I hear Macs don't get as many viruses. True? What can I do about pop-ups?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Greenone, Nov 5, 2005.

  1. Greenone macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2005
    I keep getting pop-ups and I'm wondering if I can get some sort of software that will prevent this (and of course viruses, if they can still attack the mac). I've read and heard that Norton is terrible and causes more problems with people's laptops (any brand) than anything else. Has anyone else found this to be true?

  2. p0intblank macrumors 68030

    Sep 20, 2005
    New Jersey
    The Mac never gets viruses, so there is no need to worry about getting one. :) As for the pop-ups, we all get them now and then. Safari has a pop-up blocker built-in, but a couple still get through sometimes. It's only one or two sites that they get through, so it doesn't bother me.

    Oh and as for virus software, don't bother.
  3. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Jan 6, 2004
    i think every Mac browser has a built in pop up blocker, besides the discontinued IE for Mac....

    Camino, Firefox, and Safari all have one, some get through, but thats rarely for me at least.

    as of right now there are no known Viruses for Mac OS X.
    although you can still be a host for Window Viruses and send them on to your Window using friends.
  4. jiv3turkey748 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 30, 2004
    macs never get viruses or spyware
    safari has a built in pop up blocker
  5. Greenone thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2005
    Thanks folks. I don't get a whole lot of pop-ups, you're right. I guess I can learn to live with them!
  6. Eric5h5 macrumors 68020

    Dec 9, 2004
    Macs don't get as many viruses as PCs in the same way that the equator doesn't get as much snow as the North Pole. As for pop-ups, all I use is Safari, and I'm pretty sure I've never seen one yet.

  7. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Greenone, which browser are you using? As everyone else is saying, Safari has a built in blocker but you may need to enable it from the Safari menu. I remember that Panther had it off by default, I can't remember if Tiger does though. :)
  8. jmort macrumors member

    Jun 10, 2005
    Southern CA
    Just to clarify

    I saw a couple of posts that said Macs never get viruses, and I thought, respectfully, I would clarify the matter.

    This is how it works as far as I understand it, and feel free to correct me, anybody, if I am in error. The mac *can* get viruses, but in practice it doesn't. The reason for this is two-fold. The first reason is that Macintosh computers are hardly targeted for viruses compared to PCs. After all, what's the use in writing a virus on the mac, since it will only affect 5-10% of the computer world. The second (and more reassuring) reason Mac's are more virus secure is because of the UNIX underpinnings that make up OSX.

    In windows, the normal user account is set up as an administrator in most cases. This is good for the user in that they have free reign of their computer to do what they want without being prompted for a password. The downside is viruses that get into their systems also have the same free reign to install themselves and start trouble without the system questioning them. On a mac however, even when you are logged in on an administrator account, the computer is allowed far fewer privileges, meaning any software that tries to install itself or modify your system must first receive your password. Meaning, nothing gets installed or modified unless you allow it. You can experience this simply by downloading a widget in safari. Before the widget installs itself, your computer prompts you that you've downloaded a piece of software that is trying to install itself, and asks your permission to proceed.

    In a nutshell, those are the two biggest reasons the mac is so virus-free. Now, that being said, it is conceivably *possible* that a mac could get a virus, but then again, what's more likely to get robbed, a 7-eleven, or fort knox? You get the idea.

    As for the popups, make sure you've enabled the popup blocker in safari (see attached photo), and that should eliminate all but a very few stragglers. If it's still driving you crazy (what kinda sites are you looking at anyway ;) ) I might recommend OmniWeb http://www.omnigroup.com/ OmniWeb has a TON of customization features, one of which is to prevent ALL popups, and it works without fail. It isn't free though, but I've paid for it and would recommend it to anybody. Great browser.

    Hope this was helpful

    Attached Files:

  9. SummerBreeze macrumors 6502a


    Sep 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    As for Viruses, you won't get one on a Mac. Although you may be able to pass viruses on through email to your friends using Windows. You're kinda like that little monkey on Outbreak, who's all cute and stuff but who can totally cause pain for everyone else. So if you're really paranoid you can get the free ClamXav to check for windows viruses that you can pass on.

    I don't really get any pop-ups using Safari. If you're getting a bunch, definitely check in your preferences to see if you pop-up blocker is turned on.
  10. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    Don't worry about viruses until you come to MR one day and the headline reads: "Virus for Mac Discovered." Until then you should be fine.

    As for pop-ups, you won't get them like with Windows (on my cousins computer she doesn't even have to have a browser open to get a pop-up :eek: ). You can use the pop-up blocker built into Safari, which should do the trick.
    Here is what I do. I have two browsers on my computer Safari & Firefox. Neither one do I use the popup blocker. I set Firefox to dissable cookies, cache, etc. and I use this for the less trusting sites, like games, or if I plan on going to a website I've never been to (like if I'm researching for a history paper).
    I have Safari set to allow cookies and cache, and I use this for trusted sites such as; MacRumors, Apple, my E-mail, or any site I visit regularly that requires cookies. Every once in a while I will go through and manually delete unwanted cookies from Safari.
    --By doing this I hardly ever get a pop-up, and once I do I just go through and try and find the problem (usually I clear the cache and look for suspicious cookies.
  11. Greenone thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2005
    Wow - very helpful, thanks a lot!

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