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Reverse whole disk virus scanning

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000032446D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Nov-05
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Nov-05
Document File: 1 page(s) / 37K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

An optional feature could be made available in a virus scanning package to automatically reverse the scanning order, either on every alternate scheduled scan or for a manual scan. This feature would give users who sometimes or always have to terminate a whole-disk scan before completion, to have some assurance that the files at the end of the directory structure were being checked with equal frequency.

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Reverse whole disk virus scanning

When requested to scan a whole disk, virus scanning software begins with the first file in the directory structure and works down the directory structure until it reaches the end. Users with a large number of files on their disk, or a slow processor, sometimes do not have time to allow the scan to complete (for example, where the scan takes longer than a working day to complete and the user must switch off their PC before leaving the office). Currently available virus scanning software, to our knowledge, does not enable users to perform the scan in any other order, other than by selecting individual folders for manual scanning, which is a time-consuming process. Because of this, where users regularly terminate scans before completion, the files at the beginning of the directory structure will be scanned much more frequently than those at the end.

    An optional feature could be made available in a virus scanning package to automatically reverse the scanning order on every alternate scheduled scan. The first scan would start from the beginning of the directory structure working forwards, the second from the end of the directory structure working backwards, and so on. The feature could also be used to perform a manual whole-disk scan in reverse order. This feature would enable users who know they sometimes or always have to terminate a whole-disk scan before completion, to have some assurance that the files at the end of the directory structure were being checked with equal frequency.

    If the virus scanning software has to identify the files at the bottom of each branch in order to use these as a starting point for the reverse scan, this process might take as long as the scan itself. A workable alternativ...