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 AUTHOR
 eddie0221
Joined: 2/2/2006
Msg: 7
system restorePage 2 of 2    (1, 2)
click on the start menu. select program files. than select accessories, than system tools. from there, do a "disk clean-up" and than "disk defrag"
 Scheherrazade
Joined: 11/5/2005
Msg: 9
system restore
Posted: 4/22/2006 10:21:32 PM
I've been a computer tech for 10 years and never encountered a numores problem. But I have enountered the problem you describe with your machine. Trying to pinpoint what destruction your installed program caused your computer is not going to be easy. It could have been adware and spyware, it could have been a virus, or it could have been a compatibility issue. The previous suggestions take you in the right direction. You need to run multiple adware and spyware programs because each one will pick up different objects. No single program can remove them all. A good registry cleaner will also help. There are also several good on line virus scans you can run on your system. Symantec, Panda and Trend Mirco each have virus scans that will run on line and I'd recommend using all three. Another good tool to use is "Hijack This" You can download it free off the internet, but I would highly recommend checking out the forums available before you remove anything that shows up on a Hijack scan. It would be better if you happen to know a local computer geek that can talk you thru using Hijack.

Even after you do all this you may still end up with problems if the program caused a conflict with windows or other programs. By your description, it sounds as if you have serious registry problems. If you run all the adware, spyware and virus scans, remove any infected objects and still continue to have problems, it might just be easier to back up your information to cd or dvd, reformat and reinstall your entire system. Once your registry is screwed up, its very difficult for a typical computer user to be able to get it back to normal functions. And the cost of having a professional clean it up can be extremely high because it takes many hours for this type of repair.
 Scheherrazade
Joined: 11/5/2005
Msg: 12
system restore
Posted: 4/23/2006 9:35:09 AM
Unless you own a custom built computer, most computers now days come with a recovery partition that is so simple most kids can do it these days. The original problem described is a programing problem. If its not a hardware problem then backing up and doing a full recovery is the simplest most effient way to get the system back up and running. It takes it back to what the computer was like the day you got it and hopefully most people know what they did to their system from there. ie, putting on software and internet set up. Sure its a hassel and most do not remember to back up their address book and favorites, but its better than going days without programs responding or getting a million pop ups that make you nuts. Most name brand machines have tech support you can call to help you thru it over the phone. The majority of computers sold now days are from places like Best Buy, Comp USA or Circuit City type of stores. Unless its a hardware problem, the hassel of dealing with a place like that is just not worth the headache. Calling the manufacture, ie Dell, HP, Sony or Toshiba to name a few can be a real strain on your patience but they can at least talk you thru the system recovery and most of them will if you call them about this type of problem.

This forum is for ADVICE. Which is what we are giving. With this type of problem run multiple adware, spyware and virus programs, if that does not work, do a recovery. Call your manufactures tech support. Taking your computer to a professional should be the last resort when you have tried all the other options because most are aware of the high cost of computer repairs. I do business computers that have to be saved because the information on them is vital and I charge a pretty penny for it. The average user should not be subjected to those type of charges unless its a last resort.
 Scheherrazade
Joined: 11/5/2005
Msg: 15
system restore
Posted: 4/23/2006 6:59:06 PM
In Theory when you do a Dell or Hp recovery, its suppose to be formatting the hard drive and reinstalling everything fresh the way it came from the factory. I'm sure you, me and most other computer geeks know that is not true. As far as I know, no virus can do phisical damage to a hard drive. If she runs good virus protection after the recovery then you are not faced with that problem. Except the general public thinks Nortons is good virus protection and its not.

The OP should back up her data, run a full system recovery. Make sure she has a good virus program and a good adware and spyware program. In 99% of the cases that face this problem this is a valid solution. If she does this and still has problems, it would make sense to at that point take it to a professional. If she took it too a professional at this point, that is the first thing they would do. If they knew it had already been recovered and still persisted in the same symptoms, other options would be explored.
 Scheherrazade
Joined: 11/5/2005
Msg: 16
system restore
Posted: 4/23/2006 8:16:19 PM
C3, I appreciate your stand and in my opinion its better for any lay person to bring their computer to a professional technician for repair. My job would be a lot easier if everyone would stop trying to fix it themselves or have the neighbors kid come over and try to fix it. However computers now days are set up in a more user friendly manner to avoid such costly trips to the repair shop. Program conflicts, compatibility issues, adware, spyware and viruses are constantly causing grief to computer users. You are mixing hardware problems with software problems and they are two separate animals. Nothing in the OP's description even hinted at a hardware problem. That being the case then a recovery and reinstall on her own following the manufactures fairly easy instructions would save her a lot of money at a repair center. Running the recovery will not invalidate a warrenty in any manner and any of the progams you are referring to as junk programs are going to be the same ones that were on the original install when the user got the computer new. If the OP had mentioned a hardware problem then this conversation would be entirely different. Nothing we've suggested above requires opening her computer case, therefore there is no threat to the warranty. Also if she does run the recovery and still expereinces problems you have a more accurate description of the problem and a better means to diagnose it.
 SteelCity1981
Joined: 8/16/2005
Msg: 17
view profile
History
system restore
Posted: 4/23/2006 8:22:36 PM
system restorer on windows is a waste of time all it does is restore registry keys back to it's orginal state, but it still doesn't get rid of viruses, trojens, ad-ware, spyware, corrupt programs, because it wasn't made to do that. So it doesn't really restore your system in terms of the way you think it would.
 Scheherrazade
Joined: 11/5/2005
Msg: 18
system restore
Posted: 4/23/2006 10:33:23 PM
We are talking about a System Recovery, not a Restore. The OP stated that she tried the restore feature on multiple occasions and it did not work. A System Recovery would be reformatting the drive and reinstalling everything fresh to factory configurations which should eliminate adware, spyware, viruses and registry corruptions.
 SteelCity1981
Joined: 8/16/2005
Msg: 19
view profile
History
system restore
Posted: 4/24/2006 12:42:14 AM
Not always some hardcore viruses you have to delete the master boot records and recreate the whole partition by fdisk in order to get rid of it. My buddy had one last year system recovery didn't do anything because iot was in the boot sector.
 MisplacedOutlaw
Joined: 5/6/2006
Msg: 20
view profile
History
system restore
Posted: 6/11/2006 3:14:07 PM
I have been working on computers for about 27 years and to date have yet to reformat a drive and reinstall the OS to correct a problem. Of course its simpler, easier, and less time consuming to reinstall the OS and a lot of people do so, but I myself am reluctant to do so even when asked by the owner of the pc. To me that solution sounds like a typical response from a call center.

