Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

Slow Computer, Possible Malware File on Desktop, SMART Hard Disk Error


  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 SafeModeSam

SafeModeSam

  • Members
  • 2 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:02:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 02:11 PM

Hi BC,
 
Hoping you can help with my issue.  The overview is that my computer is running incredibly slow in normal mode (opening windows explorer takes upwards of 10 minutes), there is a new shortcut on my desktop called "Continue File Opener Installation", and now when I boot up I see a "SMART Hard Disk Error".  
 
Here are my system specifications:
OS: Windows 7 Home Premium, Service Pack 1, 64-bit
Manufacturer/Model: Hewlett-Packard/HP G62 Notebook PC
 
Here is the detailed sequence of events that had led up to this post:
 
1. My wife is the primary user of this computer, and one day she told me it was running incredibly slow.  It was not a gradual slowdown, it went from "normal" speed to basically unusable all at once.  Opening any application or file takes many minutes.  I don't know of any action taken by her that caused this (i.e. downloading a file, installing an application, clicking on a suspicious link).
 
2. I tried to check some things like disk cleanup, defragmenter, removing unwanted applications, removing internet add-ons, but I could hardly do anything because of the computer performance.  I think I got a few things removed, and I turned off some things in the Startup tab of System Configuration, but that didn't really help and I eventually switched it to boot up in safe mode and restarted the PC.
 
3. Once I got it started in safe mode, it ran much more like I would expect.  I started with safe mode - minimal and tried some of the activities I mentioned above to clean up the PC and remove anything that was unwanted.  After that I booted up in safe mode with networking and noticed it still ran acceptably well and I was able to access the internet.  I tried booting up in normal mode again but it was still so slow I couldn't do anything.
 
4. At some point during this process I noticed a file on the desktop called "Continue File Opener Installation" which was suspicious to me.  I googled it and found that it and another one called "Continue Zip Opener Installation" (which I do not have) appear to be Malware.  I found the bleeping computer forums and started reading some posts in there.
 
5. Before I got too far into reading BC, I ran a scan with Norton Internet Security (even though my subscription is expired) and it found a handful of items (I think all registry items?  I don't remember and can't find a log) and said it removed them all.
 
6. After Norton didn't seem to help, I continued reading BC and one poster seemed to have the same problem that I did, so I started following the instructions provided to him on my PC (no, I didn't read the "Am I infected?" pinned post first about not using others advice as your own.  Yes, I'm a doofus).  I ran SecurityCheck, Farbar Service Scanner, MiniToolBox, MBAM, Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit, and rKill.  I got logs and reports from each one, and MBAM said it found 41 Registry Keys, 4 Registry values, and 6 files (and I assume it removed them).  
 
7. At this point I thought maybe I would see some improvement, so I turned off safe mode and rebooted in normal mode.  Still was pretty much the same (mind-numbingly slow).  So I opened MBAM again and started to run another scan thinking it might find some more items in normal mode.  The total scan previously in safe mode took less than 30 minutes.  In normal mode, the first couple steps (Pre-scan Operations) took over 30 minutes.  At some point during the first couple steps, I got a message that my hard disk detected an error and there would be an imminent failure (I don't remember the exact message and my PC boots in safe mode now where I haven't gotten the message).  So I stopped the MBAM scan, saved my important files and shut down the PC.  When I booted it back up, I got the following message:
 
"SMART Hard Disk Error
 
The SMART Hard disk check has detected an imminent failure.  To ensure not data loss, please backup content immediately and run the Hard Disk Test in System Diagnostics.
 
Hard Disk 1 (301)"
 
So I ran the Hard Disk Test and here is the result:
 
"Start-Up Test
 
100% of the system memory tested OK
 
4,113,534,976 bytes of system memory tested OK
Memory test pass
 
Primary Hard Disk Self Test
Quick Test
18% Complete........
Hard Disk 1 Quick (303)
SMART Check
Hard Disk 1 SMART (301)
 
"Start-up Test" Failed
"Hard Disk 1 SMART" (301)
"Hard Disk 1 QUICK" (303)"
 
8.  I assume that is not good.  I exited the test and finished the boot up in normal mode, switched over to safe mode with networking and rebooted again and it booted up fine (after getting the SMART Hard Disk Error message again).
 
