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Posted: 10/5/2004 3:49:33 AM EST
OK, my PC has been overrun! Now I'm no ;onger in control. Whenever I turn on my computer, I have new unwanted icons on my desktop. Whenever I go online I have 5 unwanted windows pop up for every one that I open myself, and often times the ones I open are shut down or frozen.

What can I do, what software can I purchase. It's driving me crazy. This is actually my 3rd attempt just to get to thi sboard; the others were so corrupted adn convoluted I had to restart.

Thanks for any advice you can offer.

PS: I tried to manually delete some of the unwanted files, but it won't let me.

Link Posted: 10/5/2004 3:53:08 AM EST
You have to run SpyBot and AdAware immediately. Your issue will be getting on the web long enough to grab them. Your best bet is to download them and burn them to CD on a different machine - or get someone to do it. Unplug yours from the web and install the programs from CD.

www.safer-networking.org/en/index.html

www.download.com/3000-2144-10045910.html
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 3:54:04 AM EST
Reformat, DONT USE IE. Reformat and install Firefox. Be done with it. Half the time you can reformat faster then you can clean all that shit out.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 3:56:45 AM EST

Originally Posted By Specop_007:
Reformat, DONT USE IE. Reformat and install Firefox. Be done with it. Half the time you can reformat faster then you can clean all that shit out.



Here is teh winnar.

Using IE nowadays is just idiotic if you don't have to.

If you are against reformatting, then you'll need to run hijack this!, get a good, up to date virus scanner (I'm sure you have some at this point), and run a few spyware programs.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 3:57:46 AM EST
Did you at least get some good porn?

SGatr15
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 3:58:33 AM EST

Originally Posted By BayEagle:
You have to run SpyBot and AdAware immediately. Your issue will be getting on the web long enough to grab them. Your best bet is to download them and burn them to CD on a different machine - or get someone to do it. Unplug yours from the web and install the programs from CD.

www.safer-networking.org/en/index.html

www.download.com/3000-2144-10045910.html



+1

The new verion of Spybot also has a monitor that runs in the background to prevent hijacks and other stuff from happening. Run both Spybot and Ad-Aware, and make sure in Spybot to 'immunize' your PC.

You might also want to check your installed programs list, uninstall anything that looks fishy, and run something like Registry Mechanic to clean the system registry.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 3:58:34 AM EST
I agree with BayEagle... get the spybot and adaware first. It should solve your problem by getting rid of all the nasty little spyware things on your puter. If that doesn't work, Reformat. But beware, it's lots of fun.. I just did one and I was ready to kill someone.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:05:12 AM EST
I also would recommend Popup Blocker by Panicware. It's a free download for the basic version and is extremely effective against popups. IE in SP2 on XP has a builtin popup blocker FWIW. I don't know what's with all the hate about IE. I use Popup blocker and Adaware in conjunction with a Virus program and have never had any issues...
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:11:00 AM EST
I use XP SP2 popupblocker and Adaware, and it works great. Zero issues. No need to reformat or run some other browser.

Running another browser WONT solve all spyware issues.... and it wont solve shit until you clean your system. You can still get spyware from things you click on incorrectly.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:20:39 AM EST

Originally Posted By FALARAK:
I use XP SP2 popupblocker and Adaware, and it works great. Zero issues. No need to reformat or run some other browser.

Running another browser WONT solve all spyware issues.... and it wont solve shit until you clean your system. You can still get spyware from things you click on incorrectly.



Running another browser WILL solve most of your spyware issues. Start up IE, and visit 20 different random porn sites. See how infected your computer is and what happens to it. Start up firefox and go to 20 different porn sites, then see how infected your computer is and what happens to it. Firefox's browser has not been hijacked ONCE.

For the record, all of my experience has been through my job; I'm not a porn freak ;)

Nothing will solve EVERY issue, and I'm not saying it will. But using IE INCREASES your chances for problems, and just about everyone agrees with that. Same with using Outlook. Most trojans, spywares, viruses, etc. are written for IE, ActiveX, etc., so using Firefox (or something else) decreases your risk.

The problems this guy is having are going to take more than just Adaware, which doesnt' even catch latent spyware. It just comes back when you restart your computer. Sometimes the spyware and trojans can get tangled up pretty nasty in your computer, and for computer novices, it's easier to just reformat and take precautions the next time rather than digging through their registry, hidden files, etc.

Personally, I'd run Hijack This! (sorry, don't have a link, Google it) and then post the results on a messageboard where someone can help you. Post it here and I can help you with it.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:25:39 AM EST
You guys dont make ghost images?!
Thats the ticket to solving reinstall problems. Do the base install with ESSENTIAL programs ONLY. Dont even do the video carde driver. Then make a ghost image. From then on new install is about 20 minutes tops with driver installs, probably less.
Fastest I've ever done a full install from ghost image was just around 5 minutes.
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:27:36 AM EST
Yeah those are great, but I don't think the poster would have one :)
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:33:48 AM EST
The ABSOLUTE best spyware/adware crap remover that actually works and that you don't have to manually run is called STOPZILLA. It is absolutely amazing. You can download it right off the web. Only thing is it ain't free. It's something like 15.99 a year but it is worth every penny. It updates itself and scans your drive for spyware. My kid royally screwed up my laptop so bad it was unusable if you tried to get online. There was so much spyware trying to launch it was a nightmare. I tried spybot and also tried adaware...they helped a bit but still some spyware snuck in and also you have to manually run those to get updates. Trust me, Download STOPZILLA, you can try it free for 19 days. Tell me afterward if it ain't the best thing since sliced bread
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:38:01 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/5/2004 4:38:54 AM EST by TomJefferson]
Link Posted: 10/5/2004 4:53:52 AM EST
When you get it all cleaned up, install ZoneAlarm (free version, or pay if you want) - it blocks or notifies you of EVERY outgoing communication attempt. You can allow the ones you want to get out. If you find something trying to call home you then can run ad-aware/spybot and clean it up before it hoses your system again.

