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Author Topic: Apple Releases Safari Beta for Winderz  (Read 31749 times)
GrannyGeek
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« Reply #30 on: July 29, 2007, 06:42:41 pm »

Most computers you buy at a major retailer or from Dell, etc., come with a trial version of some antivirus product, probably Norton or McAfee. You can get definition updates free for a limited time, like 60 or 90 days. After that you have to pay. Or you can switch to a free antivirus product, or buy one you prefer. But there shouldn't be a period during which the user is unprotected.

Windows XP has always come with a firewall, but it wasn't activated by default until Service Pack 2.

I don't think Windows should come with its own antivirus. That would be very anticompetitive. It seems in this regard, Microsoft can't win. If it absorbs what was third-party software, people complain that Windows is anticompetitive. If Windows doesn't come with that stuff, people complain that Windows doesn't come with virus protection or a firewall or antispyware or whatever.

Another reason is that I sure wouldn't want to be using Microsoft's attempt at AV software.

Interesting what someone said about needing a license to drive a car, but anyone can use a computer. Often I and many others have jokingly said people should have to pass a test before they can use a computer. Might not be a bad idea. Wink

So many of those security problems and system slowdown problems are the users' own doing. Sometimes they know better; often they don't. I don't know what the answer is. Using Linux would help a lot--except that I seriously doubt that people who don't know anything about keeping their Windows computers secure and don't really want to learn how would be able to use Linux, even now that distros are getting markedly easier to use.

Like muskrat, when I buy something I always attempt to find out whether and how it will work with Linux. I like the salesperson to know that Linux users are out there and we buy stuff, too.
--GrannyGeek
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The Headacher
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« Reply #31 on: July 30, 2007, 04:00:57 am »

Quote
Most computers you buy at a major retailer or from Dell, etc., come with a trial version of some antivirus product, probably Norton or McAfee. You can get definition updates free for a limited time, like 60 or 90 days. After that you have to pay. Or you can switch to a free antivirus product, or buy one you prefer. But there shouldn't be a period during which the user is unprotected.
This is a bad thing IMO. Computer manufacturers should have the guts to include a free of charge product. There are probably lots of people who continue using the included Norton after it expired (no updates), or search for a hacked version / license key instead (with a poorly protected computer!). Manufacturers probably get some money for including norton's products though... I can't imagine them doing it because it's such great software.

Quote
I don't think Windows should come with its own antivirus. That would be very anticompetitive. It seems in this regard, Microsoft can't win. If it absorbs what was third-party software, people complain that Windows is anticompetitive. If Windows doesn't come with that stuff, people complain that Windows doesn't come with virus protection or a firewall or antispyware or whatever.
A Windows installation connected to the web can't work properly without antivirus, it needs one to keep running. I think this is different from the case with mediaplayer.

Quote
Another reason is that I sure wouldn't want to be using Microsoft's attempt at AV software.
Agreed.

Quote
Interesting what someone said about needing a license to drive a car, but anyone can use a computer. Often I and many others have jokingly said people should have to pass a test before they can use a computer. Might not be a bad idea.
It's a good thing people say it jokingly, 'cuz it's a stupid idea. If you use your computer unsafely, the only person you could harm is yourself (and other users of that computer). I honestly don't care if people use infected boxes, be my guest. If OTOH you drive unsafely, you're a potentially lethal threat to anyone on the road. Also, note that a permit/license is no guarantee for safe behavior.

Quote
Like muskrat, when I buy something I always attempt to find out whether and how it will work with Linux.
Me too, the best place to find it out is the web though. I trust the webs resources a lot more than some salesperson who just wants to sell me the most expensive thing he has. Also, a lot of salespeople have very little actual technical knowledge. If I'm really interested in a particular part of hardware/electronics I'll search for it on www.google.com/linux and see what shows up.
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Joe1962
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« Reply #32 on: July 30, 2007, 04:16:11 am »

If you use your computer unsafely, the only person you could harm is yourself (and other users of that computer).
That's totally naive, if they use it on the net. Think of all those bot nets for DDOS attacks, hijacked spam machines; think of your credit card details being disclosed by a badly protected shop computer... Shocked
« Last Edit: July 30, 2007, 04:20:08 am by Joe1962 » Logged

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The Headacher
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« Reply #33 on: July 30, 2007, 04:29:02 am »

None of those things stop me from enjoying the web Joe1962.

