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Old 14. Apr 2009, 11:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Restarting old computer?

A friend of mine is giving me his old desktop, it has been sitting about 3 years now after 1 year of use. He and his wife quit using it after getting a bug that removed all their icons but not background. There tech support was really bad and 10 days later it was still unusable. It some kind of HP, sounds like it should be upper tier XP with seperate cd and dvd in it. Feedback will help with my decision either way. When I get it I'll post the specifics of it.

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Old 15. Apr 2009, 12:47 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default do you still have the restore disks?

Clean out all the dust bunnies inside the case.

Maybe use a live cd to access and save important data. Do a fresh install.

The computer may not be that fast and powerful. Should makes for a perfect platform to install linux on.
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Old 15. Apr 2009, 12:27 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The best thing to do when trying to revive an old computer is to install Linux, since most Linux works best with old computers while some other may need more system requirements. How I wish I have an old computer lying around, I could've try partitioning it (I'm scared of partitioning hard disks) and do a complete install of Puppy instead of using it as a liveCD (which isn't so bad) and installing other Linux distros to try them out and do all sorts of other cool stuff with it...
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Old 15. Apr 2009, 10:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The first thing I will do is clean it, then see if it starts. Sitting 3 years may have caused some hardware problems or battery may be dead. Old and slow it may not be it's only a year older than mine, 3 gig P5, I upgrade the ram a couple of years ago to 2.5. When I have it open I can see what's in it and go from there. Linux who knows, maybe.

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Old 20. Apr 2009, 02:54 AM   #5 (permalink)
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What's the post limit here? I have about 30kbs on the old computer.

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Old 21. Apr 2009, 09:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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This is the facts, only the facts as I know them. It’s an HP Pavilion 477v I think. It came into being sometime in the year 2003, AMD 2100 processor, 60 gig partitioned hard drive
c\ and d\ the recovery set. CD and DVD ROMS and floppy drive, 512 RAM one expansion slot. Windows XP Professional OS and a large package of different software added to this system.
After finding a good monitor and keyboard and half decent mouse, it jumps some I had to figure out a plan of attack. I decided to make this a test of the malware programs also.

Friday night is a short time so I had 2 challengers paired up, Avast Anti-Virus Remover and Microsoft Windows Malicious Removal Tool or whatever. Downloaded both in the office, saved to CD and away I went. First starting the HP; what an overloaded malware ridden piece of electronics if ever there was one. No background, icons that should have been there but really didn’t work but looked good. IE opening itself not once but 50 times before stopping, no completely functional Task Manager so closed them all by clicking. Opened the tray loaded the cd and away I went, autoplay worked when it was done clicked Avast, went through a quick setup and left for a half hour. Came back to see how it was doing, nothing found but a lot of files it couldn’t scan and still scanning, enough of this STOP close. Next MWMSRT, it set right up clicked full scan, START and away I went. Couldn’t get back for almost 2 hours, expected to find it stalled out or something, instead there it was scanning it’s little heart out finding things, a couple of Trojans, some named malwares 30 in all at that point. Checked again, up to 45 and almost closing time at the theatre, closed the accounts for the day all deposit and paperwork in order time to see where the scan stands 51 only a little to go shut down the booth in that area I’ll check it in 10 minutes go back it is off? No power to the outlet, connected to a breaker for a projector 3.5 hours of scanning gone. Figured out which breaker for reference plan for tomorrow. Back to c-net started downloading free programs malware removal. Avast Anti-Virus, Antivirus Defender or ATF, Norman Malware Remover, Revo Uninstaller, CCleaner and 2 others, burnt to disc ready to go.

Next day it knew something was up. Booted normal again, IE really complained almost 100 this time could keep up no way to run a computer, turned it off. Rebooted F-8 safe mode with networking. Installed Revo and CCleaner both loaded and set right up. Revo tracks cleaner IE then Firefox no hitch. CCleaner files cleaner click analyze it kept loading and loading and loading finally froze up, closed it down, AFT won’t load. One last thing to try, START, run, cookies, ok. Cookies right there before my eyes, INDEX and 3 files. Opened a file 100’s and 1000’s of cookies closed file, opened another same thing. Right click file, delete, yes empty recycle bin repeat with other files INDEX a different problem need that for IE to work right 1000’s there too. Avast won’t load oh well. AntiV Def won’t Acronious or something won’t load. 1.5 hours nothing, oh well keep going. Dr.Web cureit bingo!!! Do quick scan tell it how the objects as I’m watching 35 minutes later it’s done, 65 nasties deleted, moved or left alone. It finds but cannot do anything with Trojan.Noclose, better than nothing. Start full scan this could take awhile. Watch another 50 minutes, 65 more nasties. Tell myself go do something to hypnotic standing here watching, make rounds , come back go come back go come back go close again looked like half hour that point. Done closing go see what the final count is. Still SCANNING!!! 12:45am I can’t stay, 6 hours and not done. Oh well it will shut off when the other manager closes booth. At this point 219 different objects78 tracking cookies, 1 hacktool, the rest Trojans. But I have my plan for tomorrow.

