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(Windows IT Pro)   Microsoft security expert says if you find yourself stuck with certain malware, the best action is to nuke your machine from orbit. No, really   (windowsitpro.com ) divider line
    More: Obvious  
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27967 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Apr 2006 at 12:55 AM (10 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



222 Comments     (+0 »)
 


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2006-04-04 09:28:16 PM  
Well, it is the only way to be sure.
 
2006-04-04 09:34:08 PM  
Needless to say, this crops up in discussions about Windows fairly regularly.

No shiat??

DUH
 
2006-04-04 09:36:24 PM  
submitter: No, really

Ya, RLY!

It's the same recommended procedure for any severly compromised operating system. Rootkits first appeared for UNIX systems, it's slightly newer to see them on Windows boxes. Even the beloved Mac OS X is vulnerable.

There's simply no way to tell you've eliminated the risk if a machine is farked enough.
 
2006-04-04 09:39:42 PM  
nashBridges: "There's simply no way to tell you've eliminated the risk if a machine is farked enough."

Reformatting is is typically sufficient...
 
2006-04-04 09:41:17 PM  
i think his point was exactly that. only reformatting is sufficient sometimes.
 
2006-04-04 09:41:41 PM  
ArbitraryConstant: Reformatting is is typically sufficient...

Usually. But sometimes you need to kill the MBR, too.
 
2006-04-04 09:41:49 PM  
ArbitraryConstant: Reformatting is is typically sufficient...

That's what the article said. Submitter is implying that this is either:

a) unusual
b) not the proper way to deal with it.

My point was you'd have to do it on almost any system you discovered a rootkit on.
 
2006-04-04 09:46:41 PM  
nashBridges: "My point was you'd have to do it on almost any system you discovered a rootkit on."

Fair enough. I agree, it's also necessary on UNIX systems that have been compromised.

5000_gallons_of_toothpaste: "Usually. But sometimes you need to kill the MBR, too."

Indeed.
 
2006-04-04 09:48:38 PM  
No. No. No.

You pay me $50 an hour to fix it because you want to keep that software you illegally downloaded and don't have a hard copy of. And your porn. And your Mp3s.
 
2006-04-04 09:49:00 PM  
5000_gallons_of_toothpaste: Usually. But sometimes you need to kill the MBR, too.

I've done a lot on people's computers at my college. You wouldn't believe how ignorant these people are sometimes... anyways, I've only had to strip one down to the MBR once. Got so farked up I literally tore out the hardware on the thing and manually swiped the disk with a friend of mine.

It's unfriggin believable how little people take care of their computers. I go to an Ivy as well so these people are supposed to be the next wave of world leaders... get ready for a century more of leaders like Bush.
 
2006-04-04 09:49:35 PM  
ArbitraryConstant: 5000_gallons_of_toothpaste: "Usually. But sometimes you need to kill the MBR, too."

Indeed.


When's the last time someone ran into a Master Boot Record virus? I'm genuinely curious as an informal survey. I ran into my first one in three years just about two months ago, and I was shocked.
 
2006-04-04 09:50:22 PM  
On a parallel topic...I can't wait for Ric Romero's article on spyware/grayware.
 
2006-04-04 09:52:50 PM  
Best way of dealing with this is to:
(a) open hard drive
(b) apply liberal quantities of Vaseline
(c) put your head between your legs and kiss your drive goodbye
 
2006-04-04 09:53:44 PM  
No_47: You pay me $50 an hour to fix it because you want to keep that software you illegally downloaded and don't have a hard copy of. And your porn. And your Mp3s.

Keep at it. You have no idea what people will pay to keep data they haven't backed up on a server.

/hint: start multiplying by at least ten.
 
2006-04-04 09:54:37 PM  
nashBridges: When's the last time someone ran into a Master Boot Record virus? I'm genuinely curious as an informal survey. I ran into my first one in three years just about two months ago, and I was shocked.

If you don't kill the MBR every so often, it gets cocky. When you aren't looking... BAM! It kicks your dog and farks your wife. Better to old yeller it before it start causing problems, I always say. KDo it in front of the other MBRs and it will keep them in line.
 
2006-04-04 09:58:03 PM  
Link to video of ornery MBR:
http://www.videosift.com/story.php?id=20

/ok so it's a dog. Who said Windo$e is any different?
 
