Author Topic: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate  (Read 6698 times)

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Offline igotyerna

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #15 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

Offline igotyerna

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #16 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

Online bob3160

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #17 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.
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Offline Asyn

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #18 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).
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Offline igotyerna

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #19 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

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #20 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.
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Offline Asyn

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #21 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. ;)
Win 8.1 [x64] - Avast PremSec 20.10.2440.Beta#3 [UI.581] - CC 5.74 - EEK - FF ESR 78.5 [NS/AOS/uBO/PB] - TB 78.5 - SB/CP/SL/DU.B
Deutschsprachiger Bereich -> Avast Wissenswertes (Downloads, Anleitungen & Infos): https://forum.avast.com/index.php?topic=60523.0

Offline chris..

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #22 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. :-\
« Last Edit: February 23, 2020, 12:00:00 PM by chris.. »

Offline igotyerna

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #23 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

Offline chris..

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #24 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 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.



Offline igotyerna

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #25 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

Offline chris..

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #26 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.

Offline Martin00

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #27 on: February 27, 2020, 08:06:56 PM »
Hey, I'm having the same problem. Any fixes yet?

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #28 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?
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Offline Martin00

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Re: Avast! Free AV Will Not Activate
« Reply #29 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.