Some questions for a first time Mac owner

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Vell843, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. Vell843 macrumors regular

    Vell843

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    #1
    As the title says I am an first time Mac owner, I brought the 21.5 inch model last night from the Apple store and will have delivered to my house on Monday. I have just a few simple questions below, thanks in advance!!

    1. Do I need to purchase any kind of antivirus software for my Mac like norton 360? Or does Mac have it's own antivirus software thats already installed on it?

    2. Is there an Mac program that is similiar to microsoft word, powerpoint, etc or do I have to buy the microsoft office for Mac software?
     
  2. ECUpirate44 macrumors 603

    ECUpirate44

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    NC
    #2
    1. No. You don't need antivirus software, just common sense. Macs have a firewall you can turn on.
    2. Yes. Buy office 11 for Mac.
     
  3. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
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    #3
    1. No.
    Here is some more detailed information, if you want:

    Currently there are zero viruses affecting Mac OS X in public circulation, but there are other kinds of malware existing, that can infect your Mac.
    But as long as you don't install software from unknown and untrusted sources, you are safe, as malware needs administrative permissions to run successfully, which means, you need to install the malware yourself, it can't install itself (one of the reasons, why a Mac OS X virus hasn't appeared yet).
    To learn more about malware in Mac OS X and what steps can be taken to protect yourself, read the following F.A.Q.:

    2. There is MS Office for Mac, or you could take a look at iWork, which is available via the Mac App Store (MAS).

    To learn more about Mac OS X: Helpful Information for Any Mac User by GGJstudios
     
  4. Spike88 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    #4
    As a general statement, NO anti-virus software for the iMac is required. Simply ensure your ISP Firewall setting is enabled, and your iMac's OS Firewall setting is enabled as well. Instead of using "one user ID for all", simply create an Admin ID and a generic user id that has less permissions. Less compared to your super power Admin ID. And with generic user id, one continues safe computing practices as well...

    MacOS (SL & Lion) comes budled with many applicaitons - including Pages, Keynotes, etc. These read MS Office files. If you hate Pages, Keynotes, you can buy MS Office (if you want). But, I'd try Apple's included (bundled) Pages, Keynotes, etc applications first. If wondering, Apple calls their bundle general office apps as "iWorks", and multimedia apps as "iLife".

    For more details about iWorks and other included apps like iLife, surf all pages at: http://www.apple.com/ca/imac/software.html

    Hope this helps..
     
  5. simsaladimbamba

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    #5
    iWork is not included with Mac OS X or any Mac, iLife is. You can buy the applications separately via the Mac App Store (MAS) for 15 USD each.
     
  6. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    Perth, Western Australia
    #6
    1. Get a virus scanner. This crap about mac users not needing one is only going to end in tears for a lot of people shortly, as the market is ripe for the pickings. Currently the amount of malware is very small, but as far as the malware authors go, it is currently an untapped market. This will change.

    2. There are options, depending on what you need and how compatible with office you need to be. i run iWork at home and it does what i need. If you need proper Office compatibility, there is MS Office available.
     
  7. Spike88 macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 25, 2010
    #7
    I just checked the iMac "inclusion" bundle. You are correct. My BAD.

    Thanks for the correction...
     
  8. PaulCostello macrumors member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    #8
    Thx guys for all the great replys! I still didn't get an external drive, because I have one final question. What I wanna do (not sure if this is possible or not) is buy a large external drive, maybe 2 or 3 TB. Partition 1 TB to be devoted to time machine, then partition the rest of the drive for pics, videos, etc. Can i do that? Partition the drive into two separate drives, use 1st partition exclusively for time machine and use the second partition simultaneously for loading my pics and videos. is this even possible? Is anyone out there using this set up?
    Again, thanks for the feedback, it is most appreciated!
     
  9. simsaladimbamba

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    #9
    Yes, that is possible via Disk Utility:

    ____________________________________________________________

    Links to guides on how to use Disk Utility, the application Mac OS X provides for managing internal and external HDD/SSDs and its formats.
    ____________________________________________________________

    But also know, that using the same HDD for data storage and TM backups will not backup the data on the data partition. You might need to consider another HDD.

    Time Machine FAQ
     
  10. ScouseGeek macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2011
    #10
    1) Yes by all means install one, Sophos make a free edition for the Mac and it is superb.

    2) Yes Microsoft Office for Mac 2011.



