Virus, Spyware & Malware Removal Guide



Malware Removal Guide Malware is short for "malicious software", it is a general term that refers to any program designed to infiltrate or damage a computer system without the owner's informed consent. Malware includes; Adware, Crimeware, Keyloggers, Ransomware, Rogue Security Software, Rootkits, Scareware, Spyware, Trojans, Viruses and Worms. This guide will show you how to remove and protect yourself from malware infections using free software on the Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8 operating systems.

FACT: 30% of computers in the U.S. are infected with malware.

Key Key - Only applications listing the supported operating system icon will work on your system.

Windows XP - Windows XP (Microsoft will continue support through April 8, 2014)
Windows Vista - Windows Vista
Windows 7 - Windows 7
Windows 8 - Windows 8

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Step 1 - PreClean

CCleaner CCleaner - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

CCleaner (Crap Cleaner) removes unused and temporary files from your system to reduce scan times.

Instructions - Download the Slim version (no toolbar), Install and select "Run Cleaner".



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Step 2 - Scan and Clean



TDSSKiller Kaspersky TDSSKiller - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Kaspersky TDSSKiller is a specialized utility for removing rootkits. A rootkit is a program that penetrates deep into the operating system and hides the presence of malware.

Instructions - Download, Run, Scan and remove any infections.


Microsoft Safety Scanner Microsoft Safety Scanner - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

The Microsoft Safety Scanner is a free security tool that provides on-demand scanning and helps remove viruses, spyware, and other malicious software. The Microsoft Safety Scanner expires 10 days after being downloaded. To rerun a scan with the latest anti-malware definitions, download and run the Microsoft Safety Scanner again.

Instructions - Download, Run, Perform a Full Scan and remove any infections.


Anti-Malware Malwarebytes Anti-Malware - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware is a free, high performance security program that thoroughly removes even the most advanced malware.

Instructions - Download, Install, Update, Perform a Full Scan and remove any infections.


Warning If you cannot download or run any of these programs go to the Advanced Cleaning section.

Certain types of malware will steal your passwords to gain access to your personal information. Only if you were infected and once you have completely cleaned your system, it is recommended that you change any important passwords typed in on this computer, such as your Banking, Email and Facebook accounts.

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Step 3 - Protection

Microsoft Security Essentials Microsoft Security Essentials - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7   VB100 Award ICSA Labs Certified

Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) provides free real-time protection for your home or small business to help guard against viruses, spyware, and other malicious software. MSE is both VB100 and ICSA certified, meaning it can detect 100% of malware samples listed as 'In the Wild' by the WildList Organization and generate no false positives when scanning an extensive test set of clean samples. It runs quietly and efficiently in the background so you don't have to worry about interruptions or making updates. Never use more than one real-time anti-virus or anti-malware program at a time.

Instructions - Download and Install. (that's it)

Windows 8 - In Windows 8, Windows Defender includes anti-virus capabilities and provides the same level of protection against malware as Microsoft Security Essentials. [1]

[1] Windows Defender and Windows SmartScreen fight viruses and other malware (Microsoft)


WinUpdate Windows Update - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Installing security updates is critical so that you do not get infected again. To stay protected, it is recommended you leave Windows Updates on Automatic.

Instructions - Install all High Priority Updates.


Firewall Windows Firewall - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

A firewall is software and or hardware designed to prevent unauthorized access to your computer from the Internet. Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 all come with a built-in software firewall - confirm that it is enabled. Do not use more than one software firewall at a time.

Windows XP Windows XP - Go to 'Start', 'Run', type Firewall.cpl and click 'OK', 'General tab', click 'On (recommended)' and click 'OK'.

Note - The Windows XP Firewall is more then sufficient for most users with full inbound protection. In Windows XP there is no way to guarantee 100% outbound protection once your system is compromised. [2][3]

[2] At Least This Snake Oil Is Free (Jesper Johansson, Ph.D. Management Information Systems)
[3] Windows Firewall: the best new security feature in Vista? (Jesper Johansson, Ph.D. Management Information Systems)


Windows Vista Windows Vista - Go to the 'Start' button, 'Control Panel', 'Security', click 'Windows Firewall', click 'Turn Windows Firewall on or off' (provide an administrator password if prompted), click 'On (recommended)' and then click 'OK'.

