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Thread: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

  1. #11
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    How to keep 16.04 and 14.04 somewhat longer secure

    I subscribed to the free Extended Security Maintenance (ESM), which is intended for companies, but is free for everybody for max 3 PCs. Just google and register for the ESM service on the Ubuntu web site.
    I still use Ubuntu 16.04 ESM in a Virtual Machine and I use it exclusively for Banking and PayPal. To keep my applications secure, I replaced LibreOffice and Firefox by the latest snaps.

    I intend to use 16.04 till the end of the ESM in Apr 2026
    Last edited by lammert-nijhof; November 11th, 2021 at 03:55 PM.

  2. #12
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    One thing of note. While "security by obscurity" shouldn't ever be a security model to follow it does have some effect. As such that 16.04 is not nearly as dangerous as say an old version of Windows.

    My dad is the same way. He has a Mac that has been out of support for 5+ years. "It's working fine so why change it!" is his view. Can't blame him. But I think the average person regardless of age doesn't realize the danger of that type of thinking.

  3. #13
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    Quote Originally Posted by hk42 View Post
    IMHO the main reason to upgrade in Linux is to support new hardware not security.
    Remind me never to take security advice from you. Forgive me, but this is the sort of absolute nonsense that gives us an internet full of bots.

    One thing of note. While "security by obscurity" shouldn't ever be a security model to follow it does have some effect.
    No, it doesn't. Linux is not obscure. The fact that it is the infrastructure that runs the internet means that it is not at all obscure to those who are interested in mayhem.

    Just some advice for everyone: If you are not under an ESM program or do not have a current, patched, up-to-date OS -- Linux, Windows, Apple, etc -- do everyone a favor and disconnect from the web. You're the problem.

    For the OP: I would ask that you discuss with your dad the fact that danger he poses to everyone else far outweighs his desire to not have to trouble himself.
    Last edited by QIII; November 11th, 2021 at 08:59 PM.
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  4. #14
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    Quote Originally Posted by QIII View Post
    For the OP: I would ask that you discuss with your dad the fact that danger he poses to everyone else far outweighs his desire to not have to trouble himself.
    So you mean that an old computer with an old OS is a critical risk for all the brand new ones fully up to date with all their bells and whistles.
    Do you sell computers or OS's for a living ?
    Happy user of Ubuntu-20.04 on a Beelink BT3pro mini PC

  5. #15
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    So you mean that an old computer with an old OS is a critical risk for all the brand new ones fully up to date with all their bells and whistles.
    yes... (one doesn't have to have a brand new one with all the bells and whistles, an OLD one , that's up to date , is all good)
    Do you sell computers or OS's for a living ?
    what's that got to do with having commom sense?
    Last edited by 3nd; November 12th, 2021 at 05:09 PM.
    xubuntu 20.04.3 LTS (focal fossa)

  6. #16
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    Does everyone realize the OP hasn't posted since the initial post #0 2 months ago and hasn't been back since then?

  7. #17
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    Quote Originally Posted by hk42 View Post
    So you mean that an old computer with an old OS is a critical risk for all the brand new ones fully up to date with all their bells and whistles.
    Yes. Sometimes obliquely, but yes. For instance: 10k computers with old, unpatched OSes joined as a bot farm causing a DDoS attack on a critical piece of infrastructure or an important site. Bots spreading ransomware: Is your machine updated with all the bells and whistles? Are you sure? Are you absolutely sure that every move you make on the web is hygienic from a safety and security viewpoint? The "magically bulletproof" myth applied to Linux is just that: a myth.

    Do you sell computers or OS's for a living ?
    No. Appropriate security practices do not require new machines. Furthermore, selling Ubuntu at $0 per unit would require a lot of effort to make up for by volume.

    Please do not use the Ubuntu Forums to spread unwise and misguided security advice.


    And TheFu's observation is a good one, but this is in a chat area so it's fair game.
    Last edited by QIII; November 12th, 2021 at 11:12 PM.
    Please read The Forum Rules and The Forum Posting Guidelines

    A thing discovered and kept to oneself must be discovered time and again by others. A thing discovered and shared with others need be discovered only the once.
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  8. #18
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    No, it doesn't. Linux is not obscure. The fact that it is the infrastructure that runs the internet means that it is not at all obscure to those who are interested in mayhem.


    I guess I assumed that services would be targeted, not Linux in general. As such the main targets would be things that the average home user doesn't have or even know about therefore the vulnerabilities are less targeted. Any malware I'd assume would also be targeted at services that again the average user does not have the majority of the time? I wasn't claiming it's a good idea, but not as bad as it could be. Am I incorrect in this line of thought?

  9. #19
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    As an extension of QIII's comments:

    The main reason that Linux experiences less malware has little to do with its inherent robustness as an OS; it has far more to do with the fact that Linux users tend to be geeks and therefore are more security conscious to start with. The median Linux user is simply safer and better informed.

    This advantage has traditionally kept the Linux ecosystem tighter and cleaner than proprietary ones. The benefits are: fewer bot farms, smaller attack surfaces, less demand for dangerous fluffware, better code auditing… the list is as long as my arm. These benefits are significant and far reaching.

    But they are also fragile in the sense that they are dependent on Linux users continuing to practice good computing hygiene. When newbies or the misinformed drag their bad Windows habits into Linux, then say hello to Linux botfarms, c&c servers, ransomware nodes and the army of assorted nasties that have turned Windows into a malware cesspool.

    I'm at the point where I no longer want foolish newbies or no‑rules‑for‑me types piling into Linux if they insist on ignoring good practice and security hygiene. They pollute our entire ecosystem. And the two most important rules of good practice/hygiene are: never run anything EoL and update fast and furiously.

    It's not that hard. Disputing this is like insisting that the earth is flat.

  10. #20
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    Re: My dad refuses to upgrade his 16.04 laptop

    Quote Originally Posted by Tadaen_Sylvermane View Post
    I guess I assumed that services would be targeted, not Linux in general. As such the main targets would be things that the average home user doesn't have or even know about therefore the vulnerabilities are less targeted. Any malware I'd assume would also be targeted at services that again the average user does not have the majority of the time? I wasn't claiming it's a good idea, but not as bad as it could be. Am I incorrect in this line of thought?[/COLOR]
    There are many ways to attack Linux. Services is a big one, but not the only one. The most severe threats are zero‑day flaws in structural components. Thankfully, they are rare. However, not rare enough. Here's a recent one:

    https://www.theregister.com/2021/11/...ersal_unicode/

    This one is especially nasty because, well, who doesn't have Unicode? It's ubiquitous. The only thing that will solve a problem like this is an update. Any OS built before the update will be vulnerable. Anything after the update will no longer be vulnerable. And we still have people questioning the value of updates???

    But, in the final analysis, it's still older proven tools like supply chain poisoning, spoofing, spear phishing, etc that compromise most systems. These are not strictly services related either. Instead, they tend to have a component of socio-psychological engineering. The weakest link in most exploits is the entity between the chair and the keyboard.

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