Are there any self-contained virus scanners?

By billyellis ยท 19 replies
Oct 7, 2009
  1. I am wondering whether there are any AV products that you can run to scan your harddrive without having them installed, sort of like 'portable' software programs that people carry around on USB drives and run on whatever computer they happen to be using??

    I know you can't have 2 installed AV programs becuase they will interfere with one another. I have an AV program installed already. So I am wondering whether any AV company makes a self-contained program that you can extract to a folder, open and update, and then run manually as needed (like Malwarebytes, for example) to supplement your installed AV program?

    And before anyone replies 'use an on-line scan,' that is not what I am asking about. I don't want to use an online scan - I want something on my harddrive that I could update and then run after disconnecting from the internet. I'm not looking for something that will be active - I already have that in my installed AV. I'm just looking for maybe another AV scanner that I could run manually without being on-line, something that might catch things my regular AV missed. I have asked this in another thread, but the replies were always 'why don't you want to run an on-line scan?' Thanks in advance for those thoughts, but what I am really asking about is whether there are any programs I can download and run myself that would do the same thing.

  2. gguerra

    gguerra TS Guru Posts: 319

    There is also the option of creating an anti-virus boot cd and that is available for free from many vendors. Other than that there is no "standalone" AV scanner that I know of besides malwarebytes. What's wrong with malwarebytes? There is adaware which is not a true AV scanner it is more for adware. Spybot as well just dont install the real-time protection.
  3. billyellis

    billyellis TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 155

    I use both MB and Spyware, but those are AS rather than AV. The boot-CD is not something that I had thought of. I guess I'm just surprised that no one has thought to make a 'standalone' scanner that would be a second line of defense to maybe catch anything the real-time monitors let in by mistake. Thanks for the boot-CD idea. I will look into that.
  4. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

  5. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Bobbye did make several impressive posts directly addressing this...

    I don't think companies make products like that, the point is to keep them installed for protection.
    You might think about just installing Avira or some other normal AV program, scan, then uninstall.
  6. billyellis

    billyellis TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 155

    Because your replies both concluded 'use an on-line scan,' which I specifically stated in posts 12 and 14 was not what I was looking for. I am looking for an off-line scanner that I can run manually at need. If there is no such thing, that's fine. But I was frustrated that 'use an on-line scan' was the only reply I was getting, so I decided to specifically ask the question to the community outside of that thread, which was originally under a title not specifically about this topic.

    I'm hoping that someone who comes across the thread and knows of a product like this will post. I know there are online scans, but for the reasons I stated in that other thread, I would prefer something that functions similarly (scans your computer without being installed) but that operates from my hard drive and not on-line. Again, if there is no such thing at present, that is OK. I'm just hoping that there is. Seems like a fairly obvious product to make, IMHO.
  7. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    Billy, anyone can reply to this thread- but what is i that you don't understand? You cannot have a functional antivirus program if it doesn't update. Whether it's the one on your system or an online scan, it has to update regularly so that the current virus signatures are on the program's database.

    It is 'virtually' impossible to have this database without involving the internet- putting an old AV on your system and using it to scan without current updates is the best you're going to get- and that is useless. Sure, you can scan with it offline, but if it's not updated, you're wasting your time.

    So email the security companies and express your wishes!
  8. billyellis

    billyellis TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 155

    Again, this is why I got frustrated and started a thread that other people would see. I appreciate the replies, but if you are not going to bother to read my original post before responding that is not helpful. As I clearly stated in my original, unedited post, it obviously would be a program that you would update before running. I am not a m0r0n. Many programs can be updated and run without being installed on your hard drive - why not a virus scanner? If anything, a product like that would be more reliable and stable in some ways than an installed scanner in that it would not be designed with a lot of unecessary bells and whistles to make sure you keep using that product instead of another one.
    Apparently I'm not the only one interested in this sort of thing.
  9. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

  10. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    MacAfee Stinger, Portable ClamAntiVirus, Portable Antivirus from to name a few. Right now I'm using Avira Antivir and A2Free which I converted to a Portable Application. E-mail me at bonamil_lactum@yahoo com and I'll give you a copy.
  11. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    About my Portable Avira, you can copy it in your flash drive and carry it anywhere. Updating the virus signature is easy just download the AV signature ( You can even manually update the Av signature on a PC that has no internet connection.
  12. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    I thought that was from an advertisement bot...
    Can't you just tell me now, if you know, how to get a portable Avira ^^?
  13. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    I made one using Portable Apps Creation Master 1.6.
  14. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    The ability and option to scan from a bootable device can be invaluable (especially at times when your system can't boot from Windows!)

    Just fyi.. in addition to portable A/V apps... some vendors provide bootable Rescue CDs (I know of Bit Defender and Norton, maybe others too) which allow you to boot into the A/V software from CD PLUS it then connects to the vendor's server to get updates. So you can boot directly into the A/V software and run a scan with the most recent updates when you use the Rescue CD.

    In this case even though you're still connected to the internet, the only software that can run is what's booted from CD so you're guaranteed no malware can run/intervene (which i think is what you're trying to accomplish?)
  15. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    F-Prot has a bootable CD though it's a bit old and if your internet connected it updates its AV sig before scanning though it will take long. Advantage of Portable AV is its easy updating. For Avira just copy newly updated files form your hard drive to your flash drive.
  16. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Of course, you still have to update your Avira every time, then copy it over.
    Thanks WinXPert for the portable apps tip, this will save me time later!
  17. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    Welcome. I created a portable Avira because its what I use. If your using a different AV try creating a portable so that updating would be easy.

    TIP: If your using a Portable AV allways have it zipped. Extract it only when your going to use it. I just once got my Portable Avira infected by sality when I tried to repair an infected system. And lastly always update and zip your Portable AV on a clean system.
  18. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    Billy, my apology for misunderstanding what you wanted, My main concern was having the virus database updated and you're not wanting to access the internet. I did not know there was this type of portable available and that somehow it manages to be kept updated.

    So I have learned something new, thanks to your persistence.
  19. billyellis

    billyellis TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 155

    Well, what some call persistence, others call jerkiness. :eek: No apologies necessary, although I hope I was not too rude myself. :blush:

    Anyway, thanks for all the posts people. That is just the sort of thing I was looking for. :grinthumb
  20. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    Instructions: at the CMD prompt


    Extract at the root directory of your drive. Read readme.txt at App folder.

    2 files / 200kb limit.

    Attached Files:

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