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Redirects & General Slowdown


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12 replies to this topic

#1 tatortodd

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Posted 28 August 2010 - 03:36 AM

I have Windows XP and use Windows Defender and Windows Firewall as my basic security programs. Additionally, I use Advanced SystemCare 3 to keep the system running efficiently. This has served me well for a long time, but a month ago I started getting redirects and a general computer slowdown.

Neither Windows Defender found nor Advanced SystemCare 3 found nothing. A friend in IT recommended Malwarebytes, and it found and removed 3 malware problems. Some additional investigation yielded that my Internet activity was being directed to a proxy server so I remedied that.

The computer is still running slow, and Combofix was recommended to me. I ran that in Safe Mode (computer seems snappier), and was following through the directions and I'm at the step of asking for help analyzing the combofix logs. I came here and followed all of the additional preparation instructions, but gmer.exe has locked my computer twice so I do not have that log.

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#2 Shannon2012

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Posted 03 September 2010 - 01:25 PM

Hello and welcome to Bleeping Computer

We apologize for the delay in responding to your request for help. Here at Bleeping Computer we get overwhelmed at times, and we are trying our best to keep up. Please note that your topic was not intentionally overlooked. Our mission is to help everyone in need, but sometimes it takes just a little longer to get to every request for help. No one is ignored here.

If you have since resolved the original problem you were having, we would appreciate you letting us know. If not please perform the following steps below so we can have a look at the current condition of your machine.

If you have not done so, include a clear description of the problems you're having, along with any steps you may have performed so far.

Upon completing the steps below another staff member will review and take the steps necessary with you to get your machine back in working order clean and free of malware.

If you have already posted a DDS log, please do so again, as your situation may have changed.
Use the 'Add Reply' and add the new log to this thread.

Thanks and again sorry for the delay.

We need to see some information about what is happening in your machine. Please perform the following scan:
  • Download DDS by sUBs from one of the following links. Save it to your desktop.
  • Double click on the DDS icon, allow it to run.
  • A small box will open, with an explaination about the tool. No input is needed, the scan is running.
  • Notepad will open with the results.
  • Follow the instructions that pop up for posting the results.
  • Close the program window, and delete the program from your desktop.
Please note: You may have to disable any script protection running if the scan fails to run. After downloading the tool, disconnect from the internet and disable all antivirus protection. Run the scan, enable your A/V and reconnect to the internet.

Information on A/V control HERE

We also need a new log from the GMER anti-rootkit scanner. Please first disable any CD emulation programs using the steps found in this topic:

Why we request you disable CD Emulation when receiving Malware Removal Advice

Then create another GMER log and post it as an attachment to the reply where you post your new DDS log. Instructions on how to properly create a GMER log can be found here:

How to create a GMER log


Shannon

#3 tatortodd

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Posted 04 September 2010 - 04:57 AM

Problem still exists:
* The slowdown seems highly related to wuauclt.exe
* The redirects all send me to myspace.com (I don't even have an account there or use myspace). Redirects originate primarily when I'm browsing foxnews.com or facebook.com, but occur sporadically as well.

I spent several hours rerunning all of the programs again. GMER.exe finally completed running without locking the computer or automatically rebooting, and it came back saying nothing found and the log file was blank.

Attached Files


Edited by tatortodd, 04 September 2010 - 05:02 AM.


#4 etavares

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Posted 06 September 2010 - 10:24 AM

Hello, tatortodd.
My name is etavares and I will be helping you with this log.

Here are some guidelines to ensure we are able to get your machine back under your control.
  • Please do not run any unsupervised scans, fixes, etc. We can work against each other and end up in a worse place.
  • Please subscribe to this topic if you have not already done so. Please check back just in case, as the email system can fail at times.
  • Just because your machine is running better does not mean it is completely cleaned. Please wait for the 'all clear' from me to say when we are done.
  • Please reply within 3 days to be fair to other people asking for help.
  • When in doubt, please stop and ask first. There's no harm in asking questions!



Step 1

I don't see an Anti Virus Program running on your machine
  • Download and install an antivirus program, and make sure that you keep it updated
    New viruses come out every minute, so it is essential that you have the latest signatures for your antivirus program to provide you with the best possible protection from malicious software.
    Two good antivirus programs free for non-commercial home use are Avast! and Antivir
    Note: You should only have one antivirus installed at a time. Having more than one antivirus program installed at once is likely to cause conflicts and may well decrease your overall protection as well as impairing the performance of your PC.



