Author Topic: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!  (Read 7880 times)

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Offline jputting

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Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« on: December 13, 2014, 01:10:37 PM »
Hi,

I wish to simply inform everybody what a nightmare of unprecedented proportions that Avast! for mac has been for me.

I have been very careful to stick close to the facts when describing what this antivirus has put me through.

When Avast! was first released it insisted on scanning my Time Machine back ups on an external hard drive. I had been very careful to ensure that I had put in place exclusions to prevent those back ups being scanned, but those exclusions had NO effect. I of course reported this to avast technical support through the proper channel via a support ticket.

They notified me they were well aware of this issue and it honestly took them well over 12 months to fix this issue.

I also posted on this forum about this problem and nobody at all replied to my posting.

Avast! then started blocking updates from the Apple App Store and I got error messages etc. when scan secured internet connections was enabled in the Web Shield.

After lodging a ticket for  technical support, No help at all was provided by their technical support and I had to find out for myself the necessary server addresses to be excluded from the Web Shield.

Avast! simply had not put those exclusions in as part of the default configuration, this was quite a serious and very bad mistake on their part. The most recent release of their mac antivirus has finally had these exclusions added after a very long period of time.

Once again more problems have arisen with Avast!, the latest release version was blocking my Mac Game Center from connecting with the game center servers and I got numerous messages about problems with internet connections etc. After spend a long time with Apple technical support they identified Avast! as the most likely source of this problem, I then ran the uninstaller included in the Avast! Mac antivirus and rebooted my Mac.

But alas, alas even the uninstaller had NOT done a proper job of removing all the avast components and the problem with Game Center persisted. The guys at Apple Technical Support went over my Mac with a fine tooth comb and simply could not understand what changes Avast! had made that were causing this problem.

I finally had to perform a full Time Machine restore of my Mac back to a point in time when Avast! was not installed. Fortunately my Mac is now once again functioning normally.

I quite strongly recommend that people avoid Avast! for mac like the plague, it has been a source of never ending technical problems for me and has a poor reputation for false positives.

It is now installing Adware that nobody wants and everyone is complaining about on their forums.

Wikipedia states that:
Adware, or advertising-supported software, is any software package which automatically renders advertisements in order to generate revenue for its author. The advertisements may be in the user interface of the software or on a screen presented to the user during the installation process.
Adware - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adware

To put icing on the cake the Avast! technical support is almost non existant and they also take extremely long periods of time to finally fix technical issues.

Hell will freeze over before Avast! gets installed on my mac again!!!!!!!.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2014, 02:34:41 PM by jputting »

Offline specimen9999

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2014, 03:38:56 PM »
Funny that I never got any of those problems in the macs I administer, such is life I suppose.
And the ones I got (email domains with self signed certs, and Avast occasionally blocking all HTTP connections) ended up being dealt via this forum in a timely manner.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2014, 03:42:40 PM by specimen9999 »

Offline Eddy

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2014, 07:45:49 PM »
Quote
No help at all was provided by their technical support
How did you contact the technical support? Through a ticket, here on this webboard or... ?
Quote
It is now installing adware that nobody wants and everyone is complaining about on their forums.
avast doesn't install adware at all. If you believe it does, it is your lack of knowledge that makes you believe so.

Don't blame the tree if you drive against it.

Offline jputting

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2014, 07:01:33 AM »
Hi Eddy,

I wish to point out that I have indeed lodged tickets for technical support through the proper channels. The above technical issues that I have mentioned were indeed acknowledged by technical support, but unfortunately they had NO solutions to my issues.

I was in fact told these technical issues would be addressed in future releases of Avast!.

In the cases of Avast! scanning my Time Machine backups and Avast! blocking Apple App Store updates. It was indeed well over 12 months for these to be resolved by recently updated versions of Avast!.

I had also posted requests on this forum at the time for help in regards to these issues and received NO responses or advice.

Back on October 28th 2014, I posted my issue about Avast! blocking Mac Game Center connections. I asked for help in regards to finding the server addresses used by Game Center so I could add exclusions to Avast! Web Shield manually as I was forced to do with the App Store connection issues.

Once again nobody it seems had these server addresses or had any advice on how to solve this issue.

I did indeed lodge a ticket for Avast! support and still have NOT had a response from them.

God only knows how long it will take them to sort this one out.

In relation to your claim that Avast! doesn't install adware, Technical professionals and a great many,many Avast! users agree that "SafePrice" is Adware and is very much unwanted.

