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Tamer Brad
Oct 31, 2005, 03:55 PM
http://www.macintouch.com/opener02.html

I was arguing with someone that OS X has no viruses, and they brought this up ... I am not much of a computer guy so I'm not really sure how to respond to this. Help?

mjstew33
Oct 31, 2005, 03:58 PM
Tell him that there is no argument. It is a fact that Mac OS X doesn't have any viruses.


;)

DaftUnion
Oct 31, 2005, 04:16 PM
Lol, it's malicious software...NOT a virus. There are no viruses for OS X period.

crazyeyes
Oct 31, 2005, 11:17 PM
Actually to let you guys know viruses do exist for OS X my uncle runs a couple of networks and one of them is all Macs running OS X server and he said they got shut down once already due to a virus. So there ARE viruses for OS X just not alot and not easy to get.

risc
Oct 31, 2005, 11:42 PM
Actually to let you guys know viruses do exist for OS X my uncle runs a couple of networks and one of them is all Macs running OS X server and he said they got shut down once already due to a virus. So there ARE viruses for OS X just not alot and not easy to get.

Wow your Uncle knows something the rest of the Mac community doesn't? :rolleyes:

Josh396
Oct 31, 2005, 11:44 PM
Wow your Uncle knows something the rest of the Mac community doesn't? :rolleyes:
I'll believe it when I see it. Microsoft would absolutely love to see a Virus written for OS X.

Heb1228
Oct 31, 2005, 11:45 PM
Actually to let you guys know viruses do exist for OS X my uncle runs a couple of networks and one of them is all Macs running OS X server and he said they got shut down once already due to a virus. So there ARE viruses for OS X just not alot and not easy to get.
Ummm no.

slooksterPSV
Oct 31, 2005, 11:48 PM
Here is how Mac OS X can't have viruses:
In a version of Mac OS X, I think it was Jaguar, there were some things in some places that aren't there anymore, they are in different places. Also, Mac OS X is very very very difficult to take over. Everything isn't tied into one item like in Windows. Windows is all tied into the KERNEL.DLL file, on Mac OS X, each component is tied to something else. It makes the connections wherease in Windoze all the connections come out of one place. E.G.
A connects B and C and D and E - Windows
A connects to C. C connects to B. B Connects to D. D Connects to E. E connects to A. - Mac OS X

Somewhat kind of like that.

Kingsly
Nov 1, 2005, 12:03 AM
I heard that OSX can only get a virus if
1) The user physically clicks the malicious file
2) Answers yes to the multiple "are you sure" boxes
3) Enters his/her password
then and only THEN can OSX contract a virus capible of doing more than making iTunes randomly skip a song (or something meaningless like that) until the user restarts. Then the "virus" goes away.
On the other hand, when one logs on to the internet (a feat in itself) on a windows PC the computer begins downloading and installing all kinds of spyware and viruses without asking and ends up screwing itself up. Yay!
Go hackers! Destroy PC civilization as we know it, paving the way for a glorious mac revolution!

paulypants
Nov 1, 2005, 12:04 AM
Actually to let you guys know viruses do exist for OS X my uncle runs a couple of networks and one of them is all Macs running OS X server and he said they got shut down once already due to a virus. So there ARE viruses for OS X just not alot and not easy to get.

Let's seeee, how do I put this...uummm, NO.

DrNeroCF
Nov 1, 2005, 12:40 AM
Unless you're running in root mode, you'd kinda have to enter your password for it to access anything important...

ShiggyMiyamoto
Nov 1, 2005, 09:29 AM
What a n00b... LOL

Dagless
Nov 1, 2005, 10:03 AM
the world makes me laugh!

Some say there is a virus for OSX. its called WoW. but it affects the player too :eek: and the lives of people around them

Sic
Nov 1, 2005, 10:29 AM
Some say there is a virus for OSX. its called WoW. but it affects the player too :eek: and the lives of people around them

i've heard you can get that for PC too....it sounds nasty :(;)

XNine
Nov 1, 2005, 10:41 AM
Wow, so many "i heard" and "my uncle" and misconceptions about.

