By Jason Brooks  |  Posted 2008-04-22 Print this article Print

Looming large among the management issues that come with nesting Windows instances within the Macs in your care is that of maintaining anti-virus software on those Windows instances. Fortunately (or unfortunately), most organizations have become all too familiar with deploying and managing anti-virus products on their Windows clients, and whether you're tapping virtualization or dual-boot configurations to bring Windows into your Apple hardware, these anti-virus management processes will remain mostly unchanged.

Less clear for many organizations is the role that native anti-virus software for OS X instances can or should play. For instance, the PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) guidelines through which credit card issuers enforce data protection mandates that anti-virus software must be used on computer systems at merchant sites that are "commonly affected by viruses." The standard goes on to single out Unix-based operating systems-a class of which OS X is a member-as not commonly affected by malware.

However, most of the major players in the anti-virus space do offer OS X versions of their products, including McAfee and Sophos, both of which integrate OS X anti-virus administration into the same management consoles that govern the Windows flavors of their anti-virus products. Symantec, meanwhile, markets a consumer-oriented, "two anti-virus products in one" offering that's meant to provide coverage both for OS X and for the Windows instance that may reside in a Boot Camp configuration. Last fall, Trend Micro and OS X security software company Intego announced a partnership to bring Intego's anti-virus software for OS X to Trend Micro's customers, albeit under separate management interfaces.

eWEEK Labs Executive Editor Jason Brooks can be reached at



As Editor in Chief of eWEEK Labs, Jason Brooks manages the Labs team and is responsible for eWEEK's print edition. Brooks joined eWEEK in 1999, and has covered wireless networking, office productivity suites, mobile devices, Windows, virtualization, and desktops and notebooks. JasonÔÇÖs coverage is currently focused on Linux and Unix operating systems, open-source software and licensing, cloud computing and Software as a Service. Follow Jason on Twitter at jasonbrooks, or reach him by email at

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