avast! 2014: Using the Virus Chest

How to use the Virus Chest in avast! 2014 ?

The avast! Virus Chest is a safe and completely isolated place, or a 'quarantine' area in other words, for storing potentially harmful files away from the rest of the operating system. Files inside the Virus Chest are not accessible for any outside process, software application or virus and also cannot be run there. If you double-click a file, by accident or otherwise, you will not run it. Instead, the file properties will be displayed. This is a simple safety feature to prevent infected files being run accidentally and potentially causing damage to your computer. There is no danger in storing files there. Instructions on how to use the Virus Chest are described in the following sections:

Accessing the Virus Chest

To open the Virus Chest in avast! 2014 please proceed as follows:

  1. Right-click on the avast! orange ball icon in the system tray and select 'Open avast! user interface' from the menu,
    Figure I. A

    ...or double-click the desktop icon of installed avast! antivirus software to open the avast! user interface.
    Figure II. A

  2. From the main menu, select ' Scan', and then click the 'Quarantine (Virus Chest)' button on this screen.
    Figure III. A


Virus Chest Settings

By default, the Virus Chest allocates 256 MB as the maximum amount of space it can take up on your computer, and 16 MB is set as the maximum size of any individual file that can be sent from the Virus Chest. In order to change the space allocation, you have to select ' Settings' from the main menu in the avast! user interface,

Figure I. B

...then leave selected the default 'General' settings, and scroll down to the Virus Chest' section.

Figure II. B


Moving files to the Virus Chest

If avast! 2014 finds an infected or suspicious file, it will try to repair it at first. Unfortunately, some of them cannot be repaired as the whole file is malware, and therefore avast! 2014 tries to move such files to the Virus Chest. Infected files that also refuse to move to the Virus Chest will be automatically deleted from the computer. The default actions that avast! 2014 applies can be customized in the Settings of each Scan type as well as appropriate Active protection component (i.e. File System Shield, Mail Shield, Web Shield).

If you need to move a file manually into the Virus Chest, you can do it like this:

  1. Right-click anywhere on the contents table on the Virus Chest screen and select 'Add...' from the context menu.
    Figure I. C

  2. Via the displayed navigation dialog, locate the desired file that you want to move to the Virus Chest (e.g. the file Sample.xls). Then click the 'Open' button.
    Figure II. C

  3. Afterwards you should see the desired file in the contents table on the Virus Chest screen.
    Figure III. C


Scanning files in the Virus Chest

Files contained in the Virus Chest can be manually scanned or re-scanned for known viruses as follows:

  1. Right-click on the desired file (or highlighted selected multiple files) listed in the contents table on the Virus Chest screen and select 'Scan' from the context menu.
    Figure I. D

    In the meantime, a dialog box showing the scanning status may popup.
    Figure II. D

  2. When the scan is finished a dialog box showing the scanning results will appear. Click 'OK' to close it.
    Figure III. D


Restoring files from the Virus Chest

If you need to restore a file from the Virus Chest back to its original location, right-click on the desired file (or highlighted multiple files) in the contents table on the Virus Chest screen and select 'Restore' from the context menu.

Figure I. E

But please keep in mind, that restoring files from the Virus Chest, especially infected files, is only intended for critical situations (e.g. if a system or other important file has been moved there). Due to the high security risk this action requires advanced skills and experience of handling infected files to avoid further potential infection of your computer.


Extracting files from the Virus Chest

If you need to copy a file from the Virus Chest to any specific location, right-click on the desired file (or highlighted multiple files) in the contents table on the Virus Chest screen and select 'Extract...' from the context menu,

Figure I. F

...then select the location where the file should be saved (e.g. on your Windows Desktop) and click 'OK'.

Figure II. F

But please keep in mind, that as well as restoring, extracting files outside the Virus Chest, especially infected files, is also intended just for certain specific situations (e.g. if a system or other important file has been moved there). Due to the high security risk this action requires advanced skills and experience of handling infected files to avoid further potential infection of your computer.


Submitting files from the Virus Chest to AVAST Virus Lab

Any suspicious file, or file incorrectly identified as infected, can be submitted to the AVAST Virus Lab for further analysis after it has been moved to the Virus Chest. Most of the collected samples are analysed by a number of automated processes. All other samples, e.g. false positive files, need to be processed manually by our virus analysts. To submit a file for virus analysis, please proceed as follows:

  1. Right-click on the desired file (or highlighted multiple files) in the contents table on the Virus Chest screen and select the option 'Submit to virus lab...' from the context menu.
    Figure I. G

  2. Then the application form will appear, where you can select the sample type, i.e. whether you are submitting 'Potential malware' or a 'False positive', and enter as much additional information as possible. For false positive files, also try to specify the Program name1, Program publisher1, Program version1 number and the reason why you believe the file or program should not have been detected.
    Figure II. G

  3. When all the fields are filled with the correct data, confirm your action by ticking the checkbox 'I know what I'm doing',
    Figure III. G

    ...then click the 'Submit' button.
    Figure IV. G

  4. A new dialog box will inform you that the file will be submitted for analysis during the next update2. Click the 'OK' button to close it.
    Figure V. G

1Note:
The Program name, Program publisher, Program version fields will be active only if the 'False positive' sample type has been selected.

2Note:
If the file will not be submitted for analysis, check that the file size does not exceed the maximum size specified in the Virus Chest Settings.


Deleting files from the Virus Chest

Of course any file contained in the Virus Chest can be permanently deleted. This action is also very simple:

  1. Right-click on the desired file (or highlighted multiple files) in the contents table on the Virus Chest screen and select 'Delete' from the context menu.
    Figure I. H

  2. Click 'Yes', when asked if you really want to delete the selected file(s) from the Virus Chest.
    Figure II. H

  3. Afterwards you can check that the deleted file has been removed from the contents table on the Virus Chest screen.
    Figure III. H


Conditions

avast! Premier 2014
avast! Internet Security 2014
avast! Pro Antivirus 2014
avast! Free Antivirus 2014

Operating systems:


Microsoft Windows 8.1 / Pro / Enterprise
Microsoft Windows 8 / Pro / Enterprise
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Basic / Home Premium / Professional / Enterprise / Ultimate
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Basic / Home Premium / Business / Enterprise / Ultimate
Microsoft Windows XP Home / Professional / Media Center Edition

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