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Constant/random crashes and programs randomly "stopped working"


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#1 DoctorDiabolical

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 05:49 AM

--Windows Vista Home Premium, Service Pack 1--

--Dell Studio XPS Laptop--

This problem started about about 2 days ago, but until tonight I thought it was something different. Though my system has not crashed in around an hour, experience tells me it can happen almost any time.

I was browsing the web on multiple tabs (don't remember what I was browsing) when suddenly Norton Antivirus detected an attack on my computer. As I was about to check the details of the attack, my computer shut down. I don't recall whether it restarted itself or I turned it back on, but as I browsed the computer again, I began to sporadically receive multiple "X program... has stopped working" error messages. Believing this was probably bad, I tried a system restore; but with the restore, I received the error message that "system restore did not complete successfully: your computer's files and setting were not changed. Unspecified error." Again, I received messages that programs stopped working sporadically.

Thinking I could go about restoring my computer in another way, I tried the method of restoring by going through startup repair. Startup repair did not launch, however, and lead instead to a "create new user" screen. This worried me; I thought I had lost all of my files, so I quickly shut down worried that I would make it worse and didn't attempt to start my system back up until I had gotten some advice.

Someone told me that the startup repair error was not necessarily indicative of losing files, so tonight I started up my computer again. This night, however, I've been plagued not only with "X has stopped working" error messages but seemingly random crash dumps. My computer will go into the crash-dump screen at seemingly random times both in normal mode and safe mode. Once the system tries to restart after a crash dump, it occasionally crashes again in the middle of starting up.

To try and confront this problem, I've -

* Attempted system restores in and out of safe mode. The system restore IN safe mode did in fact perform its function, however, it did not remedy the crash-dumping problem nor the error message problems.

* Run msconfig. I did not find any programs that stood out to me as suspicious.

* Attempted to scan the disk for errors. This failed as chkdsk ran though, giving me an error message that apparently was fixed with Windows XP "Cannot open volume for direct access, the type of file system is NTFS ... Windows has finished checking the disk"

* Installed free-version MalWareBytes and run it; the program picked up two pieces of malware, but upon the mandatory restart needed to get rid of them, the system crashed again. The system has not crashed since, however, the error messages continue.

It's hard enough just making sense out of/trying to explain of what's happening; whether it's the malware that was deleted, a different virus, or another coincidental error. I have no idea how to fix the problem for good. I hope someone can help me.

Edited by hamluis, 12 July 2011 - 07:23 AM.
Moved from Vista to Am i Infected.


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#2 cryptodan

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 06:18 AM

Hello,

And welcome to BleepingComputer.com, before we can assist you with your question of: Am I infected? You will need to perform the following tasks and post the logs of each if you can.

Malwarebytes:

Please plost the log for Malwarebytes, and then proceed with the next set of tools.

SUPERAntiSpyware:

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.

      Scan with SUPERAntiSpyware as follows:[list]
    • 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.[list]
    • 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 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.

Instructions:

Download and scan with SUPERAntiSpyware Free for Home Users
  • Double-click SUPERAntiSpyware.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 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 Scanning Control tab.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Click "Next" to start the scan. Please be patient while it scans your computer.
  • 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".
  • 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 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.


Now GMER

GMER does not work in 64bit Mode!!!!!!

Please download GMER from one of the following locations and save it to your desktop:

  • Main Mirror
    This version will download a randomly named file (Recommended)
  • Zipped Mirror
    This version will download a zip file you will need to extract first. If you use this mirror, please extract the zip file to your desktop.
  • Disconnect from the Internet and close all running programs.
  • Temporarily disable any real-time active protection so your security programs will not conflict with gmer's driver.
  • Double-click on the randomly named GMER file (i.e. n7gmo46c.exe) and allow the gmer.sys driver to load if asked.
  • Note: If you downloaded the zipped version, extract the file to its own folder such as C:\gmer and then double-click on gmer.exe.

    Posted Image
  • GMER will open to the Rootkit/Malware tab and perform an automatic Full Scan when first run. (do not use the computer while the scan is in progress)
  • If you receive a WARNING!!! about rootkit activity and are asked to fully scan your system...click NO.
  • Now click the Scan button. If you see a rootkit warning window, click OK.
  • When the scan is finished, click the Save... button to save the scan results to your Desktop. Save the file as gmer.log.
  • Click the Copy button and paste the results into your next reply.
  • Exit GMER and be sure to re-enable your anti-virus, Firewall and any other security programs you had disabled.
-- If you encounter any problems, try running GMER in safe mode.
-- If GMER crashes or keeps resulting in a BSODs, uncheck Devices on the right side before scanning
.


All scans above should be performed in regular boot mode, and if that is not possible then I will post instructions in a follow up reply on how to get into Safe Mode to perform the scans. Also all scans should be COMPLETE and not quick unless specifically instructed to do so.




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