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What to do if my computer is infected by a virus or a malware?

I think my PC might be infected. Whenever I try to install Kaspersky it says it can't install because the PC may be infected, and that I need to first install the Virus Removal Tool.

I've also tried to install Microsoft Security Essentials but it says I'm not able to because Windows Defender is running - I should turn it off first before continuing to install MSE. However I don't seem to be able to turn it off; my PC is running in safe mode with networking.

What should I do to start Windows normally? Is there any solution or do I need to format the C: drive? My audio device is not working and Adobe as well.

Which antivirus should I use to avoid any problems in the future - is only having an antivirus sufficient, or I should also install a firewall, virus removal tool, etc?

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You are probably going to have better results clearing the virus (if it exists) by using a LiveCD boot disk as suggested by arch angel and pitto. These work ffrom the outside of the infected OS and therefore will bypass any protection mechanisms the virus program may have. –  horatio Apr 15 '11 at 14:26
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marked as duplicate by BloodPhilia, techie007, Tom Wijsman, fretje, studiohack Apr 16 '11 at 3:10

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

4 Answers

I do choose the Free Trinity : Avast - Malwarebyte's Antimalware - Superantispyware (you can easily download and install them all from www.ninite.com)

Avast works great as a shield for normal use. When you get any kind of infection sign a compete scan with the other 2 will give you almost 100% sureness to be clean again.

To save your infected pc I suggest you to use a MiniPE cd or Linux Live CD and start an antivirus from there.

If your pc can start but can't install any software you could also give Dr. Web Cure IT a try: it's a portable app (no need to install) and it saved me many times :)

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Although this is a useful answer, we have a community wiki to describe how to perform a disinfection. Please feel free to add your own method or edit the answers already given to suit your method. Please refer the OP of questions about disinfection to this community wiki and close to vote as a duplicate if you can and if it is appropriate. –  BloodPhilia Apr 15 '11 at 14:26
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Also try Stinger, which is available from here (it's free and is designed to remove remove viruses that are actively trying to block Anti-Virus and Anti-SpyWare software):

  McAfee Stringer - free live Stealth Virus removal tool
  http://vil.nai.com/vil/stinger/

  Link to Stinger with a short introduction
  http://www.lumbercartel.ca/resources/security.pl#stinger

It's a specialist in getting certain stealth viruses only, and is not a replacement for a regular Anti-Virus tool that scans for all types of viruses. It also doesn't require any installation as it's a stand-alone program that just runs.

This one has been useful to me quite a few times over the years. Since it doesn't include an automatic updater, always make sure you're using the most recent download of it before running it.

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You should always have an antivirus tool installed prefereably before connecting too the internet. While this isn't always ideal you can always keep a copy of A/V on disc or USB. I would reccomend an anti virus coupled with windows firewall and a spyware removed such as super anti spyware.

If you are sure that you have a virus then maybe you can download and burn a bootable antivirus disc which will boot you into a linux console that scan for viruses and usually removes them.

Kapersy Antivirus Boot Disk

Be sure to make this disc on a PC that is Not infected.

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Download and install MalwareBytes Anti Malware , Install, update the definitions and run a system scan, this should be able to pick up what's troubling you. Then restart your system and install an antivirus.

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