Report: Windows 7 almost five times more secure than XP


Nibiru2012

Quick Scotty, beam me up!
VIP Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2009
Messages
4,955
Reaction score
1,302
From CNET: May 16, 2011

This story is a little old, but I thought it would be of interest for other members here.

Windows 7 is four to five times less vulnerable to malware infections than is Windows XP.

Those are the findings of Microsoft's latest Security Intelligence Report (PDF), which detailed in depth the state of software vulnerabilities, exploits, security breaches, and malware in 2010.

Overall, the study found that infection rates for newer Microsoft operating systems with the latest service packs are consistently lower than those for older OSes, giving Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 the highest marks for security.

(Credit: Microsoft)

Looking at the number of reported infections per 1,000 computers, Microsoft found that Windows 7 64-bit had the lowest number at 2.5, while the 32-bit version had 3.8.

Windows XP with SP3 came in with 15.9 infections per 1,000, while XP with SP2 had the highest number at 19.3. Breaking down the numbers, Microsoft's stats mean that Windows 7 is around four to five times more secure than XP.

Windows Vista's infection rate was considerably lower than that for XP but still turned out to be double that for Windows 7.

Drilling down further, the 64-bit versions of Windows 7 and Windows Vista are less infection-prone than are their 32-bit counterparts, which Microsoft attributes to a couple of factors.

First, the 64-bit versions of both systems may appeal to more tech-savvy users, presumably ones that would better know how to secure their computers. But second, Windows 64-bit offers a feature called Kernel Patch Protection, which protects the Windows kernel from unauthorized changes. (Emphasis is mine, this goes to PROVE that running the X64 version of Windows 7 is the only way to go!)

Analyzing server-based operating systems, Windows Server 2003, which offers both 32-bit and 64-bit editions, had 5.8 infections per 1,000. Windows Server 2008 R2, which comes only in a 64-bit flavor, had 3.6 infections.

Security holes in applications versus those in operating systems or Web browsers accounted for most of the vulnerabilities last year, according to Microsoft. However, the total number of holes found in applications fell 22.2 percent from 2009. But exploits that take advantage of Java vulnerabilities rose dramatically in last year's third quarter, surpassing every other category, the report noted.

 
Ad

Advertisements

catilley1092

Win 7/Linux Mint Lover
VIP Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2009
Messages
3,507
Reaction score
563
This kind of falls in line of what I was stating a few months back, during my last 2 years of using XP exclusively, I dealt with a lot of infections.

I was having to reinstall XP Pro at least 3 times a year during this time (2007-2009) for that reason alone, while my sister, who at that time was using Vista Home Premium x64, had no infections at all. We both were using Avast Free as our main source of protection, along with Windows Defender, with a monthly scan with the now retired Windows Live Safety Scanner.

My notebook was consistently infected, while my sister's computer, even with 5 users on it (she has 4 children), was always clean. Other than it's sluggishness, Vista turned out good for her. As of last Christmas, she now has Win 7 Pro x64, which they all like a lot better. And still no viruses, although she now uses MSE 2.0 instead of Avast, and the ESET Online Scanner once monthly.

Now is it any wonder as to why when I moved away from XP, all that I knew was to scan, scan & scan again? For over 2 years, that's what I dealt with, prior to moving forward to Win 7. Old habits takes a while to break, but I feel that for the most part, I've overcome it.

Instead of me doing the scanning, I now have paid products that does this for me, during startup, and a scheduled scan. The only time that I manually scan is when I use the Microsoft Safety Scanner that was recently offered, and that's only once a month. All is clean with Windows 7 64 bit, a few ad cookies gets caught with SAS, but that's it.

I've only had one serious infection with Win 7, that was using Home Basic 32 bit, and the Safari browser with it's "Safe Search" that nailed me within 15-20 minutes with the nastiest infection of my computing life.

Needless to say, I don't trust Safari's search engine any longer. Nor do I trust XP either, unless I have at least 2 active security products installed, with all security levels jacked up to the max.

The chart above explains it all.

Cat
 

brkkab123

VIP Member
Joined
May 7, 2010
Messages
1,279
Reaction score
141
Nibs. This one isn't directly related to this post. However, I've got a IE9 question that has to do with security. In IE7 & 8 there was a way to add Adblock Plus's ad-blocking list. This I haven't been able to figure out how to do in IE9, as MS added the tracking protection. I've got all the list's for that enabled, but IE9 won't let me add the Adblock Plus list to the Tracking Protection lists. Furthermore where, they went in IE7 & 8 is gone in IE9.
 

catilley1092

Win 7/Linux Mint Lover
VIP Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2009
Messages
3,507
Reaction score
563
There was one other notable difference between me & my sister's computers besides the OS's (at that time).

I was using the free public internet, from the public library, which had a tower in a clean line of sight from my previous apartment, while my sister has Time Warner as her ISP.

However, when I moved here, and had to pay for a ISP, the infections continued, only at a slower pace. When I changed to Win 7, even using the same ISP, my security has been excellent, even when using free AV's.

1 infection in 2 years is a lot better than 8 to 10 per year.

Cat
 

Nibiru2012

Quick Scotty, beam me up!
VIP Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2009
Messages
4,955
Reaction score
1,302
Nibs. This one isn't directly related to this post. However, I've got a IE9 question that has to do with security. In IE7 & 8 there was a way to add Adblock Plus's ad-blocking list. This I haven't been able to figure out how to do in IE9, as MS added the tracking protection. I've got all the list's for that enabled, but IE9 won't let me add the Adblock Plus list to the Tracking Protection lists. Furthermore where, they went in IE7 & 8 is gone in IE9.
Yeah, it's a bummer for sure. Now there is a program called "Simple AdBlock". Free for 30 days with only up to 200 adblocks per day or pay $29.95 for the program.

I'll do some more checking around and see what I can come up with. Stay tuned Mouseketeers!
 
Ad

Advertisements

brkkab123

VIP Member
Joined
May 7, 2010
Messages
1,279
Reaction score
141
I also use AdMuncher which is pretty good. It work's with all the browsers. It' was nice having the extraayer of the Adblock Pus rules i I, though.
 
Ad

Advertisements


Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top