HERE IS THE DEFINITION OF ADWARE AS DEFINED BY WIKIPEDIA.

Adware, or advertising-supported software, is any software package which automatically renders advertisements in order to generate revenue for its author. The advertisements may be in the user interface of the software or on a screen presented to the user during the installation process.
Adware - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adware

What else could this obnoxious "SafePrice" be called? It displays intrusive advertisements that disrupt your online shopping experience and the shopping advice given is quite often inaccurate in many respects.

I and many others simply do NOT trust "SafePrice" at all.

To add insult to injury Avast! is installing "SafePrice" as part of its default installation. You are NOT NOTIFIED OR GIVEN ANY OPTION
TO REJECT THE INSTALLATION OF THIS "SafePrice" Adware during the installation process.

The option to deactivate "SafePrice" is simply NOT GOOD ENOUGH, if we do NOT want "SafePrice" it shouldn't be forced on to us.

The simple fact is NOBODY seems to like "SafePrice".

If we do not want "SafePrice" then Avast! should NOT forcibly ram this crap down our throats.

I once again repeat:Technical professionals do in fact classify "SafePrice" as adware take a look at this following link http://www.thesafemac.com/avast-installs-adware/

Thomas Reed who has this website www.thesafemac.com performs periodic Mac Antivirus tests has even had a big problem with an Avast! false positive, in his case it was a simple RSS feed http://www.thesafemac.com/avast-detects-rss-feed-as-wirelurker/ and it was directly affecting his website.

He also stated that he is quite well aware that Avast! has a problem with high rate of false positive detections as revealed by his tests.

There is a very long standing problem of Avast! also making a false positive detection of a particular system file that has been sporadically identified as a “decompression bomb” repeatedly since at least 2009.

THIS HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR 5 YEARS AND YET STILL THIS PROBLEM OCCURS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.

All these problems with Avast! I believe are caused by the fact that the publishers of Avast! have only relatively recently developed an Mac Antivirus. Avast! has only developed security products for the Windows platform in the past.

Their inexperience in dealing with the Mac operating system sticks out like a sore thumb.

The very long delays in getting technical issues fixed, I believe are caused by the fact Avast! for Mac is a free product. But I most certainly would NOT be prepared to give Avast! a single dollar under any circumstances.

If the publishers of Avast! want their product to be taken seriously and be well respected by Mac users then Avast! quite simply need to stop dragging their feet in dealing with technical issues.

Because of the very bad situation of extremely long delays in dealing with technical issues Avast! is taking a big risk of getting quite a bad reputation as being an amateurish or shonky Mac Antivirus.

To put it quite simply the respect of Mac users must be earned by developing high quality security products that perform well and have zero or very few technical issues or false positives.

When a problem does arise these issues need to dealt with urgently and provide exceptional customer support. Currently Avast! don't do any of these things. It quite simply is NOT a good product.


I now have a paid subscription to Intego VirusBarrier, it is very easy to use and I have never ever had an issue with it.

Intego's VirusBarrier always achieves top ranking in the independant Mac Antivirus tests I have seen on www.thesafemac.com and also www.securityspread.com

Intego also use much less computer memory and performs its full scans faster than Avast!

I personally know other people who also use it and on the extremely rare occasion that they need any technical support or simply have an query they have confirmed that Intego's customer support is outstanding.

I repeat my previous statement that HELL WILL FREEZE OVER BEFORE AVAST! IS EVER INSTALLED ON MY MAC AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

« Last Edit: December 14, 2014, 03:47:25 PM by jputting »

Offline Eddy

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2014, 04:14:20 PM »
Good to hear you submitted tickets.
That is the way to report bugs, shortcomings and such.
Sorry to hear some things weren't fixed sooner, but there is nothing I can about it.
Just like you I am only a user of avast.

If I have to guess,
I would say the reason that you did not got a response here is because only a few people here are using a mac.

SafePrice is not adware.
It doesn't generate any income for avast.
People who do install anything from avast agree with the terms/conditions.
You sure are given the option to install it or not.

Nobody is liking SafePrice?
Totally false statement.
Some people like it, others do not.

Quote
I once again repeat:Technical professionals do in fact classify...
Very clear that he doesn't know what adware is and if you read carefully you will see that he makes several mistakes

Offline specimen9999

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2014, 04:45:31 PM »
SafePrice is not adware.
It doesn't generate any income for avast.
People who do install anything from avast agree with the terms/conditions.
You sure are given the option to install it or not.

