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my lap top infected with Malware

My lap top has been infected with Malware virus. I did not have antivirus software installed on my lap top, but I have C Cleaner, MS security antivirus and Rescue and Recovery.

So far, I spent two days on Google searching for the cure, but no luck.
All the websites I have visited recommend down loading one, or two software but since my lap top has already being infected I am unable to down load, or install any of the antivirus. In fact I cannot open any of my files, but I can browse the internet.
The simple solution would be to reformat my PC, but this means I would lose my files.
What other options should I consider?
Could you please help? Any suggestion would be appreciated.


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12th Apr 2011 12:33

Re: my lap top infected with Malware

the best tool to remove viruses/malware is Malwarebytes. It even removes the really nasty ones that people catch of those well known social sites.

Google it, it's free to download.

However, if the virus has got too far in to your system (every time you reboot they get further in) then the virus itself might prevent you downloading and running any removal tool.

the option then is to remove the hardrive from the laptop, connect it to PC running Malwarebytes, and scan your drive using the PC's operating system.

This works. We do it all the time here. (My other business is computer repair)

Once you get rid of the problem I would then suggest installing AVG Free having first uninstalled C Cleaner and MS security antivirus, both of which are pretty useless 

-- Witch-Queen

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By 3569787
03rd May 2016 18:12

I agree

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12th Apr 2011 15:25


You need anti-virus for everyday use - personally I swear by Norton - but it is memory hungry so depends on your computers spec.

ALSO download  Malwarebytes from - its free.  Run it whenever you suspect something isnt right, or once a week anyway, it's by far the best there is at rooting out and zapping nasty malicious bugs.

If you cant download it because of whats on your computer, get someone else to download it for you onto a memory stick - then run it on yours from the memory stick to clean out whatever has infected your comp.


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12th Apr 2011 19:16


I also had this problem and the infection was preventing any internet access/downloads.

Mcafee helpline gave me the following advice which worked. I opened in 'safe mode with networking' and logged in as a guest. In my experience the Malware had only infected the administrator account on the pc.

I was then able to download and run malware bites which I now run every week or so and its suprising what it finds even when I think the pc is healthy.

HTH Good Luck!

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By Kryton
13th Apr 2011 10:58

Prevention - Not cure

Hi Cantona1,

I'm afraid if your computer has been comprimised, and it sounds like it is comprimised quite badly if you cannot download anything from the internet, then your best option is to wipe the machine clean and start from scratch - formatting the disk and reinstalling the software needed. If you have adequate backups in place this should not be a problem.

The problem with many virus is that they open the door for more virus (virii??) and your machine could have multiple infections, only some of which can be detected. A virus can also infect files in the recovery partition of your disk so it is not guaranteed to be safe to restore files from there either.

Restoring a PC from scratch can be a pain I know, that is why prevention is so much better than the cure. Most of the prevention comes from education on how to use the machine - and that is by not downloading random software from the internet, be very careful about opening email;  always disable macros, never view images by default. Keep your browser up-to-date (avoid Internet Explorer). Install and keep your antivirus up to date (try Microsoft Security Essentials - its free for small businesses < 11 people, or pick a good one listed in And don't let anyone borrow/play with your business PC (especially the kids)!

The list of don't do's is very long! If you are not comfortable with learning the security essentials then you will be better off buying a Mac because they are a lot less susceptible to infections.

Unfortunately the malware industry is very big and being unprepared for them is just not a sensible option these days.

Hope I have not stopped you sleeping!




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13th Apr 2011 14:13

my lap top infected with Malware

Thanks for all your sugeestions!


I followed what Queen said. I pulled out the hardware from my lap top, connect it to my PC with a cable which has ant-virus software, Scan and clean it. My lap top is now back to  normal, but I have to buy ant-virus software, can not the chance I may not get a virus again.

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By afairpo
13th Apr 2011 16:07

.. and then backup.
The last to-do once virus-free: get into the habit of backing up your files, with at least two layers of backup, so that you don't lose (many) files if you have to wipe and restore. Preferably use a backup program that does incremental backup so that you can roll-back to a pre-virus point in time if necessary.

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By aclince
13th Apr 2011 17:14

Macafee Virus removal service may help

I used McAfee virus removal tool recently to resolve this issue. Its not cheap @ around USD90. Effectively they take control of your machine once you can estbalish an internet connection and run aroutine that removes the virus. It does involve a phone call to the US but using skype the cost of this is minimal.

Details available on



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By stratty
14th Apr 2011 11:13



Is another great free tool for removing really tricky malware.

