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AVG antivirus update attacks Apple's iTunes

post #1 of 64
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A database update from AVG over the weekend made the Windows antivirus software attack users' iTunes installations, mistakenly viewing the application's library files as a Trojan virus and placing them in quarantine.

After the update was released, numerous users began voicing their complaints on Apple's support forums and AVG's official forums. AVG responded by releasing a new database update that fixes the problem.

"Unfortunately, a recent virus database update resulted in iTunes being detected as a Trojan by AVG security products," the company wrote. "We can confirm that it was a false alarm. AVG immediately released a new virus database update (definition file 270.13.29/2260) that corrected this issue."

With the update, AVG would recognize iTunes DLL files in Windows as infected with the "Small.BOG" Trojan virus. After the files were quarantined, iTunes would not run.

One user on the AVG forums said they tried to reinstall iTunes, but AVG recognized all of the application's localization DLL files as threats. Others said their antivirus software saw an iTunes update as a virus.

AVG recommends that users having problems update their AVG software and check iTunes.

For those whose iTunes remains broken, AVG recommends the following steps:
Open the AVG user interface.
Choose "Virus Vault" option from the "History" menu.
Locate the iTunes file that was incorrectly removed and select it (one click).
Click on the "Restore" button.
AVG offers a free antivirus suite that the company says serves more than 80 million Windows users. The company also sells a premium application. The software runs on Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP.
post #2 of 64
All those Windows guys who say "I'm responsible and never get viruses on my PC" will really love this. You don't even need a virus when anti-virus will remove your music library for you.

Another thing that doesn't happen on a Mac.
post #3 of 64
Isn't Windows grand? So well thought out, so sophisticated. Must make Bill Gates very proud.
post #4 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

mistakenly viewing the application's library files as a Trojan virus

With the update, AVG would recognize iTunes DLL files in Windows as infected with the "Small.BOG" Trojan virus



"Trojan virus" is an oxymoron. Trojans and viruses are two entirely different forms of malware.
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post #5 of 64
AVG is the standard app recommended by our external IT Support folks.

I DREAD to think what would happen if AVG ever mistook our accounts database for a virus....

Any preferable anti-virus alternatives for those of us supporting Windows machines that contrary to their nature are expected to stay running and stable?
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post #6 of 64
Lame Windows and its lame antivirus software. What more needs to be said?
post #7 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by elroth View Post

Isn't Windows grand? So well thought out, so sophisticated. Must make Bill Gates very proud.

Hehe, I doubt he even cares anymore. He stopped caring right after Vista. He all but admitted right on camera that he wanted nothing to do with it.
post #8 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by oseame View Post

AVG is the standard app recommended by our external IT Support folks.

I DREAD to think what would happen if AVG ever mistook our accounts database for a virus....

Any preferable anti-virus alternatives for those of us supporting Windows machines that contrary to their nature are expected to stay running and stable?

I prefer Avast. It is faster, better, and less intrusive in my opinion. I literally just sold my Dell laptop this morning and am online buying a new MacBook Pro 13". I am so excited! My first Mac. No worries with AV anymore.
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post #9 of 64
Hate to tell you this, but OS X *does* have vulnerabilities too, just not as many.

Don't get me wrong; there's a world of difference between OS X and Windows, but if you remember, everyone was after Apple to fix a Java vulnerability for quite a while and it just got fixed. There's a huge difference between being invulnerable and being low risk. See http://forums.appleinsider.com/showthread.php?t=99273

Another thing to keep in mind is how much an anti-virus can slow down your machine. I run VMWare Fusion on my machines, which comes with a free 12-month McAfee subscription. Immediately after installing it, performance went to 60% of pre-antivirus.

Yes, there are some fast, cheap Windows boxes out there, but by the time you've installed an anti-virus, you may only have half the performance you were promised.

