ITS Documentation

Install Sophos Anti-Virus for Mac OS X

S4366 • November 2013

ITS strongly recommends that you protect yourself from malware by installing the U-M-licensed Sophos Anti-Virus. Sophos Anti-Virus protects against viruses, worms, and other software attacks.

Sophos AV UM 9

Due to changes in Sophos's strategic direction, we can no longer pre-configure preferences, with the notable exception of the auto-update credentials. We are working with developers at Sophos to rectify this and hope that we will have full control over the installer package's preferences in a later revision.

The following document is a guide to the UM recommended preferences. Please read this document before deploying Sophos AV UM 9.05. The document is also available from the Info pane next to the Sophos AV UM download at the Blue Disc site.

New features include Live Protection and Web Protection. Live Protection delivers up-to-date threat protection by using the Sophos Lookup service to update Sophos AV in real-time. Web Protection blocks access to malicious web sites in real time. Users can white-list sites by using the Allowed Sites feature in preferences. For assistance with Sophos Anti-Virus UM 9.05, please contact the ITS Service Center at (734) 764-HELP or

Table of Contents

Who Can Install

Sophos Anti-Virus is available to all University of Michigan Faculty and Staff for use on university-owned computers only. Students, faculty and staff seeking anti-virus software for their personally-owned Apple MacIntosh computers can download Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition.  For more information, visit the ITS Safe Computing web site at

System Requirements

  • Operating system 
    Mac OS X 10.6/10.7/10.8/10.10
  • Hardware 
    Intel-based Macs (32-bit and 64-bit)
    PowerPC-based Macs
  • Disk space 
    150 MB free
  • Memory 
    512 MB
  • Internet Connection. We recommend a high-speed connection for best results.

What Sophos Anti-Virus Does

Virus checks. Sophos automatically checks for viruses whenever you open and close files, start applications, and take other actions on your Mac.

  • If Sophos determines that a file is infected, it will attempt to disinfect the file.

  • If it cannot, Sophos will move the file to a special folder.

Regular updates. Sophos Anti-Virus keeps itself current by checking hourly for new updates whenever your computer is connected to the Internet. It installs updates as they become available. This happens in the background and does not interfere with your use of your computer.

Before Installing

Please read this document before deploying Sophos AV UM 9.05.

NOTE: If you have a previous version of Sophos, new versions download automatically during updates. To run a manual update, from the Sophos menu, click Update Now.

  1. From the Blue Disc Web site download the Sophos Anti-Virus U-M installer. If you need assistance, refer to Appendix A: Download the U-M Installer.

  2. For added protection, disconnect your computer from the Internet before proceeding with the installation. Disconnecting minimizes your exposure to hostile code.

  3. IMPORTANT! To prevent conflicts, uninstall any existing anti-virus software. This includes earlier versions of Sophos Anti-Virus. Refer to Appendix B: How to Uninstall Sophos Anti-Virus. For non-Sophos anti-virus software, check the vendor's web site.

Installing Sophos Anti-Virus

REMINDER! To prevent conflicts, uninstall any existing anti-virus software before installing Sophos Anti-Virus. This includes earlier versions of Sophos Anti-Virus. Refer to Appendix B: How to Uninstall Sophos Anti-Virus. For non-Sophos anti-virus software, check the vendor's web site.

  1. If the installer did not automatically open after downloading, double-click the Sophos_Anti-Virus_U-M.dmg icon. It is located on your Desktop or in the Downloads folder.

    Sophos_Anti-Virus_U-M.dmg icon

  2. In the Sophos Anti-Virus U-M window, double-click the Sophos Anti-Virus.mpkg icon.


  3. In the Install Sophos Anti-Virus window:

    1. Click Open in the cautionary dialog box.


    2. In the Welcome to the Sophos Anti-Virus Installer window, click Continue.


    3. Follow the remaining prompts to install the software.

  4. After the installation is complete, you can safely move both the Sophos Anti-Virus U-M installer and the Sophos_Anti-Virus_U-M.dmg icons to the Trash. Also, be sure to eject any CD or DVD from your CD/DVD drive before launching Sophos.

    Both icons to send to Trash

Keeping Sophos Up-To-Date

Immediately after installation, run Sophos's Update Now to get the most recent version of the Sophos program and its virus definitions. The first time you run it, Update Now may take several minutes, depending on your Internet connection.

  1. If you disconnected your computer from the Internet while installing Sophos, reconnect it now.

  2. Click the Sophos icon in the menu bar and then click Scan This Mac.
    NOTE: If you see Cancel Update instead of Update Now, Sophos is already updating.


