I have a desktop computer that I only use for storage of old files. If I never connect the system to the internet, do I need all the virus and firewall stuff that I have on my laptop computer that I use everyday? Taking my question one step further, would I need the "stuff" on the desktop if I used that computer for back-up and moved files from one computer to the other but still never connecting to the internet? To me the answer seems simple but I am sure I am missing something!!
Thanks everyone!! Terry
Posted: March 5th, 2007, 6:50am
If that computer is connected to a network which is connected to the internet, you should use the firewall. The firewall keeps a hacker from being able to get on that computer through the network. Antivirus programs are not needed if the computer is not connected to the internet, it does not receive email, and it is not running programs that may be infected with a virus. Even if you are connected to the internet, if you don't open email attachments and don't run questionable files (like files from hacker sites), you should not need an antivirus program.
Thank you so much Ray. I did not consider the network issue as both computers share a router. I never turn on the router when I am on the desktop but you are saying that a hacker could come in through the laptop even if the desktop is off? The 2 computers aren't on at the same time. If I removed the router from the desktop, would I then not need the firewall? Please explain.
If the router is hooked up to the internet and your desktop is hooked up to the router, hackers can access your desktop from the internet (even though with a router it is harder for them and even though the desktop may not be on the internet). If the router is turned off (most people's never get turned off) when the desktop is on, there is not a way for hackers to get to your computer from the internet. In that case or if the router is disconnected from the desktop you do not need a firewall. Later versions of Windows (like, XP and on) come with a firewall in Windows.