AVG really needs to fix their “LinkScanner” product. It essentially scans pages for links and pre-downloads them to check for malware. If that doesn’t sound so bad, then your obviously not paying for bandwidth or trying to keep your server load manageable. Essentially it means more traffic pegging servers and downloading pages, but most of it being a total waste.
This isn’t just bad for webmasters. This excess traffic hogs ISP’s (who now plan to charge by-the-byte) and WiFi. In a country where we are tight on bandwidth, this is really a pretty lousy implementation.
AVG even went so far as to use multiple user agents, all of which seem to spoof IE, making it more difficult to block.
The best way to block the bogus AVG traffic seem to be by looking for the
Accept-Encoding HTTP header, which could be done using an Apache rewrite rule if you can’t do so on the firewall or load balancer level.
AVG really needs to reaccess this poorly designed product. It’s unnecessarily taxing the web.
6 replies on “AVG Wastes Bandwidth”
Following is AVG’s official response to LinkScanner concerns:
We’d like to thank our web community for bringing these challenges to our attention, as building community trust and protecting all of our users is critical to us. We have modified the Search-Shield component of LinkScanner to only notify users of malicious sites; this modified version will be rolled out on July 9th 2008. As of this date. Search-Shield will no longer scan each search result online for new exploits, which was causing the spikes that webmasters addressed with us. However, it is important to note that AVG still offers full protection against potential exploits through the Active Surf-Shield component of our product, which checks every page for malicious content as it is visited but before it is opened.
Thanks for a reply!
[…] like forums AVG has accepted the issue as not ideal and is now about to release an update on the 9th July that will change Linkscanner to only scan those pages you will actually visit, just prior to it […]
AVG has already responded to resolve this issue. The full response can be seen at http://www.avg.com.au/index.cf.....eature=104
An updated version of AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition 8.0 is already available, see http://www.avgfree.com.au. The Search-Shield component of LinkScanner has been modified to only notify users of malicious sites. The equivalent modification to the the AVG 8.0 commercial products will be rolled out on 9th July 2008.
Once the updated version has been rolled out to all AVG 8.0 users the issue will be resolved.
Best Regards, Lloyd Borrett
Marketing Manager, AVG (AU/NZ)
@Lloyd Borrett: Considering a rep from your company already replied to this post… don’t you think your getting a little spammy?
Glad to see there will be a fix for this. Now how about letting us turn the feature off without turning the tray icon into the big red exclamation point of doom? I know how to surf safely, I don’t need a babysitter, thanks, but I would still like to be able to tell when something is actually wrong with my virus protection.