Just some observations as an active user of Avast! for Mac.
1. Not so sure it doesn't generate income for avast, even if indirectly.
2. AFAIK, You are not given an option to install it, the browser extension installs automatically, you may, however, remove it.

Offline jputting

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2014, 05:54:59 PM »
Hi Eddy,

I believe it is you who simply doesn't understand the true definition of Adware.

Did you read the Wikipedia link I posted? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adware

Here is a copy for you;

Adware, or advertising-supported software, is any software package which automatically renders advertisements in order to generate revenue for its author. The advertisements may be in the user interface of the software or on a screen presented to the user during the installation process. The functions may be designed to analyze which Internet sites the user visits and to present advertising pertinent to the types of goods or services featured there. The term is sometimes used to refer to software that displays unwanted advertisements.[1]

If I have to make a choice as whom to believe in regards to Avast! and Technical issues, I will always follow the completely independent unbiased advice given by Thomas Reed on his website who has always been quite accurate in these matters.

You call yourself an Avast! Evangelist supporter and it is quite obvious you are indeed strongly biased and one eyed in your unwavering support for Avast!

Please open your mind and take a very long hard look at all the quite serious issues Avast! for Mac has.

Do you honestly believe that Avast! would include "SafePrice" if they didn't benefit from it in some way even indirectly?

Why else do they insist on forcing this crap down our throats.

Specimen9999 has also verified my statement that you are NOT given an option to refuse the "SafePrice" component, Avast does indeed install it automatically.

If you decline the terms and conditions then Avast! will not proceed to install on your Mac.

This is quite simply NOT the same as being able to reject the installation of the"SafePrice" component.

You can only disable it NOT remove it, unless you uninstall Avast!

As for your statement that some people like "SafePrice", well I yet to read any significant number of postings by people who are assumed to like it.

If there was indeed a user poll of Avast! for Mac users,
I very strongly believe the democratic majority of Mac users would NOT favour "SafePrice" and they would choose to reject this Adware.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2014, 12:45:36 AM by jputting »

Offline tumic

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2014, 03:29:17 PM »
Hi,
It's quiet hard to go through all the emotion outburst and find some technical stuff that makes
sense to comment, but I will try it. However it may happen, that I will miss some parts.

Exclusions issue
There are file shield exclusions since the beginning  in Avast for Mac and they do work. What
was missing were exclusions for on-demand scans (those were added some time ago).
So I would rather speak about a missing feature than an issue here. Also note, that on-demand
scans do not have the highest priority like the shields, the engine, updates and lot of other stuff,
which explains why this feature was implemented "quiet late".

HTTPS scanning issue
What happened is, you have enabled some advanced option, that you do not understand and then
wondered about some effects this produces. Today you use another product, that is missing the
feature (VirusBarrier has even no web shield at all as far I know) and you are perfectly ok with it. So
I really do not get, why you blame Avast for giving you this option...

Packer bombs
Again. Files marked as suspicious of being packer bombs are not detected as malware by Avast.
Avast provides just a hint in form of an warning. If you do not understand the theory behind it, just
ignore it. The warnings are even not displayed by default in the GUI.

SafePrice
First of all - it is not true, that you have to install the extension. It is optional and can be disabled
during Avast installation. It can also be removed later with no effects as already mentioned here.

Whether SafePrice (or the Chrome installation) is addware is a matter of opinion. Here in Avast
we believe it is not as it may be omitted during the installation, but yes it is on the edge. Just
a note to the "free" word in Avast product names. It really does not mean, that the developers do
eat grass and sleep under the bridge. We are not a charity but a regular company that by definition
(and law) has to earn money. The "free" word simply means you do not pay for the products with
money. Instead we "monetize" you by using alternative methods (data, third party product offers, ...)
So yes, we do get money for offering SafePrice. If you dislike this business strategy, than simply do
not use Avast. There are however millions users worldwide who like this strategy more than
giving a few bugs for the products directly.

Independent unbiased advises by Thomas Reed
When I read the articles on his webpage, I really have a completely different feeling. The webpage
is clearly anti-AV industry oriented. This would be a perfectly ok pose, wouldn't he not use find out
arguments for his articles. Also even being anti-AV oriented, he uses the outcomes of the AV industry
(like malware samples and their classification) in his "business"...

