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Combo Fix - Flashing no-stop - Stuck in a loop


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#1 MatthewPaul

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Posted 21 April 2016 - 01:57 PM

Hi group!
I'm not sure if this is the correct forum to ask so if it's not please let me know.  I have a system that was infected with some malware. Windows 7 Pro.  I went though my normal routine of disabling my AV Active Protection (VIPRE) then ran AdwCleaner, Malwarebytes, HitmanPro and finally Combofix.  At some point combofix must have hung on something and is rapidly opening and closing windows.  Nothing can be done or clicked on because of how fast they are opening and closing.  I forced the laptop to power of and when it came back up it still doing the same thing.  Seems to be stuck in a loop.  Any ideas as to how to stop it?
 
Thanks
 
Matt

Edit: Moved topic from General Security to the more appropriate forum. ~ Animal

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#2 Aura

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Posted 21 April 2016 - 01:58 PM

Hi Matthew :)

ComboFix is a very powerful reporting and scripting tool that was developped by sUBs, used by members of the malware removal team here on BleepingComputer (and also on other forums). This tool can easily break a Windows installation if poorly and/or wrongly used. It can make the whole system unbootable and also delete everything present on your drives (leaving you with close to no chance of recovery) or damage your Windows installation so badly that you would be forced to reinstall it. Therefore, you should not be using ComboFix unless you are in one of the two situation listed below:
  • You have been trained in an online malware removal forum to use ComboFix;
  • You are using it under the supervision and instructions of a trained malware removal professional on BleepingComputer or another recognized malware removal forum (UNITE forums for example);
If you already ran ComboFix on your system and need assistance with the log, you will have to post a thread in the Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Logs section of BleepingComputer, where a trained helper will assist you.

If you have any questions or concerns about ComboFix, quietman7 wrote a FAQ on it and you'll find all your answers in it.

ComboFix usage, Questions, Help? - Look here

Also be aware that BleepingComputer doesn't provide any advice on how to use ComboFix on your own, due to the nature of the tool and how dangerous it can be when used without supervision or proper training.

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#3 quietman7

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Posted 21 April 2016 - 03:23 PM

There are circumstances ComboFix will hang, crash or stall at various stages due to malware interference, failure to disable other real-time protection tools or the presence of CD Emulators (Daemon Tools, Alchohol 120%, Astroburn, AnyDVD) so that it does not complete successfully. Also, depending on how badly a system is infected, ComboFix may take longer to complete its routine than it normally does or fail to run properly. While that is not normal behavior, it is not unusual. In such cases, it is helpful to know at what stage ComboFix stalled/crashed and to provide that information to the Helper who is assisting you so they can investigate. Using Task Manager to stop ComboFix's related process usually is enough to abort it.

Open Task Manager and look for the following ComboFix related processes (some have a .3XE extension):
  • PEV.exe
  • NirCmd.3XE
  • PEV.3XE
  • SED
  • GREP
  • any file that has the extension *.3XE except CF*****.3XE <- do not end this process
One at a time, right-click and select End Process. If doing that did not free ComboFix and allow it to continue, then you will need to reboot the computer manually.

Afterwards, please do NOT run ComboFix again. If you need further assistance with a malware infection, please follow the instructions provided above and post your log in the Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Logs section of BleepingComputer.
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