herdProtect: Second-opinion anti-malware scanner with 68 scan engines

Most Windows users have an antivirus or a security software installed on their computer, to keep their systems protected from malware. While they serve us well most of the times, in todays changing scenario, where a 100,000 new threats are being discovered daily, it might be a good idea to have an on-demand, second-opinion virus scanner or a malware remover installed on our systems. In fact, the top 10 antivirus engines only detect around 90% of known and zero-day threats, leaving your PC open to numerous viruses, worms, trojans, rootkits, dialers and spyware attacks.

While one can always visit online antivirus scanners from well-know security software to scan one’s PC – or get a particular file scanned with an online malware scanner using multiple antivirus engines, some prefer to have a standalone on-demand antivirus scanner installed locally. And how nice would it be, if the second opinion scanner use multiple scanning engines to scan your PC!

herdProtect anti-malware

herdProtect is a new free cloud-based malware scanning platform, which is powered by 68 anti-malware engines! Most of the big names, apart from others are a part of this impressive and long list. These include the following and more!

Agnitum, Avast! Antivirus, Avira AntiVir, BitDefender, BullGuard, ClamAV, Comodo, DrWeb, Emsisoft, ESET NOD32, F-Secure, Kaspersky, Malwarebytes, McAfee, Microsoft Forefront, Microsoft Security Essentials, Microsoft Windows Defender, Panda Sophos, Symantec, Trend Micro, ZoneAlarm, etc.

Since no single anti-malware software is perfect, herdProtect utilizes a ‘herd’ of multiple engines to guarantee the widest coverage and the earliest possible detection. As a second line of defense anti-malware solution, herdProtect is designed to run with any existing anti-virus program already installed on a user’s PC.

The herdProtect scanning engine scans processes, modules, drivers, etc. on a user’s PC as well as the hundreds of auto-start execution points. By scanning in the cloud, all processor intensive activities are performed independent of the user’s PC, as a result of which, your PC’s performance is not affected. Depending on the aggregate results of the scan, the user can then take the appropriate actions and keep their PC free from any known malware threats.

I downloaded the 1.84MB setup file and installed herdProtect. On running it, the freeware detects the installed security software on your computer.


Clicking on the Scan button started the scan, which lasted for around 5 minutes on my PC.


Once the scan was over, it presented me with the results. These results are generally segregated as Malware Detected and Inconclusive Detections. Clicking in the View button will open the file’s folder location. Clicking on Details will take you to heardProtect’s website which throws some more light on the file.


Now one thing that is to be noted here is that herdProtect is only a scanner. It will not remove malware. It will present a list of suspect files which any one of its anti-malware engines may suspect to be potentially dangerous and list them. It will be up to us, the users, to examine each file, and only when one is very sure, to delete the file. Having so many antivirus engines scanning your files, is very likely to increase the chances of false positives ie. files which may be safe, but which may get reported due to their nature. So one must be very careful here.

herdProtect looks like a pretty useful second opinion anti-malware scanner, and I think I will keep it installed on my Windows 8.1 PC and use it, to scan my computer, every once in a while – just to be sure.

I think you will like it too. You can get it from its download page. This free software comes to you from the makers of Reason Core Security FreeΒ and Should I Remove It.

Posted by on , in Category Security with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.


  1. chavirah

    great software awesome ty

  2. Bart Ashton

    Good software, but slow if you have a bad internet connection since it uploads detected files to the herdProtect servers to scan.

  3. Thanks for the feedback, Bart.

  4. Nogitsune

    Hey Anand,
    Thank you so much for your review on herdProtect.
    I would have never paid attention to it, if not your article. Just like you I’m an end-user, doing “a lot of stuff” on the Internet. I tested herdProtect( intentionally applied some malware) and I must say, it’s great, superior to malwarebytes in some cases. A great peace of software. It’s so hard for developers to advertize their open source projects, I just hope they won’t shut down anytime soon.

    My opinion:

    Great tool;
    Fast Scan- provided you’ve a decent Internet connection;
    Astounding Detection level;

    I wouldn’t recommend it to my friends tho as they probably would just harm themselves.
    68 engines= false-positives.

