Say I have a file scan and after it has complete we want to display the files infected vs non. How could I go about representing this without the data seeming so minuscule within large file quantities?

i.e. 10k files and 1 was found to be infected.

Here's an example on a smaller scale:

enter image description here

  • Why would you not want to show it as a small point? Because it is a small percentage, after all, so the visuals are accurate. Or to rephrase; why do you want to show it larger or more prominently? I have some ideas, but I'm not entirely sure it's necessary to do what you want to do. Aug 31, 2017 at 15:33
  • Well, in the context of 10k to 1, that's insanely small and almost not visible at all. I'm curious if this doesn't represent the bar in a meaningful way?
    Aug 31, 2017 at 15:34
  • You're right, it's almost invisibly small, but so is the actual percentage. Do you perhaps want to just show the amount of infections? Or the magnitude? Or compared to the average? Or? Or? It seems like you're focusing more on the (currently used) tool, than on what you really want to convey. Aug 31, 2017 at 15:37

3 Answers 3


I'm not sure I understand your question, but could you just spell it out?


Please correct me if I misunderstood what you're asking.


I would suggest separating the infected files UI from the progress UI.


download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups


Unless there's a reason why the percentage of files that are infected matter, it is likely that what users care about the most is that there are infected files (and what they can do about it).

Total number of files is often just used as a proxy for how long the scan will take. Depending on your user groups, it's likely that users don't care (and have no real concept) about 10k vs 100k files, but they understand that having infected files is potentially bad. 1/10 or 1/10,000 isn't the issue, the issue is the 1 infected file. Your interface could indicate how many files are infected, and the list of infected files, and hopefully, what can be done about them. It's unclear why the total number of files matters aside from showing progress during the scan.

Think about a bushel of apples: if you have a rotten apple, you want to be able to identify it and deal with it because it is going to cause you grief. All of the other apples are just apples. How many you have just determines how long it's going to take you to sort through and find out if you have any rotten ones.

Avast as an example

Avast during scan:

enter image description here

Avast report after scan:

enter image description here

Unfortunately (fortunately?) I don't have any infected files, but as you can see, when there are issues, they clearly show me where the issues are. As users progress through the interface, Avast explains the issues one at a time and offers solutions.

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