Trusting updates. How to know if updates are good or bad?

Would enjoy learning what to look out for when updating apps to ensure they are good or questionable. What are the steps to consider when updating instead of just click and hope (hope and poke). I am grateful for jeff.pro forums!!!

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The first idea is to know what you’re installing and from where. Third-party repositories can be tricky, especially if nobody can vouch for them. I generally avoid adding them as much as I used to in the long past.

Per the actual updates, I doubt they will contain any malware due to the “Many Eyes” process. There’s a lot of people looking at the code before it goes live on a distribution. For example, the Linux Foundation banned the entire University of Minnesota because of its sloppy programming that created security issues on the Kernel.

Other than that, a good firewall, a no-remote-content approach with emails, and a couple of blockers on your browser will serve you well.

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This is just the question I was wondering too. Thanks for the helpful post, @vasileios. An additional question for you if I may. I’ve got the built-in Firewall in Linux Mint (Cinnamon) turned on, is that good enough? What do you mean by “no-remote-content approach with emails”? As in, don’t click the “load remote content” in emails with HTML? Also, when you say to have a couple of blockers on my browser–what kind do you mean? Do you have some that you recommend? I just want to be super careful. :smiley: Thanks so much in advance!!

Hello @hannahgirl, and welcome to the forums!

The built-in firewall on Mint is good enough, yes. If you want to go overboard, which you don’t need, a more detailed addition is OpenSnitch. Unless you’re an investigative journalist with a target on your back. :wink:

As for the “remote content,” yes. If you don’t know or trust the sender, try to avoid clicking on it. That’s how the Pegasus malware got to infect systems.

Also, for the browsers, I highly recommend the following extensions:

  1. Privacy Badger
  2. uBlock Origin

They exist on both Firefox and Brave. :blush:

And, as always, it’s my pleasure to help!

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@vasileios wow, thank you so much for the thorough answer! I’ve just finished doing all of that :+1: :blush:

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Awesome! And you’re most welcome! :blush:

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I just learned about updates the hard way - I downloaded the latest Ubunu update only to find my terminal had seemingly vanished!

But it turned into a valuable lesson because I learned how to find it (by clicking my laptop’s Windows icon and doing a search) and then added my terminal to my favorites.

Which in itself was something I had on my list to figure out: how to run apps that were installed but didn’t ‘work’.

Listening to my newly running Spotify as I type :sunglasses:

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Linux most definitely sharpens perception and problem-solving skills. If you set a reference point of yourself today and then in a year from now, you will be most pleasantly surprised. :blush:

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Hello again @vasileios! I was wondering how essential are the browser extensions you mentioned (Privacy Badger and uBlock Origin) are? They’re slowing down my browser so much I can hardly move around… When I turn them off everything speeds up, especially when I turn off Privacy Badger? I looked at the options and see that it’s really protecting me from yucky stuff, which is awesome! But… now I’m torn between not being able to do a quick research for work, heh. :confused: Is it just a matter from those extensions protecting me from Google type things? Or are they protecting me from hackers? I’m so sorry if that’s a big question and I don’t realize what I’m asking :grimacing:
Thank you again!! Your help in this forum is worth more than we could ever express. :pray:

Hey @hannahgirl!
It’s always my pleasure to lend a helping hand. :slight_smile:
It’s the first time someone mentions that their browsing experience is significantly slowed down by those two extensions. Perhaps there’s a DNS issue that intentionally slows down the response time when its trackers don’t go through. This is generally resolved (I’ve done it) if you log into your router, go to the Internet Options and in the DNS (Domain Name Servers), you input the following addresses:

1.1.1.1
1.0.0.1

Those are the CloudFlare DNS servers and are the fastest non-Google ones.

As for the extensions, yes, they protect you from much more than just tracking and ads. When ads run, sometimes even a few images, they can contain malicious code. This was spotted a while back, even on the MSN website (Microsoft’s), where ActiveX code sneaked in through the browser. Those two extensions stop that from happening. :slight_smile:

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Hey @vasileios, I finally got around to this and it worked brilliantly, thank you again! :raised_hands: :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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I’m so happy to hear that! Bravo!
And as always, it’s my pleasure! :slight_smile:

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I can’t seem to find these extensions, can you please point me in the right direction :grimacing:

Hey @Tracy! Which browser are you using?

Hi, I am using Brave @vasileios

Hello again, @Tracy!
Brave is base on Chromium. Also, Google’s Chrome is based on Chromium, which means Brave utilizes all of Chrome’s extensions.

You can find Privacy Badger here:

And uBlock Origin here:

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Thank you… I did find that but was thrown by the Google stuff so was leery. I had forgotten the Chrome and Brave connection

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No worries! Thankfully, it’s Chromium - pre-Google. :wink:

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