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Toshiba laptop running Windows XP Professional SP3, 32-bit.

I suddenly started getting unwanted windows appearing, and my laptop slowed down. Bit Defender Internet Security 2008 had not prevented the problem, but I'm not sure it's designed to do so. After this started, I set Bit Defender to ask me about putting things in the registry.

I ran a full Bit Defender scan, but it found nothing. I tried Malware Bytes Anti-Malware -- couldn't even get it to run with the trojan in there. I bought Exterminate-it. It tried to remove both Netsky and Vundo (Virtumondo). It appeared to work for most of a day while I left the laptop turned on but unused. However, late in the day another .dll showed up that wanted to be added to the registry. Even after denying that, those unwanted windows started popping up later. More scans, with both Exterminate-It and a-squared Free, show up the same, and different, bad guys.

I'm attaching the reports/logs as requested in the "start here" message.

I'm hoping you can give me some help. This laptop is my work computer, and we're working on a tight schedule. A slow computer is not acceptable, and both my boss and I are afraid to connect this machine to the office network (a requirement for our work). What if the bad guys have a network component that spreads it to everyone's computer?

If I can't get this machine working reliably soon, I'll have to try to reload the operating system. However, I don't have a disk to start totally from scratch. The disks I have are re-installation disks that came with the machine. I've never had to use those before. I have no idea if they will repair enough.

Thank you,


(experienced computer user who's not afraid to edit the registry, given clear instructions that I know I can trust)

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Download ComboFix from one of these locations:

Save as Combo-Fix.exe during the download. ComboFix must be renamed before you download to your Desktop

Link 1

Link 2

Link 3

* IMPORTANT !!! Save Combo-Fix to your Desktop

  • Disable your AntiVirus and AntiSpyware applications, usually via a right click on the System Tray icon. They may otherwise interfere with our tools
    See HERE for help
  • Double click on ComboFix.exe & follow the prompts.
  • As part of it's process, ComboFix will check to see if the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console is installed. With malware infections being as they are today, it's strongly recommended to have this pre-installed on your machine before doing any malware removal. It will allow you to boot up into a special recovery/repair mode that will allow us to more easily help you should your computer have a problem after an attempted removal of malware.
  • Follow the prompts to allow ComboFix to download and install the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console, and when prompted, agree to the End-User License Agreement to install the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console.

**Please note: If the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console is already installed, ComboFix will continue it's malware removal procedures.


Once the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console is installed using ComboFix, you should see the following message:


Click on Yes, to continue scanning for malware.

When finished, ComboFix will produce a log.


1. Do not mouseclick combofix's window while it's running. That may cause it to stall!

2. Remember to re-enable your anti-virus and anti-spyware before reconnecting to the Internet.


Attach fresh logs for:

  • ComboFix (C:\combofix.txt)
  • ISeeYouXP
  • HiJackFree

Let me know of any problems you may have encountered with the above instructions and also let me know how things are running now!

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ComboFix wouldn't run.

My computer doesn't have the recovery console on it, presumably because Toshiba pre-installed the operating system and did not include the recovery console. I also do not have an original Windows XP CD to load it from. I do have an older XP CD (Student Media), but Windows said it couldn't run from it because it's older than the version I have (my XP has been updated to SP2 and then again to SP3). I tried booting from the recovery disk that came with the machine, but it just wanted to wipe my hard drive entirely.

ComboFix wouldn't run properly on my machine. I tried it twice. Both times it gave me the "installation failed" and "not connected" messages (see below). The first time it couldn't install the recovery console but tried scanning anyway. It got to a point where it said it would reboot my machine. It rebooted but nothing had happened that I could tell, and I couldn't find a log file.

So I started it again, and this time it did delete some files. Here's how that went:

--- ComboFix said "Installation Failed.", but then it ran in a command window anyway.