Offline specimen9999

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2014, 07:34:29 PM »
Thank you tumic, I'm not the one who started the thread, but, nonetheless, it was a very informative and candid for me, I appreciate that.

Offline jputting

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2014, 06:47:10 AM »
Hi Tumic,

I do in fact quite clearly understand the technical issues here.

In regards to your statements:

1. EXCLUSIONS ISSUE
It is true that there were exclusions missing for On Demand Scans which I precisely the reason why I added them manually, but despite this Avast ignored the exclusion rules very carefully put in place by myself. Avast! simply was NOT obeying those manually added exclusions.

I also posted about this issue on these forums, once again NO response or any help at all was given.

When I lodged a support ticket, this was acknowledged as an TECHNICAL ISSUE.

It was NOT described by Technical Support as a missing feature.

Avast! may feel On Demand Scans are of secondary importance, but those Time Machine Backups are of CRITICAL IMPORTANCE to all Mac users and we simply do NOT want them ever being tampered with.

Lets face the fact that Avast! for Mac has a very bad record for false positives.

If a Time Machine Backup gets corrupted in anyway by Avast!'s actions that backup will now be unusable to me.

That is NOT an issue of secondary importance like Avast! seems to think it is.

However I did indeed have to wait over 12 months for those very important exclusions to be finally added.

That's simply NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!!!!.

2. HTTPS Scanning Issue.
Yes in fact I do clearly understand the advanced option of Scanning HTTPS.

The plain and simple fact is when Avast! introduces a feature like this for us to use it is absolutely vital that Mac services such App Store Updates - which also provide all of your Mac Security Updates should have exclusions included in this HTTPS Scanner by default.

This is a very bad and quite serious over-site by Avast!.

We simply should NOT have to wait over 12 months for those exclusions to added for those whom wish to use this advanced feature.

People should NOT have to go and search high and low for these server addresses and add exclusions for vital security services manually when they should be there by default in the first place to avoid these types of issues.

Once again this is simply NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!!!.

3. Packer Bombs
This issue Avast! has about certain files being identified as a "Decompression Bomb" has been going on for over 5 years.

As I pointed out: STILL NOT FIXED AFTER 5 YEARS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It is quite interesting to note that Intego or other Mac antivirus simply don't make this mistake.

I NEVER stated that this false positive detection was identified as Malware, just yet another Avast! false positive.

Just pointing out that here is another very long standing example of Avast!'s quite bad reputation for making false positives.

Take a long hard long look at the problem encountered by Thomas Reed when an simple RSS on his website was identified by Avast! as "WireLurker"

http://www.thesafemac.com/avast-detects-rss-feed-as-wirelurker/

I quite frankly was absolutely shocked and disgusted by Avast!'s handling of the whole situation.

A truly professional company would have sorted this out as rapidly as possible and sincerely apologised for the trouble caused.

But NO Avast! did NOT do the respectable and professionally responsible thing, A representative of Avast! posted repeatedly on their website in a quite combative manner.

I don't believe Avast! has formally apologised to Thomas Reed,
but I quite strongly believe they should do so immediately  without any reservations at all.

Once again this is SIMPLY NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!!!

4. SAFEPRICE
You have said that I don't have to install this extension and I don't know if things have changed with the latest released version, but when I installed Avast! I am absolutely 100% certain that I was NOT given the option to refuse the "SafePrice"  installation nor was any notification given that this component was included.

As pointed out this may have changed with the latest releases of Avast!

As for its uninstallation, well I am a loyal Firefox user and there was NOT any way to remove this "SafePrice" via the normal methods used to uninstall Firefox Extensions, it could only be disabled.

I have been informed that it can be uninstalled from the Safari browser, but I simply don't like Safari and don't use it unless Firefox has an issue with a particular website.

I am glad to see a frank and honest admission that Avast! does indeed get money for offering "SafePrice".

You have claimed that its debatable if "SafePrice" is Adware or not, well in that case in the light of your admission that Avast! does get money from "Safeprice"

I again insist that you take a very long hard look at the Wikipedia Definition of Adware wich I will post here yet again:

ADWARE AS DEFINED BY WIKIPEDIA.

Adware, or advertising-supported software, is any software package which automatically renders advertisements in order to generate revenue for its author. The advertisements may be in the user interface of the software or on a screen presented to the user during the installation process.
Adware - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adware

I do NOT like having any connection with a company that has basically sold its soul in such a manner.

I really do prefer to use a security product which is free form the Avast!'s Technical Issues and doesn't have Avast!'s bad reputation for false positives.

