avast! GrimeFighter

avast! GrimeFighter's innovative design makes it easy and fun to use. But you'll immediately notice that there's much more there than meets the eye. avast! GrimeFighter is a powerful automated solution to your PC frustration, which you can run as needed. GrimeFighter is an add-on for any version of avast! Antivirus.

Minions

avast! GrimeFighter

avast! GrimeFighter's innovative design makes it easy and fun to use. But you'll immediately notice that there's much more there than meets the eye. avast! GrimeFighter is a powerful automated solution to your PC frustration, which you can run as needed.

avast! GrimeFighter is different than the software you’ve used before. We start by sedating your PC before getting to work. Unlike other software, this allows avast! GrimeFighter to run without interference from viruses, and eradicate even the nastiest of infections.

  • Removes bloatware and trialware that slows your PC
  • Disables unnecessary services
  • Deletes temp files and other trash
  • Makes system registry adjustments to speed up your PC
  • Removes toolbars so websites load faster
  • Optimizes settings in popular applications

System Requirements

Operating Systems Supported:

Windows 7 (any Edition, 32-bit or 64-bit)
Windows Vista (any Edition excl. Starter Edition, 32-bit or 64-bit)
Windows XP Service Pack 2 or higher (any Edition, 32-bit or 64-bit)
Older Windows operating systems (Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000) are not supported.

Minimum Hardware Requirements:

Processor
Pentium 3 Processor
Memory
512 MB RAM
Hard disc
600 MB of free hard disk space

For best results, remove any other antivirus software from your PC before installing avast!

avast! Antivirus Supported

avast! GrimeFighter is available as an add-on. If you have any of our avast! Antivirus installed, you are good to go. Don’t have avast! Antivirus yet? Get avast! Free Antivirus now!

Why Use GrimeFighter?

Meet Officer Pete, avast! GrimeFighter's captain and chief. His arch nemesis is Grime, who embodies all of the evil crud (viruses, spyware, trialware, pop-ups, bloated toolbars, etc.) that makes you dread using your PC. Every time you run avast! GrimeFighter, Officer Pete and his minions take the fight to Grime, using their expert skills to get you and your computer back on speaking terms again.

New or old, your PC is a Grime magnet, which causes sluggish performance so your PC runs much slower than similar computers. When you purchase a brand new Windows PC from the store, it usually comes pre-loaded with all kinds of junk and trialware plus intrusive browser toolbars that dramatically reduce your screen real estate. Fortunately avast! GrimeFighter can take care of all these things.

avast! GrimeFighter doesn’t just fix the problems your computer already has; it also prevents future problems before they happen. Our minions detect hardware components in danger of failure, safeguard your vital privacy, and beef up your security making you resilient to attacks. What's more, our minions leverage crowd-driven intelligence, fueled by the entire avast! community of users, getting smarter every time someone uses avast! GrimeFighter.

GrimeFighter does what computer experts do, giving you an optimized PC just like the experts use. Consequently, because GrimeFighter takes such an in-depth look at your computer and system files, it could take a while, especially upon first use (up to a couple of hours). It’s best to run it overnight, so that GrimeFighter can get at everything without interrupting your work or play. Should GrimeFighter remove something you don’t want removed, use the undo button to restore your system to the last version before GrimeFighter ran.

Minions

Kobayashi

Kobayashi

Kills viruses, trojans, scamware, spyware, and other evils

Long ago, Kobayashi's family honor was tarnished when his mother was tricked by Grime into downloading a fake anti-virus program that stole her banking information. Fueled by revenge, he works for us now, tirelessly hunting down and slicing up viruses, trojan horses, and other rogue programs that may have wormed their way onto your PC.

Following in the footsteps of military strategist Sun Tzu, Kobayashi has dedicated himself to understanding the stealth habits of Grime and his cohorts. With their hiding places pinpointed, Kobayashi can end the enemy with one swift swing of his blade.

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The typical PC is home to tens, maybe hundreds of thousands of application binaries. Kobayashi strategy is to focus scrutiny on the significantly smaller subset which are configured to launch automatically at boot time. As the vast majority of consumer targeted malware contains at least one persistence hook, this has proven to be a very effective approach. Once Kobayashi cuts the head off of malware, your AV may come in after and clean up the carnage.

We leverage a number of technologies in deducing if a given binary is malicious or not. A custom application and environment heuristics engine, in-cloud sandboxed execution, white lists, black lists, crowd sourced statistics, comparison against previous scans... Our cloud based architecture allows us to examine massive data sets and apply limitless resources towards solving a complex problem. Enterprise grade analytics delivered straight to the consumer.

