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Old 09 April 2019, 19:22   #1
slaapliedje
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Viruses Amiga vs Atari ST.

There is another thread about how widespread the warez was on the Amiga vs the Atari ST.


I'm curious about Viruses. I know there were a few written for the Amiga, and by the look of it, Amikit still has virus checking enabled when you extract archives, but I'm wondering how prevalent they are/were.


I know I attempted at some point to play my friend's DOS copy of Wasteland on an emulator, and it detected the disk as having a virus on the ST, which I thought was funny. Other than that, I'd seen a few demos on the ST of viruses, but never saw any infected disks.


When was the last virus made for either, anyone know?
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Old 09 April 2019, 20:06   #2
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I do not know when was the last one made (and viruses usually do not have release dates written on the box), but annoying HNY96 still occurs time to time.
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Old 09 April 2019, 20:42   #3
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I have no answers myself but would like add to the OP`s question `were there HDD/file type viruses on the ST like the Amiga?`
I remember having an unknown infection of Saddam on my HDD and source code backups, thank you Lynxx/Panic for your erradicator!
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Old 09 April 2019, 21:43   #4
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This question kind of came up in my head when reading an article about the secret service finding a USB stick, putting it into their computer and having a bunch of nastiness install. Was figuring an Amiga with USB would be pretty immune to such a modern attack. But since the Amiga has the feature where it is constantly trying to access the disk for if there is something inserted, seems it'd be an easier target than say the ST in which you'd have to actively open the floppy drive icon or boot with the disk in the drive.
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Old 09 April 2019, 21:54   #5
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Sadam virus was particularly unusual in that prior to KS2 where the disk i validator was included into the ROM it was possible to be infected by simply inserting a disk infected by saddam virus You didn't even have to boot it or even access any files.


Boot block viri were common in the early days. I never got infected by any of those and virus checkers could easily detect and repair (assuming the disk did not have a custom bootblock). I remember using some program or another to keep a database of custom bootblocks for quite a while in my early days of Amiga. I never actually needed to use it to restore though.


Viri attaching themselves to files came later (probably as hard drives became more prevalent). I ran VirusZ in order to protect myself from this. I think a lot of it was media hype. I mean clearly there were a lot of viri out there but I dont think they were nearly as common as some people were claiming.

I'd say the Happy New Year HNY virus was probably one of the most common link type viri

https://www.vht-dk.dk/amiga/desc/txt/hny-9697.htm
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Old 09 April 2019, 21:59   #6
slaapliedje
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It does seem that in pre-internet days for sure there was a distribution issue. Though we did have BBSes, I think a lot of them did their own virus scanning before letting others download. At least hopefully. Yeah, the most common back then were boot block ones.
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Old 10 April 2019, 03:27   #7
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Since the Amiga was more popular than the Atari, there were more viruses on the Amiga than the Atari. Even at the later times of WWW, when people were claiming to run virus checkers often, some viruses slipped on the net. I have reported viruses linked from popular Amiga sites as late as March 2003 - https://www.amiga-news.de/de/news/AN...-00169-DE.html

and there was some demo scener who spread some nasty hard drive wiping virus around that time.
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Old 10 April 2019, 04:14   #8
slaapliedje
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I managed to find this page for the ST Viruses. http://www.uvk2000.exxoshost.co.uk/viruses.htm
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Old 10 April 2019, 05:53   #9
005AGIMA
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I was thinking only the other day how it was funny that the £10 "Virus Killer" program seemed to be able to get rid of any Amiga virus around, almost as if the writers of the killer, wrote all the virus


I recall only boot sector virus on my A500 (given I had no HDD to worry about), and yes I got infected but only ever through cracked copy games.

The only time it was a real issue was if a legit disk became infected. While Virus Killer could remove the virus, the original boot sector was wiped, and hence many legit games would be rendered useless.

Of course, the way to clean the machine itself was.....turn it off and on again.

Pretty sure they didn't even reside in memory even with battery backup clock on a ram expansion.

My question on this topic though is......
Has anyone found an infected ADF while using emulation?

If yes, what is the consequence?

Given MOST ADF files are based on cracked copies from the past, this is the very place I'd expect to find infections.

I assume "turning it off and on again" (as in the emulator itself) would clean the "amiga" if using a non HDD based build?

