Dual Boot crossover Virus Risk

Microsoft Windows xp professional w/serv...
March 24, 2010 at 02:21:36
Specs: Windows XP, amd sempron/ 1gb
Currently I am having a dual boot system with both having Windows XP. I had the 2nd OS installed so that I can install and run any softwares I downloaded from the Net. This is because almost all of the softwares I seem to download have virusus in them, and so I did not want to ruin my basic installation of XP.

Now my quest is that if I were to install and run any corrupted (virus laden) software after booting into the second OS, will it by any chance infect even the 1st OS.
(Note that both the OS have Avira anti-virus separately installed)

See More: Dual Boot crossover Virus Risk

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March 24, 2010 at 09:54:34
I would think so as in the past I have had them jump from one drive to another.

I too test out a lot of software, downloaded from black and brown hat sites.....so I now have a separate computer to test programs on.

To date though I have yet to get any cross over from running a virtual os with infected software....But I think that day is coming. The crapware writers are always two steps ahead of the anti virus programs.

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March 24, 2010 at 11:30:48
This is because almost all of the softwares I seem to download have virusus in them

Isn't that a clue to you? Why not scan your downloads?

Some HELP in posting on Computing.net plus free progs and instructions Cheers

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March 24, 2010 at 21:42:03
Of course, I do scan them after downloading, extracting, installing - at each stage. But still later on they keep showing up.

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March 24, 2010 at 23:52:17
mmm Perhaps time/wise to reconsider which sites you go to?

The file sharing sites are not considered exacly paragons of safety; likewise some of the "chat" and "all about me etc." sites have allegedly been sources of problems too.

Also when you do download/install and scan... set a restore point prior to download etc.. Scan file(s) fully before you open/install them. And when you run a scan... disable system-store until your have completed scan and also deleted anything that may be quarantined too as a result of sed scan.

A specfic separate system would be the only other way to safeguard your main system; but of course you want sed files on that system too...?

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March 25, 2010 at 00:28:05
qaznqwerty, since you have an AV on each, you're probably safe from a virus, but a worm/trojan or rootkit nasty worries me. That sort of nasty gets put in an area of memory not usually scanned by your average '[un of the mill' AV. It takes a scanner specifically designed to handle them. Make sure yours is 'up to snuff'.
Ed in Texas.

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March 25, 2010 at 03:06:51
Will a better antivirus like Kaspersky or EsET NOD be more helpful in prohibiting the spread of infection if any does occur. I know there is nothing like a full proof antivirus, but still will it be helpful in my case.

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March 25, 2010 at 03:23:09

As I understand it all.. at any given time no particular utility can/will guarrantee to find all nasties.. But in time each/all will be able to deal with the knowns...

I find Avast (avast.com) a good utility. Kaspersky is also said to be good - but there is no freebie version (for home/domestic use)?

Also I tend to favour using an on-line scan say once a month or so; e.g Trend.com ("housecall"); and also avg offers a freebie scan (or used to?).

Overall it is critical obviously to safeguard data by copying it to optical-media and/or an external HD; and regularly updating the copies too... Optical has the advantage that if it's DVDR (greater capacity than CDR but one can obviously use it anyway) a nasty will not be able infect it; but possibly if one uses DVDRW (or CDRW) that may be vulnerable?

Likewise an external "HD" may be vulnerable - or not? Not having had some of the more unpleasant nasties (thus far - fortunately) I'm theorising somewhat here...

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March 25, 2010 at 13:18:52
You have two problems One is the virus issues and second is permissions. You are running under admin accounts most likely and that is a major security issue.

Clean all virus's or reload from OEM disks and check all media with one or more AV and antimalware/spyware softwares. Then follow best practices.

Put a autorun.inf folder on all usb devices.

Playing to the angels
Les Paul (1915-2009)

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March 25, 2010 at 22:29:47
Thanks all for the suggestions, will try out all of them ..
If there are any more please let me know..

And to IMpatient, if you find this post foolish as you say it is, kindly stay away from it instead of posting offensive replies. And as a reply to your "I also suggest you stay away from Computing.net from now on" - if you dont feel like answering questions then you should be the one to stay away from here.
Mods please take note of this offensive jerk.

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