Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 10:54 UTC, submitted by irbis
Bugs & Viruses "For at least a decade, the standard advice to every computer user has been to run antivirus software. But new, more commercial, more complex and stealthier types of malware have people in the industry asking: will antivirus software be effective for much longer? Among the threats they see are malware that uses the ability of the latest processors to run virtual machines that would be hidden from antivirus programs." Note: Please note that our icon contest is still running! So if you have an idea on how to rework this story's icon, read this.
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RE[2]: No
by Erunno on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 12:54 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
Erunno
Member since:
2007-06-22

Except that viruses can still go on a rampage in the user accessible places (read: home directory) and in the worst case destroy all your data. Contrary to server maintainers I reckon that desktop users care much more about their data than the OS which can be easily replaced.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[3]: No
by chrono13 on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 13:19 in reply to "RE[2]: No"
chrono13 Member since:
2006-10-25

Most viruses, by the very definition of virus, spread automatically.

Rights restrictions almost immediately prevents most of these transmission methods.

Yes, it can hit the home directory. Does it have rights enough to start again after a restart? Maybe. Run as a system service or destroy ALL users data? No.

Additionally, a simple cron backup to any other location that requires elevation to write leaves the data, or at least most of it, protected.

Requiring right clicking and changing to executable would mitigate accidents and spoofs, though doesn't address the Dancing Bunny issue.

There are other solutions to this problem as well, but I absolutely agree that the data is the most important, and should always be backed up on a regular, automated basis, preferably to a different drive.

Hard drive failure can happen anytime to anyone and destroy all that data instantly, and more effectively than any virus. That doesn't mean data shouldn't be stored on hard drives, it simply means that the more valuable it is, the more care should be taken to ensure it is not lost.

I can let a friend use my computer and not have to worry about what they are doing. They are a limited user and the worst case scenario is removing and re-adding that user, deleting all problems with it. And I never have to worry about my computer failing to boot tomorrow because of an ini file embed in a website I visit today.

And finally, most Windows problems are not exploit related, but initiated through direct user interaction. Whether downloading a file from freesoftware4free.com or Kazaa, the greatest problem with Windows is that running as admin is default, and because it is default, running limited is not easy.

Losing one users files or login ability is terrible. In Linux, the system still boots, and I can still use the machine. I may even be able to use another user/root to recover the files.

Losing all users files and the ability to log in or use the computer is unreasonable, inexcusable, and far too common on Joe Sixpack machines. Sure, many of the files may be recoverable, but you know exactly what happens when Windows won't boot. The Windows CD goes in and the data is formatted away.

That Windows install CD is responsible for more unnecessary data loss than any virus in history.

Edited 2007-09-23 13:21

Reply Parent Score: 5