What is an Antivirus Test and Who Needs It?

Antivirus test is basically a procedure to find out how best an antivirus can remove, block or otherwise deal with malware. The simplest way to determine the performance of an antivirus is by installing it on several malware infested computers and scanning the virtual machines using the antivirus. The performance of the antivirus will be determined by the level of detection and how well the threats were cleaned up. However this is not a sure way to test the performance of an antivirus.

Everyone who uses virtual machines which in one way or another is connected to the internet should have an antivirus and thus he/she must conduct an antivirus test on his antivirus.

Testing your antivirus

To ensure maximum protection of your virtual machines, antivirus tests are usually conducted. The tests depend on the functionality of the antivirus, for example; Malware removal capability test which seeks to reveal how best an antivirus removes a malware. This test is conducted on a virtual machine on which a malware is installed before the antivirus and the antivirus is tasked to remove it. The results will be displayed by the performance of the antivirus in respect to the time used to remove the malware. The lesser the time used to remove the malware the better the antivirus and thus the antivirus test is passed. In some instances, antivirus system is first installed into malware-infested system and the time taken to install the malware determines the strength of the antivirus. It often takes hours to install a weak antivirus on a malware-infested system.

The second antivirus test is malware blockage test. This test is dedicated towards knowing how best an antivirus can block a malware from intruding into your virtual machine. This test is conducted by first installing an antivirus and then a malware is introduced into the virtual machine. The antivirus test is only passed when it prevents the malware from intruding into the virtual machine. However, it’s not advisable to test your antivirus by first infesting your system with malware as this could be dangerous incase your antivirus fails.

To prevent the risk, antivirus test files are used. The anti-malware test file can be freely shared since it is not a virus and it’s free of any viral code. The test files also contain printable characters which show the functionality of the antivirus. If you encounter somebody who wants to use real virus to test his virus performance, inform them of the Antivirus test file.


99 percent of antivirus users never consider conducting antivirus test. Most are usually disappointed by the performance of some versions, a fact that prompts them to change the software they use. Experts acknowledge that certification tests are of great value but they also express that we cannot rely on the shinny award budges to choose the antivirus thus giving antivirus test credit. The basis with which the certification is based does not spell out the reasons for the award. Fortunately, laboratories have been set up to conduct antivirus tests!