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I have installed in my Desktop PC Linux Cinnamon 14 Nadia as a host OS and in virtual box xp service pack 2 is installed as guest OS. Do i need an antivirus software for my XP, as I am connected to other people in LAN for file and printer sharing...Pl Help,,,,
Thanks for ur helpful answers in advance
Adding to post #4: also, in the early days, malware was (usually) in your face, just to show off/make the point.
These days they often run quietly in the background doing their thing, especially bots... IOW, you won't always realise its there.
What do you do with the XP system in the virtual machine? If you are using the web browser or an email program to access anything on the Internet, you need anti-virus software.
If you are only accessing shared folders and files from other computers then you have to decide how much risk there is from the other computers and the host OS. Do the other computers or the host OS access the Internet? Do the other computers have anti-virus software? If you can depend on the other computers having good anti-virus measures then it is less important to run anti-virus in the virtual machine. It never hurts to be a little paranoid and run anti-virus software even when you don't think that you need it. I often install one of the free anti-virus programs in a virtual machine's OS if I expect to occasionally access the Internet.
There are some things that are very risky to do (and might be why you have a virtual machine). If you do any of the risky things you should definitely have anti-virus software installed in the virtual machine. For example, if you are using the web browser to look at torrent sites and downloading torrents, that is risky. Opening archives or running files downloaded from torrent sites is risky. Opening e-mail attachments or reading e-mail is risky, especially with Outlook or Outlook Express.
Be careful about what disks or folders the virtual machine can directly access. For example, you don't want to map your entire disk drive from your host OS to the virtual machine. You also shouldn't usually give the virtual machine write permission to folders. If your virtual machine needs to write files, create a separate folder for it to use on the host machine.
Security is always a tradeoff between risk and cost. Is it worth the time and money to do something based on the risk that it avoids? Installing anti-virus software costs money and may slow down the virtual machine. You can get free anti-virus programs, and the difference in performance may be minimal. So the costs are pretty low. You have to figure out how much risk you have, and decide what makes sense.
Some other security measures that can help you are script blockers for the web browsers and ad-ware detection software. Just using some other browser besides Internet Explorer is a little less risky. If you use Internet Explorer, change the security settings to limit what scripts and Active-X controls can do.