There are plenty of antivirus software available today that promise to protect your computer, but how can be sure your antivirus is actually working as well as you think it is? Of course, we can check the interface, as most applications clearly inform about their status. In this article, we will discuss how to make a simple trick to ensure your antivirus work.

Do not panic, we are not going to recommend you to download an infected file. If you ever want to test your antivirus software, we can use the EICAR test file. It will not harm your computer. We can use it to ensure our antivirus is working properly.

All antivirus software should recognize this file. In order to create a sample virus, open a Notepad and insert the following line: X5O!P%@AP[4\PZX54(P^)7CC)7}$EICAR-STANDARD-ANTIVIRUS-TEST-FILE!$H+H. Then select Save as and create a file on the disk.

If you cannot save the EICAR file to your computer, disable the software entirely or change the settings of the resident protection.


The EICAR file can also be used to test the antivirus’ capabilities in intercepting infected messages. Just send it to yourself as an attachment via email.

Note: you cannot run file on 64-bit version of Windows. However, antivirus should detect a threat by double clicking left mouse button.

Some less known antivirus software don’t pick up the EICAR test file. For example, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware also ignores the EICAR file. In this case, performing the test is useless. To be absolutely sure, you can check whether the EICAR test is supported on the software developers homepage.