2006-04-04 10:00:39 PM  
nashBridges
Keep at it. You have no idea what people will pay to keep data they haven't backed up on a server.

Oh yeah, thousands, at least. Stupid bastards.
 
2006-04-04 10:00:42 PM  
davidc: http://www.videosift.com/story.php?id=20

That's the funniest thing I've seen in a while. Did they have fishing line tied to the dog's foot?
 
2006-04-04 10:10:40 PM  
The first rule of Fight Club is not to talk about Fight Club.

The second rule of Fight Club is to take a snapshot of your registry once you finish installing Windows.

Backup disks... they save the day.
 
2006-04-04 10:18:58 PM  
Or the obvious answer: Get A Mac.
 
2006-04-04 10:23:51 PM  
Kyosuke: Get A Mac.

Macs are just as vulnerable now to rootkits as any other OS. Perhaps even more so, because the work on UNIX rootkits started years before the Windows variety popped up. Apple's OS is a recompiled (and improved) version of FreeBSD, a flavor of UNIX.
 
9-9
2006-04-04 10:49:15 PM  
We're in the pipe, five by five.
 
2006-04-04 10:53:59 PM  
9-9: We're in the pipe, five by five.

Are we in the BuffyVerse?
 
2006-04-04 11:07:30 PM  
Game over man... Game over!
 
2006-04-05 01:00:04 AM  
It's about farking time Micro$oft finally figured this out,...

Slashdotters have known this for years already,...
 
2006-04-05 01:02:43 AM  
Arg, I need to always have one computer urnning to backup important files from one to the other while I redo one... bloody xp...

Yup, this has been known for years...

/me hates microsuck
//me doesnt have enough time for linux
 
2006-04-05 01:04:39 AM  
Does Windows count as malware?
 
2006-04-05 01:06:17 AM  
This is what keeps MrKrabbs in business. The most fascinating part of computer repair is finding out the porn preferences of any given client. Fundies are typically the most deviant. Shocking, I know.
 
2006-04-05 01:06:48 AM  
It is always the same cycle with these type of stories ... first it gets to digg ... then slashdot picks it up ... then fark gets it ...
 
2006-04-05 01:07:33 AM  
Someone wake up Hicks.
 
2006-04-05 01:08:26 AM  
Hmm, let's see here...

1. Point out how flawed current OS is
2. Let it be known that Vista will be ever so much better
3. ???
4. Profit!

You can bet on XP getting pwn3d hardcore as soon as Vista ships...
 
2006-04-05 01:09:26 AM  
"This is what keeps MrKrabbs in business. The most fascinating part of computer repair is finding out the porn preferences of any given client. Fundies are typically the most deviant."

Yes, go on....
 
2006-04-05 01:10:41 AM  
MS is saying they have fought the battle against spyware and viruses and lost! Reformat your machine. Yeah, great plan if you have 2000 machines like the gov't did. And I pay taxes so my gov't can keep buying this shiat from a company labeled by that same gov't as a predatory monopoly!?!? WTF!

The problem isn't removing it, it's that MS needs to not make it so damn easy to get it on your system in the first place.

I don't have any malware on my linux.

Reformatting your machine is NOT "practical" MS. Paying $150 for an operating system that's doomed to decay in not practical when you can get one that can stay running for years w/o even rebooting for free!
 
2006-04-05 01:10:53 AM  
nashBridges: When's the last time someone ran into a Master Boot Record virus? I'm genuinely curious as an informal survey. I ran into my first one in three years just about two months ago, and I was shocked.


1995 here. Anti-CMOS-B. It was rather common in the early to mid 90's....of course that may have been because a corrupt MBR often showed up as this bug.

Anyhow. I've never seen malware I couldn't defeat. It has to poke its little head up at one point or another. You just need a couple of good but simple tools and you can find it. Get a good process monitor, port monitor, and registry editor. These can be found for cheap or free (really cheap).

I haven't ran an active virus scanner since 1989 and I use the computer constantly. I do, on occasion, run into a nice piece of spyware or malware but it is nothing I can't clean in 30 minutes or less.
 
2006-04-05 01:11:35 AM  
We'd better get back, because it'll be dark soon, and they mostly come at night. Mostly.
 
