Google-owned VirusTotal is now officially available as a native OS X utility that lets Mac users scan and analyze suspicious files and URLs to quickly detect viruses, worms, trojans, and all kinds of malware. The tool is a free download for all Mac users running OS X Lion or newer.
Google makes the news official on the VirusTotal blog beginning with a brief history of the tool.
“VirusTotal Uploader is a popular utility in the toolset of many malware fighters, it eases the task of submitting files to VirusTotal using Windows operating systems by just performing a right click on any file and selecting the pertinent option from the context menu,” reads the post.
“Over the years the Windows Uploader evolved, being able to also quickly scan the image files of running processes, trigger scans of remote URL content before saving it to disk, etc. Even some communiy [sic] members produced similar utilities, many of which outperform our very own software [...] That is the magic of building a community of passionate researchers, they will use your APIs in order to produce better tools that will benefit end-users world-wide,” adds Google.
Starting today, a Mac-native standalone app can be downloaded and used without having to launch a web browser and visit the VirusTotal official page.
“Today we are proud to announce a new VirusTotal Uploader for OS X. It is available for download on our Desktop Applications page. Internally it uses our public API to schedule uploads of files, with the exact same limitations that any public API user would experience.”
All you do is open the VirusTotal app and drag the file you want scanned inside its window. Alternately, you can browse for a file on your hard drive from the File menu, or right-click any file and select the VirusTotal uploader app.
When you feed a file to VirusTotal for scanning, it gets uploaded and analyzed with over 50 antivirus solutions. Users can choose to have a file instantly scanned or schedule the analysis of its content. You can scan anything from a simple text document or PDF file, to media files (movies, photos, music) and even complex apps.
In our testing, VirusTotal has been prone to crashing whenever told to analyze the contents of a small Mac application.
The system requirements are very low, so calling them out isn’t necessary. Basically any Mac that can handle OS X version 10.7 (aka Lion) is also capable of running the small VirusTotal utility.
Despite being very simple and lightweight, VirusTotal is unattractive from a visual standpoint. The barebones interface features two small tabs – Scan and Log – at the top, and the analyzer window is but a mere table of files listed in the order they’ve been dropped inside for scanning. No color, no sound, no oomph whatsoever. Not that anti-malware apps need to be jolly, but still.
Interested parties can download VirusTotal from the supplied link and scan away at their Mac starting today.