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Windows 7: Urgent fix needed - virus has left laptop in terrible shape


01 May 2013   #1

Windows 7 home 32bit
 
 
Urgent fix needed - virus has left laptop in terrible shape

I apologise that the title couldn't be more specific. My laptop recently was infected, I presume, with what appeared to be a pretty bad virus. I can only presume that's what it was since I couldn't find out exactly what the virus was, and even after going through extreme lengths to remove any trace of software that's suspicious or out-of-the-ordinary even in the slightest (nevertheless I ensured that anything I removed wouldn't damage the PC), I'm still having issues.

I can provide you with a rough timeline of the issues. I would seriously appreciate help because this is INCREDIBLY urgent, I am a Design student at University, and I have to hand in all my work on Friday. I haven't slept in 2 nights, last night was spent removing malware. I haven't been able to back my work up because I just simply don't have anything to back it onto, money is incredibly tight at the moment, but I don't wish to ask for sympathy. Anyway, here's basically what happened

Laptop has been running absolutely fine for months. Occasionally I'd slip up and accidentally let a toolbar install itself onto the system, eg. conduit and anything along those lines. I had also made the mistake of lending it to friends a couple times, and of course finding myself having to uninstall toolbars every time I got it back. Months and months ago, I did happen to install PrivitizeVPN while trying to get around the strict university filters, and I found out this morning that PrivitizeVPN is actually a piece of malware disguised as legitimate software - incidentally the problems my laptop eventually started having fit the description of the PrivitizeVPN virus. However, I didn't start getting any problems until months after I'd installed it, though I never used it.

About 3 days ago problems started cropping up with the laptop. Initially it was just the browser crashing when running flash. Then eventually other issues would join in, the sound would just go, pages stopped loading, and if I closed the browser and tried to re-open it, the hourglass would be displayed for half a second and no browser window would open - but in task manager, a new Chrome process would appear. At some point afterwards, other issues would join in.

Explorer ended up crashing every time I tried to do anything more than browse. The first couple times this happened, it would quit then restart. But now when it crashes, I have to reboot the laptop. Another issue that occurs a lot is the start menu just stops working. Pressing "start" would open the menu as normal, but I would be unable to even highlight anything, and if I tried clicking, it'd make that ping sound as if there was some sort of dialogue box open that I needed to close.

These issues would all take effect gradually following a restart. It works fine for maybe 5-10, sometimes after only a couple seconds, but on average between 5 and 10 minutes, and then after that time, the problems all join in one-by-one. Windows Media Player also crashes EVERY time I try and launch it.

So that's essentially the timeline of the problems. As for solutions, basically I sat down to fix the virus at 8pm last night, it is now 6pm the following day and I haven't slept, only really had a break during this time for about 2 hours at the most. My attempts to resolve the issues consisted of initially restarting. As expected, that fixed the problem for a couple minutes, but only a couple minutes. The next thing I did was a system restore. That would actually fix the problem for maybe an hour or so, maybe 2 or 3. By this point I was pretty sure that I had a virus and decided to download, install, run every trusted anti-virus and malware I could find on the internet, following countless instructions on removing viruses - and I always made sure to uninstall the last anti-virus before installing the next. Quite a lot of threats were found in this time. I ran CCleaner numerous times. I tried quick scans, full scans, and any other scan available until not a single piece of anti-virus software could report anything. Restart. Problems continue. So I browse my C drive, googling every suspicious file to see if it's meant to be there, and deleting it providing google says it's okay to do so. Same with the registry. Nope, still having problems.

I figure, maybe the virus, or my rigorous virus-removal scheme damaged the system somehow? Well, unfortunately, all the system restore points are gone now for some reason. I tried to do a disk check, after 2 hours it was only on 15% so I figured that this isn't gonna work. Right now, I am able to browse the internet and write this without too many issues. But that is all I am doing. I have noticed that my sound has gone once again, and I'm sure if I attempt to use the start menu or windows explorer to excess, or if I try and launch WMP, the problems are just going to come flooding back.

Don't get me wrong, I am pretty tech savy. I have been a pretty intense computer user now for about 10 years and not experienced any big issues with viruses or malware until now. And I'd say now is probably the worst time in this 10 years for me to have an issue. My laptop didn't come with an install disk, just a repair disk which is currently in my home country, whereas I'm in England for university. I would seriously appreciate any help because I am going to fail my university course if I don't get this issue sorted within the next couple of hours, I already have no choice but to not sleep for the next 2 nights (having already done an all-nighter last night).

I am happy to provide logs from some of the anti-virus software if needed. Thank you!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

01 May 2013   #2

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote:
"I did happen to install PrivitizeVPN"
This was your big mistake. It is notorious, had you not heard of it before?
You don't say in your long post what A/V you are running and if it is up to date. I would suggest that to cut down the time you would be best to back up you important data (I'm very surprised that someone in your position and being computer savvy has not kept a continous backup of data going all the time) and do a clean install. Follow this tutorial, it's the very best you will find:
Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7

If you don't have an extenal HD that you can use try to borrow one from one of your fellow students or even the college may have one to loan!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 May 2013   #3

Windows 7 home 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mitchell65 View Post
You don't say in your long post what A/V you are running and if it is up to date. I would suggest that to cut down the time you would be best to back up you important data (I'm very surprised that someone in your position and being computer savvy has not kept a continous backup of data going all the time) and do a clean install. Follow this tutorial, it's the very best you will find:
Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7

