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Hello From Bevilry7


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#1 Bevilry7

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Posted 25 January 2006 - 01:45 AM

Like BigPolishDog I am a new member and am in need of help with my computer. How do I access the topics I need to start working out my problems? I have many hijackers and adwares according to my Yahoo! anti-spy scan. Any help would be appreciated as I can't seem to navigate the search bar on this site. Thank you. :thumbsup:

Mod Edit Moved to appropriate forum - Leurgy

Edited by Leurgy, 25 January 2006 - 10:10 AM.


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#2 Bevilry7

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Posted 25 January 2006 - 01:51 AM

I am sorry if I am using the wrong page to talk about my troubles but I can't find the right page. I've tried everything I can think of for over an hour and final worked out how to open the introductions poster so here I am. Please forgive a computer illiterate who's had it up to here with spyware! If I am on the wrong site for help with my problems, please be kind enough to tell me now so I can stop wasting my time. Thank you.

#3 jgweed

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Posted 25 January 2006 - 02:05 AM

The first step would be to download, install, and update the definitions of two good (and FREE) spyware programs that should rid your computer of a lot of spyware (I am assuming you have already used your resident Anti-virus to completely scan your hard drive):
Ad-AwareSE
Spybot Search and Destroy

You can find the links to both of these applications here:

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic3616.html

Once you have done this, then post a reply to this thread with the results, including any exceptions that the two applications cannot quarantine.
We can then proceed from there.
Welcome to BC!
Regards,
John

Edited by jgweed, 25 January 2006 - 02:07 AM.

Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one should be silent.

#4 Bevilry7

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Posted 26 January 2006 - 08:14 AM

:thumbsup: Thank you for responding. Yes I have used my resident anti-spyware but it is unable to disinfect or delete the problem files and does not offer a quarantine feature. I must remove them manually. Since I did not know how to do this, I turned to MSN Help and Support for advice. I received a reply with very clear instructions which I was unable to follow because the whole thing bogged down when I was unable to locate my RESTORE Folder in the WINDOWS Folder. It simply isn't there. They then advised me to download Hijackthis, something that is a little beyond me at this point, I have since discovered, for reasons which I won't go into now. Suffice it to say that I have tried a great many things before reaching this site. Yesterday I tried to download AdawareSE, (I hope I spelled that right but you'll know what I mean) without success. However, Spybot downloaded nicely and I have scanned my computer and deleted a whole whack of things. I am waiting to see what sort of repercussions might develop before I do anything else. As far as I know it was able to delete everything I asked it to (at least it did not say anything to the contrary). So far I am very happy with it. I haven't seen a WinFix Popup since I did the scan, and all my Casino Ads seem to have vanished as well. So far so good. The contents of my email were much improved today as well. Thank you for pointing the way!

#5 jgweed

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Posted 26 January 2006 - 08:51 AM

Try running your AV in Safe Mode; this may enable it to quarantine (or delete) those remaining problems. Post back with the exact "error" messages you get about what it still has a problem handling.

Your Restore folder is most likely 'hidden." You can unhide these by going to Windows Explorer (NOT Internet Explorer). Click on Tools, then Folder Options. Click on the View tab; under Files and Folders/hidden,files and folders,check "show hidden files and folders." Click on apply and then OK.
After following the MSN advice, I would recommend you reverse the unhiding process so you do anything to them by mistake (that is why they are "hidden" in the first place---out of sight, out of mind).

I would certainly urge you to retry downloading Ad-AwareSE and let it help rid your computer of anything Spybot did not find.

Regards,
John
Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one should be silent.

#6 Bevilry7

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Posted 26 January 2006 - 09:21 AM

:thumbsup: Thank you, John, for your additional advice. It makes a nice backup to the MSN directions. Between the two things, I should be able to locate RESTORE and continue on. If I run into further problems I will return!

I will also try the Ad-AwareSE again because I have already noticed that Spybot did not locate everything my Anti-Virus did, even though it was unable to delete them. However, it DID locate a lot of things that my AV fails to mention, about 3 pages worth! A lot of it may just be tracking cookies, though, and I have to be careful with that. I don't want to lose my privileges with any of the host sites.

Thank you again.

