Can Macs get spyware?

anterior

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2005
20
0
ok.. obviously.. with a question like this, I am new to macs. I have had a RevA 20" iMac G5 since last November. I just noticed that it has been running slow lately.. just a little "sticky". It never used to be like that.

When my old windows machine that was a good sign of a virus and/or spyware.

Maybe I should just reboot? (I hardly EVER shut it down).

-B
 

mad jew

Moderator emeritus
Apr 3, 2004
32,191
5
Adelaide, Australia
Nope, they can't get viruses/spyware at this stage.

Hopefully a reboot will speed it up. How much space have you got left on the hard drive though. Hopefully it's more than 8GB. :)
 
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mduser63

macrumors 68040
Nov 9, 2004
3,039
30
Salt Lake City, UT
I sort of noticed my PowerBook doing that the last couple days. I think it's because I was leaving Photoshop open and it was eating up a bunch of my RAM causing the computer to swap to the disk. Of course in my case, closing Photoshop fixed it, but an even better solution would be to add more RAM. How much RAM do you have?

And to confirm the answer to your question, there are no viruses or Spyware for Mac OS X right now. Possibly in the future there will be, but right now there are zero, so you don't have to worry about that.
 
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faintember

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2005
1,363
0
the ruins of the Cherokee nation
Phat_Pat said:
have you repaired permissions?
Try Phat Pat's idea, and also download MacJanitor from http://www.versiontracker.com.
MacJanitor basically is a GUI that allows you to run maintenance scripts that your computer usually runs early in the morning if it is on (2am-4am or something like that).

Edit:Disregard the MacJanitor comment. I see that you leave your Mac on most of the time. However, if your computer is asleep during the late night/morning hours, go ahead and download MacJanitor and run it.
 
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risc

macrumors 68030
Jul 23, 2004
2,756
0
Melbourne, Australia
faintember said:
Try Phat Pat's idea, and also download MacJanitor from http://www.versiontracker.com.
MacJanitor basically is a GUI that allows you to run maintenance scripts that your computer usually runs early in the morning if it is on (2am-4am or something like that).
Apps like MacJanitor are pointless just install Anacron and be done with it. I really don't understand why Apple don't include Anacron by default.
 
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faintember

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2005
1,363
0
the ruins of the Cherokee nation
risc said:
Apps like MacJanitor are pointless just install Anacron and be done with it. I really don't understand why Apple don't include Anacron by default.
Good to know. Just curious if there are any bugs with it running under 10.4.2.
I am still a bit sketchy about installing a program that is totally automated though.
 
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anterior

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2005
20
0
Wow... thanks for all the replies! I pretty much knew macs don't really have a problem with that kind of stuff (one of the reasons I got a mac). I got 512MB of RAM.. so it's kinda ok i guess. I rebooted and then did a repair permissions. Everything seems to be snappy again for now.

So what are these "processes" that run in the wee hours of the morning? Should I not be letting the mac go to sleep each night? Or just not on Sundays?

Thanks!

-B
 
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mduser63

macrumors 68040
Nov 9, 2004
3,039
30
Salt Lake City, UT
TDM21 said:
For the heck of it one day I went to Symantec's website and did a search for Viruses, Trojan horses, Worms and Macros on OS X. I found one right at the top of the list. Check it out here: http://securityresponse.symantec.com/avcenter/venc/data/macos.mw2004.trojan.html. Looks pretty nasty if anyone ever got it.
This is a well known Mac trojan. It's important to note the difference between a trojan and a virus. Trojans are malicious programs masquerading as something else, and they require the user to run them. In this case, it's a trojan that claims to be a Microsoft Word installer. It's only about 100 kB, and IMO, you'd have to be pretty dumb to think a 100 kB file could possibly be a copy of Word.
 
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Makosuke

macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2001
6,173
363
The Cool Part of CA, USA
anterior said:
So what are these "processes" that run in the wee hours of the morning? Should I not be letting the mac go to sleep each night? Or just not on Sundays?
They're technically the daily, weekly, and montly "periodic" tasks, but they're basically just housekeeping--rotating out old log files and cleaning up temporary stuff, so far as I know.

It's not going to be the end of the world if they don't run--I've seen Macs run without these tasks executing for months, if not years, without any serious issue--but running them manually as suggested above every now and then or just installing Anacron (I agree--why Apple doesn't build this in is a total mystery) doesn't hurt.

My biggest performance tip if things are inexplicably slow is just to try a restart--9 times out of 10 that fixes whatever it was that was slowing things down. Only if that doesn't work should you start poking around for what else might be wrong.
 
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Applespider

macrumors G4
anterior said:
I got 512MB of RAM.. so it's kinda ok i guess.
If you like leaving lots of apps open, you'd probably find it worthwhile upgrading your RAM. Although 512MB sounds a fair amount, these days, if you use your computer a lot, it's not that much. Buy another 512 stick or more if you can afford it and you'll notice a massive difference in the speed of your Mac.
 
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Mitthrawnuruodo

Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
13,813
182
Bergen, Norway
Applespider said:
If you like leaving lots of apps open, you'd probably find it worthwhile upgrading your RAM.
I second this. And remember that every active little Dashboard widget is a little application that will require RAM (both real and virtual) even when Dashboard isn't running. My six low resource widgets left after a little cleanup typically need 30-40 MB real RAM and 600-700 virtual RAM (which will be taken from your HD space) when Dashboard is inactive. If you're running a lot of widgets (which must be real tempting on that delicious 20" screen) then you'd really feel it, performance-wise...
 
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anterior

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2005
20
0
I don't really leave alot of apps open.. although, it's does get a little bogged down wehn I do family DVD's and iPhoto DVD's.

ok.. so if I want to upgrade my RAM, I am going to have to figure out how it is currently installed (two chips or one 512 chip). Like I said, I got the 20" RevA w/ BT and additional RAM. The default was 256 I, increased it too 512 when I ordered through the Apple Store online (based on everyone's recommendations). Again, since I am new to macs... do I go through Apple to buy additional RAM? What kind of RAM do I buy for this iMac? Is there one place/kind that is better than the other?

Also... What's the difference between Anacron and Mac Janitor?

-B
 
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