Malware

Sorry for the no postings over the last few days. What happened there was that Tony came over, (enter audience “ooooohh”) yeah and he got on my computer (audience gasp) I know I know, but he was helping me add a cool new feature to my site so it was approved. Things weren’t working right and Tony was getting annoyed with the fact that my HTML editor was not connected directly to my site, so in the flurry of things he asked if he could take down my firewall and for some unknown reason I agreed. Bad Mistake. All of a sudden my computer started freaking out, programs were getting downloaded, icons were appearring on my desktop and the background of my desktop changed to something that said “Warning your computer might be infected with spyware!!”. Well no poop Sherlock, you ARE the spyware. SOOOOO annoying. So now there was all this crap on my computer, my icons would disappear and re-appear, my CPU was at 100%, and I wasn’t very happing in general. Tony decided to play some games on the Xbox. To make a fat story thin, my computer had contracted the PSGuard malware thing, and it is a pain to remove. One thing that was a complete savior was the Ewido Security Suite. They have a 14 day full trial of their software and it found soooo much more crap than Norton Antivirus, read Norton found one thing and Ewido found several hundred, it’s time to uninstall Norton. I’m actually going to buy Ewido’s thing b/c it’s only $30 and it pretty much kicks some serious A. Next I used Panda’s Online Activescan which is very thorough and is very good at finding a few things that are left over. They have a free online virus scanner you can use, but it doesn’t get rid of anything. It’s good for telling you where certain bastard files lie deep, deep in your computer. I was able to delete most of those A-hole remnants. There a few files that Pandascan was finding but when I went to that location in my computer I couldn’t see the file even though I had “show all hidden and system files” turned on. That’s when I found a cool litte program called Killbox. This little guy is awesome, it gets rid of files that are “read only” that are a pain to delete, plus you can end your Explorer Shell while you’re deleting which is nice since some of these jerk programs get all wrapped up in your processes and say they can’t be deleted b/c the comp. is currently using it.

So as of yesterday (2.5 days after Tony was over) I thought I had fixed everything, there was nothing nasty left on my computer, but when I right clicked the desktop and hit properties, I could only see two of the 5 tabs that are supposed to show up (a nice side effect of desktop hijacking). That’s when I came across this WinXP Tweaks website, which has a buttload of resources and registry edits that restore your computer to its full functioning self. After that I was DONE, and my firewall will never come down again! Yay!

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