Arrive early to get started cause I have to open. Disc in the room I F-8 boot put in disc to see what sticks, 4 programs nothing, 2 left mbam it takes hot dog, setup a breeze. No quick scan here the full deal or nothing, start scan leave feeling good. 12:10pm everything up an running time to check mbam. Scan is done 39 minutes all kind of objects time to take care of the nasties. Make a desktop folder to copy the logs to I’ll connect a printer later if I want hard copies. Time to try my last program SAS, it won’t install in safe mode, time to try a regular boot. Start, shutdown, restart. Watch the screen see how it goes, HP invent, welcome, there it is a normal looking desktop, nice ‘63 Vette icons all lined up nice. No strange AV tray icons all 4 gone, an hp icon, MS mess., and network icon. All is great. Lets do SAS now. Installed with ease, run quickie more objects, damn. Take care of them now a full scan. Watch for 10 minutes more finds, I can’t watch leave. Return an hour later, it’s done look at that list, Trojans, tracking cookies, other nasties let’s cut them out. Copy the logs to the folder, do a little desktop cleanup to make it look neater. Try ATF still no go, CCleaner works this time still seems to be a lot of temp IE on it’s scan, can’t find where they are hiding. I’m going to see about an internet connection next weekend without networking it to the theatres computers I wouldn’t trust it as far as I can throw it.

I’ll entertain suggestions for what’s next besides on-line scans.
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Old 22. Apr 2009, 02:33 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Wow, good job.. Wouldn't it all be easier with a fresh install? Too late for that, so nevermind.

First you could've tried following this guide, but the computer is workable already. You can still use some of the tools within it though.

Anyways, you can try more scanners (Avira recommended), but I'd try to fix more problems first by using Advanced System Care (or another all-in-one, or separate utilities). Also you can try some rootkit removers like Panda Anti-rootkit, etc.

Well, good luck using the computer.
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Old 22. Apr 2009, 03:11 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Fresh install would have been nice OEM system so no disc, he didn't even burn his recovery discs to take it back to factory settings.

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Old 27. Jun 2009, 11:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I should get out of the Linux section more often
and read what's going on out here.

It's hard to believe that anyone would go through
what this guy went through and ever use Windows again.

It's almost unbelievable that someone pays for a
"POS" operating system (pre-installed) which in turn
renders the main hardware effectively useless.
The person then gives away this useless paperweight
with the infected "POS" operating system to someone else
who honestly struggles to fix the contaminated mess.
In the end, as we figured, the infection was too deep and
the device's days are numbered.

Why do we put up with an OS that's so fragile that a single
email click can destroy it??

Why do we spend our time downloading and configuring
anti-virus, anti-malware, anti-spyware, anti-whatever, etc...
when OS permissions and security is the real problem??
(anti-X programs are temporary fix for poor security)

Why do we put up with having to defrag a drive every so often??
(defrag is a temporary fix for poor filesystem design)

Why do we put up with not even getting the CD/DVD for the OS we paid for??

Why do we put up with something so rigid and inflexible,
it can be pre-installed at the factory??

Why do we put up with greater and greater resource demands??
(forcing upgrades and costing a fortune)

Why do we put up with constantly rebooting for everything??

Why do we put up with letting them install a program that will verify
if your copy of "PRE-INSTALLED" windows is genuine??
(by installing that, they are assuming everyone is a criminal
until proven innocent)

Oh yea, because it's easy and just works (for a while anyway)

Now upgrade your ram,
install a larger HD,
get the latest anti-virus / anti-spyware, etc...
$$ a new version of Windows
Reboot a dozen times
Turn on automatic updates
Fire up Internet Explorer and start surfing the web
and one more thing...
or you will have to re-install Windows again

If all goes well, you can visit forums and post how
awesome the Windows OS is.

Maybe, I shouldn't have left the Linux section...
well it's too late now, I'm out
[I][B]Linux, the choice of a GNU generation[/B][/I]
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Old 28. Jun 2009, 02:40 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The operating system is actually rarely the cause of most problems, the operator is.

lt doesn't make any difference which system they happen to be using.

A single click on a lot of things, on any system, can ( and often does) render the system inoperable, beyond the capability of the operator to repair it. That's why there are trained technicians and programmers available in many places, because they can repair it.

"Bashing" various systems, does not make any other system better, nor is it likely to make anybody change to Linux from Windows.

Also an amateur approach to such things differs very considerably to a professional approach. Time is money, and before a professional technician worth his salt wasted all that time trying to get an old infected machine up and running using all sorts of freeware and tricks, he would format the disc and do a fresh install. Or throw the machine away and simply install a new one.

Last edited by Mike Connor; 28. Jun 2009 at 02:44 AM.
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