Let's run through this real quick:
OS X DOES NOT, and probably WILL NOT, have any viruses on it, ever.

Why?

Well, let's take a look:
1. OS is not built around web applications like Windows is, where it's built ONTOP of (not only DOS, but) Internet Explorer. Everything is an extension of explorer.

2. To make any system level changes, even when in an Admin account, you HAVE TO enter your name and password. Windows does not ask for this, which is why so much crap gets there.

3. If you download an application, even in the background, OS X will ask if you want to launch this app for the first time. Right there, is another security check.

4. The malware out for OS X comes in disk images and packages that pose as REAL applications, or cracks/hacks for those applications. Generally made of applescripts that, again, when trying to run, need your ADMIN password to change things. If you have a funny feeling about something, then do go through with it.

5. These items cannot self-propogate either. So, in short, your uncle, or what you've heard is flat out WRONG. It is fact that they are wrong, and until the day soeme uber hacker can figure out a way past having to get the admion's password to install it, change system level functions, slap a trojan in the Startup items folder, and get past LITTLE SNITCH (if you don't have this app, shame on you!), then we're in the clear.

edit: I hear the WOW virus ruins lives, not just hard drives. :D

p0intblank
Nov 1, 2005, 10:50 AM
I thought I've read there are a few viruses out there for the Mac, but it is by a very rare chance that you'll ever even hear about one. I'm most likely wrong since I heard this a while ago and my facts may be a little out of place... :p

slooksterPSV
Nov 1, 2005, 04:35 PM
I thought I've read there are a few viruses out there for the Mac, but it is by a very rare chance that you'll ever even hear about one. I'm most likely wrong since I heard this a while ago and my facts may be a little out of place... :p
There will always be a Virus for any OS more than likely, but how the virus propagates into your system is different. OS X is just built right to now allow viruses. It's an un needed program to have anti-virus. With Windows the Registry is the key. Its a major part of Windows, and if they get rid of it with Vista (which they are having trouble with in the first place) then support for previous apps is anywhere from 5% to 0%. Everything uses the Registry in Windows.

Mac OS X now, it uses XML files - very smart - very good way to go about it.

p0intblank
Nov 1, 2005, 04:48 PM
Does anyone know if Microsoft is dropping the use of Internet Explorer (technically Explorer...) for browsing your computer, folders, files, etc? If not, then they are just making a big mistake. It's too bad that so many people use IE and have no idea of the circumstances. :(

jeremy.king
Nov 1, 2005, 05:21 PM
Does anyone know if Microsoft is dropping the use of Internet Explorer (technically Explorer...) for browsing your computer, folders, files, etc? If not, then they are just making a big mistake. It's too bad that so many people use IE and have no idea of the circumstances. :(

I thought they were two different programs that were just tightly integrated :confused: One is called explore.exe and the other iexplore.exe :confused:

jaduffy108
Nov 1, 2005, 05:46 PM
Here is how Mac OS X can't have viruses:
In a version of Mac OS X, I think it was Jaguar, there were some things in some places that aren't there anymore, they are in different places. Also, Mac OS X is very very very difficult to take over. Everything isn't tied into one item like in Windows. Windows is all tied into the KERNEL.DLL file, on Mac OS X, each component is tied to something else. It makes the connections wherease in Windoze all the connections come out of one place. E.G.
A connects B and C and D and E - Windows
A connects to C. C connects to B. B Connects to D. D Connects to E. E connects to A. - Mac OS X

Somewhat kind of like that.

>>>First... to original poster...if you say OSX can not be infected with a virus..you would be lying. Period. And will eventually look very foolish. The rest is up to you.

Now...this..."some things in some places that aren't there anymore, they are in different places." etc, etc, etc, etc, etc...and the rest of this meaningless babble. FUD. FUD. FUD.. Geez! Slookster...please stop drinking the Apple koolaid. Wery, wery bad.

jaduffy108
Nov 1, 2005, 05:53 PM
Wow, so many "i heard" and "my uncle" and misconceptions about.

