harbar.net component based software & platform hygiene

Antivirus and SharePoint 2013

Print | posted on Friday, February 22, 2013 6:44 PM

With the discontinuation of Forefront Protection for SharePoint, Microsoft no longer provides a streaming antivirus solution for SharePoint. This has lead to an ever increasingly common customer question, “what do I use for SharePoint antivirus?”. This post aims to detail the options (right now there is only one) as opposed to answering the question repeatedly. It is NOT intended to be a discussion on why you need a streaming antivirus solution for SharePoint, which is potentially a post for another day. For now, assume you have that requirement, so what are the options?

SharePoint 2013 introduces NO CHANGES to the SharePoint Antivirus API (a.k.a SharePoint Portal Server Virus Scanning Application Programming Interface (VS API)). Therefore any product that works with SharePoint 2010, in principal, will work with SharePoint 2013.

However 3rd party vendors in this space have always been extremely slow to implement support for the latest version of SharePoint or the host operating system. In some cases it’s the ability to run, in other cases it’s simply a matter of official support.

Let’s take a look at the usual suspects in this space, such as they are. Right now it’s not a good state of affairs.

UPDATE (August 2013): Pretty much all the main vendors have now released supported solutions for SharePoint 2013. See the list below for details and links.

  1. Forefront Protection for SharePoint 2010
    Yes, we can continue to use this and it will work just fine with SharePoint 2013. However as the product is discontinued, this is not a wise choice. Furthermore you cannot actually buy it. So unless you already have it purchased you are out of luck. If you already have it, it will continue to be supported until December 31st 2015. You will receive AV definition updates until that date as well. After that you need to migrate to something else.
    Please note, you have to perform some tricks to get Forefront to install on a SharePoint 2013 server and recognise the SharePoint instance. I am not going to detail them here, and you ping me asking for them I won’t give them to you either! This is not a good idea, it’s not supported, and you shouldn’t be doing it!
  2. AvePoint DocAve Antivirus for SharePoint
    This product is also discontinued. Not an option.
  3. TrendMicro PortalProtect
    Does NOT currently support SharePoint 2013 or Windows Server 2012. Both are “coming” in Q3 2013. Won’t install, won’t work. Not an option.
    Update: In July, TrendMicro released PortalProtect SharePoint Security with SharePoint 2013 support: http://www.trendmicro.com/us/enterprise/network-web-messaging-security/portalprotect-microsoft-sharepoint/index.html
  4. BitDefender
    This product is discontinued. Not an option.
    Update: It’s back, but sadly SharePoint 2013 right now is not supported. http://www.bitdefender.com/business/security-for-sharepoint.html
  5. Symantec Protection for SharePoint
    Does not support SharePoint 2013. Can install, but won’t detect SharePoint 2013 without a registry hack. Not an option.
    Update: In July, Symantec released a version of Protection with SharePoint 2013 support: http://www.symantec.com/protection-for-sharepoint-servers
  6. McAfee Security for SharePoint
    Does not support SharePoint 2013 or Windows Server 2012. Won’t install, won’t work. Not an option.
    Update: In July, McAfee updated Security for SharePoint with SharePoint 2013 support: http://www.mcafee.com/us/products/security-for-microsoft-sharepoint.aspx
  7. Sophos Antivirus Protection for SharePoint
    Does not support SharePoint 2013 or Windows Server 2012. Can install, but won’t detect SharePoint 2013 without hacks. Not an option.
    Update, two weeks ago, Sophos stated: “According to current planning, we  hope this will be available during the second half of 2013”
  8. Kapersky Security for SharePoint Server
    Does not support SharePoint 2013. Can’t detect SharePoint 2013 without registry hack. Not an option.
    Update: Kapersky Security now supports SharePoint 2013. http://www.kaspersky.co.uk/business-security/sharepoint

Great so far huh? The usual suspects are really doing a stand up job!

Update: of course now many vendors have solutions. Perhaps this post did a little to help push them into action. However, the ESET product remains an extremely attractive option, as it is the closet in terms of functionality to what Forefront Protection used to provide.

The good news is there is another option. ESET. A very good company and you may be familiar with their work for client OS AV. This is the only vendor who has had the smarts to step into the void left by the discontinuation of Forefront.

ESET Security for Microsoft SharePoint Server http://www.eset.com/beta/sharepoint/

The only downside is it’s currently a “beta” but the RTM is coming very soon. But it works great, and has a number of nifty features. The performance reporting is especially useful.

Update: The final release is now available here: http://www.eset.com/int/business/products/collaboration-sharepoint/





So there you have it. Right now the only option is ESET Security for SharePoint. Hopefully the other vendors will get their act together, but time will tell. If you happen to work for those companies and have news for me, please get in touch and I can update this page (which I will review and update once a month).

Update: obviously this post has been updated!