New to Mac: Viruses?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by phased, Oct 10, 2009.

  1. phased macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #1
    so i've made the switch to mac with a swell 17" mbp. my old toshiba laptop was up to it's neck in viruses/malware/spyware/etc. and that's half the reason for the switch.

    anyway, i've been mad paranoid about hooking up my external hd/ipod from my old laptop to my macbook in case it gets infected. yeah, i know, macs are meant to be immune to this sorta stuff, but i can't help but feel it'd be stupid to hook up things i know are infected. plus, i would like to run bootcamp on my mb one day - if that means anything (i've heard viruses can lay dormant and infiltrate whilst windows is in action..).

    what's a guy to do? try and clean out my old laptop and it's peripherals before i do data transfer? (easier said than done, i'm sure.)

    it's mad annoying not being able to get my files!

    many thanks.
     
  2. Pau.c macrumors regular

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    Sep 20, 2009
    #2
    when i plugged in my external HDD everything wiped! thousands of hours of tv shows disappeared if your external was formatted on a windows system the same thing will happen to you so do NOT plug it in!
     
  3. Sambo110 macrumors 68000

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    Mar 12, 2007
    Location:
    Australia
    #3
    The viruses on your external hard drive would be made for Windows, and be exe files, so they could not run on a Mac. And things cannot run on a Mac without an Administrators password, so they can't sneak in and start doing things even if they could run on a Mac.
     
  4. JediMeister macrumors 68040

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    Oct 9, 2008
    #4
    @ Pau.C - a drive will not auto-format. There had to have been a window displayed which asked permission to initialize (reformat) the drive.

    @ the OP: Viruses will not sneak over to the Mac OS from Windows or vice versa once you have Boot Camp set up. Unless you are in an environment where your Mac could potentially pass viruses to other computers on the network, you don't need AV software. ClamXAV is a free solution that will scan any files that pass through the Mac OS that may be plagued by a Windows virus. Although you don't need AV software for the Mac OS, it would be prudent to get some antivirus/antimalware software prepped once you do install Windows however, but only to scan the Windows partition.
     
  5. Winni macrumors 68030

    Winni

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2008
    Location:
    Germany.
    #5
    Ever tried using an up-to-date anti-virus software and an activated firewall? And have you ever tried to actually NOT install every piece of pirated software that you could find and have you ever NOT double-clicked on every attachment that spammers sent to you? I guess not. Otherwise your notebook wouldn't drown in malware.

    If Windows was so terrible, then I wonder why I only had one virus (Doodle44 for MS-DOS - and that one intentionally) and one worm - W32.Blaster - on my systems in my whole life? What am I doing wrong? Maybe it's because I use common sense combined with a working anti-virus software and only purchased and properly licensed software.

    Wipe out your hard disk, make a fresh installation of Windows, purchase and install a NOD32 license, don't double-click on everything that moves and be happy with what you already have.
     
  6. Pau.c macrumors regular

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    Sep 20, 2009
    #6
    i did not get that option :( if it came up would i have been able to watch my tv shows on my mac?
     
  7. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

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    Mar 20, 2009
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    Near London, UK.
    #7
    Tosh and piffle. Only because you did something, such as you acknowledged a request to format it, perhaps?
    I've plugged numerous drives formatted under windows onto this Mac, no issues at all and if it was as autmatic as you imply then dont you think there might be more than your message here.

    BTW, just how big was this disk if it had "thousands of hours of tv shows" on it ?
     
  8. JediMeister macrumors 68040

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    Oct 9, 2008
    #8
    @ Pau.C: It sounds like unintentionally or mistakenly you may have already initialized the drive. That is the only way that information would have been removed from the drive. If you want to use an external hard drive for use with Mac and PC, you want to have it formatted in FAT32, which does unfortunately limit the individual file size of a written file to 4 GB.

    P.S. sorry to the OP for carrying on a peripherally related conversation in his thread...
     