--- Then it said I wasn't connected to the Internet and that I should click on OK when I had connected. I'm always connected, but I went ahead and opened a Firefox window and then closed it. Clicked on OK.

--- ComboFix said it was trying to connect to Microsoft. After a bit, the command window went blank, and stayed that way for maybe 10 seconds.

--- Then ComboFix said it couldn't get the files it needed, but it would try scanning for the bad guys anyway. I got just a glimpse of the name of a file it couldn't find, and it looked like the name of a knowledge base page.

--- It did produce some messages in the command window and I caught the names of 3 .dll files that it deleted. They had those "nonsense" names like others that I've seen with this trojan/virus problem.

--- I still couldn't find a log file.

There seems to be some sort of "loop" going on. It looks like there's a folder C:\ComboFix, but it appears to hold a copy of the files on my C drive. Inside that folder, there is a folder, etc., etc. I don't know how deep it goes, but I'm guessing there may be a "layer" for each of the stages that ComboFix went through -- the last one I saw mentioned on the screen was stage 34, I think. I didn't realize it was creating these folders until I tried doing a search for the ComboFix log file. I have since deleted those folders.

UPDATE: As I was waiting for my search to finish, I found the guide to using ComboFix at bleepingcomputer. It included instructions for downloading the equivalent of the floppy disks that would boot Windows XP. So tomorrow I will try dropping the icon from that download onto the ComboFix icon (sounds interesting) and see if it will be able to install the recovery console from that. I'll let you know.

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ComboFix kept telling me that BitDefender was still running, but it got the Recovery Console installed anyway. I see it as a choice when I boot up.

Even after I uninstalled Bit Defender, ComboFix said BD was scanning. I discovered that Bit Defender had some services that were running, so I disabled them. Then I found a tool from the BitDefender people to completely remove BD from my system, so I did that. I have now installed avast! since that's what I use on my other machines.

Because I was having trouble with BD while trying to run ComboFix, I ran CF twice and have attached both logs. They are renamed to show the date and time. The second run of ComboFix was after dispatching BD entirely, and went quite smoothly with no alert-type boxes indicating errors with the installation or the environment.

I have also attached the ISeeYouXP results and the HiJackFree.log file.

I didn't use this computer at all during the day today. I booted it up this evening and have run it for a couple of hours, but I'm not seeing the unwanted windows, and it seems to be running at a good clip. The question is "Even if no more of this trojan/virus appears, is it really safe to use the machine that way? Where might problems be lurking? When will this trojan/virus show up again?" This computer apparently has not passed this problem on to other machines, but I know that our deadlines are so tight that infecting other machines at work would be disastrous.

I might decide to try wiping the disk clean, but I'll have to discuss it with my boss since this is my work laptop. BTW, I've seen references to an "HDD Recovery". I can also see a FAT32 partition named HDDRECOVERY by running diskmgt.msc, but I don't know how to use it or how to access it. I also have a "WinXP Recovery Disk" that came from Toshiba when I bought the machine. (The original might actually have said "reinstallation disk", but I can only find the copy I made as a backup.) From what I've read online, I'm not sure if these will totally wipe the disk (totally clean slate) or leave the disk exactly as it was when the laptop was shipped to me (with Windows XP and drivers). Perhaps HDD Recovery does one of those things, but the disk from the manufacturer does the other?

I look forward to your instructions and perhaps some advice about the recovery stuff.

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The installed version of Java on this computer is out-dated. Install Java Runtime Environment (JRE) 6u17 available from Sun Microsystems.


Using Add or Remove Programs in the Control Panel; uninstall the following:

Java 6 Update 3


Copy the contents of the below quote box to Notepad; Save As FixReg.reg to your Desktop; make sure File Type: is set to All Files (*.*).


[-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\software\microsoft\windows\currentversion\explorer\browser helper objects\{06849E9F-C8D7-4D59-B87D-784B7D6BE0B3}]

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar]

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar]

Close Notepad.

