Aside from the aspect of self-will, though, we should realize that computer viruses per seare not inherently destructive. They may take a few CPU cycles, however since a virusthat gets noticed tends to get wiped out; the only successful viruses must take only anunnoticeable fraction of your system’s resources. Viruses that have given the computer virus a name for being destructive generally contain logic bombs which trigger at acertain date and then display a message or do something annoying or nasty. Such logic bombs, however, have nothing to do with viral self-reproduction. They are payloads— add-ons—to the self-reproducing code. When I say that computer viruses are notinherently destructive, of course, I do not mean that you don’t have to watch out for them.There are some virus writers out there who have no other goal but to destroy the data onyour computer. As far as they are concerned, they want their viruses to be memorableexperiences for you. They’re nihilists, and you’d do well to try to steer clear from thedestruction they’re trying to cause. So by all means do watch out . . . but at the same time,consider the positive possibilities of what self-reproducing code might be able to do thatordinary programs may not. After all, a virus could just as well have some good routinesin it as bad ones.
1.2.History of Computer Viruses
1.2.1.A Bit of Archeology
There are lots and lots of opinions on the date of birth of the first computer virus. I knowfor sure just that there were no viruses on the Babbidge machine, but the Univac 1108and IBM 360/370 already had them ("Pervading Animal" and "Christmas tree").Therefore the first virus was born in the very beginning of 1970s or even in the end of 1960s, although nobody was calling it a virus then. And with that consider the topic of theextinct fossil species closed.
Let's talk of the latest history: "Brain", "Vienna", "Cascade", etc. Those who started usingIBM PCs as far as in mid-80s might still remember the total epidemic of these viruses in3