2006-04-05 01:13:27 AM  
Windows sucks itchy balls.
 
2006-04-05 01:14:21 AM  
Seriously, someone tell a non-computer person why it farking is so impossible to make an OS that cannot be taken over or permanently altered by malicious code. It seems to me that an OS should be able to keep track of what is happening to the OS, and tell you what happened, and un-the-fark-do-it.
 
2006-04-05 01:15:27 AM  
They mostly come out at night... mostly.
 
2006-04-05 01:15:54 AM  
instead of everyone complaining about it, why not a whole bunch of us contribute some of our time and expertise to a new operating system that works better. at first it would be clunky, but over time it should be truly good.

...oh wait
 
2006-04-05 01:16:40 AM  
Cashman, read the other posts. This is not strictly a Microsoft problem. You stupid elitist Mac user. Just like my brother. He has a Macintosh G4 or whatever with a Mac OSX operating system, and he put a password on it because he thought I was trying to use it, so I hacked his dumb ass computer, changed the password to "MacsR4fags", and the following text on his desktop as his background picture: "That's right, Macintosh computers are designed especially for use by homosexuals. You typed it, so it must be true". How did I hack this impenetrable fortress of a computer? By using information on the Macintosh website for idiots who forgot their password, of course Immature? Maybe. But the best part is that he got all offended like a typical Mac user would. Also, Rush Limbaugh endorses Macintosh.

/I like ranting.
 
2006-04-05 01:19:19 AM  
an actually secure operating system is not hard to make.

an secure operating system that is expected to run a large array of programs that do all sorts of things...well, that's trickier.
 
2006-04-05 01:19:22 AM  
damn straight: just had to reformat yesterday after my idiot housemate allowed blackburn and zeno onto my computer. It trashed my whole system.
 
2006-04-05 01:19:44 AM  
submitter: Microsoft security expert

Comedy Gold!
 
2006-04-05 01:32:01 AM  
d23---
"Needless to say, this crops up in discussions about Windows fairly regularly.

No shiat??

DUH
"

holy shiaaaat. LMFAO when I saw your post. That's exactly what I said to my cat after reading that one. Hehe.

Speaking of cat's, any boobies posts lately?
 
2006-04-05 01:34:00 AM  
"Well, it is the only way to be sure."

Wait just a minute, here, there is a subsantial dollar value attached to this computer.
 
2006-04-05 01:39:33 AM  
Just don't cross the streams.
 
2006-04-05 01:40:00 AM  
IonBeam

Jeezus. Calm down a little, maybe pop a Ritalin or two. It helps, really.

That said, I hate snooty Mac users too. I know one, who is actually a pretty smart guy, who continues to claim that Macs have only one known virus.
 
2006-04-05 01:43:14 AM  
we_hates - Seriously, someone tell a non-computer person why it farking is so impossible to make an OS that cannot be taken over or permanently altered by malicious code. It seems to me that an OS should be able to keep track of what is happening to the OS, and tell you what happened, and un-the-fark-do-it.

I'm not so much an IT guy, and I'm sure others can give you a better answer than me, but I'll take a stab at it anyway.

For the same reason you can't make a house that can't be broken into... at least not practically.

To make an OS somewhat useful, (particularly in the age of the internet) it has to be at least a little open. Just as you would reduce the practical usability for a house by removing all the doors and windows. You reduce the practical usability by of a computer by closing off all points of communication.

Finally, why can't it tell you how it's hosed and how to unhose it? often because it's been "told not to." Just as the gang that storms through your door is going to open up all the doors for their pals and cut the phone line and smash your cell so you can't call the cops.

Security is always a balancing act between fortification and usability.

Kinda like my old boss who refused to put any computers online... Sure, it's tons more secure, but he's throwing away a lot of the benefits that make it worthwhile to own a computer.
 
2006-04-05 01:46:14 AM  
Not had a problem for years, Windows user, knows how to protect his 'puter
/so there
//macs suck
///linux sucks more
 
2006-04-05 01:46:35 AM  
To anyone who often has family members, friends of family members, and coworkers come to them asking to "fix" their computers... this is no news.

(My sister's attractive friends give me about $40 to fix their machines. Something else would be better, though. ;)
 
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