Locate FixReg.reg on your Desktop. Double-click on it and answer 'Yes' when asked if you want to merge with the registry.


Download Avenger from HERE and unzip to your desktop.

  • Run Avenger
  • Read the prompt that appears, and press OK
  • Copy & paste the following text in Input script Box:
    Files to delete:

    Then click "Execute".

  • You will be presented with 2 confirmation prompts. Select yes on each. Your system will reboot.
    Note: It is possible that Avenger will reboot your system TWICE.
  • Upon reboot, a command prompt window will appear on your screen for a few seconds, and then Avenger's log will open. Please paste that log here in your next post.


Attach fresh logs for:

  • Avenger (C:\avenger.txt)
  • a-squared Free/Anti-Malware
  • ISeeYouXP
  • HiJackFree

Let me know of any problems you may have encountered with the above instructions and also let me know how things are running now!

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Your logs look fine.

Unless you are having problems from Malware it is time to do the final steps.

If you used ComboFix, uninstall ComboFix:

  • Click START then RUN and enter the below into the run box and then click OK. (Use only the command of the same name as your copy of combofix.)
  • AvoidTDSS /u or combofix /u or Combo-Fix /u
    Note: The space before /u, must be there. Which command you use depends on if I had you rename ComboFix during download.
    This will uninstall ComboFix and also reset hidden files and folders settings back to Windows defaults.
  • Delete the C:\AvoidTDSS or C:\ComboFix folder from combofix.
    Delete everything in C:\!KillBox

Delete the following from your Desktop (If they exist)










Anything else I had you use

Delete the following: (If they exist)







You can delete and uninstall any programs I had you download, that you do not wish to keep on the system.

Empty the Recycle Bin

Run ATF Cleaner

In the ISeeYouXP folder double-click HideIT.bat.

Turn off System restore to flush all your restore points then turn system restore back on.

To manually turn off System Restore, follow these steps:

1. Click Start, right-click My Computer, and then click Properties.

2. Click the System Restore tab.

3. Click to select the Turn off System Restore check box (or the Turn off System Restore on all drives check box), and then click OK.

4 Click Yes when you receive the prompt to the turn off System Restore.

To turn on System Restore, follow these steps:

1. Click Start, right-click My Computer, and then click Properties.

2. Click the System Restore tab.

3. Click to clear the Turn off System Restore check box (or the Turn off System Restore on all drives check box), and then click OK.

Delete C:\ISeeYouXP

Run Windows Update and update your Windows Operating System.

Run the Secunia Online Software Inspector, this will inspect your system for software that is out-of-date and in need of updating. Update anything program/application detected as being out-dated.

That should take care of everything.

Safe Surfing!

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I'm glad it looks like we're close to the end of this. I uninstalled ComboFix, but did not have a C:\ComboFix folder to delete or a C:\!KillBox folder to empty.

Based on your instructions, I deleted all the ISeeYouXP stuff (and emptied the Recycle Bin) BEFORE you mentioned running HideIT.bat in the ISeeYouXP folder. Is this batfile something I really need to run? Also, since the ISeeYouXP stuff is gone, I won't be able to delete C:\ISeeYouXP before updating. Is ISeeYouXP something I should install again before doing these last few steps?

What is ATF Cleaner? Where do I get it so I can run it? I still have the CCleaner that you told me to use earlier. Does that do the same job as ATF cleaner?

I will wait to flush the System Restore points, run Windows Update, and run the online software inspector until I hear back from you.

Thank you,


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Thread Closed

Reason: Resolved

The procedures contained in this thread are for this user and this user only. Attempting to use the instructions in this thread on your system could result in damaging the Operating System beyond repair. Do Not use any of the tools mentioned in this thread without the supervision of a Malware Removal Specialist.

All posters requesting Malware Removal assistance are required to follow all procedures in the thread titled START HERE, if you don't we are just going to send you back to this thread

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