You can't blame people who don't know squat about protecting their computers for being part of a botnet. The evildoers are the people who build the viruses/botnets/spammachines / whatever.
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Joe1962
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« Reply #34 on: July 30, 2007, 04:34:41 am »

I wasn't discussing blame (yet, lol), just pointing out that they can cause quite a bit of harm, even if indirectly.
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tomh38
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« Reply #35 on: July 30, 2007, 06:28:15 am »

Just a few brief comments:

I don't think people should have to have a license to use a computer, though on the surface it doesn't seem like a bad idea to require people to have a license to drive through the intertubes.  This, however, raises some obstacles.  One, you would have to get every government in the entire world to agree to require all of its citizens to have these licenses.  I don't see that happening in most countries.  Even if it were possible to get every country to agree, the specter of reduced privacy raises its ugly head.  How would you verify something like that?  Here in the US minors walk into bars all the time and get served alcohol with fake or borrowed identification.  So it would probably have to be biometric verification ... fingerprints, DNA, retina scans, or something like that.  That seems frightening to me, since there would have to be some globally accessible database somewhere with all kinds of personal information about everyone licensed to access the Internet.

On the other hand, a lot of Windows security problems could be solved if Microsoft Windows required every user to give the administrator password in order to install any software, as is the case with all *nix systems (with the possible exception of Linspire, which I think runs always as root).  I think Vista has this as an option, but it should be the default.
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rbistolfi
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« Reply #36 on: July 30, 2007, 06:40:49 am »

I guess the best thing around this would be Microsoft improving the security of his products  Shocked. I don't know if they should sheep an AV with Windows, I know Mr. Norton is happy with this thing  Grin. I agree with you Granny, in this: You need to know what are you doing! There is no question about that. A policy of permissions is already implemented but the users are not using them. But, the microsoft hole has been a business as well the OS itself.
In other point of view, we need to think about this: Linux had been not tested properly in this matter, we don't know how the system will work if the 90% of the computers of the world were using Linux, and every hacker on the planet trying to break them.
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Joe1962
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« Reply #37 on: July 30, 2007, 07:07:27 am »

In other point of view, we need to think about this: Linux had been not tested properly in this matter, we don't know how the system will work if the 90% of the computers of the world were using Linux, and every hacker on the planet trying to break them.
In my opinion, that's a common misconception. Most web servers (maybe even most servers?) run Linux and *BSDs, you think they don't try to hack them all the time?
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rbistolfi
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« Reply #38 on: July 30, 2007, 07:27:03 am »

You have a good point joe, but a server has just a few ports open, and may be just four or five for the internet. And the servers used to have some problems with mysql. That problem is thing of the past, I think, and proves that the open source community can response to problems more efficiently. IMO, a good permissions policy should be enough security though, if you are infected, the virus has nothing to do anyway. I do some php+sql *crappy* programming for extra money, and you are safe if you have a good policy about permissions and you dont offer more info than needed, i.e. you dont run process just because is free as in gratis Wink.
I am just asking if the Linux box will response in the same way if the user has no good surfing habits, as well as the programmer. May be the answer is yes, I am not an expert  Wink. I hope so, because the day is near  Smiley
Linux is better prepared in this matter anyway, as everybody knows  Roll Eyes

Note: I have seen some sql querys like this:
Code:
SELECT * FROM tableX
When the only info needed is one field, should be:
Code:
SELECT fieldY FROM tableX
In the first way if something is hacking you, it will take the hole table, in the second way will take just fieldY.
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tomh38
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« Reply #39 on: July 30, 2007, 08:52:59 am »

I would like to comment on my own previous comment.