Best regards,

Bevilry7

#7 Leurgy

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Posted 26 January 2006 - 09:25 AM

What is your operating system? I would be very careful about restoring the registry as you may also be restoring the items you are working so hard to remove.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#8 Bevilry7

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 03:30 AM

Hello Leurgy,

Top of the morning to you! As you may have noticed, I am feeling a lot happier these days. I have followed most of the advice I have received from this site, with excellent results. I was very careful, however, and removed only a few of the Adware and Hijackers that both Spybot S&S and Yahoo! Ant-Spy found on my computer, at any one time. I am now down to tracking cookies and browser-helpers that I think I will leave alone for awhile until I see how things sort themselves out.

I have noticed major changes already, and at first had to go through a few episodes of Microsoft "error messages" and "This page cannot be displayed" overlays popping up whenever I paused on any site for more than a moment or two without scrolling down or clicking on anything. Whenever I tried to get rid of the latter, it would shut down my internet connection. That all passed after I removed the last of the Hijackers and the Adware that was listed on Anti-Spy.

I have not yet touched any of the spyware yet that was/is backing up some of the Adware, and I have two pages of MyWay, aka mywebsearch, to deal with and various other things that Spybot located. It seems to be connected with the Yahoo! Toolbar that I downloaded when I got Anti-Spy, which is possibly why it is not listed there. I hesitate to take it off in one fell swoop because I don't want to lose any privileges with Yahoo!, and in particular with the Anti-Spy community which seems to be a nice bunch of guys willing to help out novices who are having trouble. I always feel the more irons you have in the fire, the better, when it comes to solving problems!

If anyone here knows anything about> MyWay< or> mywebsearch>please let me know. So far I don't think I'm having any problems with it, but now that I can get down to some serious research for my studies, that may change. Most of it is located in< Windows Directory, Program Files or the Registry or HKey_Local_Machine\software\current\user> and other similarly titled files. I really don't want to mess with the Registry unless I'm forced to, and then only with very specific advice and directions from someone I trust. The people I have heard from on this site fit that description.

As for my RESTORE Files, while researching Symantec's< Viruses, Trojans and Worms> database, I read at some point that files located in the ARCHIVES, (which all of these are since they were quarantined by McAffey almost a year ago), do not pose a threat to the computer's operating system. Unless you advise to the contrary, I now feel that I can stop worrying about them.

I find that once I have removed anything with my AntiVirus, the best indicator of how my computer will behave for awhile is a particular game that I play on one of the game sites. It's a simple little game that requires a fast clicker to enable a decent score. Several of the things I removed had the word(s)< activex> in the File Address. Sure enough, the game is not responding well at this time. It may improve on its own (it has in the past, for what reason I don't know) or it might get worse. I've had it freeze up altogether in times past because I have clicked on it faster than it is able to accommodate. Is there a way of downloading a safe, spyware free version of the activex component?

My computer's Operating System is Windows Millenium Edition. It is almost new. I have had it for less than a year and only actively started using it about five months ago. I have made many mistakes while learning my way around on it and it has survived them all! I've grown attached to it, silly as that may seem. I have Windows Office 2000 and several other Windows Software packages on it, most of which I am still trying to get the hang of, and all of it is registered with Microsoft so I am entitled to updates and other perks with Genuine Microsoft Products.

Can you tell me if I need special software to download files such as Hijackthis and Winzip? I have downloaded both of these in the past, never to see them again. I wrote down their locations very carefully and their file addresses but was never able to access either of them. My Windows Search in the Start Menu managed to locate Hijackthis when I directed it to look in Computer, but the pathway it gave me was rejected when I entered it into the "open file...." as being incorrect. One of my Hijackers was responsible for that, I am sure. I have since discovered it by accident in my Windows Media Player under History but haven't a clue how to open it. Media Player cannot open it as that is not one of its functions. I have no idea what it is doing there or how it got there or what to do about it now.

I'm very sorry Leurgy, that this post has run on so long! My what a blabbermouth I've become, but I'm afraid to start editing it in case it gets even longer! I hope you can sort out the questions from the rest of the chit chat, and I hope I haven't abused your hospitality. It is so nice to have a listening ear (or eye, as the case may be). I'm very grateful to John as well and have taken much of his advice. Thank you John!

I will end this now.

