Author Topic: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"  (Read 6405 times)

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satyr

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A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« on: February 01, 2006, 09:19:14 PM »
Hey all, this is my first post here after installing the Avast 4.6 Home Edition yesterday; the free variant of Avast anti-virus. As you may see, I have quite a few questions in regard to URL Exceptions in Web Shield resident protection "provider".


1. What is the difference between adding (if any):

http://arstechnica.com/
and
http://arstechnica.com/*


2. Is it possible to use wildcards like this below, since it says "You may use wildcards in all fields":

http://*.arstechnica.com/ (for http://episteme.arstechnica.com and media.arstechnica.com to be exlcuded too)


3. Additionally, it is possible to use more than one wildcard (in a single entry/string):

http://*.arstechnica.com/* (or http://*.arstechnica.com/ would acomplish the same; see also question "1." above ??)


4. Also, it would be nice if it would be possible to import the list of URLs; all the URLs at the same time instead of adding them separately one by one. Curious, where does Avast store this list of excepted URLs ??  I also seached the registry and "avast4.ini" file's contents; and well other files under "D:\Program Files\Avast\" directory too for the string "arstechnica" which  previously put there, but to no avail (/EDIT: Oh, I see now with Filemon program from Sysinternals that the list is probably stored in an encrypted/binary form in "Avast4.mdb" file)


I am also wondering, is there any limit, meaning that if there are more than 100 URLs for instance, the process of querying this list would impact performance significally etc. Oh and one more thing; after excluding various URLs in a http://somedomain.com/* manner as suggested in the Avast help-file, I see them anyway being processed in "On-Access Protection Control" window under "Last scanned". Curious, is this normal or what ??


P.S., Is the UI glitch after adding a URL a common bug, i.e. the glitch that the window doesn't refreshes itself, but one needs to go to some other tab and back to see the real window contents (btw., I noticed this minor bug in other parts of Avast too) ??


thanks for any reply, satyr

« Last Edit: February 02, 2006, 12:43:17 AM by satyr »

Offline RejZoR

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2006, 10:01:51 PM »
Why would you like to add some many URL's to exclusion? Scanning of web pages is very fast and perfectly transparent. No need to exclude it unless it really causes troubles to you.
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satyr

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2006, 12:47:02 AM »


Well thanks RejZoR for a quick reply, but you really didn't answer on any of my questions ...


satyr

Offline igor

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2006, 10:04:44 AM »
1. What is the difference between adding (if any):

http://arstechnica.com/
and
http://arstechnica.com/*

Quite a big one. The first one excludes really just the main page, the second one any pages on arstechnica.com (i.e. it's probably what you want).

2. Is it possible to use wildcards like this below, since it says "You may use wildcards in all fields":

http://*.arstechnica.com/ (for http://episteme.arstechnica.com and media.arstechnica.com to be exlcuded too)

Yes.

3. Additionally, it is possible to use more than one wildcard (in a single entry/string):

http://*.arstechnica.com/* (or http://*.arstechnica.com/ would acomplish the same; see also question "1." above ??)

Yes.

4. Also, it would be nice if it would be possible to import the list of URLs; all the URLs at the same time instead of adding them separately one by one. Curious, where does Avast store this list of excepted URLs ??  I also seached the registry and "avast4.ini" file's contents; and well other files under "D:\Program Files\Avast\" directory too for the string "arstechnica" which  previously put there, but to no avail (/EDIT: Oh, I see now with Filemon program from Sysinternals that the list is probably stored in an encrypted/binary form in "Avast4.mdb" file)

Well, it shouldn't be necessary to add that many exclusions... As Rejzor said, the scanning is quite transparent, it shouldn't cause any big slowdown.

Oh and one more thing; after excluding various URLs in a http://somedomain.com/* manner as suggested in the Avast help-file, I see them anyway being processed in "On-Access Protection Control" window under "Last scanned". Curious, is this normal or what ??

I don't think it's normal. When I add some URLs into the list of exceptions, they don't show up in the "Last scanned" items...

P.S., Is the UI glitch after adding a URL a common bug, i.e. the glitch that the window doesn't refreshes itself, but one needs to go to some other tab and back to see the real window contents (btw., I noticed this minor bug in other parts of Avast too) ??

No such thing occurs here... do you use any skinning tools that may possibly cause that?

Offline RejZoR

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2006, 11:04:40 AM »


Well thanks RejZoR for a quick reply, but you really didn't answer on any of my questions ...


satyr


I know i didn't and that was with a reason...
If you don't need the provider in such large scale then simply remove it (Web Shield provider). I'd understand if you'd like to insert Blocking list, but not exclusion.
Thats why i answered you like that...
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satyr

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2006, 12:20:20 AM »
OK, thanks igorR for a reply.


Quote from: igor
Quite a big one. The first one excludes really just the main page, the second one any pages on arstechnica.com (i.e. it's probably what you want).

I am curious, could I also use three (or even four, five) wildards in a single entry; namely the asteriskes in particular.


Quote from: igor
I don't think it's normal. When I add some URLs into the list of exceptions, they don't show up in the "Last scanned" items...

I think that this is because of slider not remaining at the "Custom" position; please see here Avast: few questions in regard to Standard Shield's settings if you are interested.


Quote from: igor
No such thing occurs here... do you use any skinning tools that may possibly cause that?

Well yeah, it seems to me now that it's probably my bbLean shell's "bbLeanSkin" skinning-plugin's fault then.


regards, satyr
« Last Edit: February 03, 2006, 12:48:42 AM by satyr »

satyr

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2006, 12:12:08 AM »
I know i didn't and that was with a reason...
If you don't need the provider in such large scale then simply remove it (Web Shield provider). I'd understand if you'd like to insert Blocking list, but not exclusion.
Thats why i answered you like that...

OK RejZoR, you are or better yet, might be right; but only sort of ...


You see, in that post I just meant to say that I've asked a totally valid/legitimate question about an existing Avast's feature, and therefore I expected a reply with actual question answered; and not just your personal opinion, i.e. in particular that it doesn't make sense adding so many URLs into the Web Shield under "URL Exceptions".


Anyway, thanks again both for the replies !!


cheers, satyr

Offline Vlk

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2006, 01:15:16 PM »
satyr, you can use any number of asterisks (or question marks) as you wish ;D

If you like, you can do something like

t*h*i*s*i*s*a*v*e*r*y*w*e*i*r*d*m*a*s*k*b*u*t*i*l*i*k*e*i*t*

and it will work. Not that it would be useful, but you obviously like to play with things ;D


Cheers
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satyr

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2006, 02:47:23 AM »

Thanks much Vlk for a further explanation ....


satyr


satyr

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Re: A few questions about Avast Web Shield's "URL Exceptions"
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2006, 12:24:45 AM »

Sorry all for digging out this outdated thread ...


But I've just made screenshots of that "UI glitch after adding a URL a common bug" that I've mentioned in one of the above posts, i.e. the glitch that the window doesn't refreshes itself, but one needs to go to some other tab and back to see the real window contents:






satyr