IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Avast GrimeFighter Review: Get a Speedier, Clutter-Free PC

Like scrubbing bubbles, GrimeFighter’s “minions” scour your PC to rid it of unnecessary apps, junk toolbars, and whatever else is slowing down your machine. By James E. Gaskin

It’s a fact of modern computing life: Your PC gathers junk, just like your garage. To help get rid of the clutter, Avast Software released a new PC cleanup module, which can also be licensed as a stand-alone product, named GrimeFighter. While PC cleanup tools abound, Avast uses the advanced trick of rebooting into a customized Linux OS that can then clean out Windows in ways not possible while Windows is active. GrimeFighter even includes a Linux-based Web browser to use while GrimeFighter scrubs your machine.

Aimed at the less-technical user, GrimeFighter uses a series of “minions” to explain the cleaning process without burdening the user with any type of technical talk. Captain Pete, head minion, leads others with names like Zilch, Torque, and Dale Jumpshot Jr. that look like a British octopus, a race car driver, and a two-toothed mechanic wearing overalls and waving a wrench, respectively.

Download the GrimeFighter from Avast or check out your existing Avast client to see if GrimeFighter has been added as on option. If not, log in into your Avast account and get access to your GrimeFighter and other licenses.

Ordered electronically, the licenses attach to your account. Once you install the software on a PC, you don’t need to log in a second time—the software just launches when you run the EXE. There doesn’t seem to be an easy way to unlink a license from a PC and move it to another, but that may be part of the extras when you add this to existing Avast client software.

Once the software starts, the minions provide information and entertainment for any user crazy enough to sit and watch PC cleanup software churn through a disk. The software downloads extra software, then starts “Collecting Grime” and “Analyzing Grime.”

Once the software rebooted into the Linux variant, we couldn’t capture any screen images. The generic warning screen said the process would take 30 minutes to two hours. When it was done, Captain Pete, aka GrimeFighter, rebooted the machine back to Windows and proudly presented the results of the scrubbing.

According to the report, GrimeFighter caught and eliminated a fair amount of gunk: 10 unnecessary launch apps, 10 junk browser toolbars, 4 Registry tweaks, and 327 MB of trash to get off our system. Hard to verify, but things do seem a bit sprightlier.

Is it worth the effort to add Avast GrimeFighter to your client protection arsenal? If you’re already using Avast, the answer is an easy “yes,” even if it’s just for a trial. For non-Avast clients? Gunk gumming up the works causes more and more problems as the gunk goes untouched, and GrimeFighter seems to be a good tool that touches, then strangles and buries, any non-essential apps, toolbars, and the like. And you don’t have to stay and watch the minions the whole time.

Retail pricing is $39.99 per year. For resellers looking to engage with Avast, there are three partner levels: Authorized, Silver, and Gold. The required annual sales target for Gold is $50,000. The Avast Partner Academy offers Web-based sales and technical training sessions, as well as orientation training for new partners.

Benefits of being an Avast reseller (courtesy of Avast):

  • Competitive margin structure depending on certification level
  • Direct communication with Avast headquarters in multiple languages
  • Lead-generation tools and large orders are processed only through the company’s reseller channel
  • Local promotions, incentives, and award programs
  • Special offers for educational, non-profit, healthcare, and government customers
  • Market-development funds for sponsoring sales activities
  • Dedicated territory managers for accounts
  • “Priority” pre-sales and technical support

About the Author

JAMES E. GASKIN is a ChannelPro contributing editor and former reseller based in Dallas.

ChannelPro SMB Magazine

Get an edge on the competition

With each issue packed full of powerful news, reviews, analysis, and advice targeting IT channel professionals, ChannelPro-SMB will help you cultivate your SMB customers and run your business more profitably.