How to Install ClamAV and Configure Daily Scanning on CentOS

This article will guide you through the installation of ClamAV on CentOS. Once installed, we will also configure a daily scan on our CentOS server.

ClamAV is an open source (GPL) antivirus engine designed for detecting Trojans, viruses, malware and other malicious threats on Linux. In this article, we will only be configuring ClamAV to run scheduled/on-demand scans; not resident scans.

A. Install ClamAV

1. Install EPEL repo

Before we can do proceed, you must ensure that you have the EPEL yum repository enabled. To do this, click here.

2. Install required packages
yum install clamav clamd
3. Start the clamd service and set it to auto-start
/etc/init.d/clamd on
chkconfig clamd on
/etc/init.d/clamd start
4. Update ClamAV’s signatures

I recommend cron.daily and set it up via a shell script.

sudo vim /etc/cron.daily/


/usr/bin/freshclam --quiet

This will now run with all your other cron.daily jobs

Save and exit

chmod 755 /etc/cron.daily/

B. Configure Daily Scan

In this example, we will configure a cronjob to scan the /home/ directory every day:

1. Create cron file:
vim /etc/cron.daily/manual_clamscan

Add the following to the file above. Be sure to change SCAN_DIR to the directory that you want to scan:


/usr/bin/clamscan -i -r $SCAN_DIR >> $LOG_FILE

Give our cron script executable permissions:

chmod +x /etc/cron.daily/manual_clamscan

You can even run the above script to ensure that it works correctly.

And you’re done! That should be the minimum required to 1. install ClamAV and 2. Perform a daily scan of a specific directory.