The Anti-Virus Wizard


KMail does not have a built-in virus detection solution: the developers believe using external, but specialized, tools is the better approach. KMail uses these tools through its flexible filter architecture. The Anti-Virus Wizard helps you with the initial filter setup.

What can the wizard do to help you?

It will give you some choices about how you want virus filtering to be set up. Afterwards it will automatically create the appropriate filter rules.

What are the limitations of the wizard?

All it can do is set up the filters for you; it will provide a standard setup. Manual modifications that have been applied to existing anti-virus filters are not recognized. Instead, such filters are overwritten by the wizard.

You can activate the wizard via ToolsAnti-Virus Wizard.... If this choice is not available, click SettingsConfigure KMail...Plugins and check the box next to Antivirus. You will be prompted to restart KMail; when you do, the wizard will appear on the Tools menu.


The Anti-Virus Wizard basically works the same way as the Anti-Spam Wizard does. KMail can use several external tools to detect messages containing viruses. It will determine which of these tools are installed on your system, and will show you the results from the search. You can mark the tools which you want KMail to use for virus detection. If you want more choices, you can simply close the wizard, install a new tool, then restart the wizard.

If you have chosen at least one tool you will be able to select actions for KMail to perform on messages containing viruses. To let KMail detect messages containing viruses, you should mark the Check messages using the anti-virus tools option. If you want messages infected by a virus to be moved into a certain folder, select the appropriate folder and mark the Move detected viral messages to the selected folder option. If such messages should also be marked as read, select the Additionally, mark detected viral messages as read option.

Selecting at least one of these options will allow the wizard to finish the filter setup. The wizard will not take any existing filter rules into account, but will append new rules. In any case you may want to inspect the result of this process in the Filter Dialog.


The wizard uses information stored in a special configuration file named kmail.antivirusrc (stored in the global or local KDE config directory). If the local config file contains an entry with a higher (newer) version number, the configuration data from the local file (for that tool) is used, so both administrators and users can update the wizard's configuration.

The detection of messages containing viruses is achieved by creating pipe through actions per-tool within a special filter. Another filter contains rules to check for infected messages, and actions to mark them and (optionally, depending on the choice in the wizard) to move them into a folder. Both filters are configured to be applied to incoming messages and for manual filtering.