The invasion of the pop-ups

Discussion in 'Computing and Networks' started by nanobyte, Dec 24, 2004.

  1. nanobyte

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    May 26, 2004
    118
    1
    :( I am having a serious problem with pop-ups on my computer. So many come up at once that they take up all the computer's memory resources and the result is the computer will often freeze on me and I have to reboot. They are somehow able to come up as icons on my desktop too. I'm lucky it hasn't crash. I installed yahoo pop-up blocker, but that isn't helping a whole lot. Can somebody help me out with some suggestions or advice. Please help me develop a strategy against this vicious army. :unsure:
     
  2. beenthere

    Retired Moderator

    Apr 20, 2004
    15,815
    282
    Hi,

    You're full of adware. Get Ad-Aware and Spybot, both free downloads. Run them frequently. Good luck.
     
  3. Brandon

    Senior Member

    Dec 14, 2004
    306
    0
    Yep yep.

    Other things you can do is this. Been fighting Spyware since it started and got fairly proficient in editing the registry by hand.

    First off, right click on My Computer and pick Manage and go down the list of services your PC loads upon boot. Look for the services, Remote Desktop, Remote Registry, Remote (anything) and disable the service. Also disable any service that appears it may give another computer any form of access to your PC. Depending on your service pack you will see slightly different services running.

    Don't use Internet Explorer. Any version of it unless your downloading updates from Microsoft. One more time, DON'T use Internet Explorer, any version. Its ActiveX controls are pathetic and permit more intrusions than it prevents. Use one of the open source browers like Netscape, Mozilla, etc. Their use of open source permits a more tightly secured environment.

    For the most part, there are only 2 places most spyware crap get plugged into your registry. CURRENT MACHINE and in CURRENT USER i belive. I can't say exactly, but if you click on run and type in regedit you will find 2 directorys that will be current machine and user or some form like that. Open them up, get to Software/MicroSoft/Windows,/CurrentVersion or something very similar then go down and find the directories, Run, RunOnce, Run(anything) and look inside of them. You will find all 3rd party services which get loaded when windows is loaded. This will include most display drivers by ATI or Nvidia, SoundBlaster crap, Aol crap, mostly anything you see as a little icon in the lower right. As well, you will find toolbars for your browers inserted in here OR they will be inserted into the InternetExporer software key. If you click on them and get properties, you will be able to see exactly what exe they are pointing too and you can delete the exe's by hand if AdAware is unable to fix the registry. Sometimes this happens. Especially when they use an adware key that they register as if it were a necessary DLL of windows. I hate that BS.

    Another, which make your AdAware proigrams work the best is to run them while in SafeMode. Bootup and hit F8 and get into SafeMode and run AdAware and SpyBot. In Safemode minimal drivers and services get loaded and registered therefore these programs will have more power to remove spyware.

    Lastly, you may want to download ZoneAlarms free firewall. Where as XP has one, its crap. ZoneAlarm is a great firewall and the free version is great as well.

    Doing the above I usually limit my Spyware to 1-4 tracking cookies each time I scan about once a week. No popups or toolbar crap and I surf a lot and in many places where spyware runs rampant.

    Good luck.
     
  4. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
    6,960
    143
    Download Ad-Aware from here and Spybot from here.

    There are hundreds of other Spyware tools available at Download.com

    Whilst I can accept the views expressed of the poster above about using IE, I have used IE6 successfully and without problem for around 15 months now. At the end of the day nothing can replace good browsing habits, and regular computer maintenance. For those wishing to use an alternative browser (not based on IE), I can recommend Firefox, download from here, I is generally accepted to be more secure than IE but don't expect it make your computer 100% secure.
     
  5. Brandon

    Senior Member

    Dec 14, 2004
    306
    0
    Heh.. I'm just a hater of anything that Micro$oft puts out. I have had nothing but issues with the stuff. Granted, IE6 is good. IE5 was good as well until they got through it. To me, its just a matter of time before someone finds some hole in IE6 and exploits it.

    But Dave is right. Surfing habits make a huge difference and IE6 would work, I just don't trust it. I look at how well XP was programmed and then I think about the same company making a browser and I cringe.
     
