you guys just don't actually know the answer to my question and for some reason are choosing to change the subject and question me instead of leaving the matter to someone who'll respond appropriately.

Look, Avast offers options for a reason. Everyone uses their computer differently, and some of the default settings were overkill or irrelevant for the way I use my computer, while others by default weren't quite secure enough. Do you have some kind of problem with that (in which case maybe you should go and tell the developers just to remove all the options), or can we now please focus on the original question?
You can also teak a program right out of existence. It basically comes down to a matter of trust.
You either allow the program to establish the connections to function and update properly or, you don't trust the program or don't want to
use the program to operate at it's top protection capability and chopp of it's ability to keep you current on your AV protection.
Default settings are also put in place to offer maximum protection and minimum resource use for the average user.
Granted, there are tweaks that can be made but, certain tweaks can also impede the performance and ability of the program.
Your computer - your choice - your decision.   :)
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Offline meebmoob

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2013, 02:56:03 PM »
That's all fair enough, but I'm clearly not the average user. :) The default settings would be what I'd use if I was just setting up an antivirus for family/friends, though.

While this is still largely just speculation and it'd be nice to have some concrete facts and details about how these things work, at least there's some reasonable ideas of what's happening now. I'm not entirely happy with it, but every antivirus has its own unique problems and Avast probably has the least so far so I guess I can live with this.

Offline mchain

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #18 on: August 27, 2013, 07:04:50 PM »
That's all fair enough, but I'm clearly not the average user. :) The default settings would be what I'd use if I was just setting up an antivirus for family/friends, though.

While this is still largely just speculation and it'd be nice to have some concrete facts and details about how these things work, at least there's some reasonable ideas of what's happening now. I'm not entirely happy with it, but every antivirus has its own unique problems and Avast probably has the least so far so I guess I can live with this.
Well, certainly the alternative is much less palatable.  If one does not mind fixing damage left behind by malware attacks and consequent system changes, then the best course of action would be to run system without an a/v program of any sort, and any issues of unknown or unexplained connections would then be moot, and it would not matter what a/v one ran in the past, as they are no longer present or running.

No program - no connections.

imo, I'd rather have a team of people working for me that get up every day and strive to meet the mission goals of protecting my system by blocking malware from ever entering my system, rather than have me deal with manually disinfecting my system every day of malware garbage.  Seems this may be an issue of not understanding why avast! does what it does; many different strategies are used to enable malware to be blocked at first detection.  If such is blocked straight-away, then one does not need to worry about further infections following the initial infection, as the first never got a foothold in the system.

How that initial blocking is done here at avast! is by using those connections created by avast! you seem to object to.  Removing that active protection by disabling the active connection links would seem to lower the basic threshold of protection, and thus could not increase it.

Is internet bandwidth (or the lack thereof) the real issue here?
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Offline meebmoob

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #19 on: August 28, 2013, 12:42:17 AM »
Having to disinfect 'every day' seems a bit of an exaggeration to me - in my experience it's rare to see an attempted infection (other than false positives) more often than once or twice every few months unless I'm on particularly seedy sites, and I'm pretty confident that there haven't been any unnoticed infections too. However, based on personal experiences of running without an antivirus, that's basically just inviting any old virus in and does lead to a lot of easily avoided hassle.

There may indeed be some benefits to Avast's connectivity options, but the idea people seem to be spreading that the software is not complete without them is worrying, because I'd rather my antivirus still work to a reasonable level when I'm not online! :)

Bandwidth isn't an issue here, at least not in the sense of any kind of data cap, but I generally prefer to have as little going on as possible, to reduce interruptions during gaming and just for kinda OCD reasons.

Offline bob3160

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #20 on: August 28, 2013, 01:33:44 AM »
Simply invoke "Silent Gaming Mode" while you're playing games and you'll have no interruptions and,
still have full protection.
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Offline meebmoob

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #21 on: August 28, 2013, 02:28:40 AM »
From what I've read, that option only affects visual/audio interruptions such as notifications, not behind the scenes stuff like connections.

Offline Lisandro

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #22 on: August 28, 2013, 02:39:19 PM »
From what I've read, that option only affects visual/audio interruptions such as notifications, not behind the scenes stuff like connections.
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Offline mchain

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #23 on: August 28, 2013, 09:54:53 PM »
Having to disinfect 'every day' seems a bit of an exaggeration to me - in my experience it's rare to see an attempted infection (other than false positives) more often than once or twice every few months unless I'm on particularly seedy sites, and I'm pretty confident that there haven't been any unnoticed infections too. However, based on personal experiences of running without an antivirus, that's basically just inviting any old virus in and does lead to a lot of easily avoided hassle.

