anti virus software etc

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by john2006wright, Jul 8, 2007.

  1. john2006wright macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    I'm about to switch from PC to mac and I've been told that I wont need to download any anti virus software, firewalls etc. Is this the whole story? Does OS X have a firewall? I've 'heard' that a mac is not affected by viruses but does carry them and you can pass these on to your PC friends? I was hoping to get the whole story from you guys rather than the blurb from the mac vs PC adverts.

    thanks in advance
     
  2. iBookG4user macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #2
    Mac OS X has a great built-in firewall, yes. And it is true, you will get no viruses whatsoever on a Mac, so you don't need anti-virus software at all :).
     
  3. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #3
    Mac's aren't completely isolated from virus's - although the last major threat to OSX was actually a hoax.

    OSX has its own built-in Firewall. You can access this by going to System Preferences --> Sharing --> Firewall. It is turned off by default I think. If you are behind a router then having the firewall on isn't necessary, since the router will have its own firewall.

    Turning the firewall on is good if you are going to be in an open-network etc.
     
  4. john2006wright thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    sounds great! what about adware and such things when you download free software. I'll be running Firefox which usually gives good warnings.
     
  5. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2006
    Location:
    The Land of Hope and Glory
    #5
    Apple Macs can be hosts to PC viruses though. They will not be affected by them but they can pass them on to PC users if you give them an infected file. If you transfer files to PCs a lot (work for instance) then an anti-virus program maybe a good idea.
     
  6. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #6
    That is a problem for the PC not the Mac, so let the PC user deal with it. They should have all the anti-virus crap to stop their system getting infected.

    But yes, you could send a file to a PC user containing a virus without knowing it. Since .exe files can't be run on the Mac, if you open a document containing a hidden file, the .exe file won't be triggered (since .exe is a Windows only format).

    I'd let PC users worry about virus's. I find that Virus Scanners tend to really chuck crap around the computer, but I haven't had any experience with a Mac virus scanner.

    I guess it would be handy to have a little tool that wasn't anything on the amount of system usage that Norton uses, to quickly scan a file.
     
  7. john2006wright thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #7

    i have to use a pc at work and will be transferring files back and forth. what if i bring a virus from my pc at work? I use a free download of avg on my pc at home and so far so good. Could I use this on my mac? I'd rather be safe than sorry.

    Thanks for your advice
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #8
    Spyware/adware/malware is relatively rare in OS X. I don't know of any major examples, and I have never run into any, although there might be some out there somewhere. There's a thread on MR somewhere where a number of us ran MacScan, which is purportedly a spyware hunter, and it didn't find anything worrisome on anyone's Mac. So it's pretty much a non-issue also.
     
  9. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #9
    As I've already said, I think it is best to leave your PC to be the virus scanner. If you are transferring files back and fourth, then a document will never catch a virus if you are using it on your Mac. So any document you make with your PC and transfer to your Mac, you can transfer back to your PC without having to worry about scanning it for virus's.

    If you download a file on your Mac and transfer it to your PC, scan it for virus's using the PC scanner. Let your Mac be a Mac and let your PC worry about the virus's.
     

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