Author Topic: Self-Defense Issues  (Read 5230 times)

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senrabyar

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Self-Defense Issues
« on: April 02, 2008, 12:13:16 AM »
Before my daily differential backup to tape, I have a batch file which clears the Archive flag for all files I have learnt over the years are not worth backing up (easy to get from the web etc etc)

Avast comes into this category - so I use
attrib -a "c:\program files\alwil software\*.*" /s

Since 4.8.1169 arrived, I find that merely changing the Archive flag is considered a violation - and I have to be present to make my backup work.   Hmmm.

Yes, I could probably exclude the whole folder from inside the backup software - but the list has grown over the years, and is therefore "portable" - I don't have to reinvent it for every new new backup software I use to tape/CD/DVD/ZIP.

So this is just a niggle really - but surely if my backup was an Incremental or a Full style (as it will be later this month) then the backup software would attempt to reset the flag too.

Surely just changing the Archive Flag is allowed !

Offline DavidR

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2008, 02:02:19 AM »
If you allowed changing attributes, I don't know what else/other ramifications might be.

There is little in the avast4 or sub folders that I can se a reason to backup other than the avast4.ini file if you have made any modifications to it. The other files would be recreated by installation. I don't back up any of my program files folder only volatile data files, which I can't recreate and don't want to lose.

I take an image back-up of my primary hard disk partitions every week as part of my system maintenance. This is saved to my second HDD or it can also be written to a DVD.

I also back-up volatile data files, .doc, .xls, etc. along with emails, bookmarks, address book, registration keys,  downloaded files/programs, etc. (anything you don't want to lose) every day sometimes several times a day.
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Offline alanrf

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2008, 02:07:20 AM »
David,

please see my question here and Igor's response to it.

Offline DavidR

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2008, 02:15:39 AM »
Thanks Alan, from that it would see that it should be allowed, unless Igor meant it is allowed if the application is allowed ?

If so we need to know the executable file name of the backup software.
However, I don't think that that would work as senrabyar is running a batch file to change the attributes, I doubt they could put a batch file in to exclude.

If attribute changes are allowed it is failing then, so we need some developer input..
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Offline alanrf

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2008, 02:18:53 AM »
It cannot be that every user has to provide avast with the names of any bat file they have written (as the original poster here has done). 

I have to doubt that avast wants to be the gatekeeper for every existing piece of backup software in existence or that is yet to come.

Offline DavidR

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2008, 02:29:03 AM »
The original thought was that this VPS means would be a short list, so the attributes being allowed makes sense, but it has clearly failed here if that is the case.
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Offline alanrf

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2008, 02:34:38 AM »
I am hopeful that the avast team will have a better and clearer explanation for us.

Offline Lisandro

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2008, 03:14:04 AM »
I have to doubt that avast wants to be the gatekeeper for every existing piece of backup software in existence or that is yet to come.
Me too... but I thank Alwil that they remove both GoogleDesktop and iDrive from this list.
I have no problems with Mozy although.
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senrabyar

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2008, 10:28:41 AM »
Very happy that this is already in the works. 

I think it is very important that any software does not regard normal user activities as potentially harmfull.


Offline igor

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2008, 10:31:13 AM »
I believe this is just a tiny bug.
As I wrote elsewhere, changing the "archive" attribute is allowed (you can try on executables in avast! folder, for example). However, avast4.ini is handled slightly special (unlike other files, where the write access is denied immediatelly, here the user is asked to allow/block the action).
So, my guess is that the "question" is presented too soon, before checking that the operation is only archive-attribute change.
(However, I might be wrong, and it might be hard to implemented it the expected way... don't know, I'm not the author of this part).

Offline Vlk

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #10 on: April 02, 2008, 12:28:37 PM »
Yes, it's a bug (i.e. it was not meant like this).
Change of the archive attribute should not trigger the consent dialog.
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JWJr

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Re: Self-Defense Issues
« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2008, 03:11:35 PM »
Just ran into the same problem here (archive attribute change to "avast4.ini" triggering the self defense) with Microsoft's Backup Utility for Windows (ntbackup.exe).

Glad to here it's being worked on - hopefully, this'll be fixed soon. No complaints otherwise; thanks!  -JW