Old 03-22-2010, 03:20 PM
Master Builder
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Washington State USA
Posts: 803
Default It can happen....

OK, So it finally happened to me. I thought my anitivirus anti adware and malware protection was doing its job, but obviously it wasn't. And of course I wasn't making complete backups of my files like I should have (but will in the future).

Short story: when I shut the computer down on Friday night everything was working as it normally did. Saturday, upon starting the computer a totally different screen presented itself. The screen was like one gets on a new computer just out of the box. Did I want to take a tour of Windows XP? Set up an internet connection? Gone were all my files and folders. Gone too, was everything connected to my email and favorites. Just a empty machine with the programs ready to serve. Including my up-to-date Norton 2010.

So, I thought I'll use the handy feature of XP called System Restore only to discover that each and every restore point selected was returned with "Unable to restore to that point, ..." So I tried advanced search or some such named "advanced user tool" that allowed me to look at the actual entries and found that although the restore points were listed and made boldface on the little calendar in fact the restore points were listed as "sr failed" in the log.

I'm sorting it all out and have had to start over with a system recovery going back to when I purchased the machine. All lists of email and contacts will have to be recreated. All photos on the machine of my WFO construction gone as well as many others. Fortunately I never delete photos from my camera and so they have not really gone from existance. Cards are so inexpensive I just get a new card when one fills. It takes alot of photos to fill a 4 gig SD card. Still all in all a real PIA. But it could of been worse, we do no banking or financial record keeping on any machine connected online. I shutter to think how I would feel had this happened and I had been doing my taxes online.

Best that I can determine it is some permutation of a piece of malware called "Vundo". Oh, after finding the empty entries I tried updating the Norton 2010 and it came in fine with the latest updates and a full system scan gave me the comforting yet wrong "No threats found", it appears Vundo is near on invisible to such protection. And from what I have discovered online I may still need to start over completely reformating the HD to rid my machine of this beast.

I'm bringing in contacts from an old machine and will start from there. And from now on watch the restore points to see if they are real and of course back up my files.

And later today will seek solace in a half rack of beer with a friend.

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Old 03-22-2010, 03:33 PM
Les's Avatar
Les Les is offline
Il Pizzaiolo
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Carson City, NV
Posts: 2,897
Default Re: It can happen....

Been there - and it's no fun. Good luck with the re-build. I unfortunately lost all my pic's. At least the important ones are on the FB site.

Check out my pictures here:

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Old 03-22-2010, 10:19 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,446
Default Re: It can happen....

My sympathy. I had a hard drive crash about 6 wks ago. Nothing was retrieveable. Thankfully we had burned all of our important pics to CDs, but lost everything esle. Bought a whole new system as well a an external HD that backs up everything automatically.

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Old 03-23-2010, 02:21 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Posts: 1,883
Thumbs up Re: It can happen....

That is all so easy to overcome!!!
Get a Mac!
No viruses ever and no need to run protection!
Just for validation, check with James.

Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know

Neillís Pompeiii #1

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Old 03-23-2010, 05:30 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,049
Default Re: It can happen....

My hard drive died back in October. I did get a lot of important stuff backed up first, but it was a complete PITA. I'm still looking for a disk for my scanner, although I can make it function through another program, and lots of little things are gone that I didn't know I'd miss...

A hard drive that automatically backs things up is invaluable, but wouldn't it get corrupted by the virus too?

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Old 03-23-2010, 06:13 AM
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Maryland, USA
Posts: 101
Default Re: It can happen....

I've had a few hard drives fail and I now employ a two part backup strategy: (1) A backup hard drive using "Time Machine" that comes with all Macs and also (2) Backblaze.com, which is an online service; there's a small app that runs in the background that constantly, securely backs up my files online. Because it's offsite, I'll still have my data if my house burns down or if my computer is stolen from my house.
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