General Question

jdogg's avatar

How many pc viruses and mac viruses are there? (Not together like whats the pc's amount, then whats macs amount)

Asked by jdogg (871points) September 28th, 2009

I need this for a persuasive essay :) Also how many new viruses for both are there (separately)?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

41 Answers

Buttonstc's avatar

Mac= 0

PC= too many to count

dpworkin's avatar

I don’t know the figures, but clearly, many, many more for PC than Mac. This merely reflects the PC’s vast market share, and no trait inherent to a Mac that makes it more virus resistant.

robmandu's avatar

There are zero Mac viruses in the wild.

@pdworkin, interesting you claim marketshare as a rationale. You might remember that there was, for a short time, a linux distro for the iPod. And there was a virus for that!

I’m not saying Macs are unhackable… but with marketshare increasing daily, at what point do you estimate to be the tipping point for it to be economically viable to support a Mac virus development community? Because we haven’t gotten there yet, obviously.

jdogg's avatar

if there are any numerical statistics that would be great :) (along with a reference)

robmandu's avatar

Symantec provides some rough numbers. The current number of “threats & risks” they list is 4,668,453… but that necessarily includes far more than just viruses. It would also include trojans, worms, and other attack vectors.

kibaxcheza's avatar

First off Define PC you (Exploit deleted).

Mac = a few, prolly less than the number of OS’s its gone through.

Pc = thousands.

But lets break this down right quick because im really tired of this shit. Windows has many compatible viruses. Windows has also been around for about 2 decades.

Mac’s os line has only been popular for about 3 years.

Give mac time, it will be attacked as well as soon as it becomes more popular.

HOWEVER: How many fedora, Red Hat, and other Linix viruses have you heard of? well there ya go then. and yes, Linix is considered to be “PC” as “PC” is only defined as personal computer.

Mac ( Macintosh, an old division of IBM) had a run in like this earlier on, they went under after they lost popularity.

Point: Mac has less viruses because no one uses it. WINDOWS has many attacks because it is very popular and has many default system settings. PC IS NOT A VALID TERM FOR YOUR PAPER.

robmandu's avatar

McAfee reports that 572,740 “threats” are detected with their latest definitions file.

Again, “threats” would encompass far more than viruses alone.

jdogg's avatar

@ kibaxcheza what would be a valid term….and also its not just because the minority uses MAC, as you see over the past 6 years, mac users have nearly doubled, and yet still the virus threat is SO small… also remember when mac was popular back in the day.. (like 9–13 years ago) and dominated pc sales by 89% yet, pc which was minority, already had almost 2,000 viruses, which is more then what mac has still

kibaxcheza's avatar

@robmandu Im sure hes using the term lightly….. just go will all attack vectors.

@jdogg Define what you think a “PC” is and ill tell you why you and those stupid (Exploit deleted) commercials are wrong.

majorrich's avatar

There actually are a couple few virus’ targeted for Mac’s, but have failed to make any real trouble.

robmandu's avatar

@kibaxcheza, ah… “all attack vectors” is a huge difference in your question. You’ll want to carefully evaluate the answers you get as virus is a rather specific term.

There are many exploits for Mac OS X. Trojans (against which there is little defense beyond an educated user) make up the bulk of them.

Also, there are contests, like PWN to OWN that generate a lot of media coverage where security researchers demonstrate the hacks they’ve been cooking up over the last year.

fireinthepriory's avatar

As @kibaxcheza was saying, compare numbers of viruses in terms of the operating systems, Mac OS and Windows. PC merely means ”personal computer” so technically, macs are under that umbrella (although most people don’t look at it that way.)

If I were you, I’d hunt around on wikipedia – NOT for citing directly (your teacher will beat you over the head with whatever is closest) but if you get a good wikipedia page there will be lists of references, further reading, and external links at the bottom that will be a good starting off point for reading.

jdogg's avatar

yes fireinthepriory , today i was hit with the stapler, and i agree that pc includes mac, but i have no other single word/abrrieviations for that platform

fireinthepriory's avatar

@jdogg Haha well duck next time! And use “Microsoft!” Very viable use, unless you’re also including Linux into your “PC” term. If you are, you could even say Mac OS and non-Mac OS as your two categories, and explain what non-Mac OS includes (Microsoft OSes and Linux are probably the two people will have heard of.)

jdogg's avatar

well thanks a ton! (especially robmandu and fireinthepriory)

Response moderated
Buttonstc's avatar

To whomever this may apply: you can’t really delete “exploits”. Those are notable accomplishments. Not exactly something you want to be getting rid of now is it?