If you want to see what I mean, download the FREE trial of VMWare Fusion, and a FREE trial of Windows 7. Do a performance test using something like PassMark (FREE for 20 days). Then install the McAfee free subscription included with the VMWare Fusion and re-run the performance test. Interesting, huh?

I suspect the problem is that, when you have an anti-virus installed, the processor has to do pattern matching against every byte you read off/write to the disk. That's a LOT of wasted CPU. Think of the effect that has on the processor's caches or, worse, what happens if you have an anti-virus that's not properly multi-threaded! No wonder OS X seems snappy (and will be moreso with Snow Leopard).
post #10 of 64
But wait! Isn't saving a few hundred bucks when buying a PC instead of a Mac worth it? I mean, who needs a music library anyways?
post #11 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadisonTate View Post

Hate to tell you this, but OS X *does* have vulnerabilities too, just not as many.

Don't get me wrong; there's a world of difference between OS X and Windows, but if you remember, everyone was after Apple to fix a Java vulnerability for quite a while and it just got fixed. There's a huge difference between being invulnerable and being low risk. See http://forums.appleinsider.com/showthread.php?t=99273

Another thing to keep in mind is how much an anti-virus can slow down your machine. I run VMWare Fusion on my machines, which comes with a free 12-month McAfee subscription. Immediately after installing it, performance went to 60% of pre-antivirus.

Yes, there are some fast, cheap Windows boxes out there, but by the time you've installed an anti-virus, you may only have half the performance you were promised.

If you want to see what I mean, download the FREE trial of VMWare Fusion, and a FREE trial of Windows 7. Do a performance test using something like PassMark (FREE for 20 days). Then install the McAfee free subscription included with the VMWare Fusion and re-run the performance test. Interesting, huh?

I suspect the problem is that, when you have an anti-virus installed, the processor has to do pattern matching against every byte you read off/write to the disk. That's a LOT of wasted CPU. Think of the effect that has on the processor's caches or, worse, what happens if you have an anti-virus that's not properly multi-threaded! No wonder OS X seems snappy (and will be moreso with Snow Leopard).

The antivirus hit is just part of the story. Wanna see the other reason why PC's are so slow has to do with software architecture. Why is it that any software written for PC are so slow and cumbersome? It has to do with the modus operandi of software engineers who are used to working with PC's versus Macs. Want proof? Open Word for Mac and then open Pages. Pages seems to be running on a supercomputer compared to the slowness of Word for Mac. Everything executes several-fold faster. Try to really push it and Word for Mac crashes.

Everything written for the PC follows the same low quality, unreliable and stupid software design. It is not one thing, it is the total package.
post #12 of 64
iTunes should be flagged for what it is, a big bloated piece of junk on Windows. However on the Mac side, iTunes is speedy and works very well.
post #13 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadisonTate View Post

Hate to tell you this, but OS X *does* have vulnerabilities too, just not as many.

Don't get me wrong; there's a world of difference between OS X and Windows, but if you remember, everyone was after Apple to fix a Java vulnerability for quite a while and it just got fixed. There's a huge difference between being invulnerable and being low risk. See http://forums.appleinsider.com/showthread.php?t=99273

Not to put too fine a point on it, but "Java Vulnerability" does not equal "OS X" vulnerability.
post #14 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smiles77 View Post

I prefer Avast. It is faster, better, and less intrusive in my opinion. I literally just sold my Dell laptop this morning and am online buying a new MacBook Pro 13". I am so excited! My first Mac. No worries with AV anymore.

What he said.

I have managed a couple Windows-based networks for schools and small businesses, and I always recommend Avast. It has a nearly flawless detection rate, it is updated at least once daily, and for home use it's completely free.

AVG, on the other hand, is a resource hogging beast that has a relatively poor detection rate, and is legendary for problems exactly like this.

I can wholeheartedly recommend Avast, and if I were to ever need AV for my Mac, you can be assured I'd get Avast for Mac.
post #15 of 64
AVG is what I use on my own Windows machines. Luckily they're just for testing stuff and I never need iTunes on them.

