Security firm Avast has launched a new version of its eponymous anti-virus package, and it claims it can help improve performance for gamers and block even zero-day attacks.
Avast 2017, as the company's latest release is unimaginatively known, comes with a claimed wealth of improvements over last year's release. Chief among these is the promise that it can protect against zero-day attacks - vulnerabilities known to ne'er-do-wells but for which no official patch is yet available - using a feature dubbed Behaviour Shield. Additionally, the software now includes a Wi-Fi Inspector feature - formerly available separately as Avast Home Network Security - which is claimed to be able to find vulnerable network devices, such as routers or webcams susceptible to Mirai infection, and provide details on how to best secure them.
For gamers, though, there's one feature that stands out above all others: Game Mode. As the name suggests, Avast's Game Mode is designed to spot when a game is executed and ensure it can run uninterrupted; where it differs from most rival implementations, though, is in working to disable or suspend all possible interruptions - including non-essential background processes and Windows Update - to give the game as many system resources as possible.
Additional new features in Avast 2017 include: Passive Mode, which allows Avast 2017 to run alongside other anti-virus software without interference; a redesigned password manager; improved detection times for the CyberCapture cloud-based file scanner; and improved protections against ransomware.
The new version of Avast is available now from the official website
, in free and paid variants, for Windows and macOS.