How to browse the Internet safely like an IT pro!

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posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 02:23 PM
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reply to post by DetectiveT
 


hmm that is peculiar! Mine does not lag at all. It may have something to do with how much memory your computer has? do you know how much memory is on your machine? Is your computer completely up to date?

I have only 5gb of hard disk space allocated to my VM, but it also has 1g of memory "dedicated" to its performance.

So my two guesses would be
-not enough memory
-an issue with hardware

If your computer is lacking in memory, there is also a linux build called DSL or "Damn Small Linux". I have not personally used it, but from what i read, it is one of the smallest and most efficient builds.




posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 02:33 PM
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reply to post by DetectiveT
 


I just had another idea, running a virtual machine off the hard drive as shown in my directions will be slower than say, running it off an external hard drive or a USB stick. You may have a lot of processes running on your native OS that you really dont need running 24/7 that will eat up a lot of your system resources. And on top of that, your machine will be sharing the same slow spinning HD. Running the VMachine off a USB or XHD will be fastest.

A couple other avenues you could explore-

1. Defragment your hard drive.
2. set your PC to run for best performance, instead of best appearance. Due to my school work which can require a lot of computing power, I turn off all the fancy visual effects of windows.
on windows 7 > start menu > type "appearance" > select "adjust the appearance and performance of windows" > then check "adjust for best performance".




posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 03:46 PM
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It's a brand new computer. That's why I decided to run the VM on it and why I'm so confused as to why it is slow. Aside from the basics thatcame with it it's the first thing I installed so memory is not the issue. I'll double check what's running on it though. Thanks!
edit on 31-8-2012 by DetectiveT because: (no reason given)
edit on 31-8-2012 by DetectiveT because: (no reason given)
edit on 31-8-2012 by DetectiveT because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 04:09 PM
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I am not computer smart like you guys so please answer a question I have.


I am wondering what the benefits of virtual web surfing are if your drives are already well encrypted?



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 06:33 PM
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reply to post by djr33222
 


Well, theres 2 aspects of security that seems to be popping up in this thread.
1 area is securing your stuff, physically, from say someone who can cain physical access to your pc.
By encrypting your HD, you are doing that. Of course your encryption method will determine how strong that is.
This area does nothing to prevent you from getting viruses ect.

By running the internet through linux on a virtual machine, you would have to get a virus that is capable of infecting linux and then tunnel out of the vmachine and infect windows. Which is very unlikely.



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 06:36 PM
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reply to post by DetectiveT
 


With my setup, i can move around my vmachine by simpky dragging the folder. To a usb maybe? But you have to reset the machine, as in point it torwards where the destination folder is.



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 09:12 PM
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reply to post by VonDoomen
 


oky doky... thanks.

tried to mess with it some more last night and got in but still something wasn't quite right.. will try to mess with it more eventually.. again thank you kindly for your gracious help



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 09:15 PM
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reply to post by VonDoomen
 


Couldn't an encrypted virtual machine solve both problems..

By protecting sensitive information from physical access,

And also protecting the OS from viruses.

So let's say I create an encrypted virtual drive that I could mount and unmount when I wanted. I could keep all my sensitive information there and also install an internet browser to be contained within that virtual environment.

If ever the drive is compromised I could simply create a new one, transfer the sensitive files, and delete the file for the virtual drive on my main system?



posted on Sep, 1 2012 @ 12:37 PM
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reply to post by djr33222
 


Yes correct!

Encrypting the drive will help protect your information from anyone who gains access to it, (unless of course they gain access while it is unencrypted.

The best way to do that would be by using truecrypt!



posted on Sep, 1 2012 @ 12:38 PM
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reply to post by leolady
 


Perhaps try installing the vmachine onto a USB stick. if your suffering from hardware or lagging issues, this should help alleviate that.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 11:51 AM
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reply to post by VonDoomen
 


Thanks for all your help.

I'm buying a new computer with a solid state drive and from my research I decided that encryption either doesn't work well on ssd or degrades performance too much.

I'm going to shell out the cash for an antivirus suite just to make my life easier.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:54 PM
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reply to post by djr33222
 


cool! SSD are are like warp drives compared to basic HD's! You will enjoy that!

And honestly, I have a hard time recommending subscription based AV. They may have slightly bettter active protection methods, but most AV rely on knowing what to look for. As in, the AV community needs to know about a virus in order to protect you from it for the most part. There really is no way to protect yourself from a Zero-day exploit except for not coming into contact with it!

Some good AV that are free are Microsoft security essentials, malware bytes, spybot search and destroy.
Also, running the NO Script addon in firefox is very useful. But it does require you to manually set permissions which can be confusing for lay people.

