The online Malware Museum is full of literal ‘retroviruses’

15 Feb 20167 Shares

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Malware is pretty sophisticated and vicious these days, but back in the 1990s some of it was actually quite adorable.

The Malware Museum is a labour of love from Finnish security expert Mikko Hypponen, who has managed to collate 78 computer viruses from the 1980s and 1990s that would have made IT experts at the time lose sleep at night.

According to ArsTechnica, the website has only been around for a matter of weeks but, in that time, the 30 viruses that Hypponen had uploaded to the website has grown to 78 in order to show some of the more aesthetically-pleasing examples.

However, the obvious worry for anyone visiting the site is whether entering it will lead to your computer getting infected with an ancient killer.

Literal retroviruses

Thankfully, Hypponen and the other contributors to the museum have taken the sting out of all the viruses, which can now even be downloaded on to your computer and viewed through an emulator.

Like any museum, the Malware Museum has a curator in the form of Jason Scott, who works with the online archive, Archive.org.

Speaking with Ars Technica, Scott said that he even has a collection of ravenous MS-DOS viruses locked in a personal folder on his computer, which he might post to the museum one day.

So, in the spirit of sharing the harmless viruses, here are some of the best examples of ‘retrovirus’ ever unleashed onto the net.

Gigglebit is Siliconrepublic.com’s daily dose of the funny and fantastic in science and tech, to help start your day on a lighter note.

Retro computer screen image via Surian Soosay/Flickr

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Colm Gorey is a journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com