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Posted by Todd ( on March 20, 2001 at 16:31:30:

In Reply to: virus posted by nancy c on March 20, 2001 at 15:59:05:

Hi Nancy. Sorry I wasn't able to ask questions in a more clear manner. I'm fairly sure the email you opened with the pic of a bomb was a hoax.

It's also important that people understand that email is NOT the only way a virus can be transmitted from puter to puter. Your work computer, for example, is attached to a LAN (local area network) I'd bet. That means your puter is "wired" to other puters at the place you work - probably through a central server. You may or may not have permission to directly access these other puters, but most likely some applications you run are actually stored on the server rather than on the hard drive of the puter at your actual desk.

Floppy disks are another way to spread a virus. An infected disk will slip its' virus onto your machine pretty much the minute you stick it in the drive - unless you've got a good anti-virus program.

Now, to be just a tad bit more technical - Not only must you have an anti-virus program installed, you also have to update the Virus Definitions file regularly. Recommended is once per month plus right after you hear news reports of a new virus. Check with the MIS folks where you work to see how this is handled. They may be doing it for you without you realizing it.

For those with home machines, most of the popular anti-virus progs include something called "Live Update" (or similar words). You open the anti-virus prog, click on Live Update while you're connnected to the Net and it will go out on its own, find the latest Definition file, download it and install it on your machine.

Now, as to why this is necessary. Think of a virus like a disease. You can't treat CH with Pepto-Bismol. (PLEASE! - will the one person who took Pepto during a CH one time and had the CH stop NOT post about it under this thread?) Each new virus is a bit different than the ones already out there, so your anti-virus prog won't recognize it or won't stop it. The "cure" has to be specific. This is why you need to update the Definitions list often.

Joke may well have a virus that her Norton can't detect if she has an old Virus Definition List. Same goes for anyone else who got an email from her and opened an attached file. After last years tragedy with her PC, I'm pretty certain Annemarie keeps her VDL updated.

Here's a link to an article that explains the basics of virus's. When you finish reading the first page, don't forget to click the link to NEXT - the article goes on for several pages.

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