Okay, so short story short... it would appear that whenever I use Cheat Engine to track what is changing or looking at a memory value, my system has an aneurysm. This is happening with multiple versions of the software and on both Windows XP and Windows 7 (both are on the same system, albeit on different drives). It doesn't matter what program I'm looking at, usually that would be a game but it could be notepad and it'll crash my system if I run the debugger. This never used to happen, it's something I've noticed for about a year now but I previously put it down to the individual software I was debugging, seemingly though it's actually any software.
I don't understand why this is happening, CE is designed to do exactly what I'm asking it to do so I really don't think it's having any problems of its own. That it is occurring on two unique operating systems is rather odd, let alone different versions of CE. One thing to keep in mind with CE is that it has its own kernel mode debugger, which might in some ways act in a similar way, if not identical, to a rootkit - this would be to avoid detection by anti-cheat software. But I'm not running it in kernel mode, I used to find it too buggy so I avoided it, I'm just running regular scans for 4-byte values and trying to track what's changing the memory address, then boom goes the system. That's not normal. My AV/FW is happy, logs-a-plenty tell me nowt, basically nothing unusual is going on with the system unless I start poking the memory of a game.
For what it's worth, I used to do HJT work at Castle Cops back in the days, I even signed up for training here until somebody probably noticed I was never actually here, I was too busy at CC. I pretty much gave it up, not least because I didn't have Vista so I couldn't properly advise people who did have it when it became commonplace, but then Paul buggered off to Redmond so I think I just got bored of it if I may be blunt. So I may well know very little about today's threats, but I certainly know if something's wrong with my system and have countless (mostly outdated albeit) on-demand scanners to throw at anything which might dare to rear its ugly head. Ask me about a removal tool from 10 years ago, I bet you I have it.
Suffice to say, if there's anything on my system then it's probably a boot-sector job because I can't see it.
Another thing to point out, being the only other problem I've had, is that about 6 months ago my router was persistently rebooting. When I say persistently, I mean over and over and over again... until I installed Kaspersky, then it stopped doing it and hasn't done it since. I kinda get if something is knocking my ports out by flooding them remotely, thus causing a denial of service, but for a software firewall to stop it is quite odd. In any case, that's not a problem now.
So call me paranoid by all means, but nowadays I have plenty reasons to be.
Edited by Mere_Mortal, 22 April 2017 - 11:53 PM.