FRISK Software International

4.2 Automatic updating

To automatically update the virus signature files you can use the check-updates.pl perl script in conjunction with cron. Cron is a command scheduler. To schedule check-updates.pl to run periodically, you must create something called a crontab. Please consult your system manual to find out how.

The most common command for creating a crontab is 'crontab -e'. Running it will start an editor. You must fill in the time and date fields appropriately.

Please note that as most users set the updater to check for and download new virus signature files on the hour (e.g. 9:00 or 16:00) you can optimise your download speed by setting the updater starting time to any number of minutes past the hour (e.g. 9:07 or 15:43). In this way you avoid the heaviest download traffic.

The time and date fields are:

field allowed values
minute 0-59
hour 0-23
day of month 1-31
month 1-2 (or names, see below)
day of week 0-7 (0 or 7 is Sun, or use names)

Example:

27 4,16 * * * /usr/local/f-prot/tools/check-updates.pl -cron

With this configuration, you will get e-mails whenever signature files are updated or when an error occurs. If you only want to receive e-mail only when an error, occurs, then you want to include the -quiet parameter:

27 4,16 * * * /usr/local/f-prot/tools/check-updates.pl -cron -quiet

Please make sure you run check-updates.pl as root, otherwise it will not have filesystem permissions to update the virus database. For further information about check-updates.pl, please consult the check-updates.pl manual page.

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