Dale Jumpshot Jr.

Dale Jumpshot Jr.

Disables junk and junkware so your PC boots up and responds faster

If you’ve taken the habit of walking off to get a cup of coffee while your computer boots up, then you know how slow Windows can get. Dale Jr. takes pleasure in the thrill of speed, whether it’s on the racetrack or in streamlining your Windows boot process. He carefully analyzes and disables unnecessary programs that bog down your system startup. Your PC will boot faster and any the disabled apps are still available for manual launch should you need them.

Even freshly bought store PCs come pre-loaded with junk and trial software. It’s unnerving – the equivalent of buying a new car with trash in the back seat. Incredulously, stores may charge a premium on top of the sale price for providing you with a clean system. Dale is on a mission to make those premium charges obsolete.

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New junkware is created by Grime every day. So much so that it’s hard to keep up with. avast! GrimeFighter is built on a split architecture: our client-side engine is in constant communication with our constantly evolving cloud services. The crowd sourced data from members of the avast! GrimeFighter community, in addition to our own elbow grease, help us evolve the tactics and signatures we use to identify and neuter bloatware.

As avast! GrimeFighter defaults to automatically applying decisions, we tread a fine line when classifying an app as bloatware. If you disagree with a decision, we’d love to hear from you on our feedback forums.

Beef

Beef

Tightens security by toggling settings in popular apps

Growing up on the New Jersey shore, Beef always knew there was more to life than just hitting the gym, working on his tan, and doing laundry. In his spare time from personal training, he began to tinker with computers and eventually developed a knack for tightening a PC's security posture. When he's not doing push-ups in the office, Beef is researching ways to tweak settings in popular applications to help prevent Grime from getting a foothold on your system.

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In addition to web browsers, applications like Adobe Acrobat and Adobe Reader are a popular target for attackers. Successful exploitation of vulnerabilities in these products frequently leverage features that aren’t typically required for most users. Just as we do on our own systems for example, we disable JavaScript in these products to reduce to chances of compromise.

We also disable the Java plugin within all web browsers. The security posture of the Java VM is broken regularly and developers are trending away from implementing web functionality via applets. Apple recently disabled Java for browsers under MacOS and the US government recommends you disable it. Life without Java is an increasingly prudent decision.

Torque

Torque

Tweaks Windows to improve defenses and performance

From the age of 3, Torque would hang out at the local junk yard where his dad was the night watchman. He quickly developed a love for restoring and resurrecting old abandoned cars. He went on to graduate with 2 degrees from MIT where he applied his restorative talents to the computer field.

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Out of the box, Windows isn’t tuned specifically for you. That’s where Torque comes in. For improved performance, he frees resources by disabling unnecessary OS features. For stronger security, he toggles the same settings used by IT geeks on their own PC. In short, his wrench will reach places in your PC you didn’t even know existed.

Sir Jeffrey

Sir Jeffrey

Detects failing parts and examines your hardware performance

Sir Jeffrey was raised as an English gentleman, privy to the ways of high society. Before long, he realized that his many years of privilege had given him an uncanny gift for finding even the smallest defects in computer systems.

Sir Jeffrey has since moved stateside and is now our PC hardware expert. With a keen and classy eye for detail, his job is to let you know if your old war horse is still good to ride or should be retired to the stable. Currently Sir Jeffrey is capable of identifying failing hard drives and battery health issues. He’s also studying up on memory tests and will soon be able to detect failing components in that department too.

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Sir Jeffrey first looks at the health of each of your hard drives by utilizing their built in SMART (Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology) functions. During the course of an avast! GrimeFighter scan, he launches a short self-test on each drive to find any potential failures or signs that the drive may be about to fail. If he detects any hints of impending doom, he'll notify you to back up your files and change out the hard drive immediately.

He also analyzes your laptop, netbook, and tablet batteries. Some of the telltale signs that your battery is going bad are shorter use times, and subsequently, shorter times to recharge.

If you notice the amount of time you can spend unplugged is going down, then chances are your battery has lost much of its ability to hold a charge. Another sign that your battery might be on the wane is that it takes less time to recharge. A battery that's going bad might also cause your computer to turn off or hibernate unexpectedly, even if the battery meter displays ample capacity remaining (70 or 80 percent). Sir Jeffrey will compare the last full charge amount with its rated design capacity and warn you if he thinks it's time to replace it.