After having thought some, I've concluded that an irresponsible user is going to have problems even if the root/administrator password is required to install new software.  Many people I know who have Windows will get these popups telling them their computer is infected or they need a registry scan or something of that nature.  These things are known vectors for viruses and other malware.  I tell people not to click on that stuff, but their thinking seems to be "What could possibly go wrong?"  This is the case even with people who have had system-destroying virus infections in the past.  Norton (or whoever) can never catch everything, even if the definitions are up-to-date, since the authors of viruses, etc. are always one step ahead of them.  From what I've seen of irresponsible computer users, an administrator password is likely to be something easy to remember, such as the owner's dog's name.  Linux will even let you do this,  though if you set the password from the command line you will get a warning that it's a weak password.  So, if a Windows user's administrator password is "spot" and a popup appears saying that the machine is infected, and the user clicks "OK," the chances are high that the irresponsible user when prompted by the system for the administrator password will just type "spot" and let in the virus, trojan, or whatever.  Furthermore, a lot of Windows software that's "free" as in gratis comes loaded with spyware, and people generally don't do the research they need to do to find out what contains spyware and what doesn't.  So of course in those cases (Kazaa or whatever) people will generally give the admin password just because they want to download songs or whatever.

So, I take back what I wrote earlier.  Having Windows require the administrator password probably wouldn't make most systems more secure.

The real answer, as GrannyGeek and others have already said, is more responsibility on the part of users.  I'm a generally optimistic person, but on this matter I'm pessimistic.  If, in the future, children are taught in school the importance of computer security, things might change.  With the current users on the Internet, I don't see it happening.

I suppose it's natural that we Linux users, along with *BSD users and other *nix users (I don't include the Mac but that's a different story) are more security conscious than most computer users, just because we tend to be more computer savvy.  This doesn't make us "better" than those who are not as savvy, just more knowledgeable in this particular area.

Since this thread hasn't been Godwinned yet, I'd like to take the prize:

Hitler's Cat
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GrannyGeek
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« Reply #40 on: July 31, 2007, 01:04:00 pm »

Computer manufacturers should have the guts to include a free of charge product.

I doubt the makers of free-of-charge AV products would have the resources to handle multimillions of Windows computers. Their servers probably couldn't handle the traffic, and what about the tech support requests they'd get? It's not a realistic suggestion.

Quote
There are probably lots of people who continue using the included Norton after it expired (no updates)

I know that's the case. Maybe the warning needs to be MUCH scarier so it doesn't seem like just a way to get your money.

Quote
or search for a hacked version / license key instead

I am strongly opposed to piracy even when I think the manufacturers are being jerks about it. So I'm inclined to think the user of the hacked license key deserves what he/she gets--except that "getting what they deserve" can cause grief and even large monetary losses if the infected computer spreads the malware through the Internet.

Quote
Manufacturers probably get some money for including norton's products though...

Of course they do! Why do you think computers come with all this preloaded software, called "crapware" by some? The manufacturer can reduce the price of the computer because they're getting money to include the preloaded software. Frankly, I'd rather pay less and just remove the crapware, but a lot of people would rather pay more and not have to deal with the trial versions, games, redundant applications, and other stuff they find useless.

Quote
Quote
Like muskrat, when I buy something I always attempt to find out whether and how it will work with Linux.
Me too, the best place to find it out is the web though. I trust the webs resources a lot more than some salesperson who just wants to sell me the most expensive thing he has. Also, a lot of salespeople have very little actual technical knowledge. If I'm really interested in a particular part of hardware/electronics I'll search for it on www.google.com/linux and see what shows up.

Oh, I don't take the word of the salesperson that the hardware will or will not work with Linux. I mention Linux primarily so they'll know Linux users exist and we want hardware that is Linux-friendly. It's also fun because as a little old lady (the proverbial "your grandmother"), I don't fit the stereotype of the Linux user. It shows that it's not just nerdy guys with thick glasses and pocket protectors who use Linux.<g>
--GrannyGeek
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GrannyGeek
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« Reply #41 on: July 31, 2007, 01:26:04 pm »

I don't think people should have to have a license to use a computer, though on the surface it doesn't seem like a bad idea to require people to have a license to drive through the intertubes.  This, however, raises some obstacles.  One, you would have to get every government in the entire world to agree to require all of its citizens to have these licenses.  I don't see that happening in most countries.  Even if it were possible to get every country to agree, the specter of reduced privacy raises its ugly head.

