Weird Antivirus Issue With Windows 7 [UPDATED]

I’ve been running the Windows 7 Ultimate RTM (RTM=Release To Manufacturing – The version of Windows 7 that will ship in October) for some time now (And before you ask, I did not get this from a torrent site. I am a member of the Microsoft Developers Network which allows me access to this software) and I tripped over a rather interesting problem that I’ll share on the off chance that this might help anyone else who has this issue.

After setting up a fresh install of Windows 7 and installing AVG 8.5, I encountered an issue in which Windows 7 displays a message indicating that there is “no Internet Access,” accompanied by a yellow exclamation point warning sign, despite the fact that Internet access works properly in all applications. Weird I thought. So since AVG was the last thing installed before the problem occurred, I removed it. Presto! The problem went away. Here’s where things get weird. I installed the release candidate of Kaspersky for Windows 7 and got the same issue. I uninstalled it and again everything worked. Next I tried AntiVir and got the same result. So I knew that this wasn’t specific to any one antivirus product. So I installed AVG again and started to disable one function at a time. I was finally able to isolate the problem to AVG’s Search Shield which is part of the Link Scanner that the product comes with. Once I disabled that, everything works. I’ve since replicated this behavior on another computer running another RTM version of Windows 7 (Home Premium in this case).

So if you run into a similar problem, here’s how you fix it if you have AVG:

  • Click on the AVG icon in the task bar (lower-right hand corner)
  • Then select “Link Scanner”
  • Uncheck the “Enable AVG Search-Shield” box.
  • Restart your computer

I’m not sure what the deal is with the Link Scanner and Windows 7, but I can only assume that it must interface in some way with the networking software within Windows 7 that causes some sort of issue. I can also only assume that a similar fix can be applied to Kaspersky and AntiVir.

Hopefully this gets sorted out by the time Windows 7 ships in October. While this isn’t a major issue (as you can still surf the Internet and the antivirus application still works), less technical users might see this as a reason not to run an antivirus application and that would be a dangerous thing to do.

UPDATE: If you look at the comments, I’ve been contacted by Karel Obluk of AVG and I have responded to him via e-mail. Also, I did some Googling today and came across this post on WindowsFixUp.com which describes the same issue and the same fix. I wish I had seen this the other night as it would have saved me a lot of trial and error.

4 Responses to “Weird Antivirus Issue With Windows 7 [UPDATED]”

  1. This is strange, we have not heard about a similar issue. AVG has been tested with Windows 7 and the latest versions (as well as the new beta of AVG9) runs perfectly on Windows 7 RTM. Would it be possible to get in touch to investigate further? Please, feel free to contact me directly. Thanks
    Karel Obluk
    CTO, AVG Technologies

  2. DataCabbitKSW Says:

    I honestly haven’t run into this particular issue. I have personally only tried AVG and AntiVir on the Windows 7 RTM. Do you still have access to the logs and error reports? You may want to report this not only to the AV providers, but to Microsoft itself. I’m pretty sure since you are part of MSDN, you know the basic channells to submit bugs, but just in-case (and for your readers) you can try posting over to the official Windows 7 Support Forum located here http://tinyurl.com/9fhdl5 .

    • Thanks for reminding me to post something on the Windows 7 support forum. I was planning on doing that, but I’ve been really sidetracked because of that storm that went through Toronto last week.

  3. i my computer win 7 has the yellow sign and indicates that there is no internet access what will i do and have been trying to check where the scanning AVG malware is but i have found yet

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