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Old 17. Oct 2009, 01:53 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Security. What do linux users need to know?

I have a dual boot computer. Winxp-sp3 and Mepis linux. I understand just by design linux is safer than windows.

However I have guard dog firewall and clam anti-virus running on my linux disto. What exactly are the vulnerabilities associated with linux. What can linux users do other than common sense practices? Can security issues on a dual boot computer effect either OS?

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PS: Move this if you feel it belongs in the linux section
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 12:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm so new to this area myself too that it requires others with greater knowledge to comment.

My understanding so far is that apart from a firewall for obvious reasons the other security apps available for Linux only serve to prevent the spread of Windows malware to other Windows users although these in themselves cannot harm a Linux system. I do believe though that it's possible to get a rootkit infection with Linux but I'm not sure exactly how or to what extent this may harm the system.

I prefer Firestarter for my firewall solution and also have RootkitHunter installed, that's it.

If any of the above turns out to be rubbish then no doubt we'll soon hear about it and become suitably informed
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 03:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Lightbulb if ya want to really know...

run your pc as "root" 24/7 and visit the darkside of the net your query will be answered very fast.

prob b4 you get out of the light.
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 05:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
run your pc as "root" 24/7 and visit the darkside of the net your query will be answered very fast.

prob b4 you get out of the light.
That is my understanding. The root is shielded by default. One must use a password to access the root section of the linux distro.

However each time you install software it requires root access. Not so much a concern when downloading and installing from a legitimate source.

Then there are times one wants to install software outside of apt get or synaptic repository's.
Clam anti virus doesn't have a very good detection rate. Does this then mean linux users will eventually end up with bloated security software on their machines?
Again the question lingers as to cross contamination between OS's on dual boot computers. Now add software being ran through Wine. What risks does that present.

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Old 17. Oct 2009, 05:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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@ wdhpr said...
Can security issues on a dual boot computer effect either OS?

osmosis will not get you...the much despised UAC in windows is kinda like root permission or do you really want to do this.

btw...good choice in Mepis, solid,safe and stable

cheers
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 08:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Avast has antivirus for Linux, free for home use :
http://www.avast.com/eng/avast-for-l...rkstation.html

About getting knowledge about Linux security, I think the best resource would be to get hold of freely available e-books on Linux, or posting the concerned question on the Linux forums. There are quality material available for reading about Linux, ranging from a novice to an expert level. Serious Linux users should read these books. There is so much to learn about Linux... and its fun too.
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 09:28 PM   #7 (permalink)
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It is weird going from a OS that needs all the help it can get to one that doesn't really need anything.

Linux behind a router doesn't need anything. Though I still run a firewall. For ease of use for a new guy/gal, ubuntu is the way to go, the newer version boot very very quickly.

You can install a virus in wine, as long as it'll run there and it'll bounce around in wine and thats it.

Linux does have viruses and potentially they could run but because it has a proper user account unlike the m$ joke that is UAC, even if you install a virus while it uses root privileges to install, it will only run with the privileges of the account you're using and only within that account. Also the fact that there are so many distributions makes it extremely hard to port a virus to them all.
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 09:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
About getting knowledge about Linux security, I think the best resource would be to get hold of freely available e-books on Linux, or posting the concerned question on the Linux forums. There are quality material available for reading about Linux, ranging from a novice to an expert level. Serious Linux users should read these books. There is so much to learn about Linux... and its fun too.

Yes I agree. Thanks for the link

I often read articles and tutorials about linux. There is lots to learn even from an old DOS user. I am still trying to get the language and lets call it the grammar down for linux.
Its a process.

I chose this thread because I was curious about the security issues involved with dual boot machines.
I do not have the ability to move this to the linux thread. As I mentioned in my first remarks. It would be fine to move this if you feel it would be more appropriate.

Cheers
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 09:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Yes, its a process. There is so much behind the GUI of Linux. The real power is in the command line. Linux is open-source, and so, the working and internals of Linux is also open to all users. If you learn about it, you can really get the most out of Linux... its so powerful. The mystery of Linux makes it fun too. The more I knew about Linux, the more interested I was in learning more about it. I really want to have a Linux system someday. I have lost touch with Unix/Linux, since I left my job... sigh. Otherwise, I would be taking active part in Linux forum.

When I was new to Unix/Linux... I read about them, and came to know amazing things. The internet came into existence because of Unix. Most of the servers run on Linux/Unix based systems. Many more interesting things are there about Unix/Linux.

Initially, I had thought about moving this topic to Linux forum. But, let it be here. It concerns Linux, but it is about security. At least being here on this forum, people who read it will get to know about Linux, and also about its superior security . Though, if you still want it to be moved to Linux forum, I can do it... or maybe copy it to Linux forum, so that it can get more response from people using Linux, in case they do not check this forum.
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Old 17. Oct 2009, 09:54 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Though, if you still want it to be moved to Linux forum, I can do it... or maybe copy it to Linux forum, so that it can get more response from people using Linux, in case they do not check this forum.
Yes if you could copy it to the linux forum that would be great.

Unfortunately the deb version of avast is for 32 bit versions of Linux. I am running 64 bit mepis.
This is really cool because I have a 64 bit computer that came with Winxp. When I dual boot to mepis I have a true 64 bit Linux OS and it flies.

Cheers
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