|Really? What about viruses or other malware generally associated with anything free on the internet that is not open source?|
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Ok I thought that was a joke :|
I hope it is...
|Could the website itself contain an executable or some way to transport it to your computer?|
@Helios... This is actually possible I believe, although not quite put like that ^^ Or was you joking?
I think he was being sarcastic when he said that it was magic (I hope so anyway); but no, AFAIK it isn't possible. I think it's possible sometimes to download files without you
knowing, by exploiting... exploits in web browsers; but it isn't possible for a computer to accept data without knowing. That wouldn't make sense. If no-one is listening to, for example, port 21 and you send data to port 21; nothing will happen AFAIK. It would be lost, or ignored by the OS.
As for having or not having AV programs; I personally never use them. In fact, in windows, where my parents did
use them and they set themselves up to be loaded with the OS (that is, added themselves to the startup list without asking (which REALLY used to annoy me. You want access to my startup list? Ask for it!)). My parents didn't know enough to turn off those features that they didn't want or need (because you had to change things
(:O) which is naughty); so we ended up with a 64-bit, 2 GHz cpu with 512 MiB of RAM taking five minutes to boot. No way should anything that oscillates at 2,000,000,000 hertz (that is, two billion oscillations per second) take 300 seconds to boot an operating system. It should take about ten seconds at the most. If you allow a further 50 seconds to load other programs (bearing in mind windows is multithread and multiprocess capable, and should be able to load n
programs at once) that's about a minute. If you allow another
hour, because it's windows
(just kidding =]) twenty or so seconds for loading and priming drivers and generally getting everything ready; it should take less than 2 minutes to boot, plus a further 10 (or fewer) seconds for me to click my username and type my password, plus about 30 seconds for the POST routine, and everything else the BIOS does before the OS boots; it should take less than three minutes for me to be logged in.
But because of all the resource-hungry antivirus programs, it took five (on a good day); almost double what it should have done.
When I took all the "services" and startup programs off the boot list that I didn't need, it reduced the time to about 2 minutes, including logon.
In short; av programs should be avoided like testicular cancer IMO.