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Esoterica: Hollow Earth Giveaway
$9.99
EXPIRED

Game Giveaway of the day — Esoterica: Hollow Earth

Find the fabled land of Agartha!
$9.99 EXPIRED
User rating: 17 (85%) 3 (15%) 59 comments

Esoterica: Hollow Earth was available as a giveaway on October 19, 2019!

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Exclusive offer from Giveaway of the Day and MyPlayCity! No third-party advertising and browser add-ons!

The fabled land of Agartha awaits your discovery in Esoterica: Hollow Earth! Experience an edge-of-your seat sci-fi adventure that will take you to the depths of the planet, the bad guys nipping at your heels every step of the way! Dazzling art, professional vocal work, and jaw dropping production values will be your companions as you explore underwater caves, a subterranean jungle teeming with bizarre life forms, and the laboratory of an evil genius. Just be careful who you trust.

System Requirements:

Windows XP/ Vista/ 7/ 8/ 10; CPU: 2.5 GHz; RAM: 1024 MB; DirectX: 9.0; Hard Drive: 1240 MB

Publisher:

MyPlayCity

Homepage:

https://www.bigfishgames.com/games/7798/esoterica-hollow-earth/

File Size:

0.97 GB

Price:

$9.99

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#1

Esoterica: Hollow Earth
In Brief
Esoterica: Hollow Earth is an adventure based Hidden Object game previously given away on October 23rd 2016 three years ago, where it received a positive 67% out of 69 votes. You can see the 103 community comments about the game HERE. You can also see the Steam community’s mixed reviews of the game HERE. The download is 1GB in size so may take some time to download, especially if several or more community members may be downloading at the same time.
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Introduction:
The fabled land of Agartha awaits your discovery in Esoterica: Hollow Earth! Experience an edge-of-your seat sci-fi adventure that will take you to the depths of the planet, the bad guys nipping at your heels every step of the way! Guide young Stephanie as she follows clues for locating and activating a machine her grandfather built that can tunnel through Earth to the lost continent of Agartha. When disaster strikes in the bowels of the planet, you'll have to employ your skills of observation and your wit as you search for skillfully hidden objects and solve devious puzzles. Then help Professor Stone, Stephanie's missing grandfather, keep his discoveries out of the hands of the vile Count Stauffenberg, whose plans could destroy the planet! Finally, take an active role as the two story lines collide in a stunning final act! Dazzling art, professional vocal work, and jaw dropping production values will be your companions as you explore underwater caves, a subterranean jungle teeming with bizarre life forms, and the laboratory of an evil genius. Just be careful who you trust. Don't miss Esoterica: Hollow Earth, an amazing journey inspired by the pages of classic sci-fi, complete with all of the wonders and thrills!
Reference accessed HERE. 19th Oct 2019
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The Game:
I don't have time to check the game out today, so have included links to a few full reviews of the game below as well as some videos of game play HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE. You can also see video walkthroughs of the game HERE
You can see community reviews of Esoterica: Hollow Earth via Big Fish HERE and more information in the Big fish forums HERE as well as via All About Games HERE. There are written walkthroughs of the game HERE and a downloadable walk-through HERE
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Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+22)
#25

Tried workaround several times. No luck.
Given this same problem existed before, why haven;t the developers fixed the issue?

Reply   |   Comment by Ed  –  26 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Ed,

Hi Ed,


I do think its bad practice as its obvious there are bugs. You'd think the developer would be proud of his work and try to repair any bugs. Sadly they haven't, and it's almost certain that they won't now. It may be that when the game was released it worked on the windows platform that it was designed on. I have hundreds of games that were released when Win 95/98 & XP were the reigning platform; that no longer work for various reasons on later platforms such as Vista/Win 7/8 & 10. However it's more than likely It's because its not worth their time to repair the issues, or they may be working on other games and don't have the time, or maybe even left development behind when it was not as profitable.


