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iWindoze

Is Win98SE more secure by default than XP?

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Hello, All....

I've just recently picked up a HP Omnibook 6100 Laptop and am trying

to decide which OS to install on it. I have Win98SE and I have Win2000

as well as WinXP (SP1a and SP2) what I'm trying to decide is which of

these OSes is more secure by default. While I'm knowledgeable enough

about them all to do basic locking down of the OS (antivirus, hosts, Spybot,

ect ect) I'd like to get an opinion on which is more secure by default, any

opinions?

NOTE: Assume that Win98SE has been brought up to date w/ all patches

installed-that's the default I mean, obviously trying to put an unpatched

direct from the install 98SE on the net would be insanity. Also I'm still

making up my mind as far as whether or not I'd install the system sans

IE via 98Lite so that has some bearing to the discussion. Mostly I'm asking

about services and such.

--iWindoze

PS: I've been able to get around some of my istall issues by using an

older drive image of Win98SE to install from, but does anyone know how

to work around the issues Setup.exe seems to have with the Omnibook?

It loads itself, checks the hard drive and freezes up dead when attempted

from within DOS...

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For home users, Windows 98SE is plenty secure, (when fully updated.) You most likely don't need things like file system protection or a built in firewall (which is on XP SP2 and sucks). If you are a smart windows 98 user, then stability won't be much of an issue with you. So windows 98 can be just as secure (or insecure for that matter) as windows xp. Just to reitterate on XP Home's security:

When I used that horrible OS back in 2003, I had BlackIce Firewall, NAV 2002 and 26.4K dialup. My friend hacked me 4 times over the course of about 6 months, and had no problems doing it. Both windows 2000/XP for some reason picked the most weird time to BSOD, such as right after a clean install. The last time I really used XP on my computer was about a year ago on my computer. I used it for 6 days, then it got a bunch of spyware/adware, (and AdAware/Spybot were completely oblivious to this for some reason), and I reformatted and stuck 98SE on it. Keep in mind that most of this happened a couple of years ago before all of Microsoft's amazing patches and Security Center addon to XP saved the world... or not.

So, how secure IS windows XP compared to 98SE. Just keep in mind that I used windows 95 from 1995-2002 and never got hacked. :)

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Yes, it is more secure from network (maybe not from inside - every user has almost all privileges, but if you are the only user that's not a problem).

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Do'h! I can't believe I missed that one!

Thanks for the response...the thread seemed to mostly indicate

that a hardware firewall was recommended, that's not exactly a

possibility at the moment...do you know if its possible to be 'safe'

running without one on 98SE2ME?

Thanks again!

-iWindoze

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There is no 'safe' windows box I think. I fully understood it yesterday when posting in this thread. You might want to read it.

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Windows XP has been pretty bad, but no computer is completely safe. Having it not connected to a network and in a locked vault can help, but it can still be hacked.

My Windows 98 SE box has been good for years though. Only picked up some Spyware one time, but now there are so many free protection tools that I have no problems whatsoever. Try using tools like these: AVG Free Edition (anti-virus), Kerio Personal Firewall or Outpost Firewall, CrapCleaner, and Spybot Search & Destroy.

64-bit Linux has been safe for me so far.

Edited by azagahl

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LOL, CrapCleaner. I haven't heard of that one before. Frankly, the only reasons that I think Linux is "safe" is because fewer people use it, and no one writes viruses for it. Plenty of people have explored windows and found all the security holes/bugs and written viruses to take advantage of those problems. If Linux ever hits the desktop market like Windows has, then I think it'll have the same problems with security and viruses.

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From the two computers that we have at home, the XP one has always more viruses than the w98. The last one was a porn popup when we opened IE.

Now I have installed Maxthon, and do regular ipdates with anti-spyware-viruses.

Somethign I don't do that often with the w98 computer.

However I strongly recommand the unoficial SP2 for w98 since it solve many crash and freez-up problems. I wouldn't even contemplate using w98-first edition (non SE). But that's not what I call a security issue, rather a stbility issue.

By default and as internet/netwark intrusions is concerned XP is less safe than w98.

As I said on the other thread, not only all viruses are being written for XP now but on XP and NT there are VBScript functions (language of choice for viruses) that won't work on w98.

This alone make me feel safer.

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LOL, CrapCleaner.  I haven't heard of that one before.  Frankly, the only reasons that I think Linux is "safe" is because fewer people use it, and no one writes viruses for it.  Plenty of people have explored windows and found all the security holes/bugs and written viruses to take advantage of those problems.  If Linux ever hits the desktop market like Windows has, then I think it'll have the same problems with security and viruses.

Desktop popularity is mostly irrelevant to network security. Linux has been very popular as a network operating system from approximately the mid-90s. Due to that popularity, as well as the fact that it runs on the most popular architecture (PCs / x86), security holes have been discovered continuously and that situation remains. I've had several Linux machines broken into, always as a result of not upgrading the server software frequently enough. Meanwhile, no-one has broken into a NetBSD or FreeBSD server of mine.

Interestingly, I've had only a single Win98 network intrusion, and none for Win95 (or DOS). I attribute that to the relative lack of network services.

Viruses and trojans, on the other hand, is where desktop popularity comes in, but I think Linux will remain more secure even as it becomes more popular on the desktop. One reason for that is that Internet Explorer and Outlook are missing from Linux. Another reason is that using the root (the admin user) account for everything is less common and more often discouraged in the Linux/Unix world (needless to say a virus without admin rights can't do as much damage).

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not only safety gotta think bout also wut kind of hardware u have if u have a p4 with HT then its a waste b/c 9x dont support HT also if u have a big hd it dont support huge drives either. i would look more if it will support the hardware u have instead of making it go to waste if u have an older pc its cool.. not like any microsoft product was more secure then nother lol IMO anyways

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