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Malwarebytes (free) taking a long time to scan

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I don't know why this is, but despite cleaning out temporary files, a full scan can be running over 4 hours, and still not complete.

Scans used to complete in under two hours, so I don't know whether there is a problem somewhere ?


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Thank you for the file. You currently have rootkit scanning enabled, which will often significantly increase the duration of the scan due to the low level nature of the scanning that is performed.

To confirm if this is the cause, please disable rootkit scanning and run a manual Threat Scan.

  • Open Malwarebytes.
  • Click Settings.
  • Click Security.
  • Turn "Scan for rootkits" off under Scan options.
  • Return to the Dashboard and click Scan.

Please let us know how you get on.

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Thank you for your reply.

I think I used to have rootkit scanning enabled previously anyway, but I will disable it at your suggestion and let you know how I get on.


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OK, well last scan completed in 40 mins 49 seconds (537,935 items scanned).

Looks like that issue is resolved then !

(unless you need me to do anything else)

Thank you very much for your help.


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8 minutes ago, MJBJ said:

OK, well last scan completed in 40 mins 49 seconds (537,935 items scanned).

FYI, All that is really needed is a Threat scan.

Malwarebytes is not designed to function like normal AV scanners and uses a new kind of scan engine that relies mostly on heuristics detection techniques rather than traditional threat signatures.  Malwarebytes is also designed to look in all the locations where malware is known to install itself/hide, so a full or custom scan shouldn't be necessary, especially on any sort of frequent basis (like daily), especially since the default Threat Scan/Quick Scan checks all loading points/startup locations, the registry, all running processes and threads in memory, along with all system folders, program folders and data folders as well as any installed browsers, caches and temp locations.  This also means that if a threat were active from a non-standard location, because Malwarebytes checks all threads and processes in memory, it should still be detected.  The only threat it *might* miss would be a dormant/inactive threat that is not actively running/installed on a secondary drive, however if the threat were executed then Malwarebytes should detect it.  Additionally, whenever a new location is discovered to be used by malware the Malwarebytes Research team adds that location dynamically to the outgoing database updates so the locations that are checked by the default Threat/Quick Scan in Malwarebytes can be changed on the fly by Research without requiring any engine or program version updates/upgrades.

If you need a flat file scanner to check archived data/drives, I would recommend using one of the many available free AV scanners such as Kaspersky's Virus Removal Tool, ESET's Free Virus Scan, or even the built in Windows Defender that ships with Windows 8/8.1 and Windows 10.  Links to the first two scanners I mentioned can be found below:


More info HERE https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/253972-malwarebytes-4-faqs/?do=findComment&comment=1346719

Edited by Porthos
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5 minutes ago, MJBJ said:

We use MWB (free) just to check up occasionally, about once a week.

Same thing applies, Threat scan is all that is needed.

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20 minutes ago, MJBJ said:

OK, thank you for your advice.


Your welcome.

Side note, I have never found the need to ever run a full scan on any computer coming in to my shop for malware removal even less so since Windows 10 with Defender was released almost 5 years ago. All I see no is the occasional "Chrome" issue due to sync.

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