Newb question


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 15, 2007
I just got my first mac on Monday 24" Imac. I noticed that there is no antivirus program on it or at least I don't see any. Is this a big issue I know that Mac's are not as prone to viruses as PC's are but still there is always a chance.

What are the available choices that are out there as far as this goes? (Free would be nice but I'll pay if I have to)


macrumors regular
Aug 31, 2005
Miami, FL
You don't need AV software-- in fact, people sometimes report problems stemming from AV. But, there's a free program called clamXav that you may be interested in.

I've never had AV software on my Macs-- going on 7 years now.


macrumors 6502
May 16, 2007
yeah Ive noticed that on my ol PC I had Norton running and every minute will go off with virus alerts, pain in the a$$ to remove them, But with my G4 I have not had ANY viruses or anything of the like at all!!
I figure that since the Windows OS is the most commonly used it might be a lot easier to bug than the Mac OS. A good number of ppl I know, know how to properly operate and tweak Windows but ask them about Macs they are like :confused:

hee hee :D

My sugestion is ask first and see what else you can learn as far as AV or Viruses on Macs even if they ar not your machine (Imac).

Good luck!!



macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2001
The Cool Part of CA, USA
There are currently no functioning OSX viruses "in the wild," so at this moment in time the only threat is Word Macro Viruses (which CAN run on a Mac, at least sometimes--I've seen it happen) or possibly forwarding a virus-infected file from one PC user to another (someone sends you something infected, then you send it on without scanning it, that is).

I personally don't currently use any AV software on my Macs, and I also don't have any running on any of the Macs I administer at work--so far there have been zero issues with this (of course, at work the email is all prefiltered anyway, so that greatly reduces the risk of infection or passing something on).

I do, however, keep a close eye on Mac tech sites, so in the event a live Mac virus DOES get created (which is bound to happen eventually), I'll revise my policy quickly.

I'd say it never hurts to be cautious, except that's not true--the currently available AV software for the Mac that I'm aware of is better known for causing stability problems than fixing them. ClamAV is free, though, and while it's not as transparent as the commercial options, it also doesn't cause problems, so if you want to be careful that's what I'd recommend at this point.