Highly Recommended!

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Don't forget about windows restore

One option that I haven't seen pointed out is to start the PC up in safe mode, and use Windows Restore to go back to an earlier version of the PC's setup. This completely cleaned up my son's PC when he'd infected it with a horrible virus that prevented him virtually from running any program whatsoever.

Once the PC would start up correctly I just downloaded the free MS Windows Defender product onto it, which is excellent (easily the best anti-malware solution I've found) and scanned the PC to remove the infection from his browser-cache, etc. And he hasn't had a moment's problem since.

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14th Apr 2011 11:36

Use a Sandbox for browsing and pre-scan your emails

Secure Web Browsing: Running your Web browser under the protection of Sandboxie means that all malicious software downloaded by the browser is trapped in the sandbox and can be discarded trivially.

Delete unwanted e-mails before you download to your computer. You'll be able to see who the email is from, the subject, and the attachment. This will enable you to decide if you want to delete the email or keep it. A great way to stop viruses, large attachments or to just delete unnecessary emails from getting to your computer.

Preview. Easily preview the message in your email to see what the sender has to say before downloading it to your computer. This ensures you won't download any nasty emails to your computer. Additionally, spam is marked in a red color, and your good email is marked as a green color for quick analysis.

MS Security Essentials with definitions automatically updated is as good an antivirus as most others; take on board that AV is always behind the malware writers.


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14th Apr 2011 11:43

Just done this to solve my ....

using XP on the desktop with known anti virus prog - still managed to get an 'issue' which really caused probs

yes searching the web gave all sorts of assists - but unsurprisingly could not understand half and some just did not work !

so -  used all the spyware + other progs to clear spyware etc [ own internet security although up to date - yes- seemed to have got turned off and could not right itself - it too trojan or wormed - who knows ! ] 

then using the XPprogram 'restore point'  went back a week or 2 to find one that worked and restored a previous auto system created restore point  That seemed to sort it. !!   A bit of fiddling with one or 2 applications, and  the internet security all seems to work again.   phew !!!  it is time consuming and fractious times.  GL

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14th Apr 2011 12:09

No need to re-format

Unless your computer will not boot, there's definitely no need to format the hard drive and start again. That said, It's no bad thing to have a "clean out"  every 12 months or so.

Malwarebytes is definitley my favourite tool for removing malware.

The process previously described is exactly what I would do: that is, start the PC in "Safe mode with Networking", usually acheived by pressing the f8 key as it boots and choosing from the boot menu.

Starting in safe mode prevents most malware and viruses from loading but the "with networking" bit lets you access your internet connection or other PCs on your network so you can install the latest version of Malwarebytes.

The settings for Malwarebytes default to a "Quick Scan" so you need to make sure you change it to do a "Full Scan" while in Safe mode.

Once the scan is complete, it is important to remove all detected malware and, once removed, restart the PC again in Safe mode.  DO ANOTHER SCAN !! It doesn't take that long and sometimes can find further malware entries that have been hiding somewhere.

When you're happy that there is no malware, go to and download the Microsoft Security Essentials software.
This is a good and FREE anti-virus - anti-malware system and, although not quite as good as McAfee does an excellent job.

If you are using an in-house mail-server, e.g. Microsoft Exchange, you should also consider installing Anti-virus software that scans your emails before they reach your PC. McAfee Active VirusScan is one such system.

The most important thing to remember is "never trust anything" that you are not 100% sure about.

Roger Neale
Perkeo Computer Systems Ltd

07714 670789

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14th Apr 2011 12:21

System Restore

Sometimes you can get around a virus by starting in "safe mode" (repeatedly tap F8 key after power-on but before you see Windows startup screen) and then run system restore (explore the start menu - all programes - etc to find it), restore to a date before you noticed the virus.   After that, and before you do anything else, run one of the above recommended virus scanners.

If the virus will not let you run system restore in safe mode, you need to use another computer to download to a USB memeory stick a program called Rkill from bleepingcomputer web site.  As above start in safe mode, run Rkill from the USB memory stick, if a window pops up claiming rkill is a virus leave it open and run rkill again, run rkill 2 more times then run system restore and the remaining instructons above.

Good luck.

-- Ian McDonald IML Interim Management Ltd Finance~Accounting~Systems

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14th Apr 2011 12:43

Well done

Many cogratulations for getting rid of what you had - that in itself is quite an achievement.

However, as you have discovered, running without AV is about as stupid as you can get!

