Anti-Virus

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Anti-Virus

Postby fritz on Fri May 22, 2009 8:38 pm

I downloaded Linux Mint Basic (my first) and explorer it from the DVD (not installed yet)
looks interesting ( bit different then the Vista and XP I have)
Question
Does it come with Virus Protection build in
or
do I need to Install a Anti-Virus program
(I run AVG and Avast there free I like free stuff lol)

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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby rivenathos on Fri May 22, 2009 8:51 pm

Antivirus in Linux is pretty much unnecessary for the average user. However, if you want it, ClamAV and the ClamTK GUI are available in the repositories.
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby fritz on Fri May 22, 2009 9:34 pm

thank you for the reply
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby pluraldave on Sat May 23, 2009 3:56 am

Make sure you turn on the firewall. It is included with mint but I think it is disabled by default.
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby fritz on Sat May 23, 2009 8:19 am

yes it was disabled I enabled it
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby k0tuk on Tue May 26, 2009 3:50 am

I`m not sure if there are any working viruses for Linux... correct me if i`m wrong, though :)
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby trident on Tue May 26, 2009 5:55 am

k0tuk wrote:I`m not sure if there are any working viruses for Linux... correct me if i`m wrong, though :)


Very few as far as I know... the only real reason to have antivirus is if you share files with Windows computers, to look out for Windows viruses.
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby RedWagon on Tue May 26, 2009 7:24 pm

I don't think virus protection exists for Linux and I'm pretty sure ClamAV is only for scanning Windows partitions. I have personally never heard of a Linux virus. There are many reasons why Linux has no viruses but the main one I think is the way Linux (and any Unix based OS) handles permissions. In a computer there are different security clearances, much like in a military. The higher security clearance you have, the more you can do, but also the more damage you can cause. Windows, by default, runs everything as Administrator, the highest security level. This is kind of like a military where every single solider has the security clearance to launch nuclear missiles, if the enemy got control of even an infantryman things could turn out very very bad.
Linux, Mac OS X, and other Unix based OS's run everything at the lowed possible security level and only gives higher clearance if absolutely necessary. This is why when you change system settings or install new programs you must type in a password or lead certain commands with "sudo". The power to change system settings is kept from you so that during your day-to-day use of your computer you can't accidentally mess something up.

Oh, something I almost forgot to mention that you might not know, none of the viruses for Windows will work on Linux. They are so insanely different that the viruses just don't run.

In summary, I wouldn't worry about virus protection. Just keep your system up to date and have either a hardware or software firewall running.
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby Fred on Tue May 26, 2009 7:39 pm

In Linux you always have the firewall running. The firewall in Linux is not a separate, bolt-on program. The firewall in Linux is called iptables and is a part of the ports infrastructure of the kernel. The firewall, iptables, is always running if the kernel is running. All distros come with a default set of port rules determined by the developers of the distro.

What so many Windows converts call firewalls are actually GUI configuration and/or logging utilities. Not firewalls. Once the port rules are set with these utilities they don't need to run, unless you just want to have another program running in the background or want a prettier log generated than is generated by default.

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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby flaminglemon on Thu May 28, 2009 11:12 pm

Fred wrote:What so many Windows converts call firewalls are actually GUI configuration and/or logging utilities. Not firewalls. Once the port rules are set with these utilities they don't need to run, unless you just want to have another program running in the background or want a prettier log generated than is generated by default.


So does Mint have all the important ports covered by default? If you do a fresh install, is there anything you need to do to make your system secure?
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby Fred on Fri May 29, 2009 1:39 am

flaminglemon,

That is a difficult question to answer accurately. There are always compromises that must be made to have a usable system. Example: port 80 must allow various web protocols for you to be able to access web pages and receive information in return. The developers make an educated guess about what you will probably be doing with a general purpose desktop system and enable those ports and protocols. If you wish to tighten up the rules because you don't need some of the things that are open then that would be good. By the same token, you might choose to use something that the developers hadn't thought of or that only a small number of people would need, so you would need to enable those ports and protocols.

For the vast majority of people the defaults are usually good enough, but it is always better to close off stuff you don't need. That is where configuration utilities like Gufw come in to play. Once set they don't need to run all the time however.