This is NOTHING compared to the primary hassle of AVG (and other malware-prevention systems that Windows needs, including Microsoft's own). My main objection is how it bogs down Windows for several minutes every time I wake from sleep after enough days away--updating this, asking for conformation on that, grinding the hard drive, and popping up alerts and notifiers all over the place. I want to do a 3 minute test on Windows and it takes me 10 because of fighting off all the "security" software
post #16 of 64
I thought AVG fixed it already, it seems like problems were reported last Wednesday. Not that I know, I don't use iTunes on my Windows computers. The Windows computers are purely work computers, any music I bring in is by iPhone.
post #17 of 64
Mistakes happen. AVG is free, and the fact that they fixed it so quickly says they're an okay company. Would you rather deal with Symantec and Norton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

iTunes should be flagged for what it is, a big bloated piece of junk on Windows. However on the Mac side, iTunes is speedy and works very well.

Are you kidding? I just looked at iTunes 8.1.1 on my Mac. It's 152MB. For essentially a media player. That seems quite bloated to me. VLC handles a lot more formats and is only 57MB. As for "speedy," iTunes still eats up a considerable chunk of CPU cycles. Just having it open (idle, no activity, no playback) takes 40% of my CPU on my converted netbook, according to Activity Monitor.
post #18 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

Mistakes happen. AVG is free, and the fact that they fixed it so quickly says they're an okay company. Would you rather deal with Symantec and Norton?



Are you kidding? I just looked at iTunes 8.1.1 on my Mac. It's 152MB. For essentially a media player. That seems quite bloated to me. VLC handles a lot more formats and is only 57MB. As for "speedy," iTunes still eats up a considerable chunk of CPU cycles. Just having it open (idle, no activity, no playback) takes 40% of my CPU on my converted netbook, according to Activity Monitor.

Essentially a media player???

iTunes is far more than a mere media player. And what on earth are you doing comparing VLC to iTunes???
post #19 of 64
Classic. Just freakin' classic!
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post #20 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

Mistakes happen. AVG is free, and the fact that they fixed it so quickly says they're an okay company. Would you rather deal with Symantec and Norton?



Are you kidding? I just looked at iTunes 8.1.1 on my Mac. It's 152MB. For essentially a media player. That seems quite bloated to me. VLC handles a lot more formats and is only 57MB. As for "speedy," iTunes still eats up a considerable chunk of CPU cycles. Just having it open (idle, no activity, no playback) takes 40% of my CPU on my converted netbook, according to Activity Monitor.

VLC is just a player, that's it. iTunes isn't just a player. Does VLC have a podcast catalog and retrieval system? Does it index all your audio and video media? Does it offer anything like auto updating smart playlists? It also syncs photos, emails, contacts & calendar data with other programs if you want it to. It's one thing if you don't want or need those features, but to call iTunes just a media player compared to VLC, then that's just not an apt comparison.

iTunes shouldn't be taking 40% of your CPU just idling, that is bad, but I've never seen that. iTunes shouldn't be taking any CPU unless you're doing something with it.

The current version of iTunes is 8.2.1. It might help to do an update unless you have a Pre that you want to sync to it.
post #21 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

As for "speedy," iTunes still eats up a considerable chunk of CPU cycles. Just having it open (idle, no activity, no playback) takes 40% of my CPU on my converted netbook, according to Activity Monitor.

Something's wrong with your iTunes or OS. Both iTunes and iTunes helper use 0.0% CPU when idle (On OS X). By "converted netbook", I assume you mean it's a hackintosh.
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post #22 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tauron View Post

Want proof? Open Word for Mac and then open Pages. Pages seems to be running on a supercomputer compared to the slowness of Word for Mac. Everything executes several-fold faster.

