How to update virus definitions for Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition

Article:TECH98750  |  Created: 2000-01-17  |  Updated: 2008-01-13  |  Article URL
Article Type
Technical Solution



This document describes the procedures to update virus definitions for Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition.


Before you begin: Per Symantec's Version Support Policy, Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition 7.6 entered the "inactive" phase on March 31, 2005. No further security updates will be provided per Symantec's maintenance agreement. Symantec offered the option to purchase limited duration extensions so that customers could continue to obtain content for this inactive product. Customers who own an extension contract may continue to download content throughout the duration of their entitlement.

To rebuild virus definitions
There are four methods for updating virus definitions:
  • The Virus Definition Transport Method (VDTM)
  • LiveUpdate
  • Intelligent Updater
  • Copying a .vdb file

If you are using Symantec AntiVirus Corporate Edition, some of the directions below will not work. Read the document that applies to your version of Symantec AntiVirus:
Read the following descriptions, and select a method or combination of methods that works best for your environment.

Virus Definition Transport Method (VDTM)
The VDTM is a fully automated solution for virus definitions distribution and is enabled by default between servers and their managed clients. With the VDTM, it is only necessary to update one server in order to update all computers in the network. The server gets definitions updates using LiveUpdate, the Intelligent Updater, or a .vdb file, and then automatically distributes the definitions to each of its clients on the network. Read the document How to use Virus Definitions Transport Method (VDTM) in Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition 7.x for an overview and instructions.

LiveUpdate is a program that connects to a designated server, downloads the latest definitions, and applies the definitions to the computer on which it is running. You can run LiveUpdate from the Symantec System Center Console or from the Norton AntiVirus interface. LiveUpdate can retrieve definitions files either from the Symantec server (which it does by default) or from an internal Web, FTP, or file server created with the LiveUpdate Administration Utility.

Note: LiveUpdate is not available with Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition 6.x.

To run LiveUpdate from the Symantec System Center Console
  1. Right-click the primary server, point to All Tasks, point to Norton AntiVirus, and then click Virus Definition Manager.
  2. Click Configure.
  3. Click Update Now.
  4. LiveUpdate is now running silently in the background on the primary server.
To run LiveUpdate from the Norton AntiVirus interface
  1. Open Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition.
  2. Click LiveUpdate.
  3. Follow the on-screen prompts to download the latest definitions.

Scheduling LiveUpdate
You can schedule LiveUpdate to run periodically either from the Virus Definition Manager in Symantec System Center, or by clicking File and then Schedule Updates from within Norton AntiVirus.

The LiveUpdate Administration Utility
On very large or widely distributed networks, it may be desirable to create an internal server and have clients use LiveUpdate to retrieve updates from that server, rather than using the VDTM. For information on determining whether the LiveUpdate Administration Utility is necessary, and instructions for its implementation, read the document How to configure the LiveUpdate Administration Utility.

Intelligent Updater
The Intelligent Updater file is an executable file that you can use to update virus definitions. If you are updating Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition for Windows 95/98 or Windows NT, you can run the Intelligent Updater file to update the virus definitions on your local computer. If you are updating Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition for NetWare, then you must extract a .vdb (Virus Database) file from the Intelligent Updater file (or files) and copy it to the Norton AntiVirus directory on the NetWare server. You can skip the extraction process by downloading the .vdb file directly from Symantec, as described in the "Copy a .vdb file" section of this document.

To download the Intelligent Updater from a Symantec server
  1. Go to the static folder on the Symantec FTP server.
  2. Download the Symdefsx86.exe file.
  3. Double-click the Symdefsx86.exe file to update virus definitions on the local computer.

Automatically updating definitions using the Intelligent Updater
There is a batch file that you can schedule to automatically download the Intelligent Updater and use it to update a server. For more information, read the document How to automatically update Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition definitions without using LiveUpdate.

Copy a .vdb file
A .vdb file is a package of virus definitions that the VDTM uses to distribute definitions. You can copy a .vdb file from a Norton AntiVirus server, or download one from the Symantec FTP server, and place it on any Norton AntiVirus server or client to update the virus definitions manually. Norton AntiVirus scans certain locations every few minutes for .vdb files, and incorporates the virus definitions from the .vdb file when it finds one. On clients, Norton AntiVirus then deletes the .vdb file.

The location in which to place the .vdb file depends on the version, the operating system, and whether the computer is a Norton AntiVirus server or client:

VersionTypeOperating systemPlace the file in:
6.x, 7.xServerNovell NetWareSys:Nav
6.x, 7.xServerWindows NT/2000/XPC:\Program Files\Nav
6.x, 7.0xClientWindows 9xC:\Program Files\Norton AntiVirus
6.x, 7.0xClientWindows NT/2000C:\Program Files\NAVNT
7.5x, 7.6xClientWindows NTC:\Winnt\Profiles\All Users\Application Data\Symantec\Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition\7.5
7.5x, 7.6xClientWindows 2000/XPC:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Symantec\Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition\7.5
    How to locate a .vdb file on a Norton AntiVirus server
    Norton AntiVirus servers have one or more .vdb files in the NAV folder. The last modified date of the .vdb file corresponds to the date of the virus definitions.

    To download a .vdb file from a Symantec server
    1. Go to the vdb folder on the Symantec FTP server.
    2. Download the file with the newest date by clicking the file and selecting "Save to disk" from the dialog box.
    3. If the .vdb file downloads with a .zip extension, rename the file to remove the .zip extension.
      The file name should be similar to the following: vd12bc02.vdb
    4. Copy the .vdb file to the correct folder on the computer that you plan to update.

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