Using a vintage Mac requires hardening, such as enabling the Firewall’s Stealth Mode, disabling File Sharing options in the System settings, and installing an anti-virus and being overall mindful of which parts of the web you visit. Here is how to install clamav, a free and open-source alternative for older Apple hardware still stuck on older OS’s. We will be using MacPorts for this short tutorial.

  1. After installing macports, install the following 2 packages 1:

     sudo port install clamav
     sudo port install clamav-server
  2. By default, the freshclam.conf file comes empty 2. Let’s fix it. Edit the freshclam (process that regularly updates the virus definitions database)

     sudo vim /opt/local/etc/freshclam.conf

    Add this if the file does not have the DatabaseMirror line 3:

  3. Update antivirus definitions database
     sudo freshclam

    It will download a lot of data (> 250MB). Please wait until it finishes.

  4. Enable clamav daemons for continuous database upgrades and background virus scanning
     sudo port load clamav-server

That being said, I do not recommend using a completely outdated and insecure OS as your main machine on a day-to-day basis. If my 2008 MacBook Pro were my only machine I would be running an up-to-date Linux distro.

  1. “Installing clamav/clamav-server is very annoying on MacPorts” Link 

  2. “ERROR: Can’t open or parse the config freshclam.conf” Link 

  3. “sudo freshclam -d fails” Link