MALDI-TOF-mass spectrometry (MS) has been successfully adapted for the routine identification of microorganisms in clinical microbiology laboratories in the past 10 years. This revolutionary technique allows for easier and faster diagnosis of human pathogens than conventional phenotypic and molecular identification methods, with unquestionable reliability and cost-effectiveness. This article will review the application of MALDI-TOF-MS tools in routine clinical diagnosis, including the identification of bacteria at the species, subspecies, strain and lineage levels, and the identification of bacterial toxins and antibiotic-resistance type. We will also discuss the application of MALDI-TOF-MS tools in the identification of Archaea, eukaryotes and viruses. Pathogenic identification from colony-cultured, blood-cultured, urine and environmental samples is also reviewed.