Mario

Mario

Meters your Internet speed and detects insecure Wi-Fi

Mario got his pilot’s license well before his driver’s license. At an early age, he would scare the locals in his Italian village by flying a crop-duster in mock dogfighting exercises. As he grew up, his need for blazing fast speed in all things made him a self-taught whiz at securing and configuring Wi-Fi connections.

Mario will examine the security of your wireless network for optimal speed and privacy. You don't let your neighbors run extension cords to your house for power. Don't let them steal your Internet either.

Dr. Liza

Dr. Liza

Analyzes drive contents to reveal what’s taking space

Don't let Liza's tiny size fool you. This little lady has a PhD in hard drive analysis. As early as preschool, she stunned her teachers and classmates by correctly counting seemingly impossible amounts: the grains of sand in the class fishbowl, the number of cracks in the sidewalk, and even the number of calories in a deep fried snickers candy bar.

Do you want to know exactly what's filling up that drive you swore would be impossible to fill? She'll give it to you straight by showing you percentages: songs, movies, pictures, PDFs, PowerPoint slide decks, etc. Got free space left? She'll even let you know how many more Justin Bieber songs you've got room for. Or not.

Zilch

Zilch

Reclaims precious hard drive space by taking out the trash

When Zilch was growing up, he was well known as a "neat freak". His classmates would purposely invite him over after school, knowing he would obsessively clean their rooms, wash the dishes, and vacuum the floors just for mere the joy of it. He would leave no smudge or errant scrap of paper behind, only satisfied once everything sparkled. Today, he works for us applying these same standards to your computer.

Every time you install and even use certain software, temporary files build up over time and take up lots of space. Even if you uninstall a program, trash can still be left behind, clogging up your system with even more garbage. Zilch has an uncanny knack for finding the temp, cache, and unnecessary junk files in those deep dark recesses of your PC. He'll dig through and dump out your garbage, leaving your PC feeling cleaner while reclaiming gigabytes of hard drive space.

Maximus

Maximus

Keeps you informed of critical events related to your PC

Maximus sits high up in the cloud, analyzing all the reports coming in from around the world. He stays on top of new malware, hacking trends, and glaring new vulnerabilities in Windows. If the situation warrants, he may get in touch if he deduces that one of your previously scanned computers is now at risk. By running avast! GrimeFighter again on the affected system, we'll automatically apply whatever workarounds deemed appropriate to protect or clean up your system.

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Maximus also commands a vast array of number crunching virtual machines in our cloud that statically and dynamically test certain files on your computer long after a avast! GrimeFighter scan has finished. If he finds that one of those files turns out to be suspicious or malicious, he'll alert Kobayashi to the threat and send you a note to rerun avast! GrimeFighter again.

Holmes

Holmes

Protects your identity and keeps your online habits private

Tired of tracking down cheating spouses on TV, Holmes joined avast! GrimeFighter to help protect your privacy. He'll look at your browser plugins and settings, file explorer history, and other operating system traces to make sure you're keeping your personal info personal. He'll eventually also examine your social networks (like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc.) to be sure you're not accidentally exposing those embarrassing New Year's Eve photos to the world. Don't feign innocence, you know the ones we speak of.

Nikita

Nikita

Unclutters your web browser and boost its speed

Originally from Paris, Nikita was given a new identity and trained as a top secret assassin by the French government. Forced to go into hiding after the widely publicized "fondue incident", we hired her to focus her energies on tracking down useless browser add-ons, optimizing browsing preferences, and removing annoying toolbars that clutter your screen. After she's done, you’ll be back to blazing through funny cat videos in no time.

Though Nikita currently only specializes in Microsoft Internet Explorer, she is working on expanding her trade to Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome. Someday, she hopes to add Apple Safari and Opera browser to her hit list.

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Modern web browsers provide a plethora of functionality. Document parsing, multiple media support, scripting languages, and an ever growing list of plugins (some worse than others, we’re talking about you Java), etc...The large attack surface coupled with the ubiquity of the technology, makes the browser a very popular target.

Your browser is obsolete.

1. On 8 April 2014, Microsoft stops support for Internet Explorer browsers running on Windows XP. This will put your computer and data, such as credit card and online banking details, at greater risk to hackers and malware.

2. Several browser alternatives exist, but we at AVAST use and recommend Chrome, as we find it to be the most-secure option available.