The inability to open drives and partitions is a common sign of a USB flash drive infection
. These infections usually involve malware that modifies/loads an autorun.inf
(text-based configuration) file into the root folder of all drives
(internal, external, removable) along with a malicious executable. When removable media such as a CD/DVD is inserted (mounted), autorun
looks for autorun.inf and automatically executes the malicious file to run silently on your computer. In USB drives, it modifies Windows Explorer's right-click context menu (adds a new default command) and redirects to executing the malicious file if the "Open" command is used or double-clicking on the drive icon. When a flash drive becomes infected, the Trojan will infect a system when the removable media is inserted if autorun has not been disabled. Keep in mind that autorun.inf can also be a legitimate file which other legitimate programs depend on so the presence of that file may not always be an indication of infection. To learn more about this risk, please read:
Please download Flash_Disinfector
by sUBs and save it to your desktop.
Flash_Disinfector will create a hidden "dummy" autorun folder/file with special permissions in each partition and every external drive that was connected when the tool was run. Do not delete this folder as it helps to prevent the installation of a malicious autorun.ini file on the root drive and executing other malicious files which can infect the computer. Please read About Flash Disinfector by Papakid and USB/Flash Drive Safety by TheJoker.Note
- Double-click Flash_Disinfector.exe to run the tool and follow any prompts that may appear.
- If asked to insert your USB flash drive and other removable drives, please do so and allow the utility to clean up them as well.
- Hold down the Shift key when inserting the drive until Windows detects it to keep autorun.inf from executing if it is present.
- Wait until it has finished scanning and then exit the program.
- Reboot your computer when done.
: As an alternative to Flash Disinfector, you can download and use Panda USB Vaccine
.alternate download link 1alternate download link 2
Note: Computer Vaccination will prevent any AutoRun file from running, regardless of whether the removable device is infected or not. USB Vaccination disables the autorun file so it cannot be read, modified or replaced and creates an AUTORUN_.INF as protection against malicious code. The Panda Resarch Blog advises that once USB drives have been vaccinated, they cannot be reversed except with a format. If you do this, be sure to back up your data files first or they will be lost during the formatting process.
- Double-click on USBVaccineSetup.exe to install the program to C:\Program Files\Panda USB Vaccine.
- Read and accept the license agreement, then click Next.
- When setup completes, make sure "Launch Panda USB Vaccine" is checked and click Finish to open the program.
- Click the Vaccinate computer button. It should now show a green checkmark and confirm Computer vaccinated.
- Hold down the Shift key and insert your USB flash drive.
- When the name of the drive appears in the dialog box, click the button to Vaccinate USB drive(s).
- Exit the program when done
Please download TFC
(Temp File Cleaner) by Old Timer and save it to your desktop.alternate download link
Note: It is normal for the computer to be slow to boot after running TFC cleaner the first time.
- Save any unsaved work. TFC will close ALL open programs including your browser!
- Double-click on TFC.exe to run it. If you are using Vista, right-click on the file and choose Run As Administrator.
- Click the Start button to begin the cleaning process and let it run uninterrupted to completion.
- TFC will clear out all temp folders for all user accounts (temp, IE temp, Java, FF, Opera, Chrome, Safari), including Administrator, All Users, LocalService, NetworkService, and any other accounts in the user folder.
- Important! If TFC prompts you to reboot, please do so immediately. If not prompted, manually reboot the machine anyway to ensure a complete clean.
Please download and scan with SUPERAntiSpyware Free
- Double-click SUPERAntiSypware.exe and use the default settings for installation.
- An icon will be created on your desktop. Double-click that icon to launch the program.
- If it will not start, go to Start > All Prgrams > SUPERAntiSpyware and click on Alternate Start.
- If asked to update the program definitions, click "Yes". If not, update the definitions before scanning by selecting "Check for Updates". (If you encounter any problems while downloading the updates, manually download them from here. Double-click on the hyperlink for Download Installer and save SASDEFINITIONS.EXE to your desktop. Then double-click on SASDEFINITIONS.EXE to install the definitions.)
- In the Main Menu, click the Preferences... button.
- Click the "General and Startup" tab, and under Start-up Options, make sure "Start SUPERAntiSpyware when Windows starts" box is unchecked.
- Click the "Scanning Control" tab, and under Scanner Options, make sure the following are checked (leave all others unchecked):
- Close browsers before scanning.
- Scan for tracking cookies.
- Terminate memory threats before quarantining.
- Click the "Close" button to leave the control center screen and exit the program.
- Do not run a scan just yet.
Reboot your computer in "Safe Mode
" using the F8
method. To do this, restart your computer and after hearing your computer beep once during startup (but before the Windows icon appears) press the F8 key repeatedly. A menu will appear with several options. Use the arrow keys to navigate and select the option to run Windows in "Safe Mode".Scan with SUPERAntiSpyware as follows:
- Launch the program and back on the main screen, under "Scan for Harmful Software" click Scan your computer.
- On the left, make sure you check C:\Fixed Drive.
- On the right, under "Complete Scan", choose Perform Complete Scan and click "Next".
- After the scan is complete, a Scan Summary box will appear with potentially harmful items that were detected. Click "OK".
- Make sure everything has a checkmark next to it and click "Next".
- A notification will appear that "Quarantine and Removal is Complete". Click "OK" and then click the "Finish" button to return to the main menu.
- If asked if you want to reboot, click "Yes" and reboot normally.
- To retrieve the removal information after reboot, launch SUPERAntispyware again.
- Click Preferences, then click the Statistics/Logs tab.
- Under Scanner Logs, double-click SUPERAntiSpyware Scan Log.
- If there are several logs, click the current dated log and press View log. A text file will open in your default text editor.
- Please copy and paste the Scan Log results in your next reply.
- Click Close to exit the program.
-- If you cannot boot into safe mode or complete a scan, then perform your scan in normal mode.
-- If you have a problem downloading, installing or getting SAS to run, try downloading and using the SUPERAntiSpyware Portable Scanner
instead. Save the randomly named file (i.e. SAS_1710895.COM) to a usb drive or CD and transfer to the infected computer. Then double-click on it to launch and scan. The file is randomly named to help keep malware from blocking the scanner.