Bioactive glasses (BAGs) have been studied for decades for clinical use, and they have found many dental and orthopedic applications. BAGs have also been shown to have an antibacterial effect e.g., on some oral microorganisms. In this extensive work we show that six powdered BAGs and two sol–gel derived materials have a clear antibacterial effect on 29 clinically important bacterial species. We also incorporated a rapid and accurate flow cytometric (FCM) method to calculate and standardize the numbers of viable bacteria inoculated in the suspensions used in the tests for antibacterial activity. In all materials tested growth inhibition could be demonstrated, although the concentration and time needed for the effect varied depending on the BAG. The most effective glass was S53P4, which had a clear growth-inhibitory effect on all pathogens tested. The sol–gel derived materials CaPSiO and CaPSiO II also showed a strong antibacterial effect. In summary, BAGs were found to clearly inhibit the growth of a wide selection of bacterial species causing e.g., infections on the surfaces of prostheses in the body after implantation.