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  1. #1
    Sagan's Avatar Carl Sagan
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    How to remove nearly all malware/viruses from a Windows PC

    Please share this with anyone who runs into virus issues, this process works every time. Posted this as a response and felt it deserved its own thread.

    1. Try system restore. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/306084 for xp and http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windo...ystem-restore/ for windows 7/vista. Regardless if you can or can't run the system restore move to step 2.

    2. If you can, download and install the free editions of both superantispyware (http://www.superantispyware.com/) and malwarebytes (http://www.malwarebytes.org/). Run a full scan on one, reboot, then run the other. Once completed run the first one again and if the issue is gone and it finds no more bad files then you are set to go. If there are still issues, boot into safe mode (by tapping F8 a handful of times as the machine is being turned on) and try to run each one in safe mode. If that doesn't work move to step 3. If there is no more infection, feel free to uninstall both applications at this time.

    3. If you can't install/get to the internet to download becuase you have a really nasty one or the above doesn't remove your issue, use combofix (http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/combofix). Download the combofix program from another computer and boot the infected pc to safe mode (pressing F8 as Windows starts up). Copy the combofix software to the computer and run it. This takes a good while sometimes and will sometimes sit on the same screen for 20-30 mins. If it gets stuck longer, reboot, go into safe mode and try again.

    4. Once combofix has run properly and fully, try to complete step 2 again. If combofix has run properly you should be able to.

    5. One completed make sure you have AV installed. I'd recommend Microsoft Security Essentials (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/w...tials-download), which is MS's free AV application. I know, MS sucks, blah blah but it is a good lightweight free product.
    http://youtu.be/zSgiXGELjbc

    "A still more glorious dawn awaits
    Not a sunrise, but a galaxy rise
    A morning filled with 400 billion suns
    The rising of the milky way"

    "The sky calls to us
    If we do not destroy ourselves
    We will one day venture to the stars" -Carl Sagan

  2. #2
    Sagan's Avatar Carl Sagan
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    OR: the easy way, Download and install LINUX. Easy Peasy.
    http://youtu.be/zSgiXGELjbc

    "A still more glorious dawn awaits
    Not a sunrise, but a galaxy rise
    A morning filled with 400 billion suns
    The rising of the milky way"

    "The sky calls to us
    If we do not destroy ourselves
    We will one day venture to the stars" -Carl Sagan

  3. #3
    Skippy's Avatar Pickin' and Grinnin'!
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    Can anyone believe I've never had a virus or nuthin since i started with computers in 1985/1986?? But then I never really do much online anyway. What I do to peoples computers to prevent [BEEP] from happening is install windows n stuff, n' once everythin' as ya want it for OS on a SEPERATE partition (one partition for OS, the other for 'stuff' + installed OS image) then make a HD image for a custom restore! (Win's System Restore is a joke!)
    If anything goes wrong, wipe n' restore from the image!

  4. #4
    L's Avatar
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    I use Norton 360 never had any problems
    life---> <---me

  5. #5
    shyVr6's Avatar Masking The Calm
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    I usually go to majorgeeks.com to find helpful stuff.

  6. #6
    whiteman's Avatar
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    I used to uninstall and re-install the entire system whenever I had a problem then my computer wouldn't let me do it anymore for some reason so I bought norton 360
    I don't get a signature.

  7. #7
    Ironman's Avatar
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    Linux is cool. It's the next best thing to UNIX, which is almost dead.

  8. #8
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    I use both Avast (best free virus software, beats out the Norton and McAfee paid versions by a mile!) for the light stuff, and then, when I get something really nasty, I go to Malware Bytes. Malware Bytes has saved my PCs more than once.

    Oh, and once I screwed up the system registry, went back and did a system restore, and saved it. That is a brilliant feature.

    I like Ubuntu for Linux, but the problem with that is that I run a lot of Windows programs that I can't on Linux. Such as iTunes, which runs my music, movies, and tv shows through the cloud. Whenever I'm on Linux, I've got lots of things that are inaccessible to me. Plus, I program using SQL Server and Visual Basic, both which are only Windows Compatible, and the Linux versions of Microsoft Word screw up the formatting of my text documents (and in some cases, end up making them inaccessible to open from Microsoft Word.)

  9. #9
    Otherside's Avatar
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    I use Avast and malwarebytes. Never had much on here.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


  10. #10
    insigniff's Avatar
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    Is there anyway of knowing your computer has a virus without running a scan?
    (And are the scans even reliable?)

  11. #11
    Evo1114's Avatar
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    Quote insigniff View Post
    Is there anyway of knowing your computer has a virus without running a scan?
    (And are the scans even reliable?)
    If your computer is running abnormally slow for no reason you can otherwise identify. If you see unusual programs running that you didn't personally install (fake antivirus programs or 'optimizer' programs are the big ones these days). A large increase in pop-ups. Your internet browser home page changed. Internet browser being redirected.

    The scans are usually pretty reliable (as long as you aren't using a rogue program ). But they certainly do not catch everything which is why a combination of programs works best.

    I used to sometimes spend days trying to clean up badly infected ones, but usually if a PC gets infected at work these days I just reinstall windows rather than waste so much time cleaning them. I always make sure to make the user feel bad too.

  12. #12
    insigniff's Avatar
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    Quote Evo1114 View Post
    If your computer is running abnormally slow for no reason you can otherwise identify. If you see unusual programs running that you didn't personally install (fake antivirus programs or 'optimizer' programs are the big ones these days). A large increase in pop-ups. Your internet browser home page changed. Internet browser being redirected.

    The scans are usually pretty reliable (as long as you aren't using a rogue program ). But they certainly do not catch everything which is why a combination of programs works best.

    I used to sometimes spend days trying to clean up badly infected ones, but usually if a PC gets infected at work these days I just reinstall windows rather than waste so much time cleaning them. I always make sure to make the user feel bad too.
    Thanks for the answer!

  13. #13
    Noca's Avatar
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    I need to do a fresh windows install from scratch. I got too many hard drives, stuff all over the place, programs that I don't use, messed up registry, etc.

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