Let's run through this real quick:
OS X DOES NOT, and probably WILL NOT, have any viruses on it, ever.

Why?

Well, let's take a look:
1. OS is not built around web applications like Windows is, where it's built ONTOP of (not only DOS, but) Internet Explorer. Everything is an extension of explorer.

2. To make any system level changes, even when in an Admin account, you HAVE TO enter your name and password. Windows does not ask for this, which is why so much crap gets there.

3. If you download an application, even in the background, OS X will ask if you want to launch this app for the first time. Right there, is another security check.

4. The malware out for OS X comes in disk images and packages that pose as REAL applications, or cracks/hacks for those applications. Generally made of applescripts that, again, when trying to run, need your ADMIN password to change things. If you have a funny feeling about something, then do go through with it.

5. These items cannot self-propogate either. So, in short, your uncle, or what you've heard is flat out WRONG. It is fact that they are wrong, and until the day soeme uber hacker can figure out a way past having to get the admion's password to install it, change system level functions, slap a trojan in the Startup items folder, and get past LITTLE SNITCH (if you don't have this app, shame on you!), then we're in the clear.

edit: I hear the WOW virus ruins lives, not just hard drives. :D


Adamance does not make up for substance. Actually..why am i bothering? At least you're right about "Little Snitch"..but that begs the question..why do you need it? Why do you use it?...

slooksterPSV
Nov 1, 2005, 06:28 PM
>>>First... to original poster...if you say OSX can not be infected with a virus..you would be lying. Period. And will eventually look very foolish. The rest is up to you.

Now...this..."some things in some places that aren't there anymore, they are in different places." etc, etc, etc, etc, etc...and the rest of this meaningless babble. FUD. FUD. FUD.. Geez! Slookster...please stop drinking the Apple koolaid. Wery, wery bad.
I said that because when I did the cloning, the image had to check the software version to put files in one place over another. It was something that was in Library - I'll have to look when I make another image tomorrow.

Kobaiyashi
Nov 1, 2005, 06:31 PM
Hey all,

Don't know much about programming and what not but was wondering if apple's intel switch would render its os vulnerable to viruses? Do the safeguards of OSX (mentioned above) apply even though future versions of the operating system will be able to run/emulate(?) windows software?

Thanks,

Peter

grapes911
Nov 1, 2005, 06:37 PM
Hey all,

Don't know much about programming and what not but was wondering if apple's intel switch would render its os vulnerable to viruses? Do the safeguards of OSX (mentioned above) apply even though future versions of the operating system will be able to run/emulate(?) windows software?

Thanks,

Peter
Viruses usually attack an OS, not hardware. So it won't make a difference. Linux for instance is That being said, there are things such as BIOS viruses that can attack the software on your motherboard. Right now Macs don't have BIOS, but they most likely will after the switch.

redeye be
Nov 1, 2005, 07:46 PM
Viruses usually attack an OS, not hardware. So it won't make a difference. Linux for instance is That being said, there are things such as BIOS viruses that can attack the software on your motherboard. Right now Macs don't have BIOS, but they most likely will after the switch.
Isn't Open Firmware supposed to be the alternative for BIOS, and wouldn't apple want to continue using it (sorry for getting a little off topic here)?

Cheers

grapes911
Nov 1, 2005, 07:53 PM
Isn't Open Firmware supposed to be the alternative for BIOS, and wouldn't apple want to continue using it (sorry for getting a little off topic here)?

