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What's the problem / What happens if: 1) Running Open Office as user and opening a .doc that contains a virus 2) Running Microsoft Office on wine as user and ...
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  1. #1
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    Exclamation A couple of "easy" questions worth being stikied and answered


    What's the problem / What happens if:

    1) Running Open Office as user and opening a .doc that contains a virus

    2) Running Microsoft Office on wine as user and opening a .doc that contains a trojan

    3) What's the problem between logging, running an X session as root and do everything as root VS logging and starting X as a user and launch XEmacs (or firefox) as root?

    4) If there is an exploit (e.g. buffer overflow) does it makes a difference between being user or root?

    5) Do you install applications as root? Consider the distro packages (e.g. apt repositors) VS tarball from some webpage cenarios.

    6) How to deal with free closed source? Like unrar, opera, kqemu, vmware ... (these last two need root access at some point)

    more to come...

  2. #2
    Linux Guru Juan Pablo's Avatar
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    Not sure, correct me if wrong


    Running Open Office as user and opening a .doc that contains a virus
    A macro virus? The worst thing it can do is damage your /home folder as you should be running as a user

    unning Microsoft Office on wine as user and opening a .doc that contains a trojan
    Wine may run the trojan but the virus won't work since the directory structure in Linux is totally different

    What's the problem between logging, running an X session as root and do everything as root VS logging and starting X as a user and launch XEmacs (or firefox) as root?
    You can't damage your main system in anyway if you just use a user account. If you run as root you may delete /usr/lib by error or run rm -fr /

    If there is an exploit (e.g. buffer overflow) does it makes a difference between being user or root?
    I think if there's an exploit the malicious script may get your current user privilegies but there's still chance (very small) that a bug may cause an attacker to get root permissions

    Do you install applications as root? Consider the distro packages (e.g. apt repositors) VS tarball from some webpage cenarios.
    Of course, to install an app you need to modify the file system and only root can do this but of course you can install a tarball on /home by running configure with a prefix

    How to deal with free closed source? Like unrar, opera, kqemu, vmware ... (these last two need root access at some point)
    dont know what you mean or I am too silly to understand
    Put your hand in an oven for a minute and it will be like an hour, sit beside a beautiful woman for an hour and it will be like a minute, that is relativity. --Albert Einstein
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    Don't PM me with questions, instead post in the forums

  3. #3
    Linux User Dark_Stang's Avatar
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    You just follow their instructions for the non FOSS programs. And actually, many tars have instructions in them as well. The only thing I hate when installing from source are dependency errors. If something says I need glib I pretty much just give up...
    Two levels higher than a newb.
    (I can search google)

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  5. #4
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    What i meant about the FCSS (free closed source software) software was this:
    - do you refuse to install FCSS on your machine (because you don't know if there's a backdoor or not, e.g. vmware requires root to be installed)
    - only install FCSS that can install and run as user
    - you don't care and install and run everything without worrying about having to be root or not

    This was also what i meant when i refered the "tarball from some webpage cenarios"... There is software that isn't available as a package (e.g. .deb) so not many people look at its source... So just how much do you trust them?



    The root questions revolved on two things:
    - the constant alert i see by some people: "do NOT use the root account"
    - what's the problem of running the X server as root? If there isn't any, why does it complains and i have to do it as a user? The only reason i can see is the fact that every other X application will run as root as well... like Firefox and then we have to deal with all those nasty websites (javascript virus, firefox exploits)


    Thanks for the replies

  6. #5
    Linux User Dark_Stang's Avatar
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    How do you ever install anything on windows then? I've never seen a windows program where you have to compile it. It's allready in binary.
    No, I've installed closed source software before. If you ever want to watch flash movies, you'll install closed source software.
    You HAVE TO run as root when installing software to any place other than the home directory. This is usually accomplished by running su under terminal, and not actually loggingin as root. The only program that I didn't have to install without being root was Alice (the graphical program).

    The problem with running as root all the time is. What if you do get a virus? What if some malware does get to you? Well then you're ****ed. The virus or malware, because you're running as root, has free roam to your entire file system. Wheras if you were a user, it can only get in your home directory.

    Now, which would you rather say?
    "Oh damnit... I lost my music collection." or
    "Noooo! Everything is gone! I'm such a retard for running as root the whole time! Noooo!"
    Two levels higher than a newb.
    (I can search google)

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