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Old 22nd July, 2004, 06:04 PM
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Linux Security

Simple question with no doubt a complicated answer

Do I need to run Antivirus and Firewall with SUSE and if so which packages would be appropriate?
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Old 22nd July, 2004, 07:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dod
Simple question with no doubt a complicated answer

Do I need to run Antivirus and Firewall with SUSE and if so which packages would be appropriate?
SUSE comes with a firewall called susefirewall2, you can configure it in yast.. As for anti-virus, there are some out there, but I've never heard of a linux virus. Come to think of it I haven't heard of spyware either


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Old 22nd July, 2004, 10:24 PM
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We discussed this one at length in this thread a few weeks back. Yes, you can run a virus checker. Yes it is useful - especially if you've set up file and printer sharing with Windows, since you can check for Windows viruses, too. Yes, viruses for Linux exist, however 99.99% of them are unable to do anything unless you do Something Stupid As Root. Yes, spyware also exists for Linux - though this is limited to cookies and certain javascript applications. Currently there's no equivalent for the Alexa toolbar, or premium rate dialler installers, or registry altering scripts for lowering security settings.

First dispel the misconception that Linux is more secure than Windows - it's actually sold useable but insecure, like Windows. You've already taken the most important step by running as an unprivileged user and NOT as root (you are running as an ordinary user, right?) - you can actually do this in Windows by running as a "user" or "guest", and only using the Administrator password when you really need it. There are a few simple things you can do to tighten up the way Linux works to make it more secure, but that's not important right now.

A firewall in Linux can be a good thing. Linux uses IPTables, which is very effective when configured properly. Unfortunately it's very easy to configure it badly, which can actually render a system less secure than a machine without a firewall. As Time to Paws suggested, try SuSE's own firewall before you go looking for alternatives. They're all just front ends for IPTables...
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