    You are wrong, Flashback ring a bell from the last few days, just because they are not common don't feel smugly secure because your running a Mac or sitting behind a Fire wall, your not really ever 100% safe with any system. When ever I hear "Oh it's OK we are / it's behind a fire wall" I drive my head into a desk with some force.​
     
  11. iMacFarlane, Apr 18, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2012

    iMacFarlane macrumors 65816

    iMacFarlane

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    #11
    1. No AV required, just be careful where you go on the web, and what you give permissions for when asked during software installs.

    2. Pages/Numbers/Keynote are not part of the standard iLife package in OS X. You can purchase MS Office for Mac. I did. I have used MS Office since the early 90's (Word 2.0, Office 95, Office 98, Office 2000, Office 2003, Office 2007) and now Office 2011 for OS X.

    I hate it. :mad:

    It doesn't work like any of the Office suites I've worked with on Windows boxes. It doesn't work like any Mac programs I've grown to love over the last two years. It's ugly, unwieldy, slow as all get-out, just . . . Fail. I've actually grown fond of OpenOffice, and am warming to LibreOffice, both free and compatible with all MS Office filetypes. Give them a go if you don't want to pony up the cash for Apple's iLife suite.
     
  12. simsaladimbamba

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    #12
    Sophos should be avoided, as it could actually increase your Mac's vulnerability, as described here, here and here.

    Flashback.K and Flashback.I are TROJANS, not viruses, but then again, the difference doesn't matter I suppose, since the TROJANS needed user interaction.

    Any user can use any AV software as he or she likes, even if it is not needed.
    I don't need it and I have been malware free since 2004. But then again, I used common sense and some steps pointed out here: What security steps should I take?

    PS: A Firewall alone does not protect you from malware. And it drives MY HEAD into a wall, when someone does not know the difference between a virus and a trojan but acts like a knowitall and recommends Sophos.

    **** that ****.
     
  13. Vell843 thread starter macrumors regular

    Vell843

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    #13
    Wow, I really appreciate all of he quick and useful responses!! One more question: I know that an new iMac OS OX mountain lion is conning out this summer. How does that work as far as updating the OS? Will it be free, like te iPhone, iPad, and ipod OS updates are or will I have to pay to download them? Now if I have to pay, is there like an app store on Mac? Also are the apps on Mac constantly updated?
     
  14. PaulCostello macrumors member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    #14
    Sry! posted in wrong thread
     
  15. simsaladimbamba

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    #15
    But you still got an answer.

    For future references, you can use the report button ([​IMG]) to report your posts and ask for deletion or moving.
     
  16. PaulCostello macrumors member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    #16
    Ah! Thx sim
     
  17. throAU, Apr 18, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2012

    throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #17
    A million times yes.

    The OS X firewall doesn't do what some people think it does (they seem to think it is some impenetrable security shield).

    The biggest infection vector these days is via browser based exploit - and don't assume that every "trustworthy" website you visit is ALWAYS trustworthy. Websites get hacked. Especially forums, like this one for example. Browsers have holes, browser plugins have holes, java has holes. Even if OS X is 100% secure (and it isn't - history has shown that no one has managed to put out a 100% secure OS, and lion is still constantly getting security updates) you use plenty of software that is not.

    A host-based firewall does nothing to protect you from this, unless it does content inspection and sanitization, and the OS X firewall does not, it is a simple packet filter.


    Security is best approached as defense in layers. Don't assume that anything (including your OS) is secure. Assume that each layer may have vulnerabilities and potentially be broken, thus depending on more than one layer (e.g., up to date OS, firewall, up to date browser, and virus scanner/malware protection) is prudent.

    If you just assume "oh i'll be fine there are no viruses" and take no further precautions, then one day you're going to get screwed, and chances are you won't even know about it if the malware is malicious enough/clever enough until it is far too late (because you've arrogantly assumed you're immune, and have no AV detection/protection to pick up anything).


    edit:
    Above advice goes for ANY os. Windows, OS X, Linux, FreeBSD, etc. Be slightly paranoid, because the bad guys really ARE out to get you. Or at least your money/data.
     
  18. PaulCostello macrumors member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    #18
    You can head to Microsoft website and download a free 30 day trial version of office 2011 Mac version (Word PowerPoint and Excel included) and try before you buy. Thats what I did. hope this helps
     
  19. iMacFarlane macrumors 65816

    iMacFarlane

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    #19
    The Mac App Store works just like the appstore on your iPhone/iPad. Apps are searchable, purchasable, and will alert (with red numerical badge on your icon) when an update exists.

