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I just removed a piece of malware that hides the entire C: drive on my Windows XP SP3 machine.

After cleaning it and running unhide.exe from Bleeping Computer, I noticed all the programs in the Start Menu were missing. For example, I can go to Start > All Programs > Microsoft Office, but it shows empty next to Microsoft Office. This is the same for all programs.

Is there any way to restore these items?

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What operating system? – soandos May 31 '11 at 22:04
Sorry, should have had that in the original description: Windows XP SP3 Home – msindle May 31 '11 at 22:15
you are able to edit your "original description" by clicking edit below your "original description." I went ahead and edited it for you... – David May 31 '11 at 22:19
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I would look in username\start menu for the .lnk files, as well as under all users\start menu. If they are not there, then there is nothing you can do, and you must restore them manually (right click on the file you want to add a shortcut to, send to, etc). Its worth a shot perhaps, that if the shortcuts were deleted, something like Restoration could find them, but its unlikely (search for .lnk).

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When I try and drag the link to the folder it doesn't show up. For Example If I click and drag Word to All programs -> Microsoft Office -> and drop. Its like i didn't have anything to put there, even though I tried several times? – msindle May 31 '11 at 22:27
There is nothing listed in my administrative tools either...this is rather bizarre and aggravating – msindle May 31 '11 at 22:30
this and this (go down the page till it says how to add). – soandos May 31 '11 at 22:31
It could have deleted all the .lnk files. Sorry if that is the case. – soandos May 31 '11 at 22:34
I think thats what happened, i'm running recuva deep scan to see if there is anything left....and going into add remove program files and running repairs on all my software so it slugs the shortcut back into the start menu – msindle May 31 '11 at 22:48

There are several hijack scareware problems out there, a few of which hide all of the files and directories like the one above. The startup information is put into an alternate directory usually in a temp directory some place depending on which one it is.

For the easiest method of getting the desktop and startup information back, go into the windows restore and restore prior to a date that you know for a fact the virus malware was injected into the system. This will restore all of the startup items and the desktop in most instances. Re-running a cleaning using Malwarebytes, Spybot, SuperAntiSpyware in conjunction with BitDefender or Kaspersky Rescue is advised as well. After all this is done then using Ccleaner and/or Tweaknow for a good registry cleaning and defragmentation is also a good idea

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