View Full Version : Virus Protection

June 14th, 2012, 02:13 AM
Hello, kinda new here and just wondering, I know linux is a safe OS and all but I was wondering if any Ubuntu Linux vets could tell me if Virus Protection is necessary or not?

If so, what kind of software could you suggest?


June 14th, 2012, 02:19 AM
Hi, the short answer is no but here is a link to look over.

June 14th, 2012, 02:29 AM
as long as the only applications you use on ubuntu come from their repositories, you should never have a problem related to malicious code. as for non-application things like mischievous webpages and the like, as long as you're using your system as an ordinary user and not as root, no harm can be done because your ordinary user doesn't have the access necessary to cause real harm.

upon searching, you may find an antivirus applications such as clamav. the only use i've made of this is to protect the windows boxes in our office from cross-infecting one another through the shared files on the linux server and to filter out malicious internet content on our caching web proxy.

what's more, as far as i know, there are no applications for linux that will scan files as they're accessed like windows-based antivirus applications. instead, they merely scan files upon the user's request.

long story short - if you're an ordinary user, it's exceedingly likely you don't need antivirus on your ubuntu installation.

June 14th, 2012, 02:29 AM
Never needed it for GNU/Linux or Legacy Mac machines. I am grateful I have never had to mess with anti-virus software (never had Windows machine).

That said, there is some thought of anti-virus software on Linux and Mac machines to filter files as a courtesy to Windows users (if you share files or transfer files to Windows machines).

And too, some of the hardening of Linux is secure repos (where you get your software from) and one of the best security tools... a good password (http://netforbeginners.about.com/od/antivirusantispyware/tp/5-steps-to-a-strong-password.htm) :)

June 14th, 2012, 02:33 AM

Welcome to the Ubuntu Forums. :-)

This topic comes up fairly regularly on the Ubuntu Forums, which is why it's been moved to Recurring Discussions.

The link previously supplied should show some threads about the topic and a search of "antivirus" within the UF should provide you with all the information you need.

We hope you have a great Ubuntu experience. Don't worry about where you post. As you get more familiar with the Ubuntu Forums you will get a better feel for the proper place to post. Absolute Beginner is usually the best place for support questions since we will assume you are fairly new to Ubuntu and tailor our answers accordingly.

Happy Ubuntu-ing !

June 14th, 2012, 02:59 AM
I have been using ubuntu since 8.04 (so that means several years) and never once got any virus/malware/trojan or all the other goodies one can experience on windows...

Never would think to add any anti-virus scanner...really unnecessary....especially if you only use programs in the ubuntu software center or deb files from trusted websites (example...say Pidgin, VLC Media Player, and the like)....

I think Avast makes a virus scanner (free) for linux but unlike on windows (where i did use it) i never felt any need to add it to my ubuntu or any other linux distro i have used)...

There are numerous reasons that such scanners aren't needed on linux and you will find many articles on the web that explain why...
Linux is just so much more secure in the way it is built (compared to windows)...

However, do download "gufw" from the ubuntu software center (that's to turn on the firewall) and activate it...i always add it to my new installs...other than that, i wouldn't bother with anything else...

June 14th, 2012, 05:13 AM
Alright, thanks a lot guys for the correct and speedy responses. I do run root on occasion but I'd rarely be web surfing in root...

Again, Thanks.

June 14th, 2012, 04:13 PM
I do run root on occasion but I'd rarely be web surfing in root...

If by that you mean you never surf as root, then that's great. There's no reason to ever do that.