I found the answer on the Avast Message Board (thanks to the person who suggested that)
It's the Auto Sandbox's fault. Turn it off, or have it ask you every time. You can find it under Additional Protection on the left side of the Avast Window, click on Settings, and unclick the box "Enable Sandbox", or change the option to "Ask".
I updated Avast the other day - and found it royally screwing up another program I rely and depend on: FastStone Image Viewer. Both of these programs have worked together fine for years -- but now suddenly FastStone is crashing every time I try to use it.
FastStone basically loads, usually with a new message saying "Updating Database" (it usually never says that). There's a red line around the program windows - and after a second it crashes. Repeated attempts to open the program yield the exact same results.
I uninstalled both programs and reinstalled them. I installed FastStone first - and found the problem was gone. I reinstalled Avast - and the same issue arose.
Is there a way to fix this? Please explain anything as simply as possible -- I am not good with computers, and don't understand most tech talk.
This seems like a problem on Avast's part. I like Avast - but I like FastStone Image Viewer more. So if there isn't a solution, does anyone know of another free anti-virus service I could try?