Richard Bucker

When is auto update is bad?

Posted at — Jul 11, 2011

Always.Actually there are a few times when auto updating your software of virus definitions is a good thing. That is usually limited to when you are talking about “top 100” type vendors. For example I do not mind auto updating anything from Apple, the AppStore (Mac or iPhone), and I do not mind many of the software vendors that have been around for 10+ years and have a solid reputation. And I generally accept MacPorts.But then this one caught my eye.I started off by thinking that this was going to be an easy install of what looked like a decent application/script. The script was going to tell me everything about what programs and processes were connected to the outside world. (Kinda like little snitch) But as I read more of the online documentation I saw that a) it was from a college; and b) it was going to autoupdate.I was a college student once and I did not do anything really stupid when I was that age but not everyone is like me that way. But I was incredibly curious and if I had today’s tools would I have been that nieve or straight. While this shell script looks interesting I’m not going to install it out of general fear.PS: they could have installed the script in userspace. They did not have to request the admin password. ¬†And for those of you that did not understand the above… just think about trojan horses and what lay inside. Computers are cheap enough… I just cannot afford the time required to rebuild one from the ground up.