ClamWin Free Antivirus (2009)

This open-source antivirus software fails to get the job done, with disappointing malware detection and no real-time scanning

ClamWin Free Antivirus (2009)
  • ClamWin Free Antivirus (2009)
  • ClamWin Free Antivirus (2009)
  • ClamWin Free Antivirus (2009)
  • Expert Rating

    2.50 / 5

Pros

  • Open-source antivirus software, right-click option to scan a specific file

Cons

  • Ineffective malware detection, poor disinfection

Bottom Line

Although running an extra on-demand scan can be good as backup for your regular antivirus application, ClamWin Free Antivirus' poor detection rate means that you are better off running an online scan from a commercial software maker, such as BitDefender or F-Secure, and avoiding this open-source project.

Would you buy this?

ClamWin Free Antivirus doesn't provide real-time protection, and it won't check files as you open them or have them written to your hard drive; its scans are on-demand only, which means they kick off when you schedule them or specifically tell the program to run one.

If its scans were effective, ClamWin Free Antivirus might have been a worthwhile pick as an extra security layer to catch files that your regular antivirus utility might have missed. Unfortunately, It missed almost half of the Trojan horses, password stealers, and other baddies in AV-Test.org's zoo of malware samples, an ignominious performance matched only by PC Tools Antivirus.

Against malware made to steal online-banking passwords, it was nearly impotent, missing more than two-thirds of such samples. In proactive tests meant to find how well a program can detect new malware, ClamWin Free Antivirus did better, nabbing roughly one-third of the samples while using two-week-old signature files (top performer Avira AntiVir Personal caught just over half). But that still wasn't a satisfactory result by any means.

Its six false positives were more than we'd expect even from free antivirus. ClamWin Free Antivirus was the second-slowest app in on-access scanning during our recent tests of antivirus products - only PC Tools Antivirus had slower scan times - and it put up the worst numbers for disinfection, detecting only six out of 10 infections and cleaning only five. In a rare shining performance, it identified all 10 active rootkits (stealth malware designed to hide other infections). In contrast, however, it did the worst job of removing those rootkits, cleaning up just four.

The app's basic interface lists your hard drives and allows for scheduling regular scans, but you'll need to schedule a separate scan for each drive. ClamWin Free Antivirus also adds a right-click Explorer option to scan a specific file, but such scans are notably slow, and by default it only reports discovered malware; to get an option to clean it, you must change the settings to quarantine or delete the file.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?