Windows 7 is almost immune to a piece of malware that has proven a real nightmare to users running older versions of the Windows client. Windows XP SP3 customers particularly have been hit extremely hard by Alureon, a rootkit
that failed to play nice with a Windows kernel update and ended up rendering unbootable infected PCs earlier this year. Microsoft’s Malicious Software Removal Tool cleaned no less than 356,959 Windows computers infected with Alureon, with the Redmond company pointing out that the statistics are associated exclusively with the May release of MSRT. Out of all the machines cleaned by the software giant’s free security tool, only 3.5% were running Windows 7.
In this context, Alureon comes to prove just how unsafe are older versions of Windows, as XP SP3 PCs account for the bulk of infections, no less than 64.8%. The runner-up is XP SP2 with 13.6%, Vista SP2 with 7.3%, Vista RTM with 6.9% and Vista SP2 with 3.8%. Combined, machines running XP SP2 and SP3 make up 78.4% of all the Windows computers compromised by the rootkit. At this point in time, Virus:Win32/Alureon.H is the most prevalent flavor of the browser, having been cleaned from 155,394 PCs, Vishal Kapoor and Joe Johnson, from the Microsoft Malware Protection Center, note