Need direction to kill a virus

Anthra Norell anthra.norell at
Tue Mar 1 09:16:06 CET 2005

Hi all,

      Here's an operator who instantantly destroys all messages he cannot identify within two seconds, saves and inspects all attachments before opening them and who thought himself immune from viruses for it. Years of trouble-free operation reinforced the perception.
      I recently subscribed to this group and had an immediate problem managing the sheer volume of messages coming in. The inevitable spam, baits, decoys etc. met their match at the door. But soon the junk increased in number and soon reached a magnitude where I couldn't help suspecting that I had a problem. The short end of it is that my machine seems to generate and spread viruses. It hasn't destroyed anything as far as I can tell. It makes the hard drive spin continuously over extended time periods, in connection with the Explorer it seems. And sometimes it slows down the user interfaces.
      What do I do next, one thinks and comes up with a sequence of strategies. But after all of them having failed, I am left with the sad impression that these days the production of damage motivates as much intelligence or more as the production of benefits. Microsoft, Norton and all the other good guys get knocked out by malicious hackers. Indeed, the Norton virus scanner doesn't start, not even from the CD. A complete reinstallation of the operating system (Windows ME) was ineffective, even when started from the CD. I then installed a firewall but cannot start that one either and so the last resort seems to be reformatting everything with the nightmarish prospect of reconfiguring the machine. The data is backed up, all right. The applications I can uninstall, but that doesn't save them.
      All the while I think that if I knew the innards ot Windows I'd fix the problem in five minutes. So, perhaps one of you guys knows.
      Suggestions greatly appreciated.


(Additional info: The virus is a binary file in an attachment. A visual inspection of the header reveals a file name: 'details.txt                           .pif'  (Spaces shove the extension 'pif' out into the peripheral vision and the eye's focus is supposed to mistake 'txt' for the extension). The other legible words are: Windows Program, KERNEL32.dll, LoadLibrary and GetProcAddress.  Follows 30 K of binary stuff.)

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