  3. Whenever you select Scan This Mac, the Sophos AutoUpdate Status window provides updating information.

    Sophos AutoUpdate Status window

AUTO-UPDATING: Restarting your Mac will configure Auto-Update. Whenever your Mac is connected to the Internet, Sophos checks for updates every hour and automatically installs an update when it finds one. It does this in the background, so it doesn't interfere with your work. Sophos Icon (Sophos Icon when downloading)

Sophos icon showing an X

However, if you see an X within the Sophos icon, something caused an auto-update to fail. Usually the cause is a temporary glitch in your Internet connection. You can wait for the next AutoUpdate or choose to run Update Now.

Scan Your Computer for Viruses

After installing Sophos Anti-Virus, we recommend that you scan your computer for viruses.


  • If possible, disconnect from any networked drives.

  • Eject all CDs and DVDs.

  • Clear your web browser's cache. Safari users, under the Safari menu, click Empty Cache.

  • Empty your Mac's Trash.

This first scan may take several hours, depending on the number of files and applications on your Mac, but you can use your computer while the scan is in progress. You only need to perform this manual scan once; after that, Sophos will regularly scan your computer and attached hard drives and other media.

  1. Under the Sophos menu bar, select Open Scans.


  2. To scan your Mac and any attached hard drives or other writable storage devices — for example, a USB flash drive — click Scan Now.

    .Sophos Menu

    HINT: If your computer is connected to any network servers, they will appear in the list of items to be scanned. Be sure to deselect them so they don't get scanned.

    ABOUT ERRORS: Sophos Anti-Virus cannot scan all files. For example, it cannot open private files, and it cannot scan encrypted files. It may report these as errors. You can ignore these error messages. For example, some Microsoft Office application files are encrypted, and Sophos returns error messages such as this when it tries to scan them:

    HAVE A PROBLEM OR QUESTION? Please submit a Service Request to the ITS Service Center.

  3. When the scan is complete, Sophos will report if it found any threats. From the Scan menu, select View Scan Log to see more detail.

    If Sophos detects a virus on your computer, choose to quarantine or delete the affected files.  If you are unsure about how to proceed, call the ITS Service Center at 734-764-HELP [734-764-4357] or submit a Service Request to the ITS Service Center

Check Periodically to Verify that Sophos is AutoUpdating

IMPORTANT! AutoUpdate can only function when your computer is connected to the Internet.

If Sophos Anti-Virus is unable to complete a update using either Update Now or its regular hourly update, an X will appear inside the Sophos menu bar icon.

Sophos icon when update has failed.

In most cases, failure to update is caused by a temporary glitch in your network connection. Try running Update Now. If the problem was a brief network interruption, the update will likely work the next time you try it.

Additional tips for getting Sophos AutoUpdate to work are:

  • Check your firewall. If your firewall is blocking Port 80, AutoUpdate will not be able to run. You can, however, run Update Now.

  • Make sure your computer's clock is set to the correct time. If not, it may be out of synchronization with the clock on the Sophos server.

  • Restart your computer and run Update Now.

Additional Resources

To access the Sophos Anti-Virus built-in Help:

  1. Click the Sophos icon in the menu bar.

  2. From the menu, click Open Sophos Anti-Virus.

  3. In the Help box, enter a search term or click Sophos Anti-Virus Help.

Visit ITS's Information System to obtain ITS computer documentation and other resources.

The ITS Service Center provides a variety of computing help resources.

For further help with this or any other topic, call 734-764-HELP [4357] or submit an online service request.

Appendix A: Download the U-M Sophos Installer

  1. Visit the Blue Disc web site.

  2. From the list in the orange section, select your operating system.

  3. If you're asked to login, use your uniqname and UMICH Kerberos password.

  4. In the list of software, click Download to the right of Sophos Anti-Virus UM.

    Blue Disc Site

  5. After clicking Download:

    • If you are asked if you want to open the file or save it to your computer, select Save.

    • You may be notified that the file being downloaded contains an application and asked if you want to continue downloading. If this case, select Continue.

  6. The Sophos_Anti-Virus_U-M.dmg file will download to your Desktop or to your Downloads folder.

    The Sophos_Anti-Virus_U-M.dmg file icon.


Appendix B: How to Uninstall Sophos Anti-Virus

NOTE: This will remove Sophos even though the window and final button are named Install.

  1. Navigate to the Sophos uninstaller. On your hard drive, open the Library folder, and then the Sophos Anti-Virus folder. The uninstaller is called Remove Sophos Anti-Virus.pkg.


  2. Double-click the Remove Sophos Anti-Virus.pkg file.

  3. In the install window for the Uninstaller, click Continue.

    Installer window for the Uninstaller

  4. In the Select a Destination window, make sure the drive on which Sophos is installed is selected. Then click Continue.

  5. In the Easy Install window, click Install.

    Easy Install window

  6. At the prompt for your password, use your Mac user name and password — the ones you use to you install any software on your Mac.

    Name and password prompt dialog box

  7. When the uninstall has successfully completed, you'll receive a confirmation message. Sophos has been removed your computer, and you can safely install a later version.

    Install Succeeded message

  8. Proceed to Installing Sophos Anti-Virus.