I'd also assume an Amiga virus can pose no risk to a PC itself of course.
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Old 10 April 2019, 07:17   #10
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Would be interesting to see what it tries to a virtual hard drive that is an OS folder, vs a HDF file that have a legitimate RDB set up.

Looked from that link I posted that there were plenty of Atari ST viruses, but I tend to think more people used the ST for more serious applications and were less likely to pirate the professional applications, whereas the Amiga had a more popular warez scene and more games (eventually) causing a lot of the gamers to leave the ST for the Amiga after the 500 on up came out.
Of course the big box Amigas were used for more serious software as well, but most people didn't jave the high end ones unless they had reasons for it. STs were also considered cheap Macs for a while, though I think Amiga does the emulation better, I think that came after the ST version.
Interesting that one of the latest Amiga viruses was released in 2003. Wonder if OS4.1 or Aros or MorphOS have any..
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Old 10 April 2019, 10:06   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 005AGIMA View Post
My question on this topic though is......
Has anyone found an infected ADF while using emulation?

If yes, what is the consequence?

Given MOST ADF files are based on cracked copies from the past, this is the very place I'd expect to find infections.

I assume "turning it off and on again" (as in the emulator itself) would clean the "amiga" if using a non HDD based build?

I'd also assume an Amiga virus can pose no risk to a PC itself of course.
There are many infected ADF files in TOSEC. I even started a topic regarding this - http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=96035 just search for [v] tag

demolition said it is good to preserve these viruses. You can even create new TOSEC entries by infecting some disks and changing their CRCs.
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Old 10 April 2019, 11:26   #12
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I'd say bootblock viruses must have been considerably more prevalent on the AtariST scene. Mainly because of the way they did their cracks. The "menu" disks were (most of the time) normal OS disks and did not require a custom bootloader to work (i.e. you could replace the bootblock with a Virus and it would still work) whereas more Amiga "backup" disks tended to have NDOS disks with custom bootloaders so if a Virus overwrote the bootblock the disk would no longer work.
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Old 10 April 2019, 13:52   #13
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They should have been more prevalent, but the Amiga had far more viruses than the ST which suggests that this may not have been the case.
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Old 10 April 2019, 14:11   #14
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I only had one case of infection - a DefJam compact disk (Carrier Command and Cybernoid iirc) came with ByteBandit installed on the bootblock. It didn't manage to spread though.

Other than that I've never experienced any form of infection of malware on any computers since.
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Old 10 April 2019, 19:48   #15
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I did get a few disks from local people that had viruses in my early days, bytebandit ect.
There was this 88/89 demos disc that one of the demos wouldnt load, tried various disk salv programs with no luck, kept reporting a sector was corrupt.
I loaded up a sector editior to take a peek at the offending sector, I laughed so hard I nearly fell off my chair!
LamerExterminatorLamerExterminatorLamerExterminatorLamerExterminator
was written across the whole sector!
I did pick up a few of those too from said local people(lamers) but there were plenty of tools and knowing where they came from kept anything under control!

Does the Atari have similar things like cool/cold capture to activate memory resident stuff?
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Old 11 April 2019, 06:17   #16
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Originally Posted by Predseda View Post
I do not know when was the last one made (and viruses usually do not have release dates written on the box), but annoying HNY96 still occurs time to time.
Is there a copy of VirusChecker that checks for that? As that is the normal virus killer I use as it is small and checks boot blocks and stuff.

File viruses I got hit with was TTV1/BGS9, Bubonic Plague, and a small executable that just copied it to the startup-sequence and became the first file.

Boot block viruses I saw were SCA, Byte Bandit (Didn't see the counter), Lamer Exterminator.

Saddam Virus, Had to use Nuke to check and fix all my disks.

That was in New Zealand (North Island) So the viruses made it from Europe (Were any coded in America??, Some were from Australia) all the way around the world.
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Old 11 April 2019, 06:33   #17
005AGIMA
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Other than that I've never experienced any form of infection of malware on any computers since.
Never? Really?

Heck, must be the...erm....websites I visited

Not had an infection for AGES though.

Thank God for Google Image search....I mean Windows Defender.
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Old 11 April 2019, 23:41   #18
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When was the last virus made for either, anyone know?
There were about 800-900 made for the Amiga and the last probably 2001-2002.
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