Hmmm... One of my complaints about iWorks is that it is sooooo sloooow. I have had every version and I find both Pages and Numbers very slow to open and slow at processing input.
post #23 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankenstein View Post

AVG was right! Anything made by Apple should be flagged and blocked. Nonething but bloatware for people not tech savy enough to use a pc.

So you are saying that ~80% of computer users worldwide (Windows users) are tech savy?
And why should users be "tech savy" to use a computer? Oh. that''s right. It's because they HAVE to be tech savy to get the computer to work.
The means justifies the end?
post #24 of 64
One of my primary ways to back up my MacBook's iTunes library is to copy everything over to my old-er PC. I run AVG on my PC box, WinXP SP3. I happened to open iTunes on my PC the day I heard about this problem (last week) just to see what happened, and all was good. So apparently this didn't happen to everybody.

For me, I tried Avast!, and didn't care for it at all. Several error messages, application hangs, etc. So I went back to AVG. I don't really see any HDD slowdowns or update problems.

Whatevs. I use that PC for rare PC gaming, and iTunes music backups (besides Time Machine on my MacBook)...AVG works fine for me, and didn't have this issue thankfully.
post #25 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

So you are saying that ~80% of computer users worldwide (Windows users) are tech savy?
And why should users be "tech savy" to use a computer? Oh. that''s right. It's because they HAVE to be tech savy to get the computer to work.
The means justifies the end?

Please don't feed the troll. He's been here only a couple of days and has made 20 trolling posts in several different threads. Ignore him and he'll go away.
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post #26 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by John the Geek View Post

All those Windows guys who say "I'm responsible and never get viruses on my PC" will really love this. You don't even need a virus when anti-virus will remove your music library for you.

Removing iTunes doesn't remove your library. It only removes iTunes. And really, you have to do something stupid to get a virus.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

So you are saying that ~80% of computer users worldwide (Windows users) are tech savy?
And why should users be "tech savy" to use a computer? Oh. that''s right. It's because they HAVE to be tech savy to get the computer to work.
The means justifies the end?

Savvy? Savvy: "well-informed and perceptive" You don't have to be a computer genius to use a computer.
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post #27 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by oseame View Post

AVG is the standard app recommended by our external IT Support folks.

I DREAD to think what would happen if AVG ever mistook our accounts database for a virus....

Any preferable anti-virus alternatives for those of us supporting Windows machines that contrary to their nature are expected to stay running and stable?

Definitely Avast!. I've been using it for years for me (before I got Mac) and for all my friends on their WirusXP/Vista/7 machines and I can say it's a great program. NOD32 is excellent as well, but free app lasts only 30 days, then it has to be reinstalled - not worth.
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post #28 of 64
AVG makes some pretty poor software, in my opinion. I spent years as a computer technician/supervisor and problems like this with AVG happened too frequently. It also failed, all too often, to protect a machine against new threats. I guess you get what you pay for. I haven't seen much better performance from the full version.

I personally prefer Nod32 for Windows. Not very intrusive--especially compared to the alternatives--and among the best in dealing with ground zero threats.

As for Mac, I just love not having to deal with these things. There's always someone chiming in about how there are also numerous Mac vulnerabilities, but what they're really observing is how many vulnerabilities are patched on both systems. The statistic that really matters, here, is how many vulnerabilities are actually taken advantage of. Even if the Mac had twenty times more vulnerabilities patched each month than Windows (obviously this is a hypothetical situation), Mac users would *still* be much safer, because odds are not a one of them would be taken advantage of to target the actual user. Life as usual. On Windows, pretty much every single one of them that offered an attractive attack vector would be translated into real-world viruses or spyware.
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post #29 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Hehe, I doubt he even cares anymore. He stopped caring right after Vista.

