How To Manually Remove Spyware

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Celessa

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Celessa

Okaerinasai - Welcome Home

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Okay, considering I'm giving you the basic rundown of why we all really detest Spyware, I have decided to pitch in a bit of my knowledge on how to remove spyware programs manually that even Ad-Aware and other Anti-Spyware programs normally tend to overlook.

It's quick and easy to do - and it'll guarantee you one step closer to removing all the spyware you never wanted in the first place.

Call it shared knowledge that I have learned from a good friend of mine whom I wish to share to all you others out there as well.

Reminder: Each of the "Steps" are highlighted and linked to a picture so that you can see visually through a step-by-step basis what you are supposed to be doing here. And yes, pictures do speak louder than words.

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Step 1: From "My Computer" - Go to the Local C: Drive as highlighted by me in blue, below.

Step 2: Search your way through the folders until you come across this picture here.

http://img163.exs.cx/img163/2719/project22no.jpg

Double click on it like so to access in.

Step 3: Go to the Administator Folder and open the folder.

Step 4: Near the top, click on Tools > Folder Options as seen here, then click on the options > View All Hidden Files And Folders, to access all the hidden folders on your computer. You must do this in order to get to the actual source of the Spyware problem. It's very important indeed that you should follow this step here.

http://img200.exs.cx/img200/73/project47wa.jpg

http://img198.exs.cx/img198/5839/project101kb.jpg

Step 5: Click on the hidden folder, Application Data from within your archives.

Step 6: Now this is the tricky part. Find any folders you think shouldn't belong on your computer, or those you never even realized existed in the first place, and deem it to be spyware there. For my example, I found two folders which clearly stood out as Spyware Spam - it's easy to find it and the names are very easily extingishable from one another. I highlighted the two folders of Spyware in my computer alone. Note that you should check the folders out before progressing any further here.

Step 7: Now that's a lot of Spyware. Time to start the removal process.

Step 8: Simply highlight the folders you targeted and like the picture shown here, right click and delete the folders like so. There's a warning though.

Reminder: Make a back-up folder if indeed you delete some folders but your windows program suddenly stops working properly. That way, when the computer acts differently from normal, you can go on the Safe Mode from your Windows program here and replace your missing folders as so. It's a recommendation but if you really nailed the Spyware files down to the wire, you don't have anything to worry about over here.

Step 9: Now the files look all neat and tidy, and filled with useful programs indeed. You are now one step closer to being free of Spyware.

Step 10: You can also repeat the process for "All Users" as well, and access "Application Data" as always.

| Step 11 | Step 12 | Step 13 | Step 14 |

- Delete as such.
- Make a back-up file just in case.
- Be sure to delete files you assume are to be of Spyware material. Otherwise, if you don't think it's considered Spyware, therefore don't touch and use my method instead

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Further Tips on Removing Spyware
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Thanks for reading the tutorial, and I hope this serves you well. Don't forget to click on the links below on programs that automatically remove spyware for you. You'll need these programs hand in hand so that all Spyware can be deleted from your computer there.

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Procedures
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If you aren't able to delete some of the files within the folder manually - that is because you have either:

- Accessed a website.
- Opened a program related to the internet and such.

If you do one of the following, you will have triggered one of the Spyware programs and it will be immediately already in use, which would explain why you won't be able to delete those programs right away.

Therefore, it would be wise at best to restart your computer before performing the procedure, DON'T access the internet or open any programs AT ALL here - that may trigger the Spyware trap - and then try to delete the files as such. Do this before doing anything else, and you're guaranteed to get all the Spyware junk out before you know it.

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Advanced Method to Removing Spyware
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**NOTE: Only for advanced computer users. Otherwise, I suggest that you skip this part and use the necessary Ad-Aware program to take care of the rest of your problems here. Look at the related threads below for more input.

A basic rundown of RegEdit:

Step 15: Access "System Information" - like so.

Step 16: Go to Software Environment > Startup Programs - I highlighted a Spyware trigger file as an example, which then I will begin the removal process soon enough.

Step 17: Access the "Run" selection as shown in this picture.