From 2008 onward, the cost of developing games (generally) has gone up, but the price of games has over the last decade has literally dropped though the roof; for example pre-2008 you'd be paying $19.99 for all arcade games and $50 for the average AAA game (in real terms taking account of inflation etc that would be almost $40 for arcade games and $100 for AAA games). Post 2008 (after the financial crisis) arcade games dropped in price to around $5 (that's only approx 12% of 2008 prices and AAA games (apart from a few of the really popular games like Battlefield, Total War and Call of Duty franchises) dropped to around $35. Many small developers and some big name developers such as THQ ( Red Faction, Company of Heroes and Warhammer franchises) and 2K (Bioshock franchise) have since gone out of business in the intervening years, partly due to free game sites popping up and the proliferation of indie game bundles where you often get as much as 95% off the usual commercial price of games.
Have you checked the reply I made to Marie, I've suggested a few things he could try to fix the issue?

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  25 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#24

So I used the tips how to overcome the scene where on cannot select the items required. Lost all punch cards after that.

Now I got stuck in the:

1. office, Have the blank voice recording cylinder but can't insert it in the device for recording messages. Where to get the olivine to charge it?

2. living room, where to find the required 2nd handle to this thing left of the fireplace?

The green hint charger right side bottom is full but does not show anything :-((

Anyone who finished this game successfully?

Reply   |   Comment by marie  –  27 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

marie,

Hi Marie, Unfortunately, once the giveaway is over, it's rarely checked by the community. The best thing to do is post the issue in the giveaway forums.
I've created a thread HERE specifically for the purpose. If you haven't already, you will need to register to be able to post in the forums. I've also added it to the general forum pages sticky section, so it will be seen for a few months before I remove it from the sticky section. I hope this helps.
I haven’t had time to read the Steam comments, but you’ll find a thread about the game being bugged HERE. Other possible sources of information may be found HERE. Also check out You Tube videos (if you have time). If you know how far into the game you are, you may be able to find a walk-through video that covers the section you need to see. Again, sorry i can’t be of more help. I’ve not played through the game full myself as i’ve been really busy recently. Actually bought this via Steam when it was released over five years ago (Jan 2014). I remember playing it, but oddly, it says I’ve played it for 0 hours.
Regard Stephen


p.s.
If you don't want to create an account to post, let me know here and I'll post it for you. :)

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  27 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

@Whiterabbit-uk:

Dear Stephen,

Thanks for your reply. Wasn't aware of this Giveaway of the Day Forums. Very helpful indeed!

Warm regards

Marie

Reply   |   Comment by marie  –  26 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#23

After I downloading it and clicked setup and the diaolog box showed up asking me to click yes or no. The install box never popped up. Is there a way I can still get this for free?

Reply   |   Comment by Linda  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#22

Whenever I try to run setup extracted from the zip file here, I get a popup saying “Failed to launch the program”, any suggestion?

Reply   |   Comment by Johannes  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

Johannes, See my reply to Frank Mohnhaupt, there are fixes.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#21

Whiterabitt.... absolutely gorgeous graphics, wonderful game. right up until it freezes. : (
Thanks anyway, GOTD. Love the games! Keep them coming.

Reply   |   Comment by john strecker  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

john strecker, Hi John JB found a fix for this issue, check the comments, Lady Lark also reposted the fix after finfding it from the previous time this was given away.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#20

Seem to rem playing this game up to about point where (below screen shot) guy is holding up red flaming flare with chopper to his right. Was ok but for whatever reason I pretty much ended playing there. Think will try again on new rig gear just to see if I enjoy more. Screen shots look good and don't rem any really bad experience like what some reviewers are running into like freezes or scene not taking mouse clicks. Win 10 x64 Pro.

Reply   |   Comment by beergas  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

beergas, JB found a fix for this issue, check the comments, Lady Lark also reposted the fix after finfding it from the previous time this was given away.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#19

I am stuck on a scene where I cannot click on anything to pick it up,so I cannot go any farther in this game.

Reply   |   Comment by Howard Dailey  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)

Howard Dailey, JB found a fix for this issue, check the comments, Lady Lark also reposted the fix after finfding it from the previous time this was given away.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#18

I had no difficulties finishing the first chapter, but my wife ran into a glitch right off the top. It did not start at the right place in the game. I let the intro video run, but she did not. We managed to overcome this initial problem this way:
If you have problems, start the game again under a different user name. Let all of the videos play out fully. Hopefully, this will overcome the 'glitch' problem for you.
ian

Reply   |   Comment by ian C  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

Done that the first time it was offered already - no change.

