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I've been trying to help my mother in law to backup / upgrade her old Mac. In order to use online backup solutions, I've had to transfer her files to my Windows PC. As files were transferring, I saw a couple suspect .exe's caught by my bitdefender antivirus (thankfully!). They were "lcodecplus.exe" and "update.exe" My question is:

As this Mac had these files on it, is it possible that the malicious code ran on the mac, and now my Windows PC is infected from the transfer? Or should I stop being paranoid, considering the antivirus caught them?

From my research, it sounds like it's unlikely a virus for one platform to be executed on another. I'm hoping that as bitdefender caught them on the way in, I'm at no more risk than I have already been, but should I be concerned?

  • Also, here is an article that describes what the lcodecplus.exe file does. You probably don't want to follow the rest of the steps on that page though (especially since BitDefender already caught it). – WillS Nov 29 '15 at 0:48
  • Yes, bitdefender caught and quarantined it during the transfer, so I doubt it was able to execute in any way. Thankfully I'm not getting any of those symptoms. – Reisclef Nov 29 '15 at 8:58
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No, .exe files are Windows specific (DOS, OpenVMS, Microsoft Windows, Symbian or OS/2) and do not run on MacOS, as the platform is not compatible with these.

When you do not execute them on your Windows PC you are safe, nothing happens until you manually execute them.

Antivirus solutions often work with hashes. An antivirus solution for MacOS can also often find malware and viruses for Windows as they share some hashes in their database.

Copying files does not execute them.

  • Thanks, I was pretty sure that would be the case. I might install an antivirus on my mother in law's computer, and be more wary next time. Thanks for the assurance! – Reisclef Nov 28 '15 at 23:13

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