  5. You said it! A good software but unexperienced users should stay away. πŸ™‚

  6. Kiran kumar

    I strongly recommend Hiren’s Boot CD, it is also having lot of tools like recovery cleaners and some AV tools, as you said it haven’t many AV tools included in the software.. am i right Anand.

  7. downloaded and using this software, my net is not very good but this software got great use of it. I think future updates will make it even better, I wish it could scan my whole PC, will use it now. Awesome.

  8. Antreas Arkoudi

    its great software but still beta stage

  9. SwaggaPip

    Actually you can remove. Press details and at the bottom is the word ‘Remove’ in bold. I don’t have proof on me that it works but it does remove it. (I realised because it deleted SDK Manager).

  10. SwaggaPip

    I have looked all over the internet and nobody has mentioned that there is a remove button. The bad thing is you have to remove it one by one.

  11. Zubair Ismail

    Great tool for system security..I personally use this one on daily basis.

    KMSnano automatic

  12. tommytn

    great idea…hope it develops further. a set of command line terms /switches would be nice.

  13. Neos727

    Hello, I used it and removed all the ticked ones at once. On the settings button located top right corner as well as bellow the report screen gives some options one of them being remove. But the check boxes have to be checked next to file names or unchecked to save.
    And yes it picks up a lot of stuff and sorts the ones that are uncertain at the end. I have removed 140 files mostly related to safesearch.exe which I knew was malware and conduit.
    One game related file though should have not been removed. I will use it again with greater caution.

  14. SwaggaPip

    There is the option to turn off possible false-positives in the ? page at the top right. It does not hide all of the false-positives but it hides a fair enough amount. The rest can be manually checked for high security.

  15. SwaggaPip

    Oh Thanks for the tip! I was looking in the tools menu for this option. I found it in the ? menu (about, options and settings). Thanks!

  16. SwaggaPip

    We should ask the admin to update the page. At the bottom of the review (in bold) says ‘Now one thing that is to be noted here is that herdProtect is only a scanner. It will not remove malware.’

  17. shoaib

    excellent software

  18. It’s been updated now, and also removes files πŸ™‚ You can also right click on them to ignore for future scans if you know it’s something safe.
    All in all this is a marvelous addition to my security suite πŸ˜€

  19. Keifus

    Great program , def recommend this…

  20. Stoney Huff

    I’m just using the website by web searching “herdprotect.com and ____setup.exe” just to see just how safe that new program is, based on what others have submitted.
    For example – NANO antivirus’ nanosvc.exe — 0/68 flag it = spotless.

    The search window may provide results for a website – IP address, download sites herdprotect has scanned files from.

  21. Software is really great but, at beta Stage…..Avast check this… πŸ™‚

  22. The Rilluma

    That they add realtime protection looks like an total and necassary competitor in free antivirus softwares, especially for Qihoo 360 total security (realtime uses 5 different engine protection)
    Will it work on Windows 10 ?

  23. Adnan Nawaz

    I have tried that already…But it looks like i have a speciality in mac than Windows …Great share though πŸ™‚

  24. Robb Thurston

    Happy Andy K, I just installed and used “herdProtect” second opinion scanner. I am exceptionally pleased to find this nice colleague to HitmanPro, which is for now freeware. The initial scan was very slow, but I compensate this by running it when I am away from my PC. For example sleep or career. Re: potential for false positives, all files that I ever encountered, are available on the Internet, as often as not from Google, or a similar organization. They often will vet the files herdProtetct reveals, so there is no requirement to speculate. As a matter of fact, I did recognize all the revealed files. This is extremely pleasing to me, so I thank you.

  25. You are welcome Robb. πŸ™‚

  26. Robb Thurston

    Andy, I am very pleased with Hitman Pro, however, it is not configured as pleasantly as possible as freeware. That is, after the usage of a virus-malware option, there is a requirement to pay for a professional copy. HitPro is otherwise excellent. Here we have another slightly inconvenient alternative, the fault being, it is very slow. O/K free and slow. I am pleased to work with that. I desire, Andy, to encourage you, and through you, the OEMs , to continue to work on the approach made to virus/malwares, by Hit Pro and herd Protect. It is quite kind to low income PC users, to bring such excellence to us in freeware. Best!

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