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How can my AVG Internet Security program suddenly disappear?

Hi, I've been traveling the past 2 months and suddenly noticed that AVG Internet Security had completely disappeared - no icons, not on the list of software to choose from, and not under Program Files. In looking back, I think that the Microsoft update was loaded just before AVG went away. I was just ready to renew AVG anyway, so did that and reloaded and AVG is now acting fine. The techs at AVG adamantly state that 'someone' must have removed it as it can't be done any other way. Well, I'm the only person who uses this PC and I know I didn't remove it. How could this have happened? Could a virus or malware have done it? Any help in explaining this mystery is appreciated. Thanks.

See here for additional info:
https://www.cnet.com/forums/post/4665f0fb-c217-4990-88e2-ddfded88746d/

--Submitted by Jean B. aka CNET username jlbartos

Post was last edited on November 16, 2018 11:56 AM PST

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Comments
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Were it's files and folders gone too?

Were it's files and folders still visible in Explorer? Maybe only the shortcut in Program Files got deleted...

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I would have checked that first too..

Hi Albert3801,
Yeah, That' the first thing I thought too, I have had that happen after an update and just the desktop Icon is missing and you just go to the app folder and copy a new one to the desktop.. But no, if you read the question he DID check all the folders and could not find any trace of AVG, It had been removed or uninstalled by the Windows 10 update, Probably, Because the version of AVG he had at the time of the update was not compatible with the update for windows 10. When he reinstalled AVG he probably got the newest version and it was compatible so all is well now, He just wanted to know what happened and why his AVG disappeared (o; Good Idea though, That's always the first thing to check Thanks.. Take Care, Always Have FUN!!!

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Reboot the PC

AVG has this annoying tendency lately to require a reboot immediately after you reboot the PC for a Windows update. Only it may not alert you to this. Sometimes the icon on the right side of the taskbar just disappears. Then when you try to open the program via a shortcut nothing happens. Try rebooting the PC and open up the program and update via the menu to make sure all updates are applied. You may have to reboot again. I have had the icon disappear at least twice in the last several months. The key thing is the PC needs a full restart/reboot.

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Was This Windows?

It would be helpful to know. First, go check for the AVG files or folders. If you reinstalled already, this is not useful at the moment. The other thing that can happen with windows, is that you might have switched users. You might have had a LOCAL account and a MICROSOFT account (usually, one is your email address. Check if you have two (or more) accounts. If so, you might not have the same "desktop" and/or Start Menu. It's always important to find out if it really was removed by checking files and folders and not just disappearing icons or menu items. During the upgrade, if you clicked on something to use Microsoft's anti-virus, it may have uninstalled AVG as you really are NOT supposed to have more than one malware solution at a time. From even the old days, some installs of a protection product will uninstall another product. Sometimes, one will see the signatures in the other product and declare it to be malware and off it goes. Do you still have your logs in AVG? You may want to see how far back they go and also look at the Event Viewer in Windows. Unless it go cleared, the event viewer could tell you what happened but you may have a lot of going backwards and reading to do.

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There are possibilities

Disclaimer, I've never used AVG, so don't know what its install looks like or its policies.

I'll make a few assumptions. You mention a Microsoft update, so I assume you are running Windows - it would be useful to know which version, 10 or something earlier. Since you say all the shortcuts were gone and there was no trace of it in Program Files, I assume it had been deleted in its entirety. Since you've reinstalled the latest version, you may never know what deleted it.

You said you were ready to renew AVG, so we can assume it's the paid version? Had your license expired while you were away? If so, I don't know what AVG's policy is on expired licenses, run it but without updates or disable it? I would expect the former and definitely not uninstall it. If Windows 10 finds no running security system, it will start Windows Defender but it shouldn't delete anything.

There have been some flavours of malware that have deleted any antivirus systems they find and prevent reinstall but I've not heard of one recently. Since you have your new copy of AVG up and running satisfactorily, it would be worth doing a full scan to check there is nothing lurking that shouldn't be there. Run a rootkit scan too, if AVG supports it. Possibly worth a scan with Malwarebytes to be sure too.

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Me too

With the spring MS 10 update. Totally removed Norton Internet Security, Malware Bytes and installed Windows Defender. Had to reinstall both. Had time on contract so did not have to repurch. Could not uninstall defender but with a little persuasion was able to make all work together.
Do blame Microsoft.

