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  1. #1

    fluffer's Avatar
    Member Since
    Feb 20, 2007
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    Advice for a novice re:anti-virus!
    Sorry Mods if this is in the wrong place, I'm an Admin elsewhere and know how annoying it can be.

    Right, I've finally got my paws on my first Macbook after having more than my fair share of Vaio's. With these I have always ran Norton system works and anti-virus and am now totally clueless on how to protect my Mac. I'm running Firefox now and was wondering whether someone could recomend a good downloadible anti-virus or point me in the direction of what to buy. I've always assumed Mac's to be pretty hack-proof but would like to be certain.

    Thanks!

  2. #2


    Member Since
    Oct 27, 2005
    Posts
    4,702
    G'day fluffer & welcome to Mac-Forums!

    I've not heard anything positive about running Norton on a Mac for starters. I would have 2 accounts - Admin & daily use (restricted account) also download OnyX and run it periodically to keep your MacBook running sweet.

    There is ClamXav which is free ... Others will chip in with suggestions too ....

    There's also this link on security for your MacBook.

  3. #3

    MartinS's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 02, 2006
    Location
    Bournville, UK
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    As Pulse-8 says, install an account that's just admin, and assign all your apps to it (if I remember correctly you do this by right-click "get info", then change the ownership and permissions).

    This way, whenever anything important happens you'll be prompted to "authenticate" and be required to type in your admin account username and password. This includes installing, deleting or changing applications and such like.

    Also, in Safari/Preferences/General disable "always open "safe" files after downloading".
    www.martinsketchley.co.uk

    2011 21.5-inch i5 iMac
    Mid-2009 13-inch MacBook Pro

  4. #4

    fluffer's Avatar
    Member Since
    Feb 20, 2007
    Posts
    146
    Thanks for the advice, it's just so strange going onto this system now when I've been windows based for so long.

    Glad that Norton isn't the greatest of ideas for installing on a Mac, it slowed down my last laptop terribly, awful! At the moment I'm just googling in the toolbar to solve any problems that crop up - like working out a 'hash' symbol for example! I'll probably be in and out of here with incredibly mundane questions so thanks in advance for not laughing!!! :p

  5. #5


    Member Since
    Oct 27, 2005
    Posts
    4,702
    Just for your info fluffer, a heck of a lot of run-o-the-mill stuff is sitting here amongst all the threads, just waiting to be uncovered and dusted down .... all you gotta do is have the patience and time to sift about.

  6. #6

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Dec 20, 2006
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    26,926
    Specs:
    15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD
    I'm curious - since there are no "in the wild" viruses for OS X yet, what is it that Mac Anti-Virus programs are actually looking for? Is it merely heuristics that seek out Virus-like behavior?

  7. #7


    Member Since
    Oct 27, 2005
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    To be perfectly honest cwa107, I don't know. I recall running ClamXav a couple of times and wondering if the scan would finish in time for my yet to be born grandchilds wedding?

  8. #8

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Dec 20, 2006
    Location
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    Specs:
    15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD
    Quote Originally Posted by Pulse-8 View Post
    To be perfectly honest cwa107, I don't know. I recall running ClamXav a couple of times and wondering if the scan would finish in time for my yet to be born grandchilds wedding?
    I guess what I'm wondering is if those of us intent on running anti-virus software are really cutting off our noses to spite our faces since there aren't any true viruses out there (yet!).

    Any anti-virus software that is looking for virus-like behavior, but doesn't have an actual virus database to look for specific viruses, in theory, will just create added load on the system without yielding any tangible benefit to the user. With that in mind, I'm thinking I'll wait for the first Mac virus (should be big news when it hits) and then consider anti-virus products. I do a full system backup every week, so worst case scenario, if my machine becomes infected, I'll just restore my system and then buy anti-virus.

  9. #9

    walmartconnect's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 13, 2006
    Location
    Blacksburg, VA
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    724
    Specs:
    13'' Macbook w/ 2Ghz Core Duo, 2GB DDR2, 250GB HD, 10.5.4. iPod Touch.
    Norton.... I just threw up in my mouth a little bit. cwa is right, we might as well just wait for the first big one to come out since no developer will be serious about making any type of antivirus until that time.

    P.S. If you ever use a PC again there are plenty of less obtrusive (and more functional) antivirus clients out there. AVG and PC-Cillin would be my two choices.

  10. #10

    MartinS's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 02, 2006
    Location
    Bournville, UK
    Posts
    663
    I think the anti-virus solutions for Mac look for viruses in files that might be passed on to Windows users.
    www.martinsketchley.co.uk

    2011 21.5-inch i5 iMac
    Mid-2009 13-inch MacBook Pro

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