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1702 infected files "cleaned" - NOW I CAN'T RE-BOOT - BSOD: 0x00000007B - HELP!


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#1 natureboy

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 06:03 AM

I tried to help a friend clean up her laptop of viruses a few weeks ago and now the laptop won't boot up, instead I get the following BSOD error message:

---------------------------------------------------

A problem has been detected and windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.

If this is the first time you've seen this stop screen, restart your computer. If this screen appears again, follow these steps:

Check for viruses on your computer. Remove any newly installed hard drives or hard drive controllers. Check your hard drive to make sure it is properly configured and terminated. Run CHKDSK /F to check for hard drive corruption and then restart your computer.

Technical Information:

***STOP 0x00000007B (0xF88D5528, 0xC0000034, 0x00000000)

---------------------------------------------------

BACKGROUND...

Her laptop was initially running very slow with a re-directs from Google and other websites. She had no working anti-virus protection either. I first tried windows update which wouldn't work at all. Then I slaved the drive with my computer and virus scanned it using Norton, which was able to "clean" 1702 files. Some of the following were mentioned at the time, some either couldn't be cleaned or were removed (sorry I don't recall which and no longer have the Norton log):

W32.Ramnit.B!inf
Trojan.Pidief
Trojan.Maljava
Trojan.Gen.2
GLP
Hacktool.Rootkit


It took a good 14 hrs to finish scanning / cleaning. After it finished, I de-slaved the drive and returned it to it's machine for rebooting. The above BSOD occured. I've tried using TestDisk (Link: http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step) as I recall having a similar BSOD error message before on my machine. This solution worked then - but not now. I also appear to have created a partition which I would also like some assistance removing.

Here are some details about the Laptop:
Dell Inspiron 630m, OS: Windows XP Home. Any other details available upon request...

NOTES / QUESTIONS...

> I tried running the CHKDSK /F when the drive was slaved, it ran and came back with no errors
> I tried using the Microsoft System File Checker (sfc) (Link: http://www.microsoft.com/resources/documentation/windows/xp/all/proddocs/en-us/system_file_checker.mspx?pf=true) /scannow, /scanonce etc etc - no joy.
> I don't understand how I would check the hard drive controllers OR to check if the hard drive is correctly configured - I suspect the boot files were either damaged or deleted in the scan I did with Norton.

Thanks in advance to anyone who is able to assist me in moving this situation forward!!!

Regards,

NatureBoy

Edited by hamluis, 09 January 2012 - 07:00 AM.
Moved from XP to Am I Infected.


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#2 hamluis

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 06:57 AM

Good morning :).

Looking at your list of named/known malware...I see "W32.Ramnit.B!inf".

I don't have the skills/knowledge to truly advise on such, but I would like to have you read Virut-Ramnit Reformat & Reinstall OS - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic225515.html#entry1947749 .

I will move this to one of our malware forums where someone with more knowledge can advise you on your alternatives and assist you and I will also request that someone experienced with unbootable computers (due to malware) take a good look at your situation and advise.

Louis

#3 natureboy

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 07:41 AM

Hello Louis! The link you sent me doesn't appear to work. Can you please check it. Thanks!z

Mod Edit: My error, Boopme posted content to correct ~ Hamluis.

Edited by hamluis, 09 January 2012 - 12:02 PM.


#4 boopme

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 11:34 AM

I'm afraid I have very bad news.

Win32/Ramnit (and related variants) is a dangerous file infector with IRCBot functionality which infects .exe, and .HTML/HTM files, and opens a back door that compromises your computer. Using this backdoor, a remote attacker can access and instruct the infected computer to download and execute more malicious files. The infected .HTML or .HTM files may be detected as The infected .HTML or .HTM files may be detected as Virus:VBS/Ramnit.A or VBS/Generic. Win32/Ramnit.A!dll is a related file infector often seen with this infection. It too has IRCBot functionality which infects .exe, .dll and .HTML/HTM files and opens a back door that compromises your computer. This component is injected into the default web browser by Worm:Win32/Ramnit.A which is dropped by a Ramnit infected executable file.

-- Note: As with most malware infections, the threat name may be different depending on the anti-virus or anti-malware program which detected it. Each security vendor uses their own naming conventions to identify various types of malware.With this particular infection the safest solution and only sure way to remove it effectively is to reformat and reinstall the OS.

Why? The malware injects code in legitimate files similar to the Virut virus and in many cases the infected files (which could number in the thousands) cannot be disinfected properly by your anti-virus. When disinfection is attempted, the files often become corrupted and the system may become unstable or irreparable. The longer Ramnit.A remains on a computer, the more files it infects and corrupts so the degree of damage can vary.