If you don't have an extenal HD that you can use try to borrow one from one of your fellow students or even the college may have one to loan!
As I said, I didn't use just one anti-virus. My apologise though, I should have named them. I used Avast, Avira, AVG, Malwarebytes Antimalware, RogueKiller, Ad-Aware, there were a few others but I can't remember..it's been a long day. I guess tech savy wasn't the right description, but I'd like to think I'm not an idiot when it comes to computers - I'm not the sorta person that'll get a virus from a spam email, or fall for a phishing scam, and I'm generally pretty careful with my browsing. As for borrowing a hard drive from friends, it just never really struck me as an option. I mean, of course it crossed my mind to back up stuff, and I backed up some of my more important works onto USB sticks. But I guess just...I dunno how to explain, just, borrowing someone else's External HD never felt like an option...that only ever really felt necessary if I just needed some kind of external storage space quickly for a short amount of time, it just doesn't feel appropriate to borrow a friend's External HD which they will be using, to store all your computer data on for an indefinite amount of time just in case my PC gets infected with a bad virus. Though it could be a perfectly reasonable thing to expect and I'm just not thinking particularly straight at the moment. As far as I know, the university doesn't give out hard drives though. But yeah keeping a continuous back up has been a concern of mine, but I just never really knew what my options were. Thank you for the link though, I will check it out!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


01 May 2013   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Metropocalypse,

If you wish to go a different route, other than installing the system...

...please download the Farbar Recovery Scan Tool
Select the 32-bit version.


Save it to your Desktop.
  • Double-click the downloaded file to run it.
  • When the tool opens click Yes to disclaimer.
  • Press the Scan button.
  • FRST makes a log (FRST.txt) in the same directory from which the tool is run (Desktop).
Please provide the FRST.txt in your reply. <<---

The first time the tool is run, it also makes another log: Addition.txt
Also post the Addition.txt in your reply. <<---


In addition, please download RogueKiller:
Tlcharger RogueKiller (Site Officiel)

When you get to the website, go to where it says:
(Download link) Lien de téléchargement:
Select the version for your system: 32-bit (button without the x64)
Click the applicable dark-blue button to download.
Save to the Desktop.

Close all windows and browsers.

Right-click and select: Run as Administrator

At the program console, wait for the prescan to finish. (Under Status, it says: Prescan finished.)

Press: SCAN

When done, a report opens on the Desktop: RKreport.txt

Please provide the RKreport.txt (Mode: Scan) in your reply.
(Do not take action to fix anything, please!!)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 May 2013   #5

Windows 7 home 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by cottonball View Post
Metropocalypse,

If you wish to go a different route, other than installing the system...

...please download the Farbar Recovery Scan Tool
Select the 32-bit version.


Save it to your Desktop.
  • Double-click the downloaded file to run it.
  • When the tool opens click Yes to disclaimer.
  • Press the Scan button.
  • FRST makes a log (FRST.txt) in the same directory from which the tool is run (Desktop).
Please provide the FRST.txt in your reply. <<---

The first time the tool is run, it also makes another log: Addition.txt
Also post the Addition.txt in your reply. <<---


In addition, please download RogueKiller:
Tlcharger RogueKiller (Site Officiel)

When you get to the website, go to where it says:
(Download link) Lien de téléchargement:
Select the version for your system: 32-bit (button without the x64)
Click the applicable dark-blue button to download.
Save to the Desktop.

Close all windows and browsers.

Right-click and select: Run as Administrator

At the program console, wait for the prescan to finish. (Under Status, it says: Prescan finished.)

Press: SCAN

When done, a report opens on the Desktop: RKreport.txt

Please provide the RKreport.txt (Mode: Scan) in your reply.
(Do not take action to fix anything, please!!)
Thank you so much, here are the files you asked for.
I forgot to mention that performing tasks like running a scan or installing software only works in safe mode. I don't know if that is useful information, but yeah, performance in safe mode is flawless. Also, every time the PC is restarted, tap-to-click is re-enabled on the touchpad, which is really annoying.


Attached Files
File Type: txt FRST.txt (47.5 KB, 6 views)
File Type: txt Addition.txt (13.9 KB, 4 views)
File Type: txt RKreport[1]_S_05012013_02d0950.txt (3.1 KB, 7 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 May 2013   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Please download AdwCleaner:
http://general-changelog-team.fr/fr/...e/2-adwcleaner
Save to the desktop.
Close all open programs.
To run the program, right-click AdwCleaner.exe and select: Run as Administrator

Click on Delete and confirm the prompt.

After it finishes, the computer is restarted.
A text file report opens after the restart.

Please post the content of the AdwCleaner report to your reply.
(A copy of the log is also saved at C:\AdwCleaner[S1].txt)


Also download the Junkware Removal Tool:
Junkware Removal Tool Download
Save to the Desktop.

Make sure you temporarily disable your AntiVirus, Firewall, and any other AntiSpyware applications.
These programs may interfere with the running of JRT.
For information on how to disable protective programs, refer to this info:
How To Temporarily Disable Your Anti-virus, Firewall And Anti-malware Programs - Security Mini-Guides

Right-click JRT.exe and select: Run as Administrator
The tool opens and starts scanning the system. Please be patient as this can take a while...

When done, a report (JRT.txt) is saved on the Desktop.
Please post the contents of JRT.txt in your reply.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 May 2013   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Also do the following:

Please press the Windows key and the R key.
In the Run box type: services.msc

Right click the services (one at a time) that are issuing an error:
Computer Browser
HomeGroup Provider


For each one, click: Properties

Go to the Dependencies tab, and in the top box, there is a list of services upon which the original service depends:
Computer Browser service depends on the Server service
HomeGroup Provider service depends on the Function Discovery Provider Host

Make sure these Dependencies services are set to start automatically by right clicking each one, selecting Properties, going to the General tab, and making the Startup type is: Automatic
Server
Function Discovery Provider Host


Restart the computer.

Will Windows work in Normal mode?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 May 2013   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Looks as if the urgency subsided...it's been a while...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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