Cheers
You'd think so. I personally think Open Firmware is much better than BIOS. They'll have to pretty much rewrite from the ground up though. The rumor is that they will use BIOS with some type of control chip to validate OS X (The chip must be there so you can use OS X. This keeps you from running OS X on any PC). There is a lot of info on this in the forums.

g0gie
Nov 1, 2005, 08:06 PM
To settle this -

There ARE viruses for Mac OSX, but NONE of them are even remotley widespread. For example, I could write a virus for OSX quite easily, as could many other security professionals. Granted, its much harder to write a virus, trojans, ect ect for OSX than it is for something say... Windows... but no OS is 100% secure and none probably will be (at least in our lifetime). The fact that we as apple users can boast about, is the fact that there are no widespread viruses and because of that fact, as well as a few other factors- the chance of getting a virus is next to nil. Even today apple computers running OSX have a less than 5% market share and to have a virus progating and becoming a widespread issue is remote in this day and age. This doesnt even take into account that people dont target apple users because they are such a minority. But remember, no OS is perfect from a security standpoint, to say that no virus exists, or will exit for the OSX platform is jus ignorant

grapes911
Nov 1, 2005, 08:13 PM
There ARE viruses for Mac OSX Name one.

For example, I could write a virus for OSX quite easily, as could many other security professionals. No you couldn't. That's why they were thinking of having a contest of who could write one. Because there aren't any and it will be very hard to write one. No impossible, but very hard.

savar
Nov 1, 2005, 08:34 PM
Viruses usually attack an OS, not hardware. So it won't make a difference. Linux for instance is That being said, there are things such as BIOS viruses that can attack the software on your motherboard. Right now Macs don't have BIOS, but they most likely will after the switch.

True, well-designed hardware should be immune to viruses. (There were old hard drives, on the other hand, that could be ruined because if sent bogus commands they would try to seek a sector that doesn't exist and screw up the drive head.)

But Windows could wipe out an OS X partition if Windows has the right filesystem drivers, because Windows won't care about OS X's permissions. (AFAIK, however, Windows does not have drivers for reading HFS/UFS type file systems.) Just like if you boot a PPC in OS 9 you can delete all the OS X files because OS 9 doesn't respect those permissions.

Hopefully, it will be easy to run Windows in a "sandbox", kind of like how VPC runs Windows now. Then if you get a Windows virus, the worst it can do is wipe out your Windows drive image.

Isn't Open Firmware supposed to be the alternative for BIOS, and wouldn't apple want to continue using it (sorry for getting a little off topic here)?

OF is indeed an alternative, but its not clear yet if Apple will use it on the Mactels. It's more advanced, but I there might be compatibility issues. For consistency across the two platforms, Apple might go to extra lengths to make it work.

grapes911
Nov 1, 2005, 08:41 PM
But Windows could wipe out an OS X partition if Windows has the right filesystem drivers, because Windows won't care about OS X's permissions. (AFAIK, however, Windows does not have drivers for reading HFS/UFS type file systems.) Just like if you boot a PPC in OS 9 you can delete all the OS X files because OS 9 doesn't respect those permissions.

Hopefully, it will be easy to run Windows in a "sandbox", kind of like how VPC runs Windows now. Then if you get a Windows virus, the worst it can do is wipe out your Windows drive image.
Personally, I wouldn't run windows on a Mac. I don't trust windows enough. And run it like Virtual PC does? Do you mean emulate the environment? I'm sure VPC will come out for OS X on the Intel.

PlaceofDis
Nov 1, 2005, 08:50 PM
there ARE proof of concept Trojans for OS X, and possibly one in the wild. but that is not a virus.

there are no self replicated malicious software out there at this point in time for OS X, i doubt it will remain that way forever, and is the reason why Apple doesn't push the virus free OS in their marketing

crazyeyes
Nov 1, 2005, 08:53 PM
You are guys are too big headed to realize that maybe the OS you guys think is virus free actually has a virus. I mean why do you guys have to go around poking fun of people who say something that you DON'T WANT to be TRUE but may ACTUALLY be TRUE. I mean wow big deal there are viruses that can affect OS X i didn't say they are easy to get or as widespread as viruses for windows but they are out there. They DO exist for Mac OS X. The reason being is that Macs are not the normal computers you see in government establishments or banks or the companies that these people writing the viruses want to shut down. Windows machines are running most of the companies that these people are trying to shut down. Now I thought forums are supposed to be a friendly environment and if you guys want to treat people that bring something up that you say is not true and your right and no one can prove you wrong than maybe i should just stop using these forums cause i don't want to be around a place where you can't voice your oppinion w/o being ridicculed and made fun of. Oh and i will try to get a hold of my uncle(verry busy) and see if he knows what the virus was called and what it did. But you guys need to grow up and learn how to treat people.

grapes911
Nov 1, 2005, 09:04 PM
They DO exist for Mac OS X.Name one.

