Let’s Kill Some Spyware!!

I recently had to help some people remove some serious spyware/malware/virii.
No normally if I can’t ‘kill’ the bad stuff fairly quickly. I will simply get the persons ‘data’ – documents, pics, music etc. – off the machine and then delete the partitions. wipe the drives, re-format and re-install the operatiing system clean.
But sometimes in a business situation this is not always possible.
Or sometimes all the needed applications are not available for ‘re-install’
For this you must try and ‘save’ your system without the ‘nuclear option’.
So here is one of the best methods I use on a ‘running’ active system.
Read all the instructions and download ALL of the suggested applications from a ‘non-infected’ machine 1st.
Then place them on a portable drive – usb or a directory on the infected system [c:\killmalwareapps or something]
Ok let’s start.
1st on the infected machine delete the ‘hosts’ and ‘lmhost’ files.
They will be located in the c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc folder.
[Possibly c:\winnt\system32\drivers\etc]
First try an online scan from Trend Micro.
To do this safely – using an ‘external non-infected browser’ you need to run ‘Firefox portable’ off USB drive.
This will allow a ‘clean run’ of a browser for a live malware/spyware scan:
How To:
The article here:
explains how to download the latest portable Firefox builds and how to correctly install it as a ‘portable app’ on a separate folder or usb drive. I ‘install’ it to a directory called ‘portablefirefox’ and then I copy that to my USB drive.

Then go to Trend Micro USING THE PORTABLE FIREFOX and run their housecall application and run a scan:
Make sure you do NOT use any browser installed on the infected system!!!
Use the ‘Firefox Portable’ application to get to the web.

Other tools to have on hand (on your usb drive) before starting.
From Sysinterals

Get the following apps. Download on clean system and transfer to usb.
Autoruns – Finds all the crap actually loading at startup.
You will finds all kinds of ‘crap’ that shouldn’t be there.
Extract and run this to show EVERYTHING that is loaded at start up.
This includes applications, scripts, drivers, active X controls, dll’s and more.

Process Explorer
This helps find unwanted running strigs and helps in there termination.
Run the application to see every currently running process/application on your system.

You will often need some or all of the following applications to ‘kill’ bad processes.
That is, malicious programs that are running ‘un-authorized’ processes.



file assassin

A great spyware finder:

spybot s&d;
I install this as my online scan is running (if possible).
Don’t confuse this application with other that are trading on the ‘Spybot’ name and are in and of themselves ACTUALLY spyware. The one and only original FREEWARE application is here.

Remember to have all these files already downloaded and copied to your portable drive.

And to assist in cleaning our all ‘temp’ type files:
Especially usefull if there is an ‘unseen’ internet app (ie or firefox) downloading malware in the background continually
I will run this over and over while running spybot scans.


Anyhow this is just a quick but I think fairly thorough way of cleaning an infected system if you don’t have a ‘Live’ type of utility or rescue disk available such as UBCD (ultimate boot cd), Hiren’s, or a custom Bart PE disk.

What is pulling illegal aliens into the U.S.

I was recently asked my thoughts on what effect the current ‘horrible’ economy would have on the flow of illegal aliens.
The question that got me is,
“Would the ‘fall of our blatant consumerism’ and the reduction of our freedoms cause the flow of illegal aliens to decrease?”
Well, I believe ‘consumerism’ has nothing to do with the flow of illegals aliens.

People come to this coountry for one reason – OUR FREEDOMS!!
The freedom to have a ‘CHANCE’ and the ‘OPPORTUNITY’ to succeed; or fail. But a freedom that exists in absolutely NO OTHER PART OF THE WORLD. Including western Europe!

The United States of America is the ONLY country on the planet that has people literally dying to get in!
In the United States of America, you are free, absolutely, to achieve what ever you can. Here it does not matter what color you are, what ethnicity (like it does in Europe!), what religion, what ‘class’ you came from or anything!In this country if you educate yourself, work diligently and strive, you can achieve a lifestyle and standard not possible in most of the world.

Some actual facts to remember. Most of the world shits outside!! And doesnt have clean drinking water. I am not kidding here.

Some facts on the American ‘poor’:

In America, we consider a family of four “poor” if its annual income falls below $21,203. And we actually undercount income — ignoring assets accumulated in prior years and disregarding non-cash welfare, such as taxpayer-funded education, lunch programs, health care, food stamps and subsidies for public housing. Only 6 percent of poor households, according to The Heritage Foundation, are overcrowded — meaning more than one person per room. More than two-thirds of “poor” Americans live in housing with more than two rooms per person. And 43 percent of America’s poor households own their own homes — and the average poor person’s home has three bedrooms, one-and-a-half bathrooms, a garage and a porch or a patio.

“Overall,” writes Heritage, “the typical American defined as poor by the government has a car, air conditioning, a refrigerator, a stove, a clothes washer and dryer, and a microwave. He has two color televisions, cable or satellite TV reception, a VCR or DVD player, and a stereo. He is able to obtain medical care. His home is in good repair and is not overcrowded. By his own report, his family is not hungry and he had sufficient funds in the past year to meet his family’s essential needs. While this individual’s life is not opulent, it is equally far from the popular images of dire poverty conveyed by the press, liberal activists, and politicians.”

