What Is ClamXav (and do Mac users really need antivirus)
Subject:   Then what?
Date:   2005-08-23 04:02:50
From:   miked378
I've just installed ClamXav, and all seems fine. I set up the Sentry to monitor my desktop, and then went to the test site to try out downloding the test files to the desktop -- and of course, Clamav found them.

In doing this, however, I wondered what I should do with files that Clam finds. In the article, you suggest AGAINST quarantining files, since that "can lead to unexpected movements of data." The documentation at the ClamXav site says, "What you do with them after [clam finds them] is entirely up to you!"

Should I simply trash it? In theory, in the case of an actual infected file, is there a chance that it would do some malicious act before I deleted it?

(And yes, I understand there are currently no OS X viruses, etc...)

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  • FJ de Kermadec photo Then what?
    2005-08-23 05:50:27  FJ de Kermadec | O'Reilly Blogger [View]


    The reason the ClamXav documentation tells you what you do with the files is up to you is that ClamXav does not attempt to repair files -- an unreliable and risky process.

    In this light, trashing these files is the best course of action. Provided you have never opened them and they cannot infect your Mac -- a Windows .exe virus, for example --, you should be safe. Should you have inadvertently opened a Microsoft Office file, for example, containing a malicious macro, you might want to further investigate the matter and ensure that your installation was not compromised.

    In any case, you can run a system-wide scan with an updated ClamXav as well, to be on the safe side.

    Let me know if this helps!