Virtual PC - Firewall, Virus Protection

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by grrr223, Jan 2, 2004.

  1. grrr223 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2002
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    #1
    I use Virtual PC to connect to my company's network using Terminal Server. They have a policy of requiring anyone accessing their network to have both a firewall and virus software installed on their sytems.

    What recommendations would the user's here have of what is necessary to satisfy this requirement?

    Firewall
    I will be soon turning on the firewall in Panther, so is there any reason then to use any sort of firewall within Virtual PC or would it be pointless?

    Virus Protection
    At the moment I don't really use any anti-virus software, but I guess I could install whatever .mac comes with. But would that be necessary or even help protect Virtual PC? Or do I need to install something on the windows side too? And should installing it in windows satisfy my company so I don't need to worrry about installing it on my mac?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #2
    The OS X firewall will protect your VPC installation too.

    Anti-virus on the other hand, needs to be installed on Windows, inside VPC. You won't need a separate AV app under OS X though, as the Windows virii cannot escape out into your Mac filesystem.

    Edit: If you're connecting to Terminal Server, you might be better off using Remote Desktop.
     
  3. yamabushi macrumors 65816

    yamabushi

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    #3
    Adding antivirus software to OSX isn't a bad idea at all. It would help to prevent the spread of viruses to other computers, even though your own computer is unlikely to be affected by malicious code.
     
  4. grrr223 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2002
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    #4
    Thanks folks.

    Nermel, I would love to use the Mac native Remote Desktop, and I do when I am in the office, it's performance is very impressive. However, I have been unable to get through our firewall with any Mac native applications (Vaporsec, VPNTracker, etc...)

    Fortunately, the performance of Terminal Server within Virtual PC isn't much worse than using the mac version. Because Virtual PC is simply displaying graphics and sending keyboard and mouse information, it runs MANY times faster than using Windows XP on my computer.

    Actually, it may even be faster than my 3 year old desktop at work. :)
     
  5. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #5
    I wouldn't buy antivirus for a VPC install. AVG is good and it's free. www.grisoft.com

    Your OS X firewalll will cover VPC.
     
  6. yamabushi macrumors 65816

    yamabushi

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    #6
    Actually I kind of hope that some kind of antivirus utility makes it's way into OSX10.4.0. You could get an old virus definition set for free with the OS and regular updates included with a .mac membership. Apple could just buy the definitions as a service from Symantec or Network Associates. Not really crucial for most Mac users now, but it would be nice to have as insurance against future attacks via new virii, worms, or trojans.
     
  7. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #7
    You get Virex with .Mac and considering there are no known viruses for OS X it's probably good enough.

    Not that there can't or won't be any in the future, but right now it's something to be proud and smug about.
     
  8. grrr223 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2002
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    #8
    My computer is about as dirty as someone standing on the street corner in the red light district as far as all of the random stuff that has been downloaded it while I was in college. When I got .mac, I figured, hey, what the heck, i'll install virex, it's free, and it's the "responsible" thing to do. Well, despite ungodly amounts of files, there was not a single virus on my computer. So, I uninstalled it and haven't looked back.

    I really don't want to have to install anti-virus software on my mac, i honestly don't think it's worth the overhead. But it looks like I will be turning on the Firewall in Panther and installing anti-virus software within virtual pc. My company has licenses for whatever software we use there, so I don't need to anything.

    Well, thanks everyone, you've all been very helpful.
     
  9. yamabushi macrumors 65816

    yamabushi

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    #9
    Well the processor and memory overhead is part of why I think it would be better to integrate it into OSX entirely. You could then turn it on and off whenever you wanted. An integrated solution would also probably be a bit more resource efficient and secure.

    Most importantly it would always be there if you need it. It isn't a good idea to install antivirus software after you get a virus and most Mac users won't install it beforehand. Turning on a system setting to enable an already installed solution is a much better approach to deal with a virus after the fact.

    I know people who live in small towns in the country who still leave their front doors unlocked or even open all the time. They live in a very safe area and so don't expect trouble. Where I live in the suburbs many used to do the same years ago but it isn't safe to do so now.
    My point is that we are enjoying a safe period with OSX but this won't last forever. Why not plan ahead?
     

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