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Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and each time expecting a different result.

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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby kansasnoob on Fri May 29, 2009 2:08 am

I just use email that has anti-virus (I believe Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo mail all come with basic anti-virus) so i don't have to worry about sending a Windows Virus to my Windows friends. And, of course, they should be using up to date anti-virus protection!

The defaults in GUFW (Firewall Configuration) work fine for me so I just click enable.

No problems at all in nearly a year and a half!
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby gibbs1984 on Fri May 29, 2009 1:22 pm

Just out of curiosity how comes Microsoft runs as Administrator as default and hasn't adopted a Unix approach to security but instead increases its own risk of getting viruses?
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby RedWagon on Fri May 29, 2009 4:00 pm

Just out of curiosity how comes Microsoft runs as Administrator as default and hasn't adopted a Unix approach to security but instead increases its own risk of getting viruses?


They are working on it. Windows can be setup properly by creating another user with restricted privileges, but nobody does it because it makes the system much harder to use. PC manufacturers set everything up as admin so that their PCs would be easy to use. Vista started in the right direction with User Account Control, but failed at implementing it in a way that people could live with. They restricted too much and caused all kinds of compatibility issues so most people just turned it off. As for Windows 7 I think things have improved a little more, I have a friend who has been in the 7 beta program for quite a while and I know that at least internet explorer runs by default under the permissions of a restricted user. I didn't talk much to him about it, but it sounds like they are improving security a little. Now whether or not people actually use it or just go ahead and disable everything is something we'll have to wait and see.
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby Katzedecimal on Fri May 29, 2009 5:37 pm

I personally do prefer to keep an antivirus program on my Linux box, mainly because I do do a lot of file-sharing with Windows users. Although Windows viruses won't run on Linux Mint, they will lie dormant, waiting to be passed on. I consider it a courtesy, as I don't particularly wish to cultivate a reputation for being a "Typhoid Mary" :mrgreen: My other reason for keeping antivirus is for scanning my seldom-used-now Windows drive, and the Windows machines on our household LAN. I've uncovered a couple of viruses that way, invisible to the Windows antivirus programs on those machines.

I use Avast! for Linux, which is available in .deb packages. Simply download the .debs from the Avast! site and double-click to install, they will install the GUI and add itself to MintMenu automagically now.

There IS Linux malware, though precious little 'in the wild'. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_malware As Linux gets more popular (thanks to Ubuntu and M$'s greed and screw-ups), the possibility for exploitation may increase. However, I think the real work of antimalware for Linux is as noted above, using it to detect Windows viruses on Windows machines, that have hidden themselves from the Windows antimalware programs.
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Dance without senses, no message I hear
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby arboon on Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:08 pm

Just like Katzedecimal, I use Avast antivirus, cause I have a home network with Windows, Linux and Mac (and they don't communicate as I want them all the time, just like people.. :lol:). I think this is a good option, also since I do a lot of file sharing. However, when I run the scanning option in Avast, I get a lot of scanning errors (permission denied), probably because these dirs are root dirs. I don't mind, since I think (and do I think right, is of course the proper question) no virus can get into my root since a virus cannot access these dirs.
However, when using Avast, also install clamav, because Avast offers no email protection!!
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby arboon on Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:15 pm

And: unlike many others I do not think Linux is immune. Nothing is. Since Linux OS's are becoming increasingly popular even in regular businesses, institutes and and government agencies, malware creators :evil: will be (or actually: are) on the rise. Maybe it will not be as widespread as Windows malware, but better to be safe than sorry.
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Re: Anti-Virus

Postby Dingostrategy on Mon Jun 15, 2009 11:27 pm

Thankfully there are no such things as stupid questions. I've set up a home server running mint (headless) predominantly for serving my music around the house (but also it would be useful for backing up windows machines).

I've downloaded avast and installed it. But now for the life of me, and with all the googling in the world, I can't launch the GUI to input my key and to figure out how it all works to protect/scan my windows files.

Cheers for your help.

The package i downloaded is 1.3.0-2_i386.deb

PS thanks for the forum and the software. I'm up and running on a headless unit via pendrive install, set up shared directories and squeezecenter - all with your help :)
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