I have installed Fedora on VirtualBox specially for malware testing. Do I still need an anti-virus protection in Fedora?

  • One thing to note when running a VM for sandboxing against malware - you may not want to install the VM guest additions, as that provides closer integration between the guest and host OS, which can be a vector for viruses to escape the VM and infect the hose machine. – nhinkle Jan 1 '11 at 19:36
  • I am new to it. Can you please elaborate what are guest additions? – RPK Jan 1 '11 at 19:59

No - but not for why you think. While there are antiviruses for *nix systems like Fedora, the threat is very low due in part to better security than windows, and partially due to the lack of profit in writing such things.

If you ran a Windows machine in a VN I would still reccomend using an antivirus, as while the OS is running on 'virtual' hardware it still works in the same way as something running 'on the metal'.

  • I want to use this virtual environment as a sandbox environment. – RPK Jan 1 '11 at 19:20
  • @Rohit; Doesn't matter, you don't need one. Stop making distinctions between "Virtual" and "Actual" OS' - the point of them is that they run the same way. – Phoshi Jan 1 '11 at 20:39

If it's connected to a network you need anti-virus protection and good firewall. Malware cannot jump out of virtualized environment, but can infect other PCs on local network and the Internet.

  • I am using on a single PC, but using internet on Fedora. – RPK Jan 1 '11 at 19:31
  • Actually, malware in some cases can jump out of the virtual environment. Some programs, like virtual box, allow for directories to b shared between virtual and real machine and anything in them can be infected. – AndrejaKo Jan 1 '11 at 19:34
  • Do malware understands Linux architecture? – RPK Jan 1 '11 at 20:00

It depends.

At one level "no" as you can reset the environment should you catch anything - plus you are running a *nix system which is less prone to malware than Windows.

However, if you need something for a longish period then "yes" to avoid having to reset the environment should you catch something.

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