Are you kidding!? He has over $50 billion in wealth - and all his future good works - tied up in it. You bet he cares like hell (and is scared as hell too, with what's unfolding with his company).
post #30 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tauron View Post

The antivirus hit is just part of the story. Wanna see the other reason why PC's are so slow has to do with software architecture. Why is it that any software written for PC are so slow and cumbersome? It has to do with the modus operandi of software engineers who are used to working with PC's versus Macs. Want proof? Open Word for Mac and then open Pages. Pages seems to be running on a supercomputer compared to the slowness of Word for Mac. Everything executes several-fold faster. Try to really push it and Word for Mac crashes.

Everything written for the PC follows the same low quality, unreliable and stupid software design. It is not one thing, it is the total package.

I agree about MS Office for Mac. It feels as though they did the minimum necessary to get everything running on OS X and brought a lot of baggage along with them.

However, I disagree about all Windows software being slow and cumbersome. That's a bit over the top. The world, for the most part, still get stuff done with Windows, and there are several areas where Windows is the best OS (such as multitasking performance) over all but the mainframe OS.

Let's stick to fair and true assessments. OS X is still far ahead, but you don't need to distort reality.
post #31 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post



"Trojan virus" is an oxymoron. Trojans and viruses are two entirely different forms of malware.

Just because it's different doesn't mean it's an oxymoron. If I say "banana apple" is that an oxymoron? A term is an oxymoron only when the terms that make up that term are contradictory or have opposite meaning
post #32 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQB View Post

Not to put too fine a point on it, but "Java Vulnerability" does not equal "OS X" vulnerability.

Java on OS X is implemented by Apple (not Sun), and is built into the OS.
post #33 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by blazinghero View Post

Just because it's different doesn't mean it's an oxymoron. If I say "banana apple" is that an oxymoron? A term is an oxymoron only when the terms that make up that term are contradictory or have opposite meaning

"Taped live" is an oxymoron.
post #34 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by blazinghero View Post

Just because it's different doesn't mean it's an oxymoron. If I say "banana apple" is that an oxymoron? A term is an oxymoron only when the terms that make up that term are contradictory or have opposite meaning

I guess oxymoron isn't strictly accurate. Nonsense may be better. But whilst "Trojan" and "virus" aren't opposites, they do contradict one another in the sense that it is not possible to be both a Trojan and a virus at the same time.
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post #35 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadisonTate View Post

However, I disagree about all Windows software being slow and cumbersome. That's a bit over the top. The world, for the most part, still get stuff done with Windows, and there are several areas where Windows is the best OS (such as multitasking performance) over all but the mainframe OS.

Please keep in mind that you're speaking with people who have very little to no idea what they're talking about.

AVG read a file as a false positive, the mistake was corrected promptly, and no damage was done, but still people here will act as if it's a critical flaw in everything about Windows. Amazing.

If anyone's looking for a decent discussion, it won't be found here in this thread.
post #36 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

If anyone's looking for a decent discussion, it won't be found here in this thread.

Yeah, there's a lot of crud, but we did learn that AVG isn't great and that Avast and NOD32 (which I'd never heard of) are probably better. So, I learnt something at least.
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post #37 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadisonTate View Post

"Taped live" is an oxymoron.

That is redundant, not an oxymoron.
post #38 of 64


One more reason to go Mac.

Oh, and to put the question to rest, MS wants Word to drag on OSX, and Apple wants iTunes to drag on Windows. That's why these things happen.
post #39 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by oseame View Post

Any preferable anti-virus alternatives for those of us supporting Windows machines that contrary to their nature are expected to stay running and stable?

On the Windows machines I set up for folks who wish to use one of the free antivirus apps, I usually install either: Avira, Avast, or BitDefender (note there is no anti-spy function in BitDefender, so perhaps use Windows Defender anti-spy with that choice).
I am currently using Avira on my own Windows machine.
I agree that Avast and Avira are less intrusive, and seem (to me) to use less resource than AVG.
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post #40 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

Yeah, there's a lot of crud, but we did learn that AVG isn't great and that Avast and NOD32 (which I'd never heard of) are probably better. So, I learnt something at least.

lol good point. I take back what I said.
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