There may indeed be some benefits to Avast's connectivity options, but the idea people seem to be spreading that the software is not complete without them is worrying, because I'd rather my antivirus still work to a reasonable level when I'm not online! :)

Bandwidth isn't an issue here, at least not in the sense of any kind of data cap, but I generally prefer to have as little going on as possible, to reduce interruptions during gaming and just for kinda OCD reasons.
I do understand what you're trying to do here.

Still, as the majority of your unknown and undetected connections never will come up when one is offline, and that also would be true of avast! operation under the same scenario, I don't think any connection issues would apply here when offline.  I do think avast! is natively set to run these sort of connections by default only when one is online.  You are also questioning why there is a need (and so many of them) for such connections in the first place based on your needs and use of your system.

I'm OK with that.

All one has to do is look back to version 4.8 free to see the difference between that old version and the current one, version 8.0.

Glad avast! can be customized specifically for each user if they so desire.  I fear, though, most users that attempt to do these sort changes to the default connections will go too far and then wind up in a troublesome situation that could easily have been avoided if minimal or no changes had been made.

As long as one has an imaging program set to back up their operating system drive on a daily basis, this sort of trouble can easily be undone, and then one is certainly free to experiment with these sort of changes as much as they wish.

Given the extensive modifications and the addition of many new features, I think the avast! team has done a terrific job integrating them all and, also somehow managed to keep their program from noticeably impacting normal use of a system for the vast majority of users.  I can attest here that impact on start-up time, is, at the most, only 10 seconds or so, and on normal operation, negligible.

And, they're still supporting XP.  (And Win 2000, as far as I know) 

[EDIT:]  Following up on bob3160's advice, why not temporarily disable avast! when you are playing a game and offline?
« Last Edit: August 28, 2013, 10:06:29 PM by mchain »
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Offline Michael (alan1998)

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #24 on: August 29, 2013, 03:40:42 AM »
Having to disinfect 'every day' seems a bit of an exaggeration to me - in my experience it's rare to see an attempted infection (other than false positives) more often than once or twice every few months unless I'm on particularly seedy sites, and I'm pretty confident that there haven't been any unnoticed infections too. However, based on personal experiences of running without an antivirus, that's basically just inviting any old virus in and does lead to a lot of easily avoided hassle.

There may indeed be some benefits to Avast's connectivity options, but the idea people seem to be spreading that the software is not complete without them is worrying, because I'd rather my antivirus still work to a reasonable level when I'm not online! :)

Bandwidth isn't an issue here, at least not in the sense of any kind of data cap, but I generally prefer to have as little going on as possible, to reduce interruptions during gaming and just for kinda OCD reasons.

1st Paragraph: Their are probably millions of current infected sites. I recently had the benefit of experiencing a Backdoor-BH [trj]. Luckily it was only abe to download parts of it. Nothing that could harm the computer. It was unnoticed y anything. Avast! didn't grab it Comodo didn't detect the connection. Nothing. So Imagine if you'd have to clean that youself. I watch a video from Britec09 on youtube. The system cleared the 2k malware infected file/folders. YOu truly wouldn't survive without protection so those connections are vital.

2nd Paragraph: It will. Just when a new round of Sirefef or Ransomware comes you you're screwed. Everything is digital. Updates etc.... So unless you want to borrow someones computer and manually install updates for the rest of your life, it isn't wise to tinker with the program.

I run Avast and Comodo Firewall. I have NO issues gaming. None. That won't ever be an issue unless you're using Dial-Up.
SOC Analyst, Digital Forensics & Incident Response (no cert), SIEM Design and Management, HTB Competitor & Pentesting (no cert). I occasionally write custom applications for threat detection...

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Offline meebmoob

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Re: Unexplained Avast connections
« Reply #25 on: August 29, 2013, 08:19:13 AM »
Don't get me wrong, viruses are everywhere (and I make a part of my living helping others get rid of them), just that it's very rare that I personally encounter them. While I do take various steps to reduce potential vulnerabilities compared to the average user, it could be that I'm just incredibly lucky. :)

Active offline protection is probably the most important thing for me as I deal a lot with previously downloaded files or files from removable media. Besides, any potential concerns about connections are largely irrelevant offline.

Anyway, overall I'm pretty happy with Avast so far, and while I'd still appreciate better information on some of the things it's doing, this doesn't seem like the right place for it. Thanks for some of the more intelligent, less generic responses here.