Also, 99 percent of cute little programs (screensavers, webshots, weatherbug, gator, password storage proggies, etc) are or contain SPYWARE. So, do not install them, and teach those in your household to avoid them. Call it cyber situational awareness.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 3:42:28 AM EST
Hey guys, I really appreciate the info. As suggested, I downloaded those programs onto another machine and will make a CD so I can install them on the infected one. Will the use of Firefox hamped my use of Outlook Express for email? (Maybe a dumb question, but I don't know the answer)

Also, can I keep a copy of IE and only use it on ocassion? There is a web-based software program I need for work that I think will only work w/IE. I know it doesn't work w/Netscape.

Thanks again.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 3:48:55 AM EST

Originally Posted By dogcaller:
Hey guys, I really appreciate the info. As suggested, I downloaded those programs onto another machine and will make a CD so I can install them on the infected one. Will the use of Firefox hamped my use of Outlook Express for email? (Maybe a dumb question, but I don't know the answer)

Also, can I keep a copy of IE and only use it on ocassion? There is a web-based software program I need for work that I think will only work w/IE. I know it doesn't work w/Netscape.

Thanks again.



Firefox can be used along with your OE for e-mail, if you want to change though, thunderbird has a great e-mail proggie.
Yes you can keep an IE, actually should for updates to windows, you can't d/l them from Firefox.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 3:52:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By dogcaller:
OK, my PC has been overrun! Now I'm no ;onger in control. Whenever I turn on my computer, I have new unwanted icons on my desktop. Whenever I go online I have 5 unwanted windows pop up for every one that I open myself, and often times the ones I open are shut down or frozen.





Wow, this is bad.

You have a LOT of spyware (tiny little bits of information from websites and downloads that spies on your web activity) on your PC. Spyware eats up system resources and slows down your PC to a crawl. I have seen PCs die because of spyware.

IMMEDIATELY, download Adware and Spybot Search and Destroy. Run them both. DELETE, KILL, AND EMPTY OF ALL RESULTS IT FINDS.

Then, buy MacAfee virus scanner or Norton. Run that too. You likely have trojans on your PC (trojans are a type of virus).

You might be better off just re-formatting your harddrive, however, as you likely have some of your harddrive corrupted.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 4:59:26 AM EST
Dumb question: How do you reformat a drive with XP on it? I used to know how to do it in DOS, obviously (C:\ format), but I've never tried it in XP.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:03:11 AM EST
Just boot off your XP CD.... there is a part where it asks "where" to install, from there you can delete the partition, recreate a new one, and format it (quick or normal)
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:04:56 AM EST
Dumb question: How do you reformat a drive with XP on it? I used to know how to do it in DOS, obviously (C:\ format), but I've never tried it in XP




You can do it when you reload your OS from your CD. Part of the process.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:14:14 AM EST
Thanks.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:20:43 AM EST

Originally Posted By BayEagle:
You have to run SpyBot and AdAware immediately. Your issue will be getting on the web long enough to grab them. Your best bet is to download them and burn them to CD on a different machine - or get someone to do it. Unplug yours from the web and install the programs from CD.

www.safer-networking.org/en/index.html

www.download.com/3000-2144-10045910.html



My neighbor across the street had his PC so fucked up with adware and spyware, that it would take forever to boot and couldn't access the Internet reliably. I burned a CD with AdAware and Spybot, along with the latest update files for both, plus a copy of cmd in case it was needed, and gave it to him. His computer runs extra primo good now!
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:30:22 AM EST
Isn't Outlook Express the other program that is targeted? I'd consider a mail program that wasn't so popular and vulnerable if you can make do with it.
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 8:06:04 AM EST
If you must use Outlook or Outlook Express don't enable the preview pane and select read and send in plain text.
Select block images HTML and do not allow attachments to saved or opened.


Originally Posted By nightstalker:
Isn't Outlook Express the other program that is targeted? I'd consider a mail program that wasn't so popular and vulnerable if you can make do with it.

Link Posted: 10/6/2004 8:42:38 AM EST
If you want to try to salvage your data, you can boot a Knoppix or Morphix CD, copy the files off, and then reinstall. It would take too long to explain the steps; if you know any teenage geeks in your area, talk to them about it.

If you don't have time and want to save your data, just buy a new hard drive and swap out the old one. Put the old one in the static-safe bag that the new one came in. You can install onto the new drive, and put the old one in a USB enclosure to get the data off at your convenience.

New hard drives are cheap, forty or fifty bucks for an 80GB last time I looked.
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