Windows 7 Windows 7 - Go to the 'Start' button, 'Control Panel'. In the search box, type firewall, and then click 'Windows Firewall'. In the left pane, click 'Turn Windows Firewall on or off' (provide an administrator password if prompted), click 'Turn on Windows Firewall' under each network location and then click 'OK'.

Windows 8 Windows 8 - Swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap 'Search'. If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then click 'Search'. Enter firewall in the search box, tap or click 'Settings', then tap or click 'Windows Firewall'. In the left pane, tap or click 'Turn Windows Firewall on or off' (provide an administrator password if prompted). Tap or click 'Turn on Windows Firewall' under each type of network, and then tap or click 'OK'.


Secunia Online Software Inspector (OSI) Secunia Online Software Inspector (OSI) - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

The Secunia Online Software Inspector (OSI), is a fast way to scan your PC for security updates to common programs.

Instructions - Click 'Start Scanner', allow for any Java prompts, Click 'Start' and update any programs that are insecure.


When Step 3 is completed you will only have one application running all the time, Microsoft Security Essentials.

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Advanced Cleaning

Cannot DownloadCannot Download

If you cannot download a program or access the Internet, try restarting Windows in safe mode;


Safe Mode

1. Restart your computer.

2. When you see the computer manufacturer's logo, press and hold the F8 key.

3. On the Advanced Boot Options screen, use the arrow keys to select Safe Mode with Networking, and then press Enter.

4. Log in with a user account that has administrator rights.

5. Try to download the programs in Step 2 again.

If you still cannot download a program or access the Internet, try resetting Internet Explorer's proxy settings;


Proxy Settings

1. Copy and paste the following text in the Run dialog box and click 'OK':

reg add "HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings" /v ProxyEnable /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f

2. Copy and paste the following text in the Run dialog box and click 'OK':

reg delete "HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings" /v ProxyServer /f

3. Restart Internet Explorer and try to download the programs in Step 2 again.

If you still cannot download a program or access the Internet, try deleting the hosts file;


Hosts File

1. Copy and paste the following in the Run dialog box and click 'OK':

%SystemRoot%\System32\drivers\etc

2. Delete the file named 'hosts'.

3. Restart Internet Explorer and try to download the programs in Step 2 again.



Cannot RunCannot Run

If you cannot run a program, try running RKill and RougeKiller first;


RKill RKill - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

RKill is a tool that attempts to terminate known malware processes so that your normal security software can then run and clean your computer of infections.

Instructions - Download and Run. There are two versions; RKill.com and iExplore.exe, if one does not work try the other.

Try to run the programs in Step 2 again, if not try running RougeKiller;


RogueKiller RogueKiller - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

RogueKiller is a tool that attempts to kill malicious processes and services so your normal security software can then run and clean your computer of infections.

Instructions - Download, Run and click 'Scan'. Select each tab and delete any items found.

Try to run the programs in Step 2 again.

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Advanced Detection

Autoruns Autoruns - Download - Home Page - Startup Programs Database  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Autoruns shows what programs are configured to run during system bootup or login.


GMER GMER - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

GMER is an advanced rootkit detection and removal tool.


Process Explorer Process Explorer - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Process Explorer shows information about which handles and DLLs processes have opened or loaded.


Process Monitor Process Monitor - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Process Monitor shows real-time file system, Registry and process/thread activity.


HijackThis HijackThis - Download - Home Page - Online Log Analyzer  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

HijackThis generates an in depth report of registry and file settings from your computer.


TCPView TCPView - Download - Home Page - Port Authority Database  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

TCPView shows detailed listings of all TCP and UDP endpoints on your system.


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Advanced Repair

Windows Repair Windows Repair - Download - Home Page  Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8

Windows Repair is an all-in-one repair tool to help fix a large majority of known Windows problems including registry errors and file permissions as well as issues with Internet Explorer, Windows Update, Windows Firewall and more.


Windows XP Security Console Windows XP Security Console - Download - Home Page  Windows XP

Windows XP Security Console allows you to assign various restrictions to specific users, whether you're running XP Pro or XP Home. XP Home leaves you completely without the Group Policy Editor, while XP Pro lacks the ability to use the Group Policy Editor to selectively apply policies to specific users.


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Info

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