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In context: Avira is one of the most popular antivirus programs for Windows PCs, used by millions of people around the world. However, just like any software, it can experience the occasional bug that causes unexpected problems for users. That's exactly what seems to be happening right now, with a recent update to the AV reportedly causing many Windows PCs to freeze completely.
Over the past few days, many users have been pouring onto social media platforms and online message boards, complaining that their PC is freezing up randomly if they are running Avira as their AV software of choice. One affected user is Redditor u/kiiniiwiinii, who says that their PC with Avira antivirus keeps freezing on startup. To troubleshoot the issue, they tried disabling all background apps, but the problem was only fixed after they uninstalled Avira for good.
The Redditor also claimed to know at least two other people facing the exact same issue, both with Avira security software on their computer. Other people also replied to the thread confirming the problem, with some claiming to know even more users facing the same issue with their PC while running Avira. The only common thread in all the cases is the AV software, and the problem seems to go away after uninstalling it. According to reports, the issue seems to be affecting both Windows 10 and Windows 11 devices.
Gen Digital, the company behind Avira antivirus, confirmed to German tech blog Heise (via Ghacks) that it is aware of the complaints, and is investigating the issue. While the company didn't say anything more on the matter, the developers will likely roll out a fix soon to address the problem. In the meantime, the only way to get the affected PCs back to working order seems to be uninstalling Avira.
If you're facing a similar problem with Avira or any other security software on your PC, the way to uninstall it is by going into Safe Mode by accessing the advanced Windows menu during boot. It's a relatively simple process for people in the know, but could feel a tad complicated for non-techies. Once the uninstallation is complete, restart your PC, and Microsoft Defender will be automatically enabled to keep your PC protected from malware.