Virus Scanner Configuration


Virus Scanner Configuration

WinZip® supports many virus scanners that can be run from Windows or from the DOS command line, with a few important limitations noted below. Virus scanners can be run using the Virus Scan entry in the Actions menu or during CheckOut operations if the Run virus scanner option in the CheckOut dialog box is selected.

Virus scanner configuration is done from the Program Locations tab of the Configuration dialog.

When you first install WinZip, it automatically searches for virus scanners in the folders specified by your system's PATH and in the "App Paths" Windows registry entries. If one of the supported virus scanners is found, WinZip will automatically use the scanner. A listing of and further information about currently supported virus scanners can be found on the WinZip web site at

If the installation procedure does not automatically find one of the aforementioned virus scanners, you can have WinZip automatically fill in the Parameters field by selecting the desired scanner from the drop-down combo box (for example, scan.exe) and then adding the full filename for the scanner to the Scan program field (for example, c:\mcafee\scan.exe instead of just scan.exe).

You can also configure WinZip to work with another scanner. See the section titled Virus Scanner Configuration Details below for more information.


WinZip's default virus scanner parameters work with the versions of the scanners that were tested. If the authors of a scanner change the command line parameters in future releases of the scanner, then WinZip's default parameters for the scanner may no longer work. For example, McAfee SCAN 2.1 parameters are incompatible with prior versions of SCAN. Version 2 requires the /ALL parameter while version 1 requires /A.

Unless a virus is found, no manual intervention is required while running most virus scanners. However, some virus scanners, such as TFINDVIR, always need to be closed manually, because they do not currently support options to close automatically.

Virus Scanner Configuration Details

This portion of the documentation describes how to configure WinZip to work with a scanner that is not listed above. Do not use WinZip's virus scanning support with a different virus scanner unless you have read and understood the following information.

To configure WinZip to work with a scanner, fill in the following fields in the Program Locations tab of the Configuration dialog:

  • The Scan program field should contain the name of the program (the full path name is required if the program is not in a folder specified in your system's PATH).
  • The Parameters field should contain the appropriate parameters to run the virus scanner as described below.
  • The Run minimized box determines whether the scanner should be run minimized. See below for important notes on using this parameter with DOS based scanners. Note that some scanners, such as NAVW32.EXE, always run minimized, regardless how you set this option.

Special character sequences for the Parameters field are:



indicates where WinZip should substitute the drive, folder, and the *.* characters for the files that are to be scanned. For example, "c:\temp\dir\*.*".


indicates where WinZip should substitute the drive and folder of the files that are to be scanned. Note that the wild card characters *.* are NOT included when you use %d.


indicates where WinZip should substitute the name of a temporary "report file". Report files should ONLY be used when running DOS virus scanners.


a special parameter required for McAfee's WSCAN program.

If you do not specify any of the aforementioned special character sequences WinZip will append the filenames to be scanned at the end of the scanner command line.

Be sure to specify any parameters necessary to cause the scanner to check folders of the drive and folder of the files that are to be scanned.

To configure WinZip for a Windows-based virus scanner, first ascertain that the virus scanner reports suspected viruses by displaying a dialog box. If the scanner simply writes to a log file when a virus is found you (and WinZip) will not know about the problem.

To configure WinZip for a DOS-based virus scanner, be sure to verify that the scanner can either be used with the Run minimized option (see below for details) or issues a prompt if a virus is found. If neither of these conditions is met and a virus is found you (and WinZip) will not know about the problem.

The Run minimized check box should only be used for DOS scanners under the following circumstances:

  • The scanner is configured to run in "batch" mode, without any prompts. If the scanner requires any keyboard input when running minimized, you will not be able to see the prompts, and the session will appear to be hung.
  • The scanner writes all messages through DOS, or has an option to write results to a report file. Messages written directly to the video buffer are not captured by WinZip and will be lost. To determine whether a scanner writes messages through DOS, run the scanner with its output redirected (for example, issue the command "scan > nul"). Any messages you see during this test will not be captured by WinZip. If the scanner has an option to write results to a report file you can use %f in the Parameters field to cause WinZip to capture the results (see above for details).
  • The scanner returns a non-zero error level if it encounters any problems. If the scanner does not return a non-zero error level, WinZip will assume that the files passed the virus check, and any warnings issued by the scanner will be lost. (Note: if the scanner returns a non-zero error level, WinZip automatically displays all messages written to standard error or standard output.)