Step 2

Scan With RKUnHooker
  • Please Rootkit Unhooker and save it to your desktop.
  • Now double-click on RKUnhookerLE.exe to run it.
  • Click the Report tab, then click Scan.
  • Check (Tick) Drivers, Stealth. Uncheck the rest. then Click OK.
  • Wait till the scanner has finished and then click File, Save Report.
  • Save the report somewhere where you can find it. Click Close.

Copy the entire contents of the report and paste it in a reply here.

Note** you may get this warning it is ok, just ignore

QUOTE
"Rootkit Unhooker has detected a parasite inside itself!
It is recommended to remove parasite, okay?"




Step 3

Please download MBRCheck by ad_13 and save it to your desktop.

Double-click to run. A window will pop up. If it says 'non-standard' or 'infected' MBR code detected, please type 3 for Exit for now and press Enter.

It will save a logfile on your desktop that starts with MBR, then has the date, etc. Please copy and paste the contents of that log in your reply.

etavares


If I don't respond within 2 days, please feel free to PM me.
Please don't ask for help via PM. The forums are there for a reason. Please post in the forums so others may benefit as well.

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#5 tatortodd

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 07:03 PM

Step 1: I uninstalled Windows Defender and installed Avast Free.

Step 2: I ran RKUnhooker, didn't receive the warning, and have attached the text file output

Step 3: I ran MBRCheck, didn't receive the warning, and have attached the log file output

Thank you etavares

Attached Files



#6 etavares

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Posted 08 September 2010 - 05:24 PM

Hello, tatortodd.

Ah, you could have left Windows Defender installed...that's anti-spyware not anti-virus. You should have one antivirus, one anti-spyware and one firewall installed and running on your machine for maximum protection. We never want to have two or more in any category as they will conflict and fight with each other...system instability and slowdowns result with less protection.



Next, please download ComboFix from one of these locations:* IMPORTANT !!! Save ComboFix.exe to your Desktop as etavaresCF.exe
  • Disable your AntiVirus and AntiSpyware applications, usually via a right click on the System Tray icon. They may otherwise interfere with our tools. (Click on this link to see a list of programs that should be disabled. The list is not all inclusive.)
  • Double click on etavaresCF.exe & follow the prompts.
  • As part of it's process, ComboFix will check to see if the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console is installed. With malware infections being as they are today, it's strongly recommended to have this pre-installed on your machine before doing any malware removal. It will allow you to boot up into a special recovery/repair mode that will allow us to more easily help you should your computer have a problem after an attempted removal of malware.
  • Follow the prompts to allow ComboFix to download and install the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console, and when prompted, agree to the End-User License Agreement to install the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console.
**Please note: If the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console is already installed, ComboFix will continue it's malware removal procedures.



Once the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console is installed using ComboFix, you should see the following message:



Click on Yes, to continue scanning for malware.

When finished, it shall produce a log for you. Please include the C:\ComboFix.txt in your next reply, along with any symptoms that are present after it runs.

etavares


If I don't respond within 2 days, please feel free to PM me.
Please don't ask for help via PM. The forums are there for a reason. Please post in the forums so others may benefit as well.

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#7 tatortodd

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 02:51 AM

No worries on the Windows Defender. I have Iobit's Advanced System Care Pro running for Anti-spyware. Additionally, I have a paid copy of Malwarebytes and I wasn't utilizing its protection feature so I turned that on.

Attached is the log file from etavaresCF.exe

Thanks again!

Attached Files



#8 etavares

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 06:13 PM

Hello, tatortodd.


Step 1

1. Close any open browsers.

2. Close/disable all anti virus and anti malware programs so they do not interfere with the running of ComboFix.

3. Open notepad and copy/paste the text in the quotebox below into it:

QUOTE
Registry::
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\software\microsoft\security center]
"AntiVirusOverride"=dword:00000000
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\software\microsoft\security center\Monitoring]
"DisableMonitoring"=dword:00000000
Driver::
GAGPDrv
DDS::
uInternet Settings,ProxyServer = http=127.0.0.1:5577


Save this as CFScript.txt, in the same location as ComboFix.exe




Refering to the picture above, drag CFScript into ComboFix.exe

When finished, it shall produce a log for you at C:\ComboFix.txt which I will require in your next reply.



