Disable Crazy Sounds And Fix Other Annoyances In Avast! Antivirus

Avast is one of the better anti-malware apps available for Windows, but it’s not without its flaws. Thankfully you can rid the program of its annoyances with some easy steps.

Enable automatic program updates

Screenshot avast!_Free_Antivirus_2013-05-03_14-14-02

Avast! will automatically download new virus definitions in the background, but only alert you of program updates by default. Program updates often fix bugs and close security holes, hence should be installed automatically and as soon as possible. To enable it, go to the Updates section in Settings, and choose Automatic update under Program.

Screenshot Settings_2013-05-03_14-14-37

These updates require restarting of your PC, but that shouldn’t be a problem as they are very infrequent.

Disable all sounds

Avast includes a bizarre array of voice alerts that go off every time it successfully or unsuccessfully completes an action, which include anything from updating itself to catching a malware to blocking an infected website. Almost everyone finds them annoying and so will you. To mute Avast, go to Settings > Sounds and uncheck the top option that says Enable avast! sounds.

Screenshot Settings_2013-05-03_14-15-53

Disable all or some of the annoying notifications

Like most anti-malware apps, Avast! displays different notifications/popups for different actions. While not as startling as the sounds, most of these are still very distracting. To banish all Avast notifications forever, turn on Silent/Gaming Mode from the Settings page.

Screenshot Settings_2013-05-03_14-17-53

This will even take care of the sounds if you haven’t turned them off already. However, Silent Mode is not recommended, because it will hide some of the more important notifications. To remove just the useless notifications, go to Settings > Popups, and set the time duration for Info and Update popups (the first two options) to 0.

Screenshot Settings_2013-05-03_14-18-18

You will want to know about warnings and alerts (the next two options), so don’t set their duration to 0. Yes, this is basically a hack to keep the unimportant popups from showing up at all. You can go around disabling different notifications from different areas of the Avast interface – update notifications from the Updates window, notifications for the eight different shields (!) from their own obscure Settings pages (!!) – but that’s an unnecessarily complex process.


The best security apps are like ninjas, working effectively in the background and staying out of your way most of the time. Avast gets the first part right, and with the above steps, you can make it follow the second part as well.