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Is it time to rethink the basic way computers work?


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#1 Nawtheasta

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 11:37 AM

I have read that Malware is is now costing world economy’s around 48 Billion a year. Other devices we rely on aren’t subject to this lunacy. Someone in a foreign land cannot “infect” your TV and take control of it.
With the speed and memory capacity of modern personal computers is it not now possible now to “burn” an operating system on to read only media that could not be changed??
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#2 groovicus

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 01:37 PM

Sure, but it could never store any documents, store any music, store pictures, or really do much helpful. You couldn't install new features, it wouldn't really do much at all. What good is that?

#3 Casey_boy

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 05:17 PM

In a way this has already been done. Several disk/system restore utilites use a very stripped down Linux OS.

But as groovicus says it'd be a bit useless. Whilst the opertaing system could be read only, you'd still have to save data somewhere and, again, how would you install programs/updates/anything withouth having to create a new version on new media?

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#4 Swordie

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 05:21 PM

Groovicus was pretty straight on to what would happen in a Read-Only world.

What we need to do is step up our game and everyone needs to see what they're doing. They have to double check, and have all Security Features on. With that in mind, probably 50% of Malware and Virus infections world-wide would be cleaned out.

And honestly, I doubt it costs world economies 48Billion. Reason being is, most people buy AV's, and check up their computer. They go to many electronic stores to get it fixed. It's part of the whole point of Computers. There is always two sides of things.
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#5 Nawtheasta

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 08:06 PM

Regarding the 48 Billion. Yesterday one of the links on Drudge referenced a German source. Unfortunately when I went back to see exactly who it was the story was gone.
I will be the first one to proclaim my ignorance as to how all the software inside this computer works. It just seems like we have such tenuous control over these machines. This new Virut malware they are talking about is truly scary.
Maybe applications like documents and photos may always be vulnerable. But if an operating system itself was unchangeable wouldn’t it be possible to engineer applications around this? I don’t know if this is a good comparison but take compact cassettes. These were introduced in the early 1960’s. Once the standard was adopted improvements were built around it . A cassette from 1968 will still play on a standard tape player today. Over 4 decades of usefulness.
Again if what I am saying is silly then I apologize for making a weak post. It is just frustrating that so many outside forces can manipulate these devices.
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#6 Swordie

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 08:14 PM

Yes, that new Virut is actually quite frightening. Imagine never being able to turn on your computer.. And getting your computer attacked inside out.

And I guess in a way, computers are still within the same frames. There are still the basics, and then people refine them. However, the computer is much more complex than a Cassette Tape player. A computer is a multi-purpose machine/device. If you went on a computer and never connected it to the internet, you would be fine.
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#7 Casey_boy

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Posted 06 March 2009 - 05:25 AM

If you went on a computer and never connected it to the internet, you would be fine.


...and never plugged in any removable media (flash/external hard drives)! :thumbsup:

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#8 Swordie

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Posted 07 March 2009 - 04:07 PM

If you went on a computer and never connected it to the internet, you would be fine.


...and never plugged in any removable media (flash/external hard drives)! :thumbsup:


Well.. That's a kind of iffy one, reason being is that on Flash/Externals' you only get infected if the file you place in there is infected.
And you'd have to avoid e-mail as well.. That seems a bit unrealistic in my mind.
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#9 patbox

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Posted 07 March 2009 - 05:39 PM

I have read that Malware is is now costing world economy’s around 48 Billion a year. Other devices we rely on aren’t subject to this lunacy. Someone in a foreign land cannot “infect” your TV and take control of it.
With the speed and memory capacity of modern personal computers is it not now possible now to “burn” an operating system on to read only media that could not be changed??
Regards
Nawtheasta


Yes! In other words the world GDP increases by 48 Billion a year. It creates thousands of jobs via anti-malware software companies. Our administrations wants us to buy more cars that we do not need; buy more food although we are already too fat; and I can't wait until some economists will come up with some more malware to create more jobs in the IT industry.
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#10 Swordie

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 10:24 AM

I have read that Malware is is now costing world economy’s around 48 Billion a year. Other devices we rely on aren’t subject to this lunacy. Someone in a foreign land cannot “infect” your TV and take control of it.
With the speed and memory capacity of modern personal computers is it not now possible now to “burn” an operating system on to read only media that could not be changed??
Regards
Nawtheasta


Yes! In other words the world GDP increases by 48 Billion a year. It creates thousands of jobs via anti-malware software companies. Our administrations wants us to buy more cars that we do not need; buy more food although we are already too fat; and I can't wait until some economists will come up with some more malware to create more jobs in the IT industry.



Thing is, there are too many people that already know how to fix Malwares. Although i'd like to see what these economists come up with.
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#11 patbox

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 02:28 PM

Thing is, there are too many people that already know how to fix Malwares. Although i'd like to see what these economists come up with.


Yes, but only due to all those anti-malware programs. I don't know what turnover do all the anti-virus and anti-malware companies make, but that could be in billions. Think of all the corporate clients etc.
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#12 BlackSpyder

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 03:26 PM

Correct me if I'm wrong but computers "evolved" from this method of OS. Anyone else remember the old Dual 5.25" Floppies, you had to load the OS on one drive and load whatever program you wanted to use on the other. I forget how, or if, you saved anything.

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#13 Swordie

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 03:39 PM

Correct me if I'm wrong but computers "evolved" from this method of OS. Anyone else remember the old Dual 5.25" Floppies, you had to load the OS on one drive and load whatever program you wanted to use on the other. I forget how, or if, you saved anything.


Seemed impossible, knowing that you had about 100MB in HDD.
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#14 Guest_fuzzywuzzy6_*

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 03:52 PM

It might be more useful to identify the Patients Zero in worldwide malware infestations.

For small home users, they could have a service that operates like a small government agency that has public access computers and use multiple scrubbers each day to excise or disinfect malware. This would cover new applications and documents as well as those already stored on their computers.

Here is a description of a would-be patient zero, a low level civil service employee in The Laundry, a British antispy-anti-demonic forces intelligence agency in a world created by Charles Stross in his highly entertaining collection of short stories, The Atrocity Archives, (New York: Ace Books mass market edition, 2009), 345 p.

. . . Fred in Accounting, a loser basically, who I had the misfortune to smile at last time I was on hell desk duty: "Help, I can't run my files anymore." Fred has just about mastered the art of the on/off switch but is sufficiently proficient with a spreadsheet to endanger your payroll. Last time I got mail from him it turned out he'd reinstalled an earlier version of some bits 'n' pieces over his hard disk, trashing everything, and had the effrontery to be mailing virus-infested jokes around the place. From the short story, "The Atrocity Archive," p. 19.

I had to look in the mirror for that one; I don't send out virus-infected jokes, but I do other silly things.

According to most news stories, the malware was created in university labs in an attempt to forestall future malware by developing improved security measures. We know how that happens: too many all-nighters, a moment of inattention, or bruised feelings, and something accidentally gets into the wild. At least, that is what the news stories tell us.

Edited by fuzzywuzzy6, 08 March 2009 - 03:53 PM.


#15 GTK48

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 04:03 PM

Correct me if I'm wrong but computers "evolved" from this method of OS. Anyone else remember the old Dual 5.25" Floppies, you had to load the OS on one drive and load whatever program you wanted to use on the other. I forget how, or if, you saved anything.


I learned Assembly Language Programing on a TRS-80 or Trash 80 as they were called back in 1982.




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