So that's where I'm at now.  I'm booted up in safe mode with networking and writing this post to see if there is anything I can do to try to remove the (assumed) Malware and possibly help or fix the Hard Disk Error.
 
I appreciate any advice you can provide.
 
Sam


BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 Broni

Broni

    The Coolest BC Computer


  • BC Advisor
  • 42,770 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Daly City, CA
  • Local time:10:44 PM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 06:34 PM

Welcome aboard p22002758.gif

 

There is no reason for you to worry about malware since SMART test clearly indicate your hard drive failing.

You should back up your data immediately (while you can), buy new hard drive and reinstall Windows.


My Website

My help doesn't cost a penny, but if you'd like to consider a donation, click DONATE

 


#3 RolandJS

RolandJS

  • Members
  • 4,552 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin TX metro area
  • Local time:12:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 06:39 PM

SMART failure means you might have anywhere between 2 spin-hours to 2 spin-days left with this hard-drive.  Backup at least once, if not twice, and replace HD.


Edited by RolandJS, 16 October 2015 - 06:39 PM.

"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#4 Aura

Aura

    Bleepin' Special Ops


  • Malware Response Team
  • 19,697 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:01:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 06:48 PM

SMART failure means you might have anywhere between 2 spin-hours to 2 spin-days left with this hard-drive. Backup at least once, if not twice, and replace HD.


Not really. SMART failure just means that a SMART attribute fails to pass the test, which means that in other words, the hard drive is currently failing. However, when a hard drive is failing, you cannot tell exactly when it's going to stop working. It can die in a few seconds, like in can die in a few years (yes, even though it's currently failing). It's just a clear indication that the hard drive cannot be trusted to hold data anymore since it can stop working at any time, and that you should change it as soon as possible.

animinionsmalltext.gif
unite_blue.png
Security Administrator | Sysnative Windows Update Senior Analyst | Malware Hunter | @SecurityAura
My timezone UTC-05:00 (East. Coast). If I didn't reply to you within 48 hours, please send me a PM.


#5 RolandJS

RolandJS

  • Members
  • 4,552 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin TX metro area
  • Local time:12:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 06:51 PM

Aura, you're correct!  I should have indicated "spin-hours" being tied to the probability of being able to read reliably from the drive.  When my SMART warning went off, I only had 2 days to make my backups, then from day 3, it rapidly went downhill, downhill...


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#6 Aura

Aura

    Bleepin' Special Ops


  • Malware Response Team
  • 19,697 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:01:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 06:53 PM

Just because it happened to you doesn't means that it's how it'll be for everyone :) I've seen users with failing hard drives toughing them up for another month before getting a new one. The state of corruption either stayed the same or got worse but in the end, it lastest more than a few hours or days :) A failing hard drive is one of these situations where the outcome cannot be predicted.

animinionsmalltext.gif
unite_blue.png
Security Administrator | Sysnative Windows Update Senior Analyst | Malware Hunter | @SecurityAura
My timezone UTC-05:00 (East. Coast). If I didn't reply to you within 48 hours, please send me a PM.


#7 RolandJS

RolandJS

  • Members
  • 4,552 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin TX metro area
  • Local time:12:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 08:08 PM

Aura, again, you're correct  :)


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#8 SafeModeSam

SafeModeSam
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 2 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:02:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 09:42 PM

Thank you all for your feedback, I'll start shopping!



#9 Aura

Aura

    Bleepin' Special Ops


  • Malware Response Team
  • 19,697 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:01:44 AM

Posted 16 October 2015 - 10:25 PM

No problem SafeModeSam, you're welcome :)

animinionsmalltext.gif
unite_blue.png
Security Administrator | Sysnative Windows Update Senior Analyst | Malware Hunter | @SecurityAura
My timezone UTC-05:00 (East. Coast). If I didn't reply to you within 48 hours, please send me a PM.





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users