Best regards from Bevilry7. :thumbsup:

#9 jgweed

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 08:43 AM

RE: MyWay.
Different anti-spyware applications have different criteria for what consitutes spyware. One example of this is MyWay cookies; depending on your confidence about the intent of the site management (which has changed hands), you may ignore Spybot's MyWay entries, as I do.

Anti-malware applications will "quarantine" instances they find and you agree to; there, they will not harm your computer, but you then have the option of restoring an item if something doesn't "work right" later. I generally delete these quarantine files after about a week, because- - -in some cases- - -other applications will find these quantantined items and report them as malware when the scan your hard drive.

A very good idea is to create a folder in MyDocuments and label it "DOWNLOADS;" make it a habit to point anything you download into this folder so it is readily found for unzipping or installing. You might read the instructions for download HJT (which is somewhat unique)in Step 9 here:

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/34773/preparation-guide-for-use-before-using-malware-removal-tools-and-requesting-help/

Regards,
John
Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one should be silent.

#10 Leurgy

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 07:43 PM

Sorry I have not checked back in this thread sooner but have had some busy days lately. If you are still having issues Bevilry7 can you give us an update? By the way, I'm not impressed with this Anti-Spy program. There are much better free alternatives.

Edited by Leurgy, 01 February 2006 - 07:45 PM.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#11 Bevilry7

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Posted 03 February 2006 - 05:29 AM

Hello Leurgy,

I am sorry I have not been on site for a couple of days. Life has been hectic lately and I have been visiting some of the sites that I was directed to, (by you and others) in an effort to understand more about spyware and malware.

I am having some difficulty with cookies. There are so many that I would like to delete, but I understand now that many of them are relatively innocent tracking devices that I agreed to when I registered at various websites. I have cautiously gotten rid of some of them from sites that I felt I could live without just to see what would happen. I have already noticed a great difference in the amount of unwanted email I am now receiving. Much, much less and even my hotmail junk deleter is finally on the ball. It is supposed to delete everything more than five days old, but I often had messages that were more then two weeks old in there, and would sometimes delete them myself just to get rid of them.

Also, when I unsubscribe from something now, it is immediately gone. I don't have to wait two weeks or more for them to take me off their mailing lists. It is such a relief to be rid of some of this stuff. Newsletters with all their free offers are the worst offenders and often they just showed up as the result of an email attachment forwarded by a friend. My friends don't do that anymore!

I am not too worried about the new virus that is coming out of the woodwork on Friday. My filters are set on maximum for porn and only the contacts on my safe list can get through. Hotmail has disabled two emails this week making them permanently unable to be opened. I deleted them immediately. My main Anti-virus, Anti-Spyware, and Firewalls are provided by the security service that came with my ISP, (Telus Highspeed Internet, DSL) through our local phone company. It is supposed to be the most secure package they have to offer.

Previously my ISP was Shaw Cable and McAfee was my security package. It came already installed on my computer when I bought it. McAfee could not delete or disinfect many of the items they found so they quarantined them. This has caused problems with my other Anti-spyware and Anti-Virus software. However, all these files are in my Restore Archives and are not considered to be a threat anymore unless I restore my computer back to the time they were active and even then, they are quarantined and should be disabled.

I installed Anti-Spy through Yahoo! because I was having problems with Explorer and I thought it was a program that watched for hijackers on the browser. My Telus Security had not found any at that point but Anti-Spy picked up nine of them on the first scan. I deleted four of them right away and was completely rid of WinFixer popups and other anti-spyware and registry cleaner popups after that. The next day, I deleted the rest of them. Between times, I ran my Anti-Virus Scan and it now detected the same hijackers that Anti-Spy had picked up on. I deleted them on that program as well. I have not had any problems with my web pages changing right before my eyes, or full screen popups that replaced the page I was on so cleverly that I actually went ahead and filled out the form I thought I was accessing, only to find the real one under the first one when I closed the file on it! That is how I got some of my unwanted email.

I have since downloaded Spybot Search and Destroy, and have run it several times. The first time, it picked up a phone dialer which it urgently wanted me to delete. I didn't know what it was at the time and still don't know if it was a threat to me, but my Internet Service is supplied by the same company that supplies my telephone service so I wasn't taking any chances.