The term for which you were fruitlessly searching for is:

(expletive deleted)

That will stand you in much better stead in the future :)

fireinthepriory's avatar

@kibaxcheza Ok… that was harsh. If you’re annoyed by people who don’t know as much about computers as you do, then don’t look at the computer-oriented questions. People don’t come here to be yelled at for no reason, and it was rude to call him stupid. (Not to mention ironic considering your incorrect punctuation and syntax.) I know he didn’t understand your first answer, but it was pretty convoluted, and also phrased impolitely. If you were more straightforward and nicer I think you’d be a lot more helpful.

kibaxcheza's avatar

sugar coating stuff doesnt work. Its how ive lived till now and its never produced satisfactory results. You stick to you devices and ill stick to mine. And boo hoo, i missed the gd period. kill me.

@Buttonstc noted and will be used in future instances, thanks.

cwilbur's avatar

Anyone who claims that there are Mac viruses: find me a report from a reputable source that shows that the viruses are propagating in the wild.

robmandu's avatar

Turns out, there’s a gang of Russian hackers that are supposedly, but not really, or at least not effectively “targeting Macs”.

The article should help provide some unique perspective for your paper regarding the kinds of exploits that target the various platforms. In a lot of cases, it’s easier to scam someone into thinking they’ve been exploited (like selling fake – or even real – anti-virus software to Mac users).

It also sounds like the partnerkas focus a lot of energy on trojan horses… which again, is difficult to defend against. Users need to make themselves aware of what it is they’re downloading and do they – should they – trust the source?

Response moderated
fireinthepriory's avatar

@kibaxcheza Hahahaha! Ok, I wasn’t going to respond, but that was too good. You know, I actually think your logic is rather impeccable, being a mac user myself. There are no mac viruses because mac users are NICE PEOPLE who don’t want to “develop multi headed worms that are ment [sic] to steal personal info and remain undetectable.”

(No comment about your badly spelled “douchebag” insult, however the comment about getting work done? I bought a mac so that it would be easier to do my work – probably just a different kind of work than what you do.) Ok, I’m off to listen to Hey There Delilah, although I’d prefer a nice hard cider to a beer afterwards…

kibaxcheza's avatar

new flash, there are no nice people anymore.

and for my spelling, cool…. never used one so i dont care how they’re spelled…. did you check your box in the bathroom for the proper spelling or what?

and yeah, cider would fit youre persona better. Do you listen to DMB or phis and play game cube?

and my work, much better suited in fedora core 9 than swan or puma or w/e the new OS is called for yall.

robmandu's avatar

[ off topic ]

Well, dunno about the rest of y’all, but @kibaxcheza‘s clear and compelling argument in favor of Windows because it has been “very secure” has won me over.

His additional points about Mac users being mistaken as people who listen to Dave Mathews Band or the Plain White T’s and who might also be “cool” or (gasp) “hip” has opened my eyes to my heretofore backward ways.

And it never even occurred to me how lame it is for an OS to be nicknamed after large, powerful cats known for their cunning and quickness. I will now only look for a personal OS if its primary appellation is based on an increasingly irrelevant article of clothing.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to reboot my Windows PC. There’s work to be done!

fireinthepriory's avatar

I think the way I’m tolerating your grumpiness proves that there are nice people, @kibaxcheza. Just sayin’...

And LOL @robmandu :)

Buttonstc's avatar

Robmandu is clearly the winner of this one for his cleverly penned response !

cwilbur's avatar

OMGWTFBBQ @robmandu! Ubuntu is not clothing, you n00b!

kibaxcheza's avatar

name wasnt supposed to be in insult…. i dont know what its called. The Mac OS X line combines the restrains of Windows NT with the confusion of a straight dos box.

Linix FTW. From the past to the future.

but while were on the topic of names, look up Constantine, sulphur, werewolf… Calling it Fedora core 9 is like you saying Mac OS X 10.4….. You are so smart someone should give you a cookie…..