Reply   |   Comment by Urška  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

ian C, JB found a fix for this issue, check the comments, Lady Lark also reposted the fix after finfding it from the previous time this was given away.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#17

agree with Mark'et

Reply   |   Comment by sherry storey  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#16

A poster named JB solved the problem years ago. You need to hack the .sav file. Worked for me back then. Here's instructions for the tech minded:

I have found a way to get the game going again if you are hung at the Professor Hanger Silhouette HOG. I had no problems with the game myself, but my wife played it on her PC and it hung there for her. I compared the game save files between her profile and mine and then through some trial and error found a solution. Here are the steps:

1) Have the game in the hanger but NOT in the HOG itself (the desk should display the magnifying glass so you could go into the HOG, just don't do it now).

2) Quit the game.

3) go to the game save folder:
%appdata%\AlawarEntertainment\HappyArtist\The Esoterica. Hollow Earth Survey\saves

4) Note there is a file that will have a unique number with a .sav extension.

5) Create a new text file with notepad and put the following in it exactly as I show it:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>

6) Save the file with the same name as the .sav file but use the extension .savcross
so if your .sav file is 1234567890abcdefg.sav then save the file, in the same location as the .sav file, with the name 1234567890abcdefg.savcross

7) Start the game again. You can now go into the HOG and it will work. For me this also changed the player picture (to the left of the inventory) from the professor to the girl, but it still plays the same.

I think this works because the .savcross file makes it rebuild the .sav file with the HOG activated. I'm not sure why it changes the avatar, in spite of it being defined in the file as the professor. I tried it without the avatar section and it did not fix the HOG.

Hopefully this will also work for all of you.
Reply | Comment by JB – 2 years ago –

Reply   |   Comment by Lady Lark  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)

Lady Lark, Thank you for reposting Lady Lark, appreciated.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

Lady Lark, Your instructions for the replacement file has only one line, whereas the original post by JB had a lot of lines. Will it work with just the one line you posted?

Reply   |   Comment by neme  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

I do want to add that my game didn't hang today, so I can't tell if the one line fix works or if you need all the lines from JB's post. Just wanted to point out the difference so folks wouldn't be frustrated!

Reply   |   Comment by neme  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

neme, You need all the lines, in my original I found that the GT and LT brackets were confused as BBcode by the forum software, so I had a followup post with the full file.

I reposted my whole solution earlier in this thread (post 14), with the whole file. Read the responses as someone found an even better solution based off my solution.

Reply   |   Comment by jb  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#15

Extremely slow download! My download speed is rated at 24 - 25mbs and this download is at 300kbs!

Reply   |   Comment by creeker  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

creeker, It's becasue the size of the game is quite large and more than one person will probably be downloading it at the same time. The more downloading, the slower it will take. I downloaded it before the giveaway started (as I have access via the admin panel, and was getting a 10mbs download from a 30mbs connection.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#14

This game was given away previously on Oct 23, 2016.

https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/esoterica-hollow-earth/

At that time, I figured out how to fix the 'freeze' problem. My original post on it can be seen in the link above, post 42. I've put the two sections of the post together so you can read it here. Its a bit technical, so if in doubt have someone help you if you don't understand it. pay particular attention to changing the round brackets to the GT and LT symbols in the file text I supply.

----------------------------------------

I have found a way to get the game going again if you are hung at the Professor Hanger Silhouette HOG. I had no problems with the game myself, but my wife played it on her PC and it hung there for her. I compared the game save files between her profile and mine and then through some trial and error found a solution. Here are the steps:

1) Have the game in the hanger but NOT in the HOG itself (the desk should display the magnifying glass so you could go into the HOG, just don't do it now).

2) Quit the game.

3) go to the game save folder:
%appdata%\AlawarEntertainment\HappyArtist\The Esoterica. Hollow Earth Survey\saves

4) Note there is a file that will have a unique number with a .sav extension.

