Virus on Windows partition of Mac

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by srf4real, Oct 1, 2006.

  1. srf4real macrumors 68030


    Jul 25, 2006
    paradise beach FL
    Windows on Apples - a good idea? It's like selling a Mercedes auto and adding an feature where the engine can break down regularly and be unreliable in case of emercencies! I think the geniuses were asleep on this one. It may come back to bite Apple in the butt when its consumers need windows professionals to fix their mac virus problems, need windows virus software, have computers that aren't safe for the internet anymore because they're infected... Might as well save money and get the pc!

    -my mac runs mac os only and it will stay that way.-:D
  2. psychofreak Retired


    May 16, 2006
    If you get a virus on the Windows partition, then the OS X portion stays fine, I couldn't tell if you understood that. You can always reinstall Windows, while not having to back up your OS X partition.
  3. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

    Sep 16, 2001
    Tuttlingen, Germany
    I get what you're saying there, but I've heard of viruses running algorithms that physically harm some of the components of a computer...something like instructing the hard drive to smash its reader into itself. Was that an urban legend, or was something like that actually written? Is it even possible?
  4. pianoman macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2006
    the feature that allows you to run Windows on a Mac is entirely voluntary for a reason. it's for people who want or need to use Windows and understand the associated risks. obviously, installing Windows on a Mac does not make Windows' vulnerabilities disappear; you still need anti-virus software, anti-adware/spyware software and to not use IE.

    i, too, am not installing Windows on my MBP, not because i don't trust Windows or my own upkeep methods (not once have i had a virus or malicious spyware on my previous Windows machines), but because i don't need it. Mac OSX does everything i want and need.
  5. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    Yeah, that happens. Or viruses that overrwrite the BIOS (now EFI or something). Overclocking components, bla bla bla. These sort of viruses are rare though, as most viruses are more about spreading chaos and mayhem, downloading installers, running hacks and proxies, etc, which can make spammers mucho money, but for that they need a working computer.

    In short (if that didn't make any sense) it's in the virus writers to make viruses that don't physically harm a PC.
  6. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    I'm sorry but this is just silly. First, Apple will probably never feel that their notion to have windows run on a mac is a bad idea. The second windows was running on a mac I know 4 people that bought a mac right away. They always said that a mac was nice, but they had a handful of programs they were not willing or able to give up. Virus problems? Yeah it's going to be there, but like anything you have to protect yourself. I've never really known anyone who need professional help to get rid of a virus, but then again most of my friends are rather versed in the world of Windows.

    Like me you really don't have any intentions of running windows on your mac. I certainly do not, but if running windows on a mac gets more macs sold then it will hopefully help the bottom line and bring the prices down even more.

    All I know is that I have seen more bootcamp issue thread started than I want and therefore I can find something to replace those windows programs and if not I would buy an independent windows machine.
  7. n-abounds macrumors 6502a


    Mar 6, 2006
    If you know computers pretty well, you won't have a problem with BootCamp.
  8. balamw Moderator


    Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2005
    New England
    Or even a regular Windows box. Start w/XP Sp2. Skip IE, OE and Outlook and run a decent AV, spyware program and you can actually run Windows without (big) problems...

  9. contoursvt macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2005
    i've actually been running XP SP2 since 4/9/2005 with no antivirus or anti spyware and its fine. The key for me is this:

    -I dont surf sites that end in .jp or .ru or what have you.
    -I dont surf porn on the machine
    -I dont go looking for illegal apps or 'free' music
    -I configure IE to always prompt for activeX objects
    -configured outlook to not use auto preview
    -All my data gets saved on my server which does run antivirus
  10. MacsAttack macrumors 6502a

    Jul 2, 2006
    I've been running XP on a machine since it was introduced. I found the key was not to connect the thing to any networks or modems.

    It has been fairly secure...

    For the internet I used a Mac :D

    Now if Parallels can get its act together (or VMWare get a move on) then I can use issolated virtual machines and do away with one box under the desk.
  11. Krevnik macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2003
    Well, there is one thing that Apple did that prevents a firmware hack (for now anyways) without the user's knowledge. The OS cannot write to the EFI flash, the firmware prevents it. The Firmware can load up an update and update itself though, from NVRAM, but to do it, it still requires that the USER start the update when they boot the machine (by holding down the power button until they hear the beeps).

    This means that any attack on the firmware: A) is very unlikely to be done from Windows, considering how unique an attack you would have to mount in order to do it, B) is a social engineering issue. As long as you have users behind the keyboard, you can't really stop social engineering with fancy code.
  12. bemylover macrumors regular

    Jun 20, 2005
    What's wrong with .ru?
  13. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Jun 25, 2002
    Gone but not forgotten.
    Maybe, he can't read Russian, or Japanese, for that matter.
  14. apfhex macrumors 68030


    Aug 8, 2006
    Northern California
    1) You're using IE :D and 2) Those are just foreign sites... they wouldn't have any more problems than any .com or .net or what have you.

    Anyway, are there viruses that can reformat/erase the boot drive? That's really all I'd be worried about, since otherwise Windows doesn't see the HFS+ partition. As far as causing physical hardware damage, something like "instructing the hard drive to smash its reader into itself" sounds bogus to me, but hmm. *shrugs*
  15. wakerider017 macrumors 68000


    Sep 20, 2006
    US of A
    You guys are ridiculous.


    I have run windows since 95 came out and just recently switched to OS X...

    (Boy what a difference!)