The reason being is that Macs are not the normal computers you see in government establishments or banks or the companies that these people writing the viruses want to shut down. Windows machines are running most of the companies that these people are trying to shut down. While I don't know what they run, I'd guess that they run their own modified versions of Unix. I really don't know though.

Now I thought forums are supposed to be a friendly environment and if you guys want to treat people that bring something up that you say is not true and your right and no one can prove you wrong ...Prove me wrong. I'll listen to any intelligent argument or facts you provide.

than maybe i should just stop using these forums cause i don't want to be around a place where you can't voice your oppinion w/o being ridicculed and made fun of. To each their own.

solvs
Nov 1, 2005, 11:04 PM
Now I thought forums are supposed to be a friendly environment and if you guys want to treat people that bring something up that you say is not true and your right and no one can prove you wrong than maybe i should just stop using these forums cause i don't want to be around a place where you can't voice your oppinion w/o being ridicculed and made fun of.
If anything, I'd say that people here are being too nice. If there is a virus out there, no one seems to know about it. You'd think someone would want to shut us elitist Mac users up. You might want to grow a thicker skin though, because people here do ask questions when others make statements like the ones you have and then get offended when someone says "prove it". At least no one is making fun of your spelling. :p

Even if there is a virus out there, at least we don't have to worry about it spreading too much, which is one of the reasons why viruses are so bad.

Xeem
Nov 1, 2005, 11:37 PM
Even if a lot of the posts on this thread have been... opinionated, I don't think anyone is being ridiculed. No one has actually posted proof of a real virus in this thread yet.

jer2eydevil88
Nov 3, 2005, 02:22 AM
I know what I am about to type is going to get me flamed and some what I am going to say is going to be disproven. Please attempt to remember that I know this and I am no fool yet I felt the need to add something to conversation.


Please tell me every last one of you is not so idealistic and lost that you believe there is "no such thing as a virus" for OS X?

People come on this is 2005 and while OS X is not a primary target of malware creators its certainly not unheard of for it to have its problems.

A lousy google search of mac trojans led me to these links
http://www.sophos.com/virusinfo/analyses/maccowhanda.html

http://macscan.securemac.com/

-- Older from 2004 but about a worm --
http://www.pcworldmalta.com/news/2004/Oct/271.htm

So while you all can see in the first link that its possible for OS X to be duped into getting a virus its hardly as vulnerable as Windows XP which is known for its self replicating problems.

Blue Velvet
Nov 3, 2005, 02:34 AM
... I could write a virus for OSX quite easily...


Now how many times have I heard that one before? You'll be pretty (in)famous so you better get started.

redeye be
Nov 3, 2005, 05:33 AM
...its hardly as vulnerable as Windows XP which is known for its self replicating problems.
And the definition of a virus is that it is self replicating
/flame ;)

grapes911
Nov 3, 2005, 08:24 AM
A lousy google search of mac trojans led me to these links
http://www.sophos.com/virusinfo/analyses/maccowhanda.html

So while you all can see in the first link that its possible for OS X to be duped into getting a virus its hardly as vulnerable as Windows XP which is known for its self replicating problems.
Actually, your posts proves nothing and I'll tell you way. A trojan does not equal a virus.

A trojan is malware that is hidden in something else. Much like the trojan house of mythology. A trojan cannot replicate itself. When you have the trojan, it can effect all different parts of the system. It cannot however embed itself in other files. To get one, some person must physically put it in a file and you must download it. This trojan will not spread to others unless you send it to them.

A virus is also malware, but slightly different. Like a real virus, a computer virus must have a host. The biggest part is that a virus is self-replicating. Meaning that once you get it, it can infect other executables and even send or mail itself to others. Basically, this is why "well written" viruses can spread to so quickly.