5) Create a new text file with notepad and put the following in it (Note I had to change all of the < to ( and > to ) to post in the forum, change them back before saving the file):

(?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?)
(Save )
(LuaVariables )
(b s="ep_02_loc_03_hog" v="1" /)
(t s="avatar_save" )
(s s="current_state" v="normal" /)
(s s="avatar_id" v="professor" /)
(/t)
(/LuaVariables)
(/Save)


6) Save the file with the same name as the .sav file but use the extension .savcross
so if your .sav file is 1234567890abcdefg.sav then save the file, in the same location as the .sav file, with the name 1234567890abcdefg.savcross

7) Start the game again. You can now go into the HOG and it will work. For me this also changed the player picture (to the left of the inventory) from the professor to the girl, but it still plays the same.

I think this works because the .savcross file makes it rebuild the .sav file with the HOG activated. I'm not sure why it changes the avatar, in spite of it being defined in the file as the professor. I tried it without the avatar section and it did not fix the HOG.

Hopefully this will also work for all of you.

Reply   |   Comment by jb  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)

jb,

Thanks for posting this fix, hopefully it will work for everyone. :)

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

jb, Works for me. A BIG thanks to you!

Reply   |   Comment by MerlinTheGreat  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

jb (and all of the others who face this problem), Seems one looses all golden cards and progress in the journal when doing this 'rebuild trick'.
I tried just copying the sav file to a .savcross file and guess what? It works just as well, only this time it keeps all golden cards and all of the progress in the journal. :D

Reply   |   Comment by MerlinTheGreat  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#13

From my own personal notes on the previous offering of this Giveaway.

"The game has a bug and I could not get past the screen where a force-field must be dropped because one of the hidden objects in the scene "a brown bottle" could not be selected."

From what some of the reviewers have said this time around, the game appears to be still ridden with bugs.

Has ANYONE been able to compete this game and do you have any suggestions on how to get around the technical glitches which plague the game?

Reply   |   Comment by Mark  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+4)

Mark,

Hi Mark, check through the comments, JB found a fix.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#12

This game is a waste of time for me. I think the programmer screwed up.

Reply   |   Comment by Therese S.  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

Therese S., Hi Therese, judging by the plethora of comments about this issue, there is obviously some underlying bug, thankfully there is a way around it; see JB's fix. :)

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#11

Installed OK on Windows 10 64 bit, but I'm in a HOG scene and nothing works! I clicked on something that was to be found, but no reaction. I think I might have tried to play this before, but maybe it didn't work then either, because it already had all my preferences set up. Oh, and the hint button didn't light up anything in the HOG scene either.

Reply   |   Comment by Therese S.  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Therese S., See the comment by JB

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#10

This game was already offered on GOTD.
Downloaded & installed without problem. Then it locked up here: https://i.postimg.cc/gjqFgTbD/ss-7fa5eedcb753fee5d0b09353e838b327ecede588.jpg (img # 9 here). Tried playing from scratch, same thing. I then uninstalled it and forgot about it.
Installed again now - exact same thing.....

Reply   |   Comment by Urška  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+12)

Same thing here, can click on the items untill I will be 99 years old, they do NOT get selected.

Reply   |   Comment by MerlinTheGreat  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)

Urška, I get the exact same thing on that screen. Nothing selects.

Reply   |   Comment by GB  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Urška,

See the comment by JB, there is a fix for the issue.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#9

Installed on Win 10 with no issues. The game locks up on your Graphics #9 (shown below). Have rebooted to see if there was an issue on my end. No issue. I will try and see if I can "do" another scene and come back to this one later. Otherwise, I'll uninstall it. Looks like it would have been a fun game.

Reply   |   Comment by Sunnie  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)

I installed again from the PlayCity website to no avail. It just does not allow any clicks in this scene in the game. I was able to go to other areas in the game and click with no problems. Have come back to this page several times and still no clicking available. I rebooted, to no avail.

If anybody figures this out, please do post. I'll wait to uninstall. Thanks.

Reply   |   Comment by Sunnie  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+10)

Have uninstalled the game. Thank you for all the wonderful games you do share with us that work! Much appreciated.