Step 2


Are you still getting redirects?

etavares


If I don't respond within 2 days, please feel free to PM me.
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#9 tatortodd

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Posted 10 September 2010 - 01:29 AM

I performed step 1 and have attached the log file.

As far as step 2, I have not had any redirects since running Combofix last night and have spent time at both Facebook and Foxnews where the redirects usually occur.

Thanks again!

Attached Files



#10 etavares

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Posted 10 September 2010 - 05:29 PM

Hello, tatortodd.
Great!

let's get a second opinion that you are clean.



Step 1

Please pull anything out of the recycle bin that you want to save. Part of this fix will empty temp files, and that does include the recycle bin.

Please download TFC by OldTimer and save it to your desktop.
alternate download link

  • 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 or Windows 7, 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.
  • Important! If TFC prompts you to reboot, please do so immediately. If not prompted, manually reboot the machine anyway to ensure a complete clean.




Step 2

Please go to the Kaspersky website and perform an online antivirus scan.
  1. Read through the requirements and privacy statement and click on Accept button.
  2. It will start downloading and installing the scanner and virus definitions. You will be prompted to install an application from Kaspersky. Click Run.
  3. When the downloads have finished, click on Settings.
  4. Make sure these boxes are checked (ticked). If they are not, please tick them and click on the Save button:
    Spyware, Adware, Dialers, and other potentially dangerous programs
    Archives
  5. Click on My Computer under Scan.
  6. Once the scan is complete, it will display the results. Click on View Scan Report.
  7. You will see a list of infected items there. Click on Save Report As....
  8. Save this report to a convenient place. Change the Files of type to Text file (.txt) before clicking on the Save button.
  9. Please post this log in your next reply.

Note: Kaspersky online scan may take time to complete, please be patient.



Step 3

Please download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and save it to your desktop.
alternate download link 1
alternate download link 2

MBAM may "make changes to your registry" as part of its disinfection routine. If using other security programs that detect registry changes (ie Spybot's Teatimer), they may interfere or alert you. Temporarily disable such programs or permit them to allow the changes.
  • Make sure you are connected to the Internet.
  • Double-click on mbam-setup.exe to install the application.
  • When the installation begins, follow the prompts and do not make any changes to default settings.
  • When installation has finished, make sure you leave both of these checked:
    • Update Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
    • Launch Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
  • Then click Finish.
MBAM will automatically start and you will be asked to update the program before performing a scan.
  • If an update is found, the program will automatically update itself. Press the OK button to close that box and continue.
  • If you encounter any problems while downloading the definition updates, manually download them from here and just double-click on mbam-rules.exe to install.
On the Scanner tab:
  • Make sure the "Perform Quick Scan" option is selected.
  • Then click on the Scan button.
  • If asked to select the drives to scan, leave all the drives selected and click on the Start Scan button.
  • The scan will begin and "Scan in progress" will show at the top. It may take some time to complete so please be patient.
  • When the scan is finished, a message box will say "The scan completed successfully. Click 'Show Results' to display all objects found".
  • Click OK to close the message box and continue with the removal process.
Back at the main Scanner screen:
  • Click on the Show Results button to see a list of any malware that was found.
  • Make sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected.
  • When removal is completed, a log report will open in Notepad.
  • The log is automatically saved and can be viewed by clicking the Logs tab in MBAM.
  • Copy and paste the contents of that report in your next reply. Be sure to post the complete log to include the top portion which shows MBAM's database version and your operating system.
  • Exit MBAM when done.
Note: If MBAM encounters a file that is difficult to remove, you will be asked to reboot your computer so MBAM can proceed with the disinfection process. If asked to restart the computer, please do so immediately. Failure to reboot normally (not into safe mode) will prevent MBAM from removing all the malware.



Step 4

AFter all of the above, please post a new DDS log.

etavares


If I don't respond within 2 days, please feel free to PM me.
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#11 tatortodd

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Posted 12 September 2010 - 08:07 PM

You weren't kidding when you said Kaspersky takes a while (5 hours to download and run). I downloaded all of the files, completed all of the scans, and have attached the requested log files.

I have not had any redirects and the computer continues to be snappier. Thanks again for all of your help.

Attached Files



#12 etavares

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Posted 13 September 2010 - 05:58 PM

Hello, tatortodd.

