Installing ClamWin

The assumption here is that the software has already been obtained. If that isn't the case, first check out: getting ClamWin.

People who are not very familiar with command line usage will probably want to skip over the notes relating to a “silent installation”. However, those instructions are mentioned first because they are brief and then the rest of the instructions for installing the software files don't apply for people using that route.

Silent Installation

An old forum post about ClamWin installation seemed to suggest closing ClamTray.exe before running the upgrade installer. (See: adjusting running software for information about stopping a program. For an automated solution, closing that program is recommended, to avoid a potential dialog box. (There is also a WClose.exe in ClamWin's directory (e.g. C:\Program Files (x86)\ClamWin\Bin\WClose.exe for a 64-bit machine. However, this program has also been known to seem to fail, just producing error messages for end users, when tested with ClamWin 0.98.5 in Win7.)

For a silent installation, ClamWin's online FAQ for a silent installation recommends using three command line parameters: “ /sp- /silent /norestart” (without the quotation marks).

It appears that there may be more command line parameters available, based on an old forum post about ClamWin installation.

According to the page, using /NOTB avoids installing the toolbar, although the web page seems to be indicating that /notb (in lowercase) was needed for ClamWin version 0.97.7.

For those who are not using a silent installation, here is a verbose, graphical guide for performing the installation of the software files.

Locate and run the downloaded executable (which was obtained by following the instructions for installing ClamWin).

ClamWin Welcome Screen

Press the “Next >” button.

Initial EULA screen

Some day, if you've never read the GNU General Public License, it is generally recommended to do so. It helps to explain the whole mindset/mentality of the Open Source culture that led to popularity among early users of the Linux kernel. However, the summary is shown on the first screen (after the Copyright statement and before the “Preamble” heading which isn't initially readable). Fast typists can get through this screen by holding the Alt button and pressing the A key followed by the N key (and then releasing Alt) in order to perform the two needed steps: Choose the “I accept the agreement” radio button, and then choose “Next >”.

Screen to choose users

(The above screenshot was modified. In general, at this screen, just pressing Next is fine.)

Choose Destination Path

The simple thing to do on this screen is to just press “Next >”. Users of a 64-bit operating system may notice the path starts with “C:\Program Files (x86)\” when installing 32-bit software. If that is seen, that is fine.

Then some possible windows/screens may or may not appear:

Confirm Destination Since It Pre-Exists

The above screen probably won't appear. If it does, it may be worthwhile to check out why. If ClamWin is already installed, perhaps the old installation may be used or perhaps it should be removed first.

ClamWin Installation's Offer

ClamWin may offer to install the “Ask Toolbar for Internet Explorer and Firefox”. (This did not seem to happen on a system using 64-bit Vista Home Premium but it was seen on a system using 32-bit XP. It is possible that ClamWin only does this on supported 32-bit systems, such as those listed on the ClamWin Ask partnership page that is redirected to from More information about the partnership has been made available at the ClamWin online FAQ.) The hyperlinks shown in the screenshot go to and and (needlessly) the second checkbox is greyed out except when the first checkbox is checked. The generally recommended course of action is to leave both checkboxes unchecked, and so proceed without interacting with services that are unrelated to what is being installed.

Choose Installation Files

In general, it is fine to just accept the defaults of this screen unless any of the foreign languages are desired. If so, check the relevant box(es) before performing the next step: Once again, choose “Next >.

Shotcut Options

Once again, press “Next >”

Select Additional Tasks

The above screen may not have the “Download” option if one of the larger installers was chosen. This guide recommends unchecking the “Download Virus Database Files. (Do not Select if you connect via a Proxy Server)”. Doing so will speed up the installation time. The program will need to be updated after installation, but this is a good thing because it allows one to see an actual download and update after installation and that is a comforting thing. To uncheck the dialog box with a keyboard, simply press the space bar when the text next to the checkbox is selected, which will be the case when first arriving to this screen.

Creating a desktop icon probably will not be needed, since ClamWin is expected to be visible in the tray. For the last time, choose “Next >”.

The final pre-install confirmation screen
The final pre-install confirmation screen (scrolled down)

Scroll down if desired. (Note the above example shows “Download Virus Database Files. (Do not Select if you connect via a Proxy Server)”. This should not be seen if an earlier recommendation, the specific earlier recommendation to not download the database until later, is followed. A screenshot without the “Download” section is available.)

Now instead of pressing Alt-N to go to “Next >”, the “Install” button needs to be chosen.

Actual install process

Towards/at/after the end of the install process, the software may create another window showing an update. (This may be something that can be switched to via the task menu.) Again, that will not happen if the earlier recommendations are followed, only because it is preferable to see this successfully happening after the software is installed.)

Downloading an update

After all tasks are completed, the installer will go to the final screen of the installation process.

Final screen of ClamWin install

At the point where this window is seen, the basic software files have been installed so that they will be usable. (They still won't be usefully used until additional steps are taken.) Select the Finish button (by pressing the Enter key or by using a rodent).

After the software is installed, the software's default setup configuration will not cause the software to scan any files, ever. To make the software be useful, ever, some changes need to be made. See the ClamWin guide for more details on using the software after it is installed.