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'Some files could not be scanned'


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#1 leatherwings

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 04:51 PM

Hi all!

I have avast! Antivirus, and I ran a whole system scan last night. When it finished, it told me that 'some files could not be scanned'. What does this mean? Is it a possible sign of infection or is it nothing to worry about? I'm not sure whether my internet was on or off when it scanned - I don't know if this has anything to do with it. Any help would be appreciated. :)

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#2 quietman7

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 08:21 PM

Files that are showing in a security scan log as being locked, skipped or unable to scan are not usually indicative of a malware infection.

"Object is locked skipped", "Access Denied", "Some files could not be scanned", "Password Protected" or "Encrypted" notations in an anti-virus/anti-malware scan are not uncommon. Some files and services are locked by the operating system or running programs during use for protection, so scanners cannot access them. Other legitimate files, especially those used by security programs, may be obfuscated, encrypted or password protected in order to conceal itself so they do not allow access. When the scanner finds such an object, it makes a note and then just skips to the next one. That explains why it may show with such notations but no action taken in certain anti-virus or anti-malware log scan reports. These are normal when using many security scanning programs so there is seldom a need for concern.

Note: It is not unusual for an anti-virus or anti-malware scanner to be suspicious of compressed, archived, .cab, .rar, .jar, .iso, and packed files because they have difficulty reading what is inside them. These kind of files often trigger alerts by security software using heuristic detection because they are resistant to scanning (difficult to read). This resistance may also result in some scanners to stall (hang) on these particular types of files or just ignore (skip) them.

If the amount of files not scanned appear to be numerous, you can always try rescanning in "safe mode" which reduces the number of modules requesting files to only the essentials which make your computer functional. This in turn reduces the number of files that may be skipped due to protection by other running programs.

When in doubt, it doesn't hurt to get a second opinion or run supplementary scans like Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware or SUPERAntiSpyware.
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#3 leatherwings

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 11:22 AM

Thank you very much for the info. Just one thing though. There were quite a lot of unscanned files, so how do you scan in 'safe mode' as suggested?

#4 quietman7

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 11:48 AM

Click on the text highlighted in blue where it says safe mode above. These are links that will provide more information or explain in detail what to do.

That link will go to here:
http://www.computerhope.com/issues/chsafe.htm
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