Posted 08 April 2008 - 11:38 AM
My HP Pavilion zv5000 laptop will not boot. The OS is Windows XP Home Edition. I was using Avast anti-virus for protection, but it must have failed because it recently became infected with a lot of malware, including trojans, spyware, adware, and other vicious little bugs. At that time I could still log on to the computer, watch movies, play games, and get on the internet, but I could tell something was wrong. I went on the "Am I Infected? What Do I Do?" forum for help. I was told that first I should download a program called Malwarebytes Anti-Malware. I did, then ran it according to the instructions. At the end of the scan, it had found over 250 infected files! I made sure that all were checked then hit "Remove". At the end of removing the files it said that I needed to reboot to complete the removal of the more difficult files. I clicked OK and it shutdown and started rebooting, but would go no further than the HP splash screen. I shut it down and rebooted, pressing the F8 key, I told it to reboot in Safe Mode. It tried but got only as far as a black screen that has the words Safe Mode in all four corners, and across the top of the screen it says Microsoft ® Windows XP ® (Build 2600.xpsp_sp2_rtm.040803-2158: Service Pack 2). It will not go any further than this screen. The moderator that was assisting me suggested that I may need to reformat the hard drive, and suggested that I come to this forum and start a new post asking for help.
Do I need to reformat the hard drive? It was suggested that I do, based on the types of a couple of the infections found on my hard drive (rootkits and backdoor trojans), as you can never be sure that they are totally removed.
I would like to be able to get back onto the computer before doing this, so that i can backup some files prior to reformatting. Is this possible?
This computer is only going to be used for games, movies, and internet surfing. No financial data will be entered into this computer, although in the past I have made a few online purchases with a credit card. I am told that this information (the card number) may be at risk, another good reason to reformat. Knowing this, would you recommend a Repair or a Reformat?
Thank you for any help you can give me!