  9. Pau.c macrumors regular

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    Sep 20, 2009
  10. arjen92 macrumors 65816

    arjen92

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    Below sea level
    #10
    You should be able to just connect your harddrive to the mac. Virusses are written in certain languages and are based on leaks. Mac os x is another language, and has other (and probably less too) leaks. So as one already said .exe files won't run on your mac. So no virus can hop over. In fact there are no viruses for Mac os x, only trojan horses. Also with bootcamp, viruses can't go from the windows partition to your mac os x partition.

    p.s. You should search the forums, there is a lot written about this.
     
  11. Pau.c macrumors regular

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    Sep 20, 2009
    #11
    thank you i will sort this out so i can start all over again with my ripping haha! i just hate it when you lose everything and have to start all over again.

    but thats what i get i suppose by travelling alot and dont want to take all my DVD's with me!
     
  12. phased thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #12
    thanks for all the help, guys (most of you!).

    i may have exaggerated a little with my description of the amount of viruses/etc. present on my toshiba. i have however had trouble with the occasional trojan horse on it - it this something that can effect my mac? i now understand that your typical .exe virus will not.

    so i should install clamXAV and just get on with the file transfers, right?

    and the ipod - that'll be fine? wasn't there this one virus/etc. ipods were susceptible to? mine is a 30gb from late '05.
     
  13. toolbox macrumors 68020

    toolbox

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    Oct 6, 2007
    Location:
    Australia (WA)
    #13
    If your ipod is formatted in the windows format, itunes will want to erase it and re sync all your music. Make sure you have everything backed up before hand.
     
  14. phased thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #14
    it will do this automatically? or will i be prompted?

    it's only been used on windows, so i assume it is formatted as such.
     
  15. vitonet macrumors newbie

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    Oct 10, 2009
    #15
    Pau.c,

    Sorry this isn't the original post, but it may be possible nothing is wiped or gone. Did you try plugging the drive back into Windows to make sure? If your drive was formatted as NTFS (Windows format) which it most likely was, it will not show up on your Mac when you plug it in. Like stated, it may ask you to initialize the drive on your Mac, and if you do that will wipe it out. If you didnt do that, you may just be able to plug it back into Windows and see if your stuff is still there. If so, you will need to backup your stuff somewhere else, and format your drive on a Mac using Fat then it should be usable on both computers.
     
  16. toolbox macrumors 68020

    toolbox

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    #16
    In past experiences it will prompt you, has for me.
     
  17. phased thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #17
    Whoa, this has me a little shaky.

    So I can't just connect my HD to my MB and use it as per normal? I assume it is formatted as NTFS because it's only been used via PC.

    I'm confused - what do I do? Download Fat first? The last thing I want is any HDs getting wiped - that thing has years of my work on it.
     
  18. toolbox macrumors 68020

    toolbox

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    Oct 6, 2007
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    Australia (WA)
    #18
    Macs will read / write Fat / fat 32 based drives. they will read NTFS formatted drives but from memory they can not write unless you have something like ntfs 3g installed

    Macs will not automatically erase a disk drive without prompting first.
     
  19. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #19
    Your Mac couldn't run Windows applications (viruses) even if you wanted it to.

    Connecting a drive to your Mac will never damage either computer or drive, even if the drive is unreadable. (Something is seriously fishy in Pau.c's story.)

    Bottom line: You have nothing to worry about.

    arjen92, I'm not really sure what you're on about. I suspect this isn't your area of expertise.
     
  20. Pau.c macrumors regular

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    Sep 20, 2009
    #20
    i will try it when i am home, i have not tried it on a windows since!

    i hope to god it will still be there :) thank you!
     
  21. Mike Macintosh macrumors regular

    Mike Macintosh

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    Location:
    Washington State
    #21
    I was in the same vine as you 4 years ago, what I would consider is maybe burning some files you trust to CD if possible, and just put it on your machine the old fashioned way.
     

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