Do I need AntiVirus?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by finsfanscott, Jan 29, 2016.

  1. finsfanscott macrumors newbie

    May 20, 2013

    I have installed VirtualBox on my MacBook Air, then installed Windows 10, and finally got a copy of Office 2010 installed. The only reason I did all this was because Office 2016 for Mac doesn't support "slices" in PivotTables (at least the ones my work mates produce on their PC based Excel 2013). I can download the Excel files I need from my corporate Box account, and get them into the Virtual environment through sharing a folder. So... here's the question:

    Do I need a PC based Antivirus to run if:

    1- I never ever, never ever ever never open a browser while in the VirtualBox? I am only using Excel to copy some charts into Powerpoint then bringing them back to the Mac side?

    2- If I use the "Edge" explorer in Windows 10 to ONLY go to, to download the spreadsheet directly instead of downloading on the Mac side and "sharing" to the VirtualBox. No Yahoo, No Google, no mail, nothing else on line. Would I still be at risk?

    In each case I have the standard Mac firewall running.

    If I do need an Antivirus, I could get Norton for free from Comcast (my ISP), I should install it in the VirtualBox environment, right?

    Thanks for the thoughts!!
  2. chscag macrumors 68030


    Feb 17, 2008
    Fort Worth, Texas
    Anytime you run Windows whether in a VM or from a dual boot, you should protect yourself with an AV program. And especially if you can get Norton for free why not use it? Be safe, install Norton. ;)
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    No, you don't need to use an antivirus if you only go to a single site or two. I have had a VM running for years that I used for MS office and work stuff. Windows 10 comes with a basic antivirus anyways so you're not going completely naked (so to speak).
  4. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000


    May 17, 2012
    The beauty of running a virtual environment is how easy it is to replace it if there is any problem with it. Just backup your virtual machine somewhere such as an external drive or even locally lacking that if you have the room. Obviously I'd hope you keep your work backed up outside of that virtual machine also in case disaster strikes. In the unlikely event you ever had some issue, you could easily delete the affected virtual machine and copy over your backed up one and immediately resume work once you restored you work files.

    I would not bother with the overhead and hassle of a norton product personally. The basic protection included with Windows 10 is fine for your use case as maflynn pointed out I would agree.
  5. Pockets69 macrumors newbie

    Jan 7, 2016
    Do not install Norton please...

    1 - yes because even though you may not connect to the internet, you never know what the files you are using / you are given may contain, so an antivirus is important.

    2 - seeing as you connect the internet to go to (or whatever it is called) you obviously need an antivirus, you never know what files may contain even though you download spreadsheets they may contain malware code as well, so be careful, and get an antivirus.

    Now do yourself a favor and don't install Norton, throughout the years norton has become bloated slow and ugly and worst of all inefective.

    here are free alternative avira or malwarebytes are good some of the best and are free, you also have the option from Kaspersky which is very very good.

    Also forgot to mention MS security essentials, i have been using it for ages, never had any problem what so ever.

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