Step 18: Type "regedit.exe" in the box inside and click OK with your mouse pointer here.

Step 19: Click on the + sign at "HKEY_LOCAL_CURRENT_USER" and then highlight "Software" shown here below. Click on the + sign next to this selection here, as well.

Step 20: Scroll down until you reach Windows > Current Version > Run

Step 21: Now find the Spyware startup file you want to delete, right click over the file, and press "Delete" like so. However - if you aren't sure it's Spyware 100%, don't delete it!! Just a fair warning. My example here was a Spyware program that I have deleted earlier, using my other method from above. This one here is the file that triggers the Spyware Program, not the actual source of the Spyware Program itself, which I had already deleted before in the much earlier steps if you can recall back then.

Step 22: Now the Spyware Startup File is no longer there. You have now removed the rest of the Spyware as so - this means no more annoying Spyware programs triggered, whenever you restart, boot, and open Windows. Thank you for reading.

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Related Threads
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Microsoft Antispyware Beta
Viruses targeting Windows X.P. Service Pack 2
Discussion on best Spyware Removal program

"No matter where you go, no matter how tough life may be, just remember that always in your heart, you will still be loved."

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Criox

Criox

~LoNe BaNcHoU oF MiNiToKyO~

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That is useful! Hehe! But I am using avest virus and spy scan! Well using that method u say is rather complicated but it is useful dealing with those new spyware data that ur spy removal cannot detected! I'll keep this infor in mind! Thks! ^^

~SpInnIng ThE NeW ThReAd oF CrEaTiOn~
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jackalx66

jackalx66

Blau Mond

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weee
thx for the tips~

i ussually use prog or edit it with regedit

this one is safer i think

thx celes xD

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elektr1k

elektr1k

Challenger of Fate

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Nice work, Celessa. I've never thought about removing it that way. I usually just use HijackThis!

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  • Jan 29, 2005

Celessa

Retired Moderator

Celessa

Okaerinasai - Welcome Home

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**Bows** My apologies, if it is too tough to understand, you can just click the links directly to my pictures and go from there. It's much quicker that way.

The first few steps are very simple - it just tells you how to get from one file to another.
Once you reach around Step 6 - it gets tougher. Sorry if I can't make it any simpler for some of you guys - just to let you know. lolis

"No matter where you go, no matter how tough life may be, just remember that always in your heart, you will still be loved."

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yike great !!! nice tutorial for removing spyware ^^ thnx for this one =D
hmz...usually I just use antispy or spyware remover xD!!! a well.....this one sounds nice ^^
thnx thnx *bows* *applause* xD!!!

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Arigato ne, Celessa-chan! It's great help... Thanks for sharing... ^^

  • Jan 29, 2005
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Whoa... it just might work! Never thought spywares were stored there.

"Exterminate with extreme prejudice."
Hail, Celessa!

Celessa

Retired Moderator

Celessa

Okaerinasai - Welcome Home

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Quote by RevueWhoa... it just might work! Never thought spywares were stored there.

"Exterminate with extreme prejudice."
Hail, Celessa!

Did you actually try it out? I was shocked that there were hidden files myself. One was named - "Burn Pop CD Tracker" - it pops your CD ROM out whenever you click on a site, with a pop-up that tells you to download an Anti-Spyware program. Even Ad-Aware couldn't take the new Spyware out, which came as a shock. I hope this helped you out Revue - thanks for the kind words everybody. ^_^

"No matter where you go, no matter how tough life may be, just remember that always in your heart, you will still be loved."

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This is a very informative tutorial. I have my hidden folders visible already, but I only opened my application data folder once to delete a directory that wouldn't let me install Norton Antivirus software.

I've seen computers that had dozens of spyware programs and malware programs on the box without the user realizing it. Except for the fact that the machine ran extremely slow and crashed a lot. I've heard even worse stories from other people who work in technical support positions and fix these issues on a regular basis.

If you don't have some type of protection like a firewall (so you know what progs are talking to the net.) or scanner your asking for it.