If Bill Gates would create a system registry cleaner or buy one, such as FixIt from VCOM, and include it in all M$ products as an accessory, overall problems would be greatly reduced and there would be an overage of computer software repair shops. However, that is not going to happen especially when M$ will not for example tell users to run scan disk before a defrag unless you call for paid support. Bill took a big step when the restore feature was introduced but he neglected to implement encryption or a seal of the restore points from the rest of the sytem. Therefore, viruses, trojans, worms, etc, can hide in that sector.

For over the past 5 years, I have yet to have a system I set up or repaired encounter any problems. The key is to have the proper tools installed and follow preventive maintainence. Anyone that owns a computer and accesses the Internet needs three basic things; a firwall, an AVP, and an Adaware/spyware program. All the other tools that are necessary to maintain a computer are within the operating system.

To make maintainence easier, use ccleaner which will reduce the time manually required for emptying the browser and java cache, temp files and cookies. Unfortuately, preventive maintainence is seldom discussed or even mentioned when a consumer goes to purchase a computer. Around 95% of all computer problems I have encountered could have been avoided had the system been set up correctly and preventive maintainence performed. The key is to prevent a potential threat to a system before it becomes a major concern.

Not to badmouth Bill but the IE browser, Outlook, Outlook Express, and MSN programs are accidents waiting to happen and he knows it. If pc users would use any other browser than IE, additional problems in a system would be reduced.

Adaware by Lavasoft, yes run it. But before doing so, go into Internet Options and clear the cookies, files and history. Then download and install ccleaner, Run it. Then run Adaware. Afterwards, download the anti-virus updates and run it. If you do not have an AVP go do it on line at http://onlinescan.avast.com/ Then scan the drive and then defrag it.
 MisplacedOutlaw
Joined: 5/6/2006
Msg: 21
view profile
History
system restore
Posted: 6/12/2006 10:07:30 AM
What was the name of the trojan found? Go to Start avast!Antivirus from the blue bubble with the A inside of it located in the lower righthand side of your screen in the startup tray. Open the virus chect and write down the name of the trojan and the original location. Then close avast and google "the name of the virus" to learn about the trojan and where the source of the trojan is actually hidden, from your friend's computer.

Question: When the trojan was found, did you select the option to perform a complete scan including the boot sector of your drive upon a reboot? When you are given that option always do it as the trojan may be resident in your memory.

Check sites that are legit and not sites that advertize removal if you purchase the product such as numerous adaware product sites. The original location listed by avast only indicates where the trojan was detected, not where the source of the trojan may be actually hidden and generating detected entries; the prefetch folder of IE is a very common place. Regardless, then google "the name of the virus"+ removal.

You can also go to
http://www3.ca.com/securityadvisor/virusinfo/default.aspx
http://www.cert.org/other_sources/viruses.html
http://www.f-secure.com/v-descs/
http://www.trendmicro.com/vinfo/virusencyclo/default.asp
http://ve.nod32.ch/
http://www.viruslist.com/en/viruses/encyclopedia
and do a search for the trojan if you do not feel comfortable performing a google search.

BTW, congradulations for using avast (which many people do not know is FREE). The AVP has features and performs operations not found in other AVPs.

Just don't panic.

Don't worry about your firewall at this time. Wait until the pc is up and running again. You can always use the "better than nothing" firewall that comes with XP until you download a better firewall such as the freebie from ZoneAlarm.

Don't worry about not being able to perform a Restore, chances are good the restore files are infected too.

FYI, the free or trial version of System Mechanic backs up the registry of a computer when it is installed but when it is uninstalled, the registry backup go with it. Another reason why not to use it unless you buy it or have a key generator.

Once your system is up and running again, go to Start-Run and type regedit in the window. Then go to Registry and select Export Registry File from the drop down menu and save the file with a name such as regbackup20061212, preferably on a different drive or disk. Want the best backup you can have prior to installing a new program? You have just done it. EVERYTHING needed to restore a system to a prior condition is there.

Hope this helps.
 MisplacedOutlaw
Joined: 5/6/2006
Msg: 23
view profile
History
system restore
Posted: 6/15/2006 7:21:03 PM
Ontarioguy 33: Yes.

Most the automatically configured settings for ZoneAlarm and AVG are fine. If you install avast with ZoneAlarm presently installed you may see a message regarding transparency which is not much of an issue. AVG is a good AVP, I just prefer avast for personal reasons.

If you run Adaware, Spybot - Search & Destroy 1.4 , and Windows Defender on a routine basis, you will have excellent coverage for your system. Just do not forget to check for new definitions (updates) before running scans.

In regard to manually saving a copy of your registry file for restoration later, it works on every presently released M$ OS. Most good utility programs that alter the registry will offer the user an opportunity to backup the present registry before initiating changes. However, to prevent being dependent upon that particuliar utility, especially in the event of failure to that utility or system, perform the backup yourself.

Hope this helps.
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