There are a few trojans (not many) for OS X. They don't spread too much because of their inability to self-replicate. Again, there are no known viruses for OS X. Symantec is probably the worlds most notable malware experts. You can check their Online Virus Encyclopedia. It lists about 180 known malware if you search for OS X. Not one of them is a virus.

grapes911
Nov 3, 2005, 08:25 AM
Now how many times have I heard that one before? You'll be pretty (in)famous so you better get started.
I'd go with famous. You'd be like those hackers that gets caught and then make huge amounts of money in the computer security field.

BiikeMike
Nov 3, 2005, 10:36 AM
So, if you are running Windoze on virtual PC, can IT get infected? and if it does, will it affect OSX in any way, or just virtual PC?

grapes911
Nov 3, 2005, 10:51 AM
So, if you are running Windoze on virtual PC, can IT get infected? and if it does, will it affect OSX in any way, or just virtual PC?
If you are running Windows via VPC, your Windows installation can get infected. It cannot affect OS X or VPC. It can only affect the virtual Windows installation.

jer2eydevil88
Nov 3, 2005, 11:42 AM
This is pulled off of dictionary.com under the definition of virus.

virus



<security> (By analogy with biological viruses, via SF) A
program or piece of code written by a cracker that "infects"
one or more other programs by embedding a copy of itself in
them, so that they become Trojan horses. When these
programs are executed, the embedded virus is executed too,
thus propagating the "infection". This normally happens
invisibly to the user.

A virus has an "engine" - code that enables it to propagate
and optionally a "payload" - what it does apart from
propagating. It needs a "host" - the particular hardware and
software environment on which it can run and a "trigger" - the
event that starts it running.

Unlike a worm, a virus cannot infect other computers without
assistance. It is propagated by vectors such as humans
trading programs with their friends (see SEX). The virus
may do nothing but propagate itself and then allow the program
to run normally. Usually, however, after propagating silently
for a while, it starts doing things like writing "cute"
messages on the terminal or playing strange tricks with the
display (some viruses include display hacks). Viruses
written by particularly antisocial crackers may do
irreversible damage, like deleting files.

By the 1990s, viruses had become a serious problem, especially
among IBM PC and Macintosh users (the lack of security on
these machines enables viruses to spread easily, even
infecting the operating system). The production of special
antivirus software has become an industry, and a number of
exaggerated media reports have caused outbreaks of near
hysteria among users. Many lusers tend to blame
*everything* that doesn't work as they had expected on virus
attacks. Accordingly, this sense of "virus" has passed into
popular usage where it is often incorrectly used for a worm
or Trojan horse.

See boot virus, phage. Compare back door. See also
Unix conspiracy.

So what I posted is still relevant since a Trojan is a virus its just not a large scale self replicating worm like the kind of virus associated with Windows.

grapes911
Nov 3, 2005, 12:26 PM
This is pulled off of dictionary.com under the definition of virus.



So what I posted is still relevant since a Trojan is a virus its just not a large scale self replicating worm like the kind of virus associated with Windows.
Nope still irrelevant. Yes a virus is normally a Trojan because it hides in another file. A Trojan is not necessarily a virus though.
Example: A couch is furniture. All furniture is not a chair.

From Cisco's website:
Unlike viruses and worms, Trojans do not reproduce by infecting other files nor do they self-replicate. Trojans must spread through user interaction such as opening an e-mail attachment or downloading and running a file from the Internet.http://www.cisco.com/en/US/about/security/intelligence/05_09_Virus-Worm-Diffs.html

I REPEAT: THERE ARE NO KNOWN VIRUSES FOR OS X.

PS. Don't use the word "worm" either. They are an entirely different type of malware.

Dreadnought
Nov 3, 2005, 12:50 PM
I think I had a virus a couple of weeks ago in VPC with windhoze 2000. When I started VPC, VPC asked me a question which I automatically said yes to. Well, it deleted completely my 10 GB windows partition, leaving only a blank partition... So the virus is called VPC 7 and comes standard with VPC 7!