  6. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
    6,960
    143
    Hehe, fair enough, I know a lot of people have problems with Microsoft. To be honest if you are going to use IE, I'd only use the SP2 version, with the built-in pop-up blocker and numerous flaw-fixes.

    A criticism I've heard levelled at other browsers than IE is their incompatibility with many things the web has to offer, its somewhat ironic that IEs versatility is also what makes it a vulnerability! A browser I use frequently, which incidently is built on IE technology, is the Avant Browser, sleek design with integrated pop-up blocker and tabbed browsing (something IE is still missing). Again anyone wishing to try the Avant Browser its free from Download.ocm
     
  7. nanobyte

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    May 26, 2004
    118
    1
    Hi everybody. Thanks for add the suggestions and info. I downloaded both Spybot and Ad-Aware, but neither of them are doing there jobs like they should. Spybot never finishes scanning. It starts out well, but as soon as it hits 9621 out of 13,XXX (couldn't remember the exact number) it gets stuck. The fist time I ran Ad-Aware it did fine until it finish the scanning. When I click next to delete all the junk it had found, it got stuck in the process of deleting. Now Ad-Aware isn't working at all. It gets stuck initializing itself. Brandon told me that Spybot operates better when the computer is in safe mode so I tried that, but when I push F8 nothing happen; the computer booted up as it usual does. When are you supposed to push F8 Brandon? I feel like I'm fighting a loosing battle here. HHHEEELLLPPP!!!!
     
  8. Brandon

    Senior Member

    Dec 14, 2004
    306
    0
    Not loosing. Just a battle you've not done before. If you don't have anything of importance on your HD or you have backups, nuking the harddrive and reinstalling your OC is the best way to beat all the spyware, but most people can't just up and format their drive. I try to keep my WinXP system like a linux system with multiple partitions for the OS, swap files, downloads, etc. If I get a virus, I nuke my C drive, restore it from the stable backup and everything is back in business -- little advanced, so we'll go the below route.

    First, go find the temporary internet file folder. I am not sure there it will be on your machine since I have mine redirected. Should be in Program Files, or in Windows, etc. one of them. Delete everything in it. Find your cookies directory. You can just do a file search for cookies and delete them all as well. Empty the recycle bin.

    With that much spyware, run a virus checker if you have one. If you don't have one, http://www.trendmicro.com/en/home/us/enterprise.htm
    go there and do their House Call to do a free virus scan of your PC. Clean what ever it finds. Try reinstalling AdAware if you can but don't run it. Reboot you system when done.

    Start hitting F8 right after your computer does POST. Keep hitting F8. Won't hurt anything. (POST = Power On System Test. i.e. check the memory n crap, the 3.5" drive makes its grinding sound, etc) You should see a text screen pop up giving you a handful of boot options. Pick Safe mode and hit enter.

    Safe mode takes a long time to get through. So don't be suprised if it takes up to 5 minutes for your system to boot into safe mode. From here run AdAware/SpyBot. Reboot back into normal mode when done and rerun AdAware/SpyBot. If its clean. Your done, pat yourself on the back, DL a new Web Browser. heh. If you find more, reboot back into safe mode and repeat.

    IF for some reason you can not get your PC to go into safe mode via F8, we'll do it the not so safe way.

    Turn your PC off. Let it sit for 5-10 sconds. Turn it on. As soon as it starts to boot Windows, PULL OUT THE POWER CORD out of the back of the machine. Don't hit the power button. The way some of the power controls are set up, you PC might not turn off. You WANT the PC to loose power during the boot process to simulate a terrible crash. This will normally prompt your PC to boot into safe mode next time you boot the machine. ONLY do this if you can't get your PC into safe more manually unless someone else has a less destructive idea. You run the risk of some mild disk corruption while doing this (in 3 years, hasn't happened to me yet and I abuse my machines) but it works.

    If for some reason the above just does not work send me a message and we'll try a little more direct approach. I'll walk you through doing some stuff by hand within your registry via AIM or something.
     
Loading...