AVG Rescue CD is a suite of several useful applications that you can run on your computer before the operating system starts, one of which serves as a free bootable antivirus program. The program interface may not be as comfortable to use as similar programs, but there are lots of custom options and it even lets you update the virus definitions without having to reinstall the software.

Note: This review is of AVG Rescue version 120.160420. Please let me know if there’s a newer version I need to review.

AVG Rescue CD Pros & Cons

Though the interface isn’t the best to work with, AVG Rescue has some nice features:


  • Supports online and offline updating
  • Custom scan options
  • Can enable heuristics scanning
  • Includes other helpful tools


  • Large download (170 MB)
  • No graphical interface
  • Navigating menus can be difficult


Install AVG Rescue CD

Select the link called “Rescue CD (for CD creation)” on the download page to download AVG Rescue in the form of an ISO file. The next step is to burn the ISO file to a disc. Once AVG Rescue is on a disc, you’ll need to boot your computer to it.


Start a Virus Scan with AVG Rescue CD

The first screen you’ll see after you boot your computer to AVG Rescue will ask you what you’d like to do. To start the program, choose AVG Rescue , then press Enter on the Disclaimer screen to accept the agreement and get started. There are over a dozen options you can choose from when AVG Rescue first starts up. You’re able to update the virus definitions, view past scan results, mount Windows volumes, configure network settings, and, of course, start a virus scan.


To start a scan with AVG Rescue, simply choose the Scan option. If an update is suggested, you’ll be prompted to download it. You can skip this step by selecting No to continue through the wizard. You’ll then be asked to choose a part of the computer to scan in the Scan Type Menu window. To scan a whole hard drive, choose Volumes, or select Directory or Registry to perform a more specific scan. Finally, you are given several scan options, such as to scan inside archives, use heuristics for scanning, scan cookies, report documents with macros, scan the boot sector, and others. Select or deselect options with the Space key, then choose Enter to start the custom scan.


My Thoughts on AVG Rescue CD

My two favorite things about AVG Rescue is the fact that you can choose different scan options because some similar bootable virus scanners don’t offer such settings, and that you can update the definitions straight from the disc.

However, what I dislike most is the non-graphical interface. Not being able to click around on the screen makes moving forward and backward through options very frustrating, which actually caused me to accidentally exit completely out of the program twice while trying to start a scan.

Though once you make your way through the wizard and properly start a scan, doing so with AVG Rescue will prove to be beneficial because you can customize what is scanned. Some of the other included tools worth mentioning from AVG Rescue is one for mounting encrypted volumes, a hard drive tester, and a ping utility.

Download AVG Rescue CD


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