Ramnit is commonly spread via a flash drive (usb, pen, thumb, jump) infection where it copies Worm:Win32/Ramnit.A with a random file name. The infection is often contracted by visiting remote, crack and keygen sites. These type of sites are infested with a smörgåsbord of malware and a major source of system infection.

In my opinion, Ramnit is not effectively disinfectable, so your best option is to perform a full reformat as there is no guarantee this infection can be completely removed. In most instances it may have caused so much damage to your system files that it cannot be completely cleaned or repaired. Security vendors that claim to be able to remove file infectors cannot guarantee that all traces of it will be removed as they may not find all the remnants. If something goes awry during the malware removal process there is always a risk the computer may become unstable or unbootable and you could loose access to all your data.

Further, your machine has likely been compromised by the backdoor Trojan and there is no way to be sure the computer can ever be trusted again. It is dangerous and incorrect to assume the computer is secure even if your anti-virus reports that the malware appears to have been removed.

Many experts in the security community believe that once infected with this type of malware, the best course of action is to wipe the drive clean, reformat and reinstall the OS. Please read:

Whenever a system has been compromised by a backdoor payload, it is impossible to know if or how much the backdoor has been used to affect your system...There are only a few ways to return a compromised system to a confident security configuration. These include:
• Reimaging the system
• Restoring the entire system using a full system backup from before the backdoor infection
• Reformatting and reinstalling the system

Backdoors and What They Mean to You

This is what security expert miekiemoes has to say: Virut and other File infectors - Throwing in the Towel?

If I guide someone with Virut (or any other File Infector) present and their Antivirus cannot properly disinfect it, then I recommend a format and reinstall...dealing with such infections is a waste of time and that's why I prefer the fastest and safest solution - which is a format and reinstall...After all, I think it would be irresponsible to let the malware "stew" (download/spread/run more malware) for another couple of days/weeks if you already know it's a lost case.


This is what Jesper M. Johansson at Microsoft TechNet has to say: Help: I Got Hacked. Now What Do I Do?.

The only way to clean a compromised system is to flatten and rebuild. That’s right. If you have a system that has been completely compromised, the only thing you can do is to flatten the system (reformat the system disk) and rebuild it from scratch (reinstall Windows and your applications).


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#5 quietman7

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 10:54 PM

Then I slaved the drive with my computer and virus scanned it using Norton

File infectors are easily transmittable so monitor your own computer closely after removing the slave.
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#6 natureboy

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 12:27 PM

Thanks guys for the information and guidance, I have another question that is kinda related to this overall situation.

Now that I'm faced with the prospect of having to wipe and re-install Windows. I'm told that my friend doesn't have a recovery disc and the OS was a pre-install. So my question is this...

Using the Product Key on the base of the laptop, would I be able to install a copy of Windows from ANY reputable source and use that key to get Windows back up and running? I understand the label on the underside of laptops (with the product key) is either Green and Purple or Blue. In the case of my friend's machine it's Green and Purple. I don't know if this has a bearing on how I proceed....

I know there is an option to go back to Dell to get a Recovery CD issued (at a cost), I'm purely exploring other (free) alternatives.

Any help with this would be much appreciated.

Regards,

NatureBoy

#7 quietman7

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 01:02 PM

I know there is an option to go back to Dell to get a Recovery CD issued (at a cost)...

That is the best course of action.

By policy Microsoft no longer allows OEM manufactures to include the original Windows CD-ROM on computers sold with Windows preinstalled. Instead, most computers manufactured and sold by OEM vendors come with a vendor-specific Recovery Disk or Recovery Partition for performing a clean "factory restore" that will reformat your hard drive, remove all data and restore the computer to the state it was in when you first purchased it. Please read Technology Advisory Recovery Media.

If the recovery partition has become infected, you will need to contact the manufacturer, explain what happened and ask them to send full recovery disks to use instead. If you lost or misplaced your recovery disks, again you can contact and advise the manufacturer. In many cases they will send replacements as part of their support or charge a small fee.

The following links are for several different companies that sell recovery disks for a small fee. You will need to contact the manufacturer for your machine, explain what happened and ask them to send full recovery disks:If your copy of Windows was not already pre-installed and is a full retail version, replacement media is available from here: Microsoft Support: How to replace Microsoft software or hardware, order service packs.
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#8 natureboy

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 02:51 PM

Guys, apologies for the delay in my reply. Everything is sorted thanks to you and all the support and guidance you gave me. Once again you've demonstrated why this is a great place to keep returning to.

My friend has her computer back and it's a dream to use! I upgraded the RAM and it's poles apart from where it once was. Thanks again guys!

#9 quietman7

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 03:46 PM

You're welcome on behalf of the Bleeping Computer community.

:thumbup2: Tips to protect yourself against malware and reduce the potential for re-infection
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