Author Topic: Avast Security in Network  (Read 816 times)

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Offline dmitriy.pavlovskiy

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Avast Security in Network
« on: November 25, 2020, 07:38:05 AM »
Hi! I use Avast Security 14.6 beta and BigSur.
In my Network settings I see one connected Avast Security module and several not connected. Usually the number of not connected increase over time, last time I removed over 10 of it.
Why are not connected here? Why their number increases?


Offline ondrej.kolacek

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Re: Avast Security in Network
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2020, 05:24:48 PM »
Hello,

Avast Antivirus does not configure any VPN. With Catalina, Apple has introduced Network Extension framework (https://developer.apple.com/documentation/networkextension?language=objc) for intercepting network traffic (which our Web Shield and Mail Shield need to do) instead of the old way (via Kernel Extension). This framework was AFAIK originally used on MacOS only to implement VPN, however on iOS it has also already contained the network traffic interception. This functionality was ported and expanded to MacOS in Catalina, although in an immature state. With Big Sur, Apple has discontinued kernel extensions, so we had to switch to this new technology.

Unfortunately despite the fact we are not using the VPN part of Network Extension (our system extension which uses Transparent Proxy for our Pro and Free version and additionally Dns Proxy for our Pro version), the Transparent Proxy functionality, used for scanning network connections, shows as VPN in Networks in System Preferences. This is probably because parts of the functionality used for managing Transparent Proxy are also used for managing VPN; we have already reported one other case where "VPN" term was erroneously used in messaging and Apple has renamed it to more appropriate term. We have already reported this naming issue, however due to the fact that this is not only a case of name change, but there are multiple graphical elements displayed, it is hard to say when/if this will ever be changed by Apple.

So please rest assured, unless you buy our VPN product, there is no VPN active. However as long as you have Web Shield or Email Shield active, there will be this record in Network (and since manually deleting it stops these shields from working, Avast keeps recreating it).

Please note, that these "issues" do not impact the underlying functionality, despite the fact that they are visually annoying and confusing. We apologise for any confusion we are causing.

Kind regards,
Ondrej Kolacek
« Last Edit: December 02, 2020, 03:19:25 PM by ondrej.kolacek »

Offline Auros2

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Re: Avast Security in Network
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2020, 01:49:55 AM »
I think I am experiencing a similar problem to what's described here.  I upgraded to Big Sur recently, and my network had entirely stopped working.  I had to fully uninstall Avast (which was itself a huge hassle -- I had to reboot, then immediately run the uninstaller before Avast fully loaded in, because once it had started up its services, it the uninstaller would hang when trying to stop them).  I noted that I had a BUNCH of those Avast entries in my Network interfaces list.  After the first successful uninstall I tried a fresh install from the website, and immediately had my network fail again, so I dealt with uninstalling it again.  If the product isn't going to work with my OS, it doesn't seem like it makes sense to pay for a subscription. :-P