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I was big fan of the Toontown Online MMO when Disney used to run it so I was excited to learn that it had been revived by a fan or group for fans building on the original source code. During a recent update, my virus checker said there were questions about the new installer executable, and that they were looking into it. That made me realize that although I'm usually very cautious about what I click, download, etc, in this case, I didn't even think about the issue of security.

(Note: I'm not sure but this may be what was developed by the person who posted this:

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/20296611/python-server-emulator-for-toontown )

My understanding is that you can't really do real-time protection on the traffic between the server and the engine on your PC but I don't really know enough about the process to make an informed decision as to how vulnerable it might be, especially given the current smaller third party nature of the MMO. I know this forum isn't for the question "Should I use it or not" but any advice, insight, etc into the security issues so that I can make an informed decision would be appreciated.

I do have two questions that focus on more specific details of the issue.

First, I am thinking about switching my anti-malware software to PCMatic, which I guess uses a whitelist approach instead of a blacklist approach. Would this be effective in preventing anything a hack would do from installing additional malware? And would it fail to prevent redirection to a malicious web site or would it catch it?

Second, is there some way I could use virtualization to create a sandbox that would run the program and isolate it from the rest of my system in case there are any issues? I'm in the middle of researching VPN vs virtual machines because I don't truly understand the concept yet, but (assuming they're truly different things) would one or other or both allow me to do that? Or can I do the same thing by say installing Linux as a dual boot OS and use that only for TT? Or is the second OS not really isolated and thus safe?

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  • We can't tell you exactly what any anti-virus package may or may not do
    – schroeder
    Oct 14 '20 at 19:54
  • We will not review this specific program, so I have made the title more generic.
    – schroeder
    Oct 14 '20 at 20:01
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VPN is to virtual machine as air conditioning is to a couch. Very different things.

You have to get clear on what you want to be protected from:

  • Traffic coming from your machine (to something malicious)
  • Malware installed on your machine

Those are 2 very different problems. And a VPN protects you from neither.

A Virtual Machine can be used to limit the damage an infection can cause. Unless the infection is extremely advanced, it can only damage the VM. Dual Booting does not provide any isolation at all.

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