Reply   |   Comment by Sunnie  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

Sunnie, Hi Sunnie, JB has found a fix for the lock up issue.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Whiterabbit-uk, Thanks. I'm not very computer savvy. Not sure I should play around with this stuff. I might just mess up my computer and can't fix it. I did look for the .sav file, but couldn't find it. I file all my games in my "games" folder I made. I run Win 10 64 bit.

I may try it at some point, as I did enjoy the game. We'll see.

Reply   |   Comment by Sunnie  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#8

Looks like a nice HOG, though I'm disappointed to see from the screenshots that there is at least one 'find by shape' HOG scene. I'm NOT a fan of those, but at least it isn't a 'find all six pieces of this thing by shape!'

Definitely going to try it though: thanks to the developers, BFG, and GGOTD.

Reply   |   Comment by Cad Delworth  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#7

Hi, I'm downloading and it seems to be taking awhile. Is there a problem with overloaded servers?

Reply   |   Comment by Therese S.  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (-1)
#6

Fun HOG, no issues installing and running on Windows 10.

Reply   |   Comment by Elli  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#5

A download for strong internet connections: For 1 GB ZIP, it takes around 55 minutes.

Is that correct?

Reply   |   Comment by marie  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

marie, mine said 57 minutes. I'm on broadband, normally it's not an issue at all to get even big files.

Reply   |   Comment by Therese S.  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

Therese S., I just stooped download, cancel it and start over. Downloaded in 2 minutes then

Reply   |   Comment by Urška  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

Urška, I did restart, still took 57 minutes but I'm installing it now. Will review after I see if it works and everything.

Reply   |   Comment by Therese S.  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

Unzip and installation (needs to deactivate Avast) took another 10 mins. Now it works fine with Win 10 64-bit.

Reply   |   Comment by marie  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#4

Had same problem but it was a corrupted zip file with the GCD file being corrupted (failed 7zip's test archive). A Waste of Money when you have a limited Internet download. HOW HARD is it to do an archive test before loading it on the web page than downloading it & testing it? . It seems these Giveaway sites are in league with the Internet providers to help them Make money by adding to the download's sizes (in Some cases more than Doubling the size of the actual program SIZE!!)

Try using 7ziped folders or any archiver that gives higher compression than zip.

Reply   |   Comment by Mark'Et  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (-7)
#3

1 GB for what is mostly a static game! Come on... Programmers really need to relearn programming again

Reply   |   Comment by malossin  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (-1)
#2

Installation Don't work: The key cannot be decrypted !

Reply   |   Comment by Frank Mohnhaupt  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Frank Mohnhaupt,


Hi Frank, that message usually means that your security has blocked the installation due to the Themida wrapper. That wrapper can also be used to hide malware, so some anti malware suites automatically block it 'just in case' however, the giveaway project has been running since Dec 2006 and they have never given away a game infected with malware due in part to the fact that all downloads are first checked by them using the latest anti-malware suites (not just one). There are three things you can do to get the game to install and register, (well actually 4 or even 5).
1) ... Temporarily turn off your security, install the game then turn your security back on (this is the fastest method),

2) ... White-list all the giveaway files with your security then install,

3) reboot in safe mode with networking, install the game then reboot as normal.

and the fourth, download the game directly from MyPlayCity HERE as that doesn't have the Themida wrapper, but it does contain a folder that contains low level adware and toolbar install files. There is also a fifth, i.e. Steam have the game in their store, but that would cost you £2.79/£3.99/€3.99 HERE.

Failing the above, please check the FAQ's thread over in the game discussion forums HERE in case there are any other fixes. Please do let me know if any of the above worked. Thank you.

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+10)

Whiterabbit-uk, thanks... I download the game directly from MyPlayCity, that works for me.
Turn off Security software (Avast Antivirus) dont work, same failure.

Reply   |   Comment by Frank Mohnhaupt  –  29 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)

Frank Mohnhaupt, In Avast!, you need to go into Shields and then switch off Behaviour Shield. ;)
Then everything will install as expected. Sorry for the late reply!

Reply   |   Comment by Cad Delworth  –  28 days ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
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