Of course! That's why we say it as a joke. There is already too much censorship of Internet content by governments and we can imagine how easily a requirement for a "computer license" could be misused to restrict access to information. Nevertheless, it's hard not to wish for some mandatory level of knowledge before so many users are unleashed on the Internet. Heck, it's not just the Internet. How many times have you tried to help someone whose computer ran like molasses, only to find that they had 60 things running in the background all the time? No wonder it's slow!

Quote
On the other hand, a lot of Windows security problems could be solved if Microsoft Windows required every user to give the administrator password in order to install any software, as is the case with all *nix systems (with the possible exception of Linspire, which I think runs always as root).  I think Vista has this as an option, but it should be the default.

As you point out in another message, this wouldn't necessarily solve the problem. However, it would help because it would prevent automatic installation of malware. Or would it? Vista includes UAC (User Account Control) activated by default. But all I hear from Vista users are complaints about having to give permission for so many things that we Linux users have *always* had to give a password for. And it's not even that burdensome in Vista because if you are a user with administrative rights, all you have to do is click that it's okay to do whatever, not give a password. At least that's how it worked on my daughter-in-law's Vista computer. I don't have Vista myself. Before Vista, Windows for consumers has always been weighted toward convenience rather than security. Maybe it's too late to put the genie back in the bottle.
--GrannyGeek
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tomh38
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« Reply #42 on: July 31, 2007, 01:35:36 pm »

LOL GrannyGeek ... I'm definitely nerdy but my glasses aren't thick ever since they came out with the thin plastic lenses.  Grin

There's a shop where I go sometimes to get obscure hardware, and the guys who work there are all Linux nerds.  One is really a Linux dork but that's a different story.  They sell, repair, and upgrade Windows machines (otherwise they would go out of business), but they all use Linux at home.  It's a locally owned shop, not part of any regional or national chain.  When I do go into a BestBuy or CompUSA, half the time I just get a blank stare if I ask whether something is Linux compatible.  Once a guy actually said to my face that Linux was crap and I should use a real OS like Windows 2000 or XP.  Sometimes I actually get somebody who knows something about Linux, but I never take their word for it when trying to determine whether something is Linux compatible or not.

You're probably right in saying that the servers of free AV products couldn't handle millions of Windows machines downloading from them.  Still, when I'm helping someone with a Windows machine, I usually remove the (usually not up-to-date) Norton security stuff and put on some free things, which tend to be less resource intensive anyway.

On your final point in your last post, I've recently heard the same complaint about Vista.  It probably is too late to put the genie of convenience-over-security back into the bottle.

My point is ... actually I think I only started this post to say that my glasses aren't thick.  Cheesy
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newt
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« Reply #43 on: July 31, 2007, 04:15:01 pm »

Computer manufacturers should have the guts to include a free of charge product.

I doubt the makers of free-of-charge AV products would have the resources to handle multimillions of Windows computers. Their servers probably couldn't handle the traffic, and what about the tech support requests they'd get? It's not a realistic suggestion.

I gotta point out that your statements here are totally unfounded - your doubt, probability, and guesses do not make Headachers idea unrealistic.  I would much rather see "multimillions" of users sent away with AVG Personal Free and Comodo Firewall Free than the trial/limited teasers they get.  At least the end user wouldn't be left with a virtually useless product in 30-90 days.
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Triarius Fidelis
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« Reply #44 on: July 31, 2007, 04:21:22 pm »

Once a guy actually said to my face that Linux was crap and I should use a real OS like Windows 2000 or XP.

Ask him if he ever used Linux. If not, tell him to STFU.
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