Ok, good news. Your log appears clean. Let's clean up our mess. If your computer is running well; please do the steps listed below. At the end, I've also listed a few completely optional things you can do to further secure your computer. Safe surfing!



Step 1

Uninstall ComboFix and Clean Up
Click Start > Run and type combofix /Uninstall click OK (Note the space between combofix and /Uninstall) See below:

Please advise if this step is missed for any reason as it performs some important actions.

Download and Run OTC

We will now remove the tools we used during this fix using OTC.
  • Download OTC by OldTimer and save it to your desktop.
  • If that link doesn't work, try this one.
  • Double click icon to start the program. If you are using Vista, please right-click and choose run as administrator
  • Then Click the big button.
  • You will get a prompt saying "Begin Cleanup Process". Please select Yes.
  • Restart your computer when prompted.

If you ran Defogger and disabled your emulator, please don't forget to run it again and reenable it. See the instructions here to do so.


Optional Items

Please take the time to read below to secure your machine and take the necessary steps to keep it that way.


System Still Slow?
You may wish to try StartupLite. Simply download this tool to your desktop and run it. It will explain any optional auto-start programs on your system, and offer the option to stop these programs from starting at startup. This will result in fewer programs running when you boot your system, and should improve preformance. If you are running Windows Vista or Windows 7, please right-click on the icon, and select "Run As Administrator"; otherwise it won't work.
If that does not work, you can try the steps mentioned in Slow Computer/browser? Check Here First; It May Not Be Malware

Protect yourself from malicious sites

The HOSTS file can protect you from connecting to bad sites. See The Hosts File and what it can do for you for more background.

Please download HostMan. It safeguards you with a regularly updated Hosts-file that blocks dangerous sites from opening. This adds another bit of safety while surfing the Internet. For installlation and setting up, follow these steps:
  1. Double-click the Downloaded installer and install the tool to a location of your choice
  2. Via the Startmenu, navigate to HostsMan and run the program.
    1. Click "Hosts" in the menu
    2. Click "Manage Updates" in the submenu
    3. Out of the three, select atleast one of the three (I have MVPS Host as my main one)
    4. Click "Add Update." After that you will only need to click on the following button to retrieve updates:
  3. Click the X to exit the program.
  4. Note: If you were using a custom Hosts file you will need to replace any of those entries yourself.


Keep Windows Up to Date
It is important that you visit http://www.windowsupdate.com regularly. This will ensure your computer has always the latest security updates available installed on your computer. If there are new updates to install, install them immediately, reboot your computer, and revisit the site until there are no more critical updates.



Update your AntiVirus Software

It is imperative that you update your Antivirus software at least once a week (Even more if you wish). If you do not update your antivirus software then it will not be able to catch any of the new variants that may come out. If you use a commercial antivirus program you must make sure you keep renewing your subscription. Otherwise, once your subscription runs out, you may not be able to update the programs virus definitions.


Make sure your applications have all of their updates

It is also possible for other programs on your computer to have security vulnerability that can allow malware to infect you. Therefore, it is also a good idea to check for the latest versions of commonly installed applications that are regularly patched to fix vulnerabilities. You can check these by visiting Secunia Software Inspector and Calendar of Updates.

Use a Firewall

I can not stress how important it is that you use a Firewall on your computer. Without a firewall your computer is susceptible to being hacked and taken over. I am very serious about this and see it happen almost every day with my clients. Simply using a Firewall in its default configuration can lower your risk greatly.

For a tutorial on Firewalls and a listing of some available ones see the link below:

Understanding and Using Firewalls

Install an AntiSpyware Program

A highly recommended AntiSpyware program isMalwarebytes Anti-Malware. You can download the free version..

Installing this program will provide spyware & hijacker protection on your computer alongside your virus protection. You should scan your computer with an AntiSpyware program on a regular basis just as you would an antivirus software.

Update all these programs regularly
Make sure you update all your programs regularly. Without regular updates you WILL NOT be protected when new malicious programs are released.

Follow this list and your potential for being infected again will reduce dramatically.

Good luck!

etavares


If I don't respond within 2 days, please feel free to PM me.
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#13 etavares

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 06:08 AM

Since this issue appears to be resolved ... this Topic has been closed. Glad we could help. smile.gif

If you are the topic starter, and need this topic reopened, please contact me via PM with the address of this thread.

Everyone else please begin a new topic.


If I don't respond within 2 days, please feel free to PM me.
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