I have had other Anti-Spyware recommended, in particular Microsoft's new beta application and something called ewido, also a beta application. I checked out the Microsoft software package awhile back when I was trying to fix my problems and discovered that it requires Windows XP or Windows 2000 and Explorer 5 or better. I have Explorer 6 with Security Service Pack II and Windows Me with both available Updates on it, also Windows Office 2000 software, which I don't think is the same thing as Windows 2000 operating system, or is it? I'm afraid to try downloading any beta type program until I'm sure my operating system can support it. Is it possible to upgrade Windows Me to Windows XP? If so, how would I go about downloading it and what site would I go to, in order to find it?

I have heard a lot about Hijackthis and am very grateful for the hot link to the tutorial for the download procedure. I was not aware that it needed to be downloaded to a disk and then unzipped later. I know nothing about zip files. My Security Service advised me to download a program called Freedom when I asked for support. I did so and never saw it again unless it was the applet that showed up on two occasions when I was rebooting my computer. I had to download something called Winzip to open it which I also never saw again. It wasn't at the location it was supposed to be in when I looked for it and frankly, I didn't really know what I was looking for. It probably also needed to be downloaded to a disk. When people give advice to someone who is a complete novice, they must also tell them what to expect in the download and setup process and ask relevant questions like, "what sort of operating system do you have?"

The first time I saw the applet, I shut my computer off. I didn't know what it was and thought it was a virus of some sort. The black screen it comes with is very off putting. Thank goodness my computer is equipped with an automatic windows registry fixer or we probably wouldn't be sharing this dialogue now!

My computer was behaving beautifully after all the scanning and removal of the most obvious threats (to a novice) and I will continue to prune some of the cookies. I have taken to checking the current list every time I go to a new location and deleting every new cookie that has turned up if I don't plan on returning to the site. However, tonight I have been unable to sign into Microsoft Messenger and must access my email through the connection on my MSN Homepage, which is still working. I don't know if this has anything to do with the panic about the Kama Sutra Worm or if I have a new problem with another virus. Time will tell. Also I have been getting a "Microsoft needs to close," error reporting message every time I shutdown my computer for the last two days. I have to direct my computer to "end task" before it can carry on with the shutdown process, first unchecking a "restart computer afterwards," checkbox in the error reporting dialog box. I don't know what is causing that either, but it almost seems like the computer doesn't want me to shut it off. I have had no problems at all with Messenger until now, and my computer has been acting a little logey all day today. Nothing you can put your finger on, just a general feeling of malaise.

The last thing I want to mention is that I have an icon located in my display bar, both on my homepage and on my email inbox. It is a red ball with a white bar posted across the center, superimposed on a line drawing of what looks like a planet with a ring around it. I have no idea what this is. When I point at it with my cursor it says, "privacy report." Can you tell me what this might be? It makes me feel rather as though Big Brother were watching me! Not that I have anything to hide.

I hope you can find your way through all this verbiage, Leurgy. Thank you so much for following up on my issues. At the moment I feel cautiously optimistic and look forward to browsing through other areas of this forum soon, to check into some of the problems others are having. Are you allowed to print anything from this site? I'm preparing a binder of information that I might need someday in the future and I would like to be able to print some of the things I find. Are there other tutorials on the site regarding the general operation of a computer and how to keep things running smoothly? I'm sure I created many of my own problems through sheer ignorance on my part. I would like to change that, but the computer training programs at the educational facilities in my area are so outrageously expensive that I simply can't afford them. I will have to poke along picking up what information I can from forums like this one.

Once again, thank you for your time and goodnight now.

Best regards,

Bevilry7

#12 Leurgy

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Posted 04 February 2006 - 05:56 PM

also Windows Office 2000 software, which I don't think is the same thing as Windows 2000 operating system, or is it?


No, its not, and Ewido and the Microsoft Anti-Spyware Beta won't work with ME.

Is it possible to upgrade Windows Me to Windows XP? If so, how would I go about downloading it and what site would I go to, in order to find it?


You would have to purchase an upgrade copy, or better yet a full copy of XP to upgrade but first make sure your computer can handle it.

When I point at it with my cursor it says, "privacy report


I think that is an IE alert to a third party cookie. Double click that icon when you see it and it will tell you what it is.

Are you allowed to print anything from this site


Please feel free to print anything you find useful as long as it is not for publication elsewhere.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool





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