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Avast Free Antivirus 2020 settings you need to change now

Avast Free Antivirus is a great security tool for Microsoft Windows, but it has its quirks. Here’s a look at the most important Avast Free Antivirus 2020 settings you need to change now.

This guide is for version 20 (aka 2020) of Avast Antivirus. If your device has an older version installed, it is time to update: right-click or touch and hold Avast icon in System Tray (Taskbar’s Notification area), expand Update, and choose Program.
Upgrading is free, by the way.

As usual, the latest version improves protection, but also adds free ransomware protection to the suite.

Resetting Avast Free Antivirus 2020 to its defaults

First, if you’ve used Avast on the same computer for over 3 years, or if you experience problems with it, you might need to revert its settings to the defaults. This will make Avast better at automation (for example, the Fix Automatically action was not available several versions back) and potentially solve upgrade-related problems.
Skip the following section if Avast works great.

Please note that resetting Avast does not remove password protection!

To reset Avast, open its user interface first. To do this, either click Avast system tray icon or right-click it and choose Open Avast user interface.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020 system tray icon right-click menu, choose ‘Open Avast user interface’.

Then open Menu from the top right.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020 user interface. Click ‘Menu’ on the top right.

Finally, click Settings in the menu.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020 user interface menu. Click ‘Settings’.

In the General tab, open the Troubleshooting tab from the left and hit the Reset to default button.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Troubleshooting. Click ‘Reset To Default’ to revert to the default settings.

As expected, Avast will confirm this action and it will require a computer restart. After the reboot, continue with this tutorial.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Troubleshooting, Reset all of your settings. Click ‘Yes, reset’.

General settings you need to change in Avast Free Antivirus 2020: sounds, password protection, and privacy

To change Avast settings, open its user interface, click or tap Menu on the top right, and choose Settings.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020 user interface menu. Click ‘Settings’.

The Settings window opens. In the General tab, open Notifications and clear the Enable Avast sounds checkbox.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Notifications. Clear the ‘Enable Avast sounds’ checkbox.

Move on to the Password tab. This is the most important Avast Antivirus setting you need to change: password protection does not allow others (people or malware) to change program settings or to turn off anti-virus and anti-malware modules without the correct passphrase. This vastly improves your device’s protection level.
Click or touch the Create new password button to start.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Password. Click ‘Create new password’.

Fill in both Password fields. Make sure you choose a good, unique password: do not reuse your Windows password, credit or debit card PIN or something else important.
Then click or tap Create new password.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Password, Create new password. Type and re-type the new passphrase.

Now the Password tab displays different options. Require password only to access settings is the default one and works fine. You can also Change Password or Remove password when necessary.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Password. To modify your Avast passphrase, click ‘Change password’.

If you do not want to share usage information with Avast and third parties, open the Personal Privacy tab. The data that Avast collects about your program usage and detected items should be anonymous, but one can clear all of the checkboxes here when needed.
Generally, I recommend clearing at least the Offers checkbox to prevent sharing your habits with third parties.

Staying private also means not connecting your device with an Avast account.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, General, Personal Privacy. Clear the ‘Offers’ checkbox.

Protection settings you need to change in Avast Free Antivirus 2020

Open the Protection tab from the left. Most settings are fine by default, but some still need adjustment.

First, scroll down in the Virus Scans tab and turn on the UEFI BIOS option to protect your device’s startup environment.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, Protection, Virus Scans. Tick the ‘UEFI BIOS’ checkbox.

In the first three tabs – Full Virus Scan, Targeted Scan, and Explorer Scan – scroll down and tick the Perform automatic actions checkbox. This will select the recommended Fix automatically setting.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, Protection, Virus Scans. Tick the ‘Perform automatic actions during this scan’ checkbox for all virus scan types.

Next, open the Core Shields tab from the left and then choose the Potentially unwanted programs tab.
Set this to Fix automatically. I have no idea why Avast keeps ignoring PUP-s by default.

Avast Free Antivirus 2020, Settings, Protection, Core Shields. Open the ‘Potentially unwanted programs’ tab and set the option to ‘Ask’.

And that’s it! Your Avast Free Antivirus 2020 is now smarter and keeps malicious software and files away even better than before.

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