In answer to a previous post, Norton also makes me swear, but not by it - at it! Please don't waste your money on Norton or McAfee which will slow your machine to a crawl. Miscrosoft do an extremely good product that is free and won't slow you down - Microsoft Security Essentials. Keep it updated regularly and it will keep you pretty safe unless you regularly browse Russian warez sites and click links in emails from banks!

And just to be extra safe, run Malwarebytes weekly.

And another thought - keep your files in a free Dropbox account, then if you ever need to wipe your PC your files will be safely in your Dropbox account. If you facy this then use this link to gain us both a bit extra free storage

There is also a free Microsoft product that does the job in background in a fuss-free way - Windows Live Mesh

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14th Apr 2011 13:44

Malware bytes, in safe mode

I would boot into safe mode (with networking) and then download and run Malware Bytes.

To get into safe mode, restart the computer and press F8 continuously until the selection appears.  Choose Safe Mode with Networking on the selections menu, using the arrow keys and enter.
Malware Bytes seems to be recommended by pretty much every IT support person I've spoken to (although some of them call it MBAM).  I've used the free version once myself, and it did the job very nicely.  You can download it here:

Disclaimer:  This is what I'd do.  I can't guarantee it will work, and I can't even guarantee it won't make things worse.

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14th Apr 2011 14:48

many of these virus actually freeze the computer and so using sa

always create a start up disk for emergencies - tho your data will be in peril if you have to run this so always have a back up routine in place as well. i have also migrated from Norton to microsoft security essential


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14th Apr 2011 16:23

Will not boot

I have a laptop in this condition, what happens then?

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14th Apr 2011 16:39

my lap top infected with Malware

My limited knowledge is: It depends on the type of virus and timing. As Queen said, if you the virus is entrenched in to  your hardware, (How long the virus has been in your system), and the longer the virus stays in your system, the harder is to remove it using the safty mode method. INMO, Taking out your hard disk from your lap top and connectin it to a PC which has ant virus software would be easy way out. I never contemplated reformating my PC- I think this is suicide.

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14th Apr 2011 16:51

Take care if using removed disk method

Please note - If trying the remove disk method mentioned above (buy the neccessary USB adapter on-line) be aware that some viruses will attempt to infect the host machine when you plug it in (M$ has recently released a patch to disable autorun to help avoid this.  Auto update will have installed it if switched on) - make sure the host has an above recommended virus scanner with bang up to date definitions before you start.

-- Ian McDonald IML Interim Management Ltd Finance~Accounting~Systems

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By Kryton
19th Apr 2011 23:03

"To be on the alert is to live; to be lulled into security is to

I read with interest the responses here and wondered why you all have so much trust in the various anti malware products listed. It is fairly common knowledge in the computer security world that anti-virus manufacturers are faltering, if not losing the war. In recent weeks, security companies breached include Kaspersky, Barracuda Networks and RSS. If these IT security firms are at risk - what chance does your antivirus software have?

Often, the detected virus is often the tip of the iceburg, particularly in cases where no antivirus protection has been in place for prolonged periods. People here seem to put a lot of faith in using safe mode and System Restore, but there have been several cases where Restore Points have been infected, and running in safe mode basically reduces the number of drivers that run - so it is in no way safe from a virus.

You cannot be certain that your backups are virus free aswell, a virus is capable of hiding in a backup just as easily as in files on an infected PC.

If you check the anti virus reviews on you will see that all of the antivirus packages have weak spots, and that is for viruses types that are known about, those not detectable yet are the ones to watch.

Scared? - well you just need to be aware of the risks and be educated on how to avoid them.

I do not claim to be an expert on PC security - but I know enough not to be completely lulled into a false sense of security by antivirus and malware protection products. If you are lax with your security or computer "hygeine" - you are likely to be infected and all the antivirus and malware protection you can buy is not going to save you!

The good news.... you can reduce the risk significantly. I am assuming that you do not all have an IT guru at hand, but you can help yourselves:

Don't use your works PC for playing games/casual browsing/viewing porn - avoid browsing all but trusted websites; make sure your pc is updated (turn on updates); make sure your antivirus is up to date; don't view images and attachments in emails unless you completely trust the sender; switch off the preview pane in your email; don't view email attachments inline; Make sure email attachments are scanned; Never run files that are attached to emails, even if from trusted senders; Be very wary about enabling macros in office files (excel/word/access) disable them; avoid clicking on links in emails; don't download applications unless you are sure they are legitimate (not easy); switch on your firewall; use a mac! Make backups. Wear good socks.

Sleep easy!


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