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Scan a hard drive for malware in different computer?


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#1 Sterling14

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 06:44 PM

At work they will sometimes ask me to fix their computers, and one computer is in pretty bad shape. Every few minutes it just completely locks up and needs to be powered down by holding the button. So I go to scan it with malwarebtes, and after 8 minutes of scanning, it brings up 176 items, but then locks up and needs to be restarted. So next time I ran malwarebytes and as soon as it brought up 176 items, I stopped the scan and removed the items. I believe there's more but I can't scan it without the system freezing.

So, would I be able to put the hard drive in another computer as a slave, and effectively scan for viruses? Are there any programs you recommend for this? I think a program that could run without booting Windows may work too (and probably be more convenient). However, I do realize a lot of bad malware run as processes in Windows. Would these methods not fix these types?

I do realize that malware may not be the direct result of the freezing, but I figure it would be better to start at before I start ripping hardware apart, especially since the computer is obviously infested.

Also, does anyone have good malware remover recommendations? Malwarebytes doesn't open on another computer at work, and I wanted to know of other good programs to try.

Thanks for the help guys!
"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

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#2 sidorak95

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 07:01 PM

It probably would work. I did it with a computer that had a Virut infection. I used Norton, SAS, and ESET to clean it up. However, in normal mode it locked up and I had to boot in safe mode. Be warned though, if your antivirus has real time scanning, you'll be bombarded with alerts. Have you tried SAS free or a-squared free?

#3 Sterling14

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 08:45 PM

Thanks for the reply! I'll give this a try then. I have used SAS before, and I was thinking I'll probably try it on that other computer.
"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

#4 quietman7

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Posted 09 June 2009 - 10:13 AM

Important: If you are slaving a problem drive due to a malware infection like Virut, keep in mind that there is always a chance it will infect the hard drive you are slaving it to.

Before resorting to slaving, you can try using VIPRE Rescue - the size of the downloaded application is large. This is a command-line utility that will scan and clean a computer which is so badly infected that programs cannot be easily run. Be sure to print out and follow the instructions provided on the same page.

You can also try running MABM in safe mode. Scanning with Malwarebytes Anti-Malware in safe or normal mode will work but removal functions are not as powerful in safe mode. MBAM is designed to be at full power when malware is running so safe mode is not necessary when using it. In fact, it loses some effectiveness for detection & removal when used in safe mode because the program includes a special driver which does not work in safe mode. Further, scanning in safe mode prevents some types of malware from running so it may be missed during the detection process. For optimal removal, normal mode is recommended so it does not limit the abilities of MBAM. If you cannot use or complete a scan in normal mode, then try performing a Quick Scan in safe mode.
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