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I observed that some of my xml files (ssis dtsx packages basically) are getting corrupted randomly. What could be the possible reasons? I couldn't find any clue from system events or logs. Can this be some sort of virus activity? Have you ever faced a similar situation?

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Is there a datestamp on them that is recent? –  JNK Aug 3 '10 at 13:45
    
No, there isn't one. –  Faiz Aug 3 '10 at 13:47
    
Have you done a scan on the drive for bad sectors or other issues? Could just be the sectors in that folder are having an issue. –  JNK Aug 3 '10 at 13:49
    
That should not be the case as the same is repeated in multiple machines. –  Faiz Aug 4 '10 at 9:34

3 Answers 3

I had the some thing happen to me in the last couple of days with a program I wrote. One of the xml config files was being changed every time the program started. I found that if I replaced the file with the correct version and then set it as Read-only the file wouldn't be overwritten and the program worked.

I don't know exactly why the file was being overwritten. However, I do have a theory. I don't believe it is a virus on my computer. In my program the code checks a website everytime it starts. I believe that the website was hacked and was sending back malicious code that was overwriting the xml. I found that if my computer wasn't connected to the internet then the file wouldn't be overwritten. So, my solution has been to mark the file as read only for the time being, and also to investigate if the website has been hacked since that could be the real source of the problem.

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looks like a possibility. But the only possible site this program will be accessing is Microsoft site and chances of this site being compromised is thin. –  Faiz Aug 4 '10 at 9:36

Actually, it can be, depending on the type of XML file.

XML files are structured text files that accommodate data values, text, ...etc. Further, programs can employ this structure to host Scripts or Macros that controls the behavior of these programs. So if the XML file changes, program behavior changes accordingly; and this is the idea of Macro Viruses.

So if your XML file contains pure data, it is safe as if it were an image or sound file.

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Well, XML files can be corrupted by viruses just like HTML and HTM files can and some viruses can corrupt both. But I think the best bet for you is to submit your corrupted or suspicious files to your anti-virus provider for inspection.

If your anti-virus software or your anti-virus service providers tell you what kind of virus/attack it is then there are all kind of cures available on the internet.

just ONE thing...

Once these HTML, PHP, XML files are recovered or repaired or cleaned they tend to lose their actual data(code). So try to do a lot of manual recovery or have backup*S*.

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