    Any upgrade to your existing OS will be automatically pushed via Software Update program. If you want to upgrade to a new OS (Lion -> Mountain Lion), you can do so on the Mac App Store for a nominal fee (~$30 or so, compared to ~$130 for the latest Windows beta).
     
  20. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #20
    You don't need a 3rd party antivirus app to keep your Mac malware-free, and having one installed won't guarantee you can't be infected, as antivirus detection rates are not 100%.

    I recommend that you avoid using Sophos, as it could actually increase your Mac's vulnerability, as described here and here. If you still want to run antivirus for some reason, ClamXav (which is free) is one of the best choices, since it isn't a resource hog, detects both Mac and Windows malware and doesn't run with elevated privileges. You can run scans when you choose, rather than leaving it running all the time, slowing your system.

    Macs are not immune to malware, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on Mac OS X, and there never have been any since it was released over 10 years ago. The only malware in the wild that can affect Mac OS X is a handful of trojans, which can be easily avoided by practicing safe computing (see below). Also, Mac OS X Snow Leopard and Lion have anti-malware protection built in, further reducing the need for 3rd party antivirus apps.
    1. Make sure your built-in Mac firewall is enabled in System Preferences > Security > Firewall

    2. Uncheck "Open "safe" files after downloading" in Safari > Preferences > General

    3. Disable Java in your browser. (For Safari users, uncheck "Enable Java" in Safari > Preferences > Security.) This will protect you from malware that exploits Java in your browser, including the recent Flashback trojan. Leave this unchecked until you visit a trusted site that requires Java, then re-enable only for the duration of your visit to that site. (This is not to be confused with JavaScript, which you should leave enabled.)

    4. Change your DNS servers to OpenDNS servers by reading this.

    5. Be careful to only install software from trusted, reputable sites. Never install pirated software. If you're not sure about an app, ask in this forum before installing.

    6. Never let someone else have access to install anything on your Mac.

    7. Don't open files that you receive from unknown or untrusted sources.

    8. For added security, make sure all network, email, financial and other important passwords are long and complex, including upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters.

    9. Always keep your Mac and application software updated. Use Software Update for your Mac software. For other software, it's safer to get updates from the developer's site or from the menu item "Check for updates", rather than installing from any notification window that pops up while you're surfing the web.
    That's all you need to do to keep your Mac completely free of any virus, trojan, spyware, keylogger, or other malware. You don't need any 3rd party software to keep your Mac secure.

    The firewall does not prevent malware infections, especially ones caused by user action.
     
  21. robgendreau macrumors 68040

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    Jul 13, 2008
    #21
    One additional point: your router probably has a firewall, so the one on your Mac is probably not necessary. YMMV, but check before you enable. I've found that it's rather non-intuitive for many users, especially those used to configuring routers via a web browser.

    Rob
     
  22. AppleDApp macrumors 68020

    AppleDApp

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    #22
    In case you haven't already done so, get an antivirus. Not all mac apps are tested by Apple. So there is no way to ensure they are safe. If an App comes directly from the Mac app store, it should be a safe bet. Then there is still the risk of getting malware/virus from being connected to the internet.
     
  23. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #23
    It's a good idea to enable the Mac firewall, even if you have one in your router, especially for portable Macs, so you'll have a firewall active even if you connect to another network that might not have one enabled. There's no downside to having both a router and the Mac firewall enabled.
    Read my earlier post. Antivirus apps don't ensure protection. If you buy a used Mac, it's a good idea to do a clean install, which would remove any malware present.
     
  24. forty2j macrumors 68030

    forty2j

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    Jul 11, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #24
    AV software on Macs ends up being a net negative:
    - There's hardly anything to look for
    - Apple is pushing their own detection and cleanup directly through Software Update
    - An AV can use up system resources and/or interfere with legitimate software
    - Some AV programs actually introduce vulnerabilities on your computer

    Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think any AV caught the Flashback trojan when it came out, nor did they have a fix in for it that much sooner than Apple did. For the most part, these trojans require manual intervention to install and pretty much always require the user to do something stupid; education and common sense will get you much further than software-based protection.
     
  25. Rich2Putt macrumors member

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    MA
    #25

    or try this. http://www.openoffice.org/
     

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