AVASTCLEAR.EXE vs Uninstall
To be able to execute a clean install requires getting around the A/V Self Defense module. There are 2 ways to accomplish this: using the “AvastClear.exe” removal tool in safe mode, or uninstall Avast / AVG from Programs and Features and manually remove the leftovers. Administrator login is required for either procedure. I can help you, if needed. Installing over the top of non-functioning A/V usually results in non-functioning A/V. Therefore, the guaranteed solution is a clean install.
This is my preferred method as it only requires 1 reboot to finalize! This process requires admin privileges. Uninstall the existing Avast / AVG, reboot, and delete the (4) Software folders listed below. Please note that C:\ProgramData\Avast Software folder is hidden. And Microsoft, in their infinite wisdom, always leaves the old directories for the purpose of System Restore. Go look in Program Files, and every program you have ever uninstalled is still there! There are several utilities like Revo Uninstaller or Uninstall Tool that will delete directories and registry entries automatically. An uninstall process can also be pushed from the Avast / AVG management consoles. If the uninstall process fails, then the removal tool will be required!
The 4 Avast Business Software folders that MUST BE REMOVED to perform an Avast clean installation are:
- C:\Program Files\Avast Software
- C:\Program Files\common Files\Avast Software
- C:\Program Files(x86)\Avast Software
- C:\ProgramData\Avast Software
The 4 AVG Business Software folders that MUST BE REMOVED to perform an Avast clean installation are:
- C:\Program Files\AVG
- C:\Program Files\common Files\AVG
- C:\Program Files(x86)\AVG
There is constantly new versions that must be freshly downloaded from Avast for recent changes. AVASTCLEAR.EXE requires to be run in safe mode using Administrator rights, and that means 2 reboots! This newer tool works for all versions of Avast, and the removal process is described below.
Download the Avast! removal tool: http://www.avast.com/en-us/uninstall-utility “AVASTCLEAR.EXE”
NOTE: “AVASTCLEAR.EXE” MUST BE USED IN SAFE MODE
On this screen, you will have to choose the version of Avast, and if you did NOT change the default location during installation, then you may leave those defaults, and just choose the Avast version. And reboot the system after using AVASTCLEAR, and now you can “clean” install.
At https://www.avast.com/en-us/uninstall-utility#pc there are different instruction sets on various issues including:
How to uninstall Avast while “setup is already running”
Uninstall Avast using Command Prompt