    But all this crap about my hardware will blow up if I run XP...

    Your computer will not spontaneously combust if you run Windows....

    Sure you will prob get spyware, and maybe even a virus...

    But I have never had a virus cause any damage to hardware, nor have I ever heard of one damaging any one's computer I know. I think this is more of an urban legend than anything...

    If you want to be realistic than I think everyone here know the main killer of computer hardware... POWER SURGES! I have lost quite a bit of hardware in the past b/c of these...

    You can run OS X, you can run XP, but be sure to have a surge protector if you really care about your computer...

    I bet some of you guys out there won't run XP but at the same time have your Mac plugged right in to the wall outlet.

    That is kinda like saying I won't fly on an airplane b/c it is too dangerous but I will drive all around town...

    It seems like this is a bash fest against XP with little/no evidence to back it up.

    Keep in mind I am know a Mac advocate, but I don't like senseless "rumors."
  16. Krevnik macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2003
    Once a virus penetrates security far enough to be 'root' or 'System', it can do what it wants. It can do anything the OS can, and doesn't have any safties that the OS might. There have been viruses in the past that have wiped hard drives, nuked a BIOS or two, and yes, a couple decades ago, it was possible to physically crash a hard drive with a virus. Older HDDs (as in made in the 80s) didn't have very complex firmware to protect itself from misuse, the hack wasn't so much telling it to crash into the platter, but rather you gave it a sequence of commands the head/reader couldn't handle, and as a side-effect, it crashed into the platter causing physical damage.

    That said, these days a virus wants to stick around, and steal/collect personal information that can be used by the virus writer. There isn't really a use for wiping a HDD and tipping the user off when you are trying to commit credit card fraud and the like.

    Not really an urban legend, just before your time. ;)

    Most of the nastier viruses written were for early versions of MacOS (before System 7), or were written for DOS, back in an era when software was always considered 'trustworthy'. The problem is that a virus that infects from a floppy disk, and wipes your drive tends to be discovered and squashed just by realizing that the floppy disk was the source. Viruses that destroy the host really quickly, or on a certain date have very limited impact, and can't exist in the wild for more than a couple months, really. This was also an era where viruses had to be spread through an infected application, usually on a floppy or BBS, as networks were not common outside of large businesses yet.
  17. contoursvt macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2005

    Well in my experience, there are more viruses floating around on russian and japanese sites than other so I just avoid them. As for IE... I have no issues with IE since I've got active X disabled (well it prompts when needed - wont run automatically).
  18. whitekran101 macrumors newbie

    Oct 5, 2006
    ok, lemme clearify one thing, having the harddrive crash on itself is physicaly impossible, its an urban legend

    there is only one virus i know of that my friend himself created where it hacked into unprotected bios, and it uped the charge that the power supply took in therefore making a power surge and frying your motherboard, though he hasn't released it nor will he, that is the only virus that would destroy your computer

    a hardrive doesn't have the capability of 'self destruct', thats a bunch of junk

    now also, i've ran xp so many times, just get a anti virus other than norton and your fine (fyi, norton aint good) get a firewall (firewall on router is best, since hackers dont even touch your computer) get mozilla (firefox fyi) and you'll be fine

    also, the other urban that a virus on xp will hurt osx is again, junk, its like, running a C++ program, then all the sudden, using the same lines, running it with java instead, it wont work, it'll bork out (and thats if you somehow manage to physically jump the partitioned harddrive)

    lemme put it this way, i love mac osx, i need windows xp, but boot camp sucks balls, its already messed up my computer (i made a thread about it) i need some programs for music that i just can't give up, but since almost no computers except for macs offer such good midi connections, i was almost forced into buying a mac

    look, basically what i'm saying is is that running windows xp is FINE, viruses arn't gonna destroy your computer, they might destry windows, but it won't destroy your computer, and windows is easy to reinstall (unless you have a corrupted cd like i have, lil bit harder then)
  19. Max on Macs macrumors 6502

    Max on Macs

    Feb 25, 2006
    Milton Keynes, UK
    There was at one point a virus which could physically destroy a hard disk, but this was more than 15 years ago, I think more than 20, and hasn't been possible with drives since.
  20. Zedsdead185 macrumors 6502

    Sep 14, 2006
    As long as your not doing anything dodgy online with windows, then i doubt you will actually get any viruses. If you do the worst that can happen is it will slow the os down. Bad viruses mostly come from doing bad things;) .

    Besides, If you're worried then download some free antivirus or spyware programs to scan and rid you of any problems. Try 'adaware' or 'AVG'. As long as you perform scans now and then you should be fine.

    Of course this is where you can say mac os is so much better as you should noit have to spend half of your time clearing problems from your computer!
  21. Phishin' it macrumors member

    Oct 2, 2006
    where the waves are.....feral brah

    I have heard of viruses that can pop open disk drives and **** like that, but it was a rumor and I have never seen it.
  22. fall3n macrumors 6502

    Aug 17, 2006
    pop open disk drives? you mean like a cd-rom drive? That would be a trojan and someone just ****ing around with you. You can do somethng like that with sub7, i did that to my friend years and years ago to **** around with him. it was quite funny. haha
  23. srf4real thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jul 25, 2006
    paradise beach FL

    Yeah, you know a friend, I know a friend, he knows a friend, she knows a friend... how many viruses does that make! my mac is osX only. I don't trust the new technology and software and I luv not worrying about it. I just think it a little silly to take a foolproof os like osX and muck it all up with windows vulnerability.:confused:

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