Avast!'s reputation as a respectable security product is suffering quite badly because of these constant ongoing issues.

Avast!'s reputation is now even further tainted by the fact that it is now installing Adware.

I once again repeat that if a poll of Avast! for Mac users was conducted, I very strongly believe that the democratic majority would choose to reject "SafePrice".

Do you people at Avast! have any respect at all for what Avast! users want and do NOT want!.

I also prefer a security product which is published by company who has much higher moral and ethical values and provides a much higher quality product and exceptional Technical Support. 

So it really has been a case of GOOD RIDDANCE TO AVAST!

I have also fully stated just about  everything I have wanted to say about the nightmare Avast! for Mac has been to me.

I also feel the current debate is constantly going around in circles in respect to some points I have raised.

I am NOT going to post any more on these forums because of this.

All of your strongly biased and one eyed Avast! supporters can now go back to enjoying your shabby, amateurishly designed Avast! antivirus and the countless technical issues that  Avast! will plague you with for years to come.







« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 08:53:04 AM by jputting »

Offline specimen9999

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2014, 10:15:15 AM »
First, no one insulted you, or attacked you personally, your insults towards others are absolutely gratuitous.

For someone who's not using the product, will never use again, and did not paid to use it, you seem too involved.

It's hard to see the objective and motivation, is it a cautionary tale for other users? No one is going to read all that (I didn't). When someone is dissatisfied with a product they just stop using it, it's not like there aren't any other options out there, that's how consumers 'vote' if they like a product or not.

Normally, someone makes their point, the other part replies, the people reading both sides make their own judgement. Not agreeing with you is not going around in circles, your disgruntled repetition is.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 10:44:34 AM by specimen9999 »

Offline jputting

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2014, 11:15:31 AM »
Hi specimen 9999,

You can rest assured this most definitely is my final post.

I am only adding this postscript to clarify my reason for starting this thread.

1. Yes this was indeed intended to be a cautionary tale for other users as to the nightmarish experience Avast! for Mac has been and to basically sound the alarm that this product is quite simply NOT A GOOD ANTIVIRUS.

2. I do apologise for the length of my postings and any repetition contained therein.

I ask you to have patience and try to go through my previous posting point by point.

3. I simply will never ever apologise to those people are slavishly devoted to Avast! and are very reluctant to open their eyes and see it has quite serious technical issues, which continue for very long periods of time before they are finally fixed.

I could have been much more caustic and scathing towards those who are almost evangelistic in their regards to Avast!, I knew I was taking a risk in being barred from these boards, but I strongly feel that the risk was well worth it.

4. Consumers often don't just move from one product to the next without complaint, in fact it is quite common for good friends and family to caution each other about poor quality products and bad customer service et. There are also many TV shows, forums and websites where people can caution others about bad consumer experiences, scams and rip offs et.

In this day and age word of mouth recommendations mean an awful lot and cautionary messages are very important.

Well this is most my final posting and nothing is going to tempt me to resume posting again.


« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 11:20:42 AM by jputting »

Offline specimen9999

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Re: Avast!: The Worst Mac Antivirus Ever!!!!
« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2014, 06:01:45 PM »
It's worth noting that the Wikipedia definition of Adware that you used basically includes free mobile apps that use ad banners, also includes SaaS and subsequently Google, Facebook, etc.

Quote
Support by advertising is a popular business model of software as a service (SaaS) on the Web. Notable examples include the email service Gmail[2][14] and other Google Apps products,[3] and the social network Facebook.[15][16] Microsoft has also adopted the advertising-supported model for many of its social software SaaS offerings.[17] The Microsoft Office Live service was also available in an advertising-supported mode.[3]

But also distinguishes for when the term is used for certain types of malware, which is not the main definition, or distinguishes Adware from Spyware.
Quote
The term adware is frequently used to describe a form of malware (malicious software),[19][20] usually that which presents unwanted advertisements to the user of a computer.[21][22] The advertisements produced by adware are sometimes in the form of a pop-up.[23]

When the term is used in this way, the severity of its implication varies. While some sources rate adware only as an "irritant",[24] others classify it as an "online threat"[25] or even rate it as seriously as computer viruses and trojans.[26] The precise definition of the term in this context also varies.[c] Adware that observes the computer user's activities without their consent and reports it to the software's author is called spyware.[28]
« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 06:06:02 PM by specimen9999 »