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AVG Disappeared

I'm going to try to answer everyone's responses in one.
My PC has Windows 10, and sometime in fall, maybe before or after AVG went missing, it did a big update on my PC. I can't prove the occurrence either way. Anyway, there was no trace of Internet Security on the system. In APPS it did not appear on the list. The shortcut on my desktop didn't work. When I looked on C drive, there were no files for AVG either in Program Files or Program Files (86x). As to the expiration of my contract, we have auto renewal. Also, I was ready to confirm the purchase before the deadline, so I don't think it went bye-bye due to contract running out. I think I just ran a full scan, but will run it again in case I didn't and a rootkit one as soon as I can. Thanks for that suggestion.
So far all seems to be well after downloading and reinstalling AVG Internet Security. None of our other PCs was affected in this way, and since we were traveling, one of them ended up not getting the new access code or serial number until after the expiration date. I just re-installed and all was well. Thanks to all who responded and asked questions. I should have included some of those pieces of information, but the whole thing surprised me so much that I missed doing so!
Jean

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Hi Jean

Hi Jean -- we responded to your thread with some answers to your questions, here in the featured thread. Here's the high points:

1. Avast or AVG would never uninstall themselves for no reason!

2. Some malware does try to uninstall your antivirus. However, we have a built-in self-defense module to prevent this; you would be prompted if anything tried to uninstall our program without your permission.

3. Avast or AVG would not uninstall themselves if your license expires; generally speaking, the software would revert to a free/unlicensed version and prompt you for renewal.

We believe that in this case, something unusual must have happened with a Windows Update or an issue elsewhere on the PC; we're glad that a simple reinstall resolved things for you.

Please contact us if you need anything and we thank you for your support!

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Antivirus programs
Yes, it happened to me too !
Until now, three times I updated my windows 10 home edition (automatically, ohhhh, yes) my malwarebytes registered soft ceased to work and I had to reinstall it.
Fortunately, malwarebytes is smart enough to find the key without any help, so the full version was back quickly.
The drawback is I don't know how many minutes I ran unprotected (yeah, I know, one second only is too much !)
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Yeah Micro soft seems intent on bilking the public

Still running windows 7 _ just switch on my Business only computer from Vista to Windows 7 ( wouldn't accept Windows 8 as too old of a computer ) in any case after doing this tried to get my Microsoft Live mail e Mail - NO GO _ after goggling that question found they no longer support it . Have to use the
old Micro Mail I didn't like when Live mail became available . Microsoft is becoming a Pain in the behind . Don't really like the touch screens, app type stuff _ sorry it's ok on my I Phone but don't like it for my computer . They're shoving stuff down our throats without asking if want it _ As does Apple .
I'm holding onto Windows 7 for as long as i can As these companies want everything obsolete . If they can't make it cheap to self dispose they make it software incompatible. tired of spending monies on
things that work but the companies in software business either jack up the prices ( Microsoft office now annually payments ) or make it no longer supporting updates for security .

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Re: Windows Live Mail

Windows Live Mail still runs in Windows 7. You can't download the installer from Microsoft anymore, but surely you can install it from the backup of the installer you made when installing it in Vista.As we say here: you only loose what you didn't backup.
Did you try the download from https://windows-live-mail.en.softonic.com/download ?

And did you ever consider using Mozilla's Thunderbird, an open-source email client. Many people use it. You might like it better than your old Micro Mail. You might even like it better than Windows Live mail!

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Windows Update again!

Windows Update again!
It has happened to me on two occasions including the loss of WORD.
I keep a copy of all valuable cleaning/anti-virus programmes in the task bar.

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It was the Windows Update

I have seen Windows 10 updates remove all sorts of programs. One was "Windows 7 Games" a simple program that gave you back, Solitaire, Spider Solitaire, Freecell, etc. Another one, that I saw it take off on 2 different occasions was Hallmark Cards Event Planner. And several others. It indiscriminately will randomly remove programs. Often leaving the shortcut, but the actual program is gone. Just one more reason we should not be subject to forced updates.

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I had a sort of similar problem once or twice

Once my ISP provided a "free" antivirus program that uninstalled my Norton Antivirus without my permission because the two were not "compatible." On another occasion, an update to Norton installed a device driver (.dll) file with the same name as a .dll file another program used, causing a problem everytime I tried to start the other program.

Maybe something like that happened in this case.

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One More Possibility

I'm just wondering if you had any kind of tech support conversation on your computer that involved allowing a support person to fix something by what's called "remote assistance". That's where you let the support person have access to your computer over the internet. In theory, someone could use the temporary access or control to uninstall a program. Highly unlikely since you would be there watching, I hope! Of course, a rootkit could possibly allow remote access when you were away from your desk, but Windows Update remains the strong favorite. We had a couple of casual games disappear from our Windows 10 laptop after the spring update. No idea why - it just happened.
Do you have a System Image backup from before the Windows Update? You could restore that System Image then keep an eye out for Windows to invoke an update and see if AVG vanishes ....

