Writing Viruses

The constant threat: viruses, trojans, spyware, ... the list goes on

Writing Viruses

Post by kiddietron on Mon Feb 23, 2009 5:25 pm
([msg=18496]see Writing Viruses[/msg])

Bet I got you to click on the topic fast. XD

Okay, so I have a question.

You know how in the war between Mac and Windows users, one of the main points is that Macs get less viruses?

Why is Windows more susceptible to viruses?

Most of the time is it possible to create viruses targeted at Linux?
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by dwmead03 on Mon Feb 23, 2009 6:21 pm
([msg=18499]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

It's not that Window's is necessarily more susceptible to viruses, it's more the fact that there are just many more Window's users. That's why there are less viruses for Mac's and Linux. Look up the percentage of people using computers that use Windows. Last time I checked the percentage of Mac users was below 5%.
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by mattman059 on Mon Feb 23, 2009 7:41 pm
([msg=18502]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

As noted above, windows isnt necessarily more susceptible it just holds the Critical Mass. If you were trying to do a lot of damage, you would want to effect the most people possible...the % of mac users and linux users together is less than the percent of the world which uses windows based computers. Ignorance once again prevails in most cases and people just assume its carelessness on the part of Microsoft and it's programmers to leave back doors and vulnerabilities.
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by kiddietron on Tue Feb 24, 2009 12:46 am
([msg=18516]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

I realize that Windows gets more viruses and hacks because it is used way more but is there any bit of truth in whether the security quality is different between Windows and Mac?

And is Linux really even hackable?
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by mattman059 on Tue Feb 24, 2009 11:02 am
([msg=18544]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

Some one correct me if I am wrong..but i seem to remember an article i read online bout a hacking convention in which a Mac, PC, an Linux box were tested for vulnerabilities and the Mac was the first one hacked, followed by the PC and last (if at all) the Linux box.


being open source, Linux has the benefit of a worldwide community of developers who love debugging, and penetration testing and who arent bogged down by deadlines for releases..so if Linux is hackable it's not because there are security vulnerabilities that programmers arent aware of, but it's because the developers themselves are hacking the system to figure it out/make it better. Windows and Mac both are pressured by release dates and budgets so that comes into play when designing operating systems software.
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by godofcereal on Tue Feb 24, 2009 11:54 am
([msg=18550]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

Ah the linux box could have been any type of linux. Ubuntu is the buggiest of all of them. Its not definate that the linux box is hard to hack.
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by TheMindRapist on Tue Feb 24, 2009 8:20 pm
([msg=18610]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

It is possible to create virii for Linux, as mentioned before, there are simply less of them created.
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by i_fallenhero on Mon Mar 02, 2009 9:10 pm
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why are less viruses created for linux? there are millions for windows
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by mischief on Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:47 am
([msg=19139]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

like it was mentioned before i_fallenhero, there are simply less windows linux/mac, and therefore less damage, and therefore less incentive to program evil software for those operating systems. but that doesn't mean the incentive is completely gone.

lets say you have 3 banks.

two tiny banks, holding 5% of the world's money each.

another big bank, holding 90% of the world's money.

if you were going to rob a bank, which one would you rob? :)
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Re: Writing Viruses

Post by ajisroot on Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:19 am
([msg=19619]see Re: Writing Viruses[/msg])

mischief wrote:like it was mentioned before i_fallenhero, there are simply less windows linux/mac, and therefore less damage, and therefore less incentive to program evil software for those operating systems. but that doesn't mean the incentive is completely gone.

lets say you have 3 banks.

two tiny banks, holding 5% of the world's money each.

another big bank, holding 90% of the world's money.

if you were going to rob a bank, which one would you rob? :)


The smallest. The bank with 90% of the money is going to have much more security, so the 5% bank would be an easier target, and it's still 5% of the worlds money... even with a fraction of that , I could retire.

But your right, a lot of it has to do with how much each is used, though I'm still convinced that Linux is less susceptible for a couple of other reasons as well:

1.) Installation. Compare the installation of windows vs Linux. I personally use Gentoo/slackware, and the gap in required knowledge from installing windows to installing Gentoo/slackware is tremendous. A trained monkey can install windows on a computer, but most Linux distros require a little more know-how. What this means is the average Linux user is going to be far more tech savvy than the average windows/mac user, and they're going to know when they should/shouldn't trust something far more often than a windows user.
2.) The differences in ease of running/installing a program. To install something in windows, doesn't take more than one or two clicks. *Almost* all the programs in linux (that I've dealt with, on gentoo/slackware again) require MUCH more thought, and often a glance at the readme file for instructions on installations/requirements. All of which is again, going to make the linux user more likely to move on. (obviously only applies to malware that is intentionally installed, and yes, this happens all the time to windows ppl)
3.) mattman059 makes an excelent point, and the fact that the distros are open source and therefore have a much larger base working on improving them, and aren't as tied to release dates the way the big corporations are probably has a much better impact on security. (That and the fact that every nit-picker in the world has access to the code and can help debug it.)


A lot of it has to do with who is using it imo, but then I think every software problem in windows is user error when you get right down to it.
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