Best of luck!



posted on Sep, 3 2012 @ 04:25 PM
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reply to post by VonDoomen
 


Virus scanners have come a long ways. So even if it's not listed it can still be detected just doing heuristic scanning and the virus scanner picks up files that act in the same manner as a known virus. System files are constantly monitored. There for a while viruses was attacking the virus scanners themselves and shutting them off or turning off their constant guard. Once the virus scanner was disabled then the Trojan released the full payload onto the system creating havoc. Most of those types of Trojans are so destructive that even with a virus suite there is no way to repair the damage done. This is why I always stress to people to have a backup solution and a clone of your drive and make a restore point. Although there are viruses out there that can destroy even your restore points they just erase them. So you can see the extent of damage they can do. Restore point though can still get you out of a pinch if itself hasn't been attacked. It's good for fixing stuff like Installing crappy software that you couldn't uninstall or it BSOD's your system on boot time. Over my course of years I have seen some pretty gnarly trojans viruses that just turns your computer into a zombie and nothing can be done but a format c.



posted on Sep, 3 2012 @ 06:25 PM
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reply to post by sean
 


Great post, thanks for the addition!


I think the ATS community would benefit greatly from more easy to follow computer guides!



posted on Sep, 7 2012 @ 01:24 AM
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Please explain to me how if someone knows how to gain access into your VM, that they don't know you're running a VM off of another OS? Obviously the VM is just a shell that runs off of the main operating system, you would think that if someone has the knowledge of how to gain access into your system via the VM, they would be able to figure out the root fairly easily thus gaining access into the actual machine as well.
This is the part I never really understood.

Encryption is also a great idea but also pretty worthless if an attacker gains remote access into your system and simply sets up a program such as a keylogger to find out what your encryption key is - if they get the key then you can kiss all your encyption goodbye.


All the anti-virus, anti-trojan, etc programs are also very good - unless you happen to set up a second anti-virus. For example, Norton and McAfee on the same system. Then all kinds of problems can occur. The other thing is a lot of these anti-virus programs are VERY well known, and if someone really wants to go to the effort of creating some new virus / trojan, then they already know what most people are using as protection...


The only other things I'll say are that it's a real PITA to UNINSTALL anti-virus programs, then tend to cause all sorts of problems in your systems registry - I found out the hard way a few times.

When it comes down to it, the best security is common sense. If you don't know the source of a file 100%, don't download it. Another thing I keep seeing a lot these days are what are known as phishing attempts - where an attacker spams thousands of e-mails out to random people, with links to various websites that look exactly like the real websites do, and then people simply type in their information. A good example of this is a website like aol.com - you can easily use an upper case "i" to fool people into thinking its an L. In other words, aoi.com not AOL.com - this stuff used to happen all the time back when AOL was huge in the 90's and I still see it from time to time. So again, if you get an email that seems sort of funny, say - "you were found doing whatever and violated the rules of whatever", make sure the source of the email is 100% legit before simply filling out forms and sending them to some random person on the net.



posted on Sep, 15 2012 @ 08:59 PM
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reply to post by Time2Think
 


Actually remote access to a machine can be very secured IF it's done right. Remote Desktop is encrypted with a 128-bit RC4 encryption algorithm, which is kind of weak with today's 1024,2048,4096 bit algorithms. The traditional way to use RD is to open port 3389 to the router that points to the local machine. It's alright to use that method in a pinch. However, you wouldn't want to do this on a permanent basis and use it all the time. Remember you are still open for man in the middle attacks and brute force attacks.

If you are going to use RD all the time, I highly suggest setting up a SSH server on that remote machine for better security. Not only is your remote desktop session secured so is your internet browsing by doing a proxy tunnel to your SSH server using that 4096 bit encryption. By creating a public/private key on the ssh server, only users with a private key that matches the public key is allowed to connect and tunnel through the server.
edit on 15-9-2012 by sean because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 15 2012 @ 09:41 PM
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reply to post by Time2Think
 


As for your VM question maybe it could happen something like this.... let's say your network looks something like this...

Internet provider(WAN)----->Router(NAT)-------->Your Machine(LAN)------Basement PC(LAN)-------Upstairs PC(LAN)

Now with this you have your machine and 2 others on the LAN. Your machine shares it's C drive openly and locally with the other 2 machines. Now you create a VM on your machine that had been setup with Integration Features. The VM shares Your Machines Network NIC as though it had it's own. VM has a IP address and can access the internet as well as access your C drive through network shares. Now lets say you're on the VM browsing the net and you download a nasty Trojan. Now that the VM has been compromised the hacker now has access to that VM and also has root access of your C drive because you shared it to the network. In other words even though the VM is virtual it's still considered as a real machine on the network. You can verify this by starting the VM on your Local Machine and going to start | run | type in cmd and hit enter. At the prompt type net view and hit enter. As you can quickly see the VM is seen on the network. Hope that helps.



posted on Sep, 21 2012 @ 10:18 AM
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reply to post by VonDoomen
 

Why not simply do like I do, as an IT Professional myself, and run a Linux host with a Windows VM? That way your host system, while not 100% secured, is much less likely to be hijacked by a virus that you pick up in your VM than the other way around. Along with having a really good AV program to check links while working, this solution can keep you fairly secure.
Just my two cents
Kasei



posted on Sep, 24 2012 @ 09:47 AM
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reply to post by Kasei
 


I agree, that is also a viable approach. However, this post was intended for people new to VM's. Most beginners will more than likely want a windows host with a linux VM. This provides them an introduction to linux to become more familiar with the OS.

Thanks for posting!





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