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Check Malwarebytes

I don't use AVG, but I can tell you that Malwarebytes has completely removed a few of my programs including many by IObit.

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Take IOBits off the hit list!

Hi Rjobb,
Yeah I have had that problem too, its because most IOBit software has some sort of scanner in them to ether clean your PC or scan from bad things, This looks like a virus to Malwarebytes! You just have to un-check all the IOBit software from Malwarebytes before it removes it! as a False Positive! and I sent that info to Malwarebytes support so that will probably be changed in a new update, Malwarebytes is one of the best for finding well hidden bad things that are hard to find or get removed, It works well with some other software like Avast And IOBits Malware Fighter! I don't use Malwarebytes all the time, But, will run it if I think there is a problem? Avast is very good and fast for a monitoring Antivirus program that protects your system all the time, AVG is very good also, So you should be fine once you exclude IOBits from the Bad file list in Malwarebytes! Good luck, Take Care, Always Have FUN!!!

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My AVG went haywire last week too....

I didn't lose it completely, but a couple weeks back I started getting AVG opening with "UI failed to load" error, in a black window with a string of nonsense.

when I finally had time to deal with it, I just went to the site and reinstalled. no problems since (whoops - other than I guess I'll have to reset everything, as I just opened it and automatic updates aren't working anymore either....)

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Other Malware Products

Make sure you don't have other anti-malware products around as they can wipe-out other anti-malware software. Especially if you told Windows Update to turn-on MS's antivirus.

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Feature updates can do that

When installing feature updates (actually a new OS), all programs are reinstalled. If a program is incompatible with the new OS so that it can’t be installed, naturally it will be missing. Usually, there is some sort of notification about this. The latest version of AVG most likely is compatible with the feature update.

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Something Else to Remember

There were Windows Update errors on, I think it was the 2018 Spring Update where AVG was causing the Windows Update process to do strange things. Although the problem was OFFICIALLY blamed on AVG, MS worked on a fix. The AVG was running instructions that they were not supposed to. Remember that software like AVG has to run with special privileges to do its job. But I don't think that relates to anything recent nor this exact problem. It's still possible the Windows Update removed AVG and planned to put it back later, unless the Update never completed properly.

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Magic Disappearing Apps on Windows 10!!!

Hi jlbartos,
Yes! I have had this happen to me and not just Anti-Virus programs ether, What I have found out after talking with Microsoft and others that when MS Windows 10 does a major update some programs are no longer compatible! (Most times the software in question just needs to be upgraded to be compatible with the update for windows 10) It gives you a warning! If your setting there watching the process for a hour or more? But! If not, It just does it! If the program is no longer compatible it just gets uninstalled! And that's it! It may have just needed to be upgraded? Like if his/her AVG program software was out of date and therefor not compatible with the MS 10 Update? It just got uninstalled! If He/She would have had the program updated before the update, It would have most likely been OK! (But Who? Knows This? Unless you check all your software for the newest version Before Windows 10 does an update?) Its kind of like a test! See if your paying attention? LOL! I have lost other programs like my old version of Photoshop! I like it better then the new version and I hate paying for software on a monthly basis! Its like I have enough bills already to keep track off! LOL! But, About 2 updates ago for Windows 10 it became no longer compatible and it was uninstalled! I re-installed the old software and its there now! But, Will NOT RUN! )o; Even if I put it in compatibility mode for say Windows XP! So, I am forced to use it on a PC that still runs windows 7! Works great! (o; I do have a request in to MS to look into this problem, Like I am expecting an answer any second now??!! (o;
I would say that when he/she reinstalled and reactivated the AVG it was the upgraded version and so all is well with Windows 10 and AVG once more! (o;
Its like I like and use Windows Gadgets! I know its like can be hacked or something? But, That's what I have Avast and other software for! But, Every time Windows 10 does an update it gets removed! I reinstall it and everything is good again! Its one of the BOSSY features of Windows 10 and Microsoft that wants to dictate to the user what programs they can run and what they can not! I find any and all ways around it when ever I can, But that is just the way Windows 10 is... (o;
Its like there deal, If you have to reload windows 10 because of a Motherboard death or upgrade you have to go back and install windows Vista or 7 and then do the Free upgrade to windows 10! If your registered with Microsoft and have your digital licence saved in MS? Then it will do the free upgrade and your back to all good again once you re-install all your software! FYI: Do a current backup first! If possible, and it will help getting your PC back to the way it was before the change or upgrade, Otherwise you have to BUY a new licence to get windows 10 back on your PC, They (MS) makes a download file for DVD and you can get a DVD copy of windows 10 to reinstall if a thing happens and you have to rebuild, But, Make sure your are a registered user of MS and all your PC's are registered and then You will not have to BUY a new licence! (o; (I can get you the link if anyone needs it? Its legal software from MS! Its just a little hard to find) I hope this helps someone, and answers your Question on the disappearing Software and Windows 10... Thanks... Take Care, Always Have FUN!!!