“Nearly three-quarters of poor U.S. households own a car,” says the study, “31 percent own two or more cars. Ninety-seven percent of poor households have a color television; over half own two or more color televisions. Seventy-eight percent have a VCR or DVD player; 62 percent have cable or satellite TV reception. Eighty-nine percent own microwave ovens, more than half have a stereo, and more than a third have an automatic dishwasher.”

In 1970, only 36 percent of the entire U.S. population — rich and poor — lived with air conditioning, while today 80 percent of poor households have air conditioning. The average poor American has more living space than the average citizen — of all income levels — living in many cities throughout Europe, including Paris, London, Vienna and Athens.

Right now, our economy is in a recession of unknown duration, with rising unemployment and vast economic anxiety. But we live here, in America — a country of vast prosperity, freedom of choice, and a control over our own destinies that much of the world simply finds breathtaking.

Just some food for thought for those who wake up everyday in this wonderous land without the grattitude they should have.

Windows Live Applications on Windows 2003 Server

After searching far and wide I found a solution to not being able to install the lates version of Windows Live applications on Windows 2003(and 2008) Server.

My desire is pretty much for only Live Writer but all the ‘Live’ apps are now completely bundled.

You can’t simply download and install the ‘writer installer’ anymore. [this was a solution for Live Writer beta 3]

After downloading the full Windows Live installer – wlsetup-all.exe

You must make adjustments to the actual installer that will allow for a ‘server’ install (A ‘non supported’ OS).

First download and extract ‘Resource Hacker’ to a folder (desktop is simplest)

Next run ResHacker.exe and open the setup file – wlsetup-all.exe

Locate CONFIG 0. and expand

Then go to ‘View’ on the menu bar and ‘Find’ enter ‘Workstation’ and find any references and replace with Server.

Then ‘Compile’ and Save the installer.

You can then run the install and all should work!!! Did for me anyways.

Good luck.

From Giz Windows 7 tips

Gizmodo has a huge collection of tips, tricks and how to’s for the up coming version of Windows – Windows 7.
I highly recomend reading if you are interested in the future of Windows.
I have had a running VM (virtual machine) of Windows 7 for months now and I am quite excited about the performance; much better that Vista (for me anyways)
I will post some more info on my VM experiences in another log.
For those that are already using Vista the ‘jump’ will be minimal. And for those on Windows XP it will be an easier transition than going from XP to Vista.

Gmail adds contact synchronization over the ‘air’

Fellow Gmailers and ‘techies’,

There is an updated sync tool from Google that works ‘over the air’ and not only synchronizes calendars but also contacts!. I have not tried this yet but sounds like I will be giving it a go later this week.I have been using Google’s ‘calendar sync’ with my Outlook for a while and I love it!

This may not be necessary for me or regular ‘Active Sync’ users because I sync my contacts already, but it is worth trying out. Anything to assure ‘uniform data’!This sounds like it takes that to the next level.
Google Sync uses a Microsoft Exchange server to keep all of your contact and calendar data in sync over the air. If you’ve added a new calendar appointment from your desktop, Google Sync will push the update to your phone. Likewise, changes you make from your phone are automatically synced to your Google account in the cloud.

If you try it let me know how it goes.


Windows Media Center How To’s

Some have asked me how to work with the fantastic Media Center in Vista and its ‘father’ WinXP Media Center Edition.
There are other ‘open source or freeware’ apps and plenty of quality ones to purchase available to do what Media Center does, but I have used most of them and they don’t compare with the Vista (or WinXP) Media Center.
Some example of the other application Myth TV, Media Portal, Beyond TV, Sage TV, and XBMC to name a few of the quality ones I’ve used (use).
If you don’t have Vista, or WindowsXP Media edition some of the freeware applications can do a very good job and some of the retail applications will too.
You can even use a media center PC to save money by kissing cable or satallite goodbye! (see below)
Well, anyways here are some great links that will help more than I can with a a simple email response.



some other good stuff:




And even more great resources:
42 keboard shortcuts for Media Center:

Review of media center apps:

Saying goodby to cable and satallite tv using online services:


Some of my favorite sites:



Must Watch Videos

Going back to my disdain for lies, deception and policies based on completely UN-SCIENTIFIC facts or principles.
Here is more stuff that should be watched by EVERYONE.
Mind you the language is adult and Pen & Teller use it to make their points. But if the language offends you than the ACTUAL FACTS they present should offend you MORE!

On recycling.
This is one of those things like the ‘man-made global warming’ religion that is being force fed to generations of kids. Mostly because we have not been told the truth.
Even after watching the following videos many will continue doing what they have been doing because -‘ it makes them feel good’. Whether it actually is good seems to be irrelevant to most people now days.


Environmental Hysteria:
part 1:

As anyone knows I am an animal lover. However these people are nuts!
If hooking a monkeys testicles to a car battery and shocking the crap out him could somehow extend the life or reduce the suffering of a HUMAN BEING than all I would say is, “red is positive and black is negative, have at!”

On World Peace: