Avast setup highlights why you should always customize installations

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Whenever I install a program on Windows, the very first thing that I do is check for a customization option.

I have two main reasons for doing so: The first is to make sure I don’t miss adware or other unwanted programs offered during installation, the second that I don’t install components that are part of the main program that I don’t require.

The latest version of Avast Free Antivirus highlights why that is a good precaution.

Please note that Avast is not the only software program that includes a selection of components that you may have no interest in. I use the program as an example to highlight the importance of customizing installations, not to blame Avast for bundling all these components with their program.

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Other companies may not even give you as many customization options, if any, when you install their products on your devices.

avast setup

If you don’t select customize during installation of Avast, you end up installing the following components on your system.

  • File Shield
  • Web Shield
  • Mail Shield
  • Browser protection
  • Software Updater
  • Remote Assistance
  • SecureLine
  • Cleanup
  • Rescue Disk
  • Browser Cleanup
  • Home Network Security
  • Passwords

While you may have an understanding of what some of these components do or offer, it is less clear with others.

For instance, what is Home Network Security doing or SecureLine?

Even if you know all the modules, you may not need some of them. You may not need Passwords, a password manager, if you already use a password manager. The same is true for SecureLine, a VPN component, cleanup and browser cleanup, or remote assistance.

Yes, having some of the components installed makes sense. You may want the Rescue Disk for example, or the File and Web Shield components as they may improve protection while using the system.

But that is exactly what the customize option is for; to let you pick the components you need and deselect those you don’t.

Avast makes this a little harder than it should be as it does not provide descriptions that help you understand what each component does.

The only option you have when this occurs is to either research a component on the Internet. While you can in theory install it and check it out once it is installed, it not only may require you to remove it again if you find out you don’t need it, it may also have other unforeseen consequences depending on what it does.

If you don’t select customize, you’d get all twelve components selected by default. These may interfere with other software running on your system in worst case. Some may install browser add-ons that you don’t require, others may take over functionality that other software is already being used for.

Side Tip: Avast informs you that it will collect and share data during installation. It won’t give you an option to opt-out there, but you can do so once the installation completes. Open the settings of the program with a click on the gear icon, click on Privacy to expand the section on the page, and remove the checkmark from “Participate in data sharing”.

Now You: Do you use custom installation options?

About Martin Brinkmann

Martin Brinkmann is a journalist from Germany who founded Ghacks Technology News Back in 2005. He is passionate about all things tech and knows the Internet and computers like the back of his hand. You can follow Martin on Facebook, Twitter or Google+

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