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Me too

Happened to me also but with a current subscription to McAfee total security.

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Disappearing Programs on Windows 10 installs

The problem with programs disappearing on computers, is definitely caused by windows 10 updates, I have been having the same problem all year, ok, its a different make of antivirus, but it still happening, I have been closely monitoring the problem since the Spring. Last time it caused me a major problem, as it left my system so vulnerable that after a lot of work getting it back to normal, when I did a scan it found over 80 instances of virus attacks. As well as this problem I also find my system constantly freezing or slowing down, again, caused by Windows 10 updates, at times rendering my computer completely unusable. I have complained to microsoft's Live assistance, & all they recommend is a complete reinstall, which is crazy, I can' t keep reinstalling windows every month or so ! In one instant when chatting live with a microsoft assistant, she turned around and agreed with me that windows 10 is really problamatic & should not have been released, in what I say, Is really a Beta release.
I am in a worse scenario then most as my computer is a Microsoft surface pro, I cannot install a different operating system as the windows serial is burnt in to the Bios, so when I install, windows 7 for example, microsoft detects the install and automatically upgrades it to windows 10 again.
What could be even worse is the fact that many other windows 10 users won't have a clue as to what is happening, and probably end up wasting £££'s sending their computers in for repair each time. Microsoft really need taking to court over this, but who can afford to, I certainly can't !

Post was last edited on November 17, 2018 6:05 AM PST

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vanishing programs

Well I thought I was just crazy when programs vanished from my windows 10 computer after updates. It was not AVG, but Malwarebytes vanished and several others. I suspect that the update was bad or corrupted and they restored from a hidden backup on an invisible partition and did not restore anything to which they did not have serial keys. However, that restore eventually corrupted and I had to do a clean install. I wish I could manage updates on windows 10, but I did not pay for the pro version and do not wish to invest in buying a whole new OS. They should offer a mini-upgrade to pro for this. I am really not happy with Windows 10 and may go back to Win 7 eventually. I have about 20 licenses for ***.

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From Avast and AVG

Hi Cnet fans!

It sounds like, in Jean's case, something else on the computer or with a Windows update caused an issue with the AVG installation that was present. I can further clarify some things, too!

AVG or Avast does NOT suddenly uninstall itself. The user must uninstall it themselves.

Some malware does try to uninstall antivirus, but there is a self-defense module built into our antivirus to prevent this from happening. If any other program tried to uninstall without your permission, you would see a dialog from the program asking if it was you who tried to uninstall Avast/AVG.

Also, looking at Jean's original post, it sounded like she was on auto-renewal for her AVG subscription. Even if she was not, AVG would not uninstall itself for this reason. However, in this situation it would revert to a Free/Unlicensed version and notify the user that the license has expired, at which point it could then be renewed.

It also looks like the issue was resolved simply by reinstalling AVG, which is great Happy Again, it does sound like this was possibly an issue with Windows Update or another issue present on the PC, but that it's now good to go.

If anyone (including you, Jean!) has any issues with Avast or AVG, we encourage you to reach out to us via our official support channels for help:

https://support.avg.com/
https://support.avast.com/

You will want to ensure 100% that you are submitting a ticket through our official Avast or AVG support portal as well -- be wary of unofficial support companies that promise to provide support for our products but are NOT affiliated with us in any way!

Thanks everyone!

Post was last edited on November 20, 2018 6:52 AM PST

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me too

I just want to add to the discussion here.
I installed AVG free version along with Vuze torrent downloader, and AVG disappeared without reason from my computer and it doesn't appear in the programs list in the control panel. Very weird behavior from an anti-virus.

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re: me too

Hi, Nick408:

It sounds as if you're having a similar issue with a recent Windows update. Reinstalling AVG Free should resolve the issue. If you have any further issues, we have an extensive FAQ database and support options at: https://support.avg.com/

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AVG Internet Security Program

To fix this problem, follow the following steps:
Please go to Control panel > program and features and let me know the AVG programs installed on your computer.

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