P.s. For your MAC; grats, you paid like what $600 for a sticker and a logo…. you totally win dude.

cwilbur's avatar

@kibaxcheza: OS X combines the power of Unix—because it’s BSD under the hood—with the ease of use of a coherently designed user interface.

It’s rather ironic for someone who’s a Linux advocate to slam OS X because of “the confusion of a straight dos [sic] box”—pretty clear evidence that the speaker is out of his depth.

kibaxcheza's avatar

@cwilbur you think that i dont know what it is? and you dont think that i can run command line…. Wow, sorry for speaking in such that i say rocket science in stead of aerospace engineering…. I dont expect everyone to be on the same levels with everything as i am… that would be pompous… And you cant tell me that everyone knows how to run CL based OS.
But, one thing that separates Mac and Unix, is the amount of control. MAC even says it themselves “We turned off many safety controls so that the user doesnt get confused with complex settings.” Its a restrictive OS, more so than Windows.
You cant even begin to deny that. And you cant deny that you paid out the ass for a logo and some pretty lights.

I can believe that a computer literate person would even begin to choose mac…. shows that youre an idiot.

and you can take your [sic] shit and shove it. Dos box is a legit phrase.

robmandu's avatar



< < “computer literate person” over the last 29 years and more platforms than @kibaxcheza can spell incorrectly.

kibaxcheza's avatar

@robmandu and the context is wrong how? expecting everyone to have a command of a (basically) outdated topic and to say that its common knowledge would be very pompous of me, as i would be degrading someone for not having the same knowledge…...

cwilbur's avatar

@kibaxcheza: I think you “don’t know what [Mac OS X] is,” in that the statements you’re making about it are completely ridiculous and have very little basis in fact. It’s almost as if you’ve read a few screeds about OS X on Linux fanboy websites and consider yourself an expert.

I am, in fact, a computer literate person. I make my living (and a very good one, at that) as a software developer. I use Linux every day at work, and have been using it off and on since 1993; I’ve been using some flavor of Unix, not counting OS X, continuously since 1991. I chose the Mac because of that BSD base and because of a consistent user interface. I got a logo and some pretty lights, sure, but I also got a well-engineered, high-performance computer with a rock-solid and easily usable operating system.

You are certainly free to continue ranting, but to be honest the more you say on this matter the more you reveal your ignorance.

jdogg's avatar

@kibaxcheza what makes you think I’m less smart with computers than you are!? Please inform me what you know and I’ll gladly see whether ur statement is true. I don’t ask questions to get chewed out, the only reason I asked it was for some statistics, which I couldn’t find, and some nice users responded with information.

Response moderated
jdogg's avatar

I have no room to tell u that ur wrong, in the end, who knows which one will be better but both have their pros and cons and it is ridiculous to fight over which is better, so I say, thanx for everyone for your help, whether ur for mac, microsoft computers, Linux, unix, solaris, or even this so called “chrome os” coming up…

cwilbur's avatar

@kibaxcheza: I recommend that you actually go to the effort of backing up your opinions; then you’ll see just how unsupportable they are.

“Such a cock guys” is hardly a convincing argument, and the fact that that’s the best argument you can come up with says a great deal about the rational basis for your views—or, more accurately, the total lack of rational basis for your views.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

[Mod Says] Please stay on topic and refrain from insults.
Off topic comments and insults will be removed.

prasad's avatar

AVG finds too many on my pc.
I can’t comment about mac as I’ve never seen one.
I know not a single person in India who has and uses mac. There could be few reasons for that:
1. macs are costly than windows. Cost does matter for many Indians. Only, companies who have clients asking for mac have macs, still rare.
2. macs are hard to operate than windows; as one of my friends who has seen mac said.
3. Apple didn’t do their marketing part as compared to windows in India.

I still don’t understand, if macs are costlier, hard to operate than windows, why do people use mac? Do they only go for it cause it looks great and less virus prone to windows?

jdogg's avatar

That are not harder to operate, it just takes a little getting used too. Macs interface is very different from windows setup wise, it’s like the setup of Linux only better organized. One feature I like is instead of going to control panel then programs an d features then uninstall program, all you have to do to remove a program is right click the icon and select delete and yes your sure and your done! I just think people need to try mac for 90 days and thenbdraw a conclusion not speak from there ears…

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