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Tias

Tias

Slither slither on the ground

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thx very much Celessa but i got a proplem....the folders i see r more like white r thes ALL spyware? or r the spyware hided in them?

It is time for you to drown

SilentMasamune

SilentMasamune

I'm all washed up. . .

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Thanks. I was able to remove some of the spyware-related folders, and I'm having Microsoft Antispyware Beta remove the rest.

Celessa, you're the best! :D

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  • Jan 29, 2005

Celessa

Retired Moderator

Celessa

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Yeah - I highly recommend personal firewalls as well - but the only costback is that you don't access sites as thoroughly and you can't download as fast - which I'm hoping some companies may reconsider looking over these certain types of programs. Zone Labs is one I highly recommend using.

More Spyware Examples - This was when I was still searching for more manual spyware. Cowards, the nerves - indeed. And thanks mel, guys - no problem, just helping you people out, of course.

"No matter where you go, no matter how tough life may be, just remember that always in your heart, you will still be loved."

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celluz

celluz

Italian Otaku

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Nice Tutorial Celessa :D When i work in my computer shop laboratory i have to use the "hard way" to remove the trash in the computers. I have only 2 little tips to share...

1 - dont click yes on any browser window that popup (maybe sound stupid....but many of my customers are more stupid of that :D )

2 - Use another browser....Internet Explorer is the first Spyware in the world :D

Anyway....i catch the chance of this topic for give a big kiss to Celessa and to say that im happy to see her here....damnit...the death squad must return to me now :P

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I already knew that, it's pretty usefull i think.

Well, thanks for sharing with us ;)

  • Jan 29, 2005

Archer79

Nerdly Ghost

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I would also recommend two things in addition to what Celessa said. The first is running "msconfig" (using start -> run) ....Then look under the "startup" tab and the "services" tab. This dialog allows you to determine which programs will start when your computer starts up. ...It can be fairly useful. ....Of course, it can also be powerless sometimes, depending on how the spyware was written. (i.e. It "rides" or "hides" on/in a valid software.)

i would recommend the use of BOTH adaware and Spyware Search and Destroy for the removal of "scut that's not supposed to be there." ...It seems to do a pretty good job of it. -- Of course, then there are those days when the spyware/adware is too new for the killers, but fortunately, those days don't tend to happen too often. :)

a note on the "services" tab. .....You can check the box on the bottom to hide all of Microsoft's services. This can be useful, since if the bug is riding on a Microsoft service, you're pretty hosed anyways. :) -- Take care everyone. :)

Oh, and I forgot to mention. For those of you with .XP (or better?) ...XP shipped with something called "system restore" also available from "msconfig". ....This will completely nuke any changes since the last restore point. ...And since spywayre has to change something to hook in... ....If you know when your computer was compromised, you can go back to a previously good setting, and get rid of the problem. ....Be careful though. ....If you go too far back, you might re-open security holes that Microsoft patched, and pickup an evil worm that might be lurking around, waiting for you to come on the network. ....So... ....Don't restore back over a week if you can help it. ..Of course, that's just an average. If a worm that has been immunized by a patch that JUST came out is around, you'll need to update from a CD or something before getting back on the network or you might get the worm. ...Sorry if I made that a little verbose. I kinda meant to say, "If all else fails, use system restore."

Oh! And just an informational tid-bit. ....Everytime your machine comes onto the network, it announces its presence. (Unless you're a uber-cool hacker, and are not talking. ...I'm not a hacker or cool though. ;) ) So.. Unfortunately there are worms out there that monitor for one of these announcements, and when it hears it, it not only knows you are on the network, but your address, etc. ....Today, the worm can inherently infect a machine within seconds of connection. Pretty creepy, huh?

  • Jan 29, 2005

Mordin

Mordin

The Wise One

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Hey, thanks for the tip Celessa, I will try it now.

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  • Jan 29, 2005
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oh wow I never really thought they could put files there although they weren't able to put any spy-ware on my computer but I went to another friends pc and did the same thing and took out over half a gig of spy-ware from his pc...and it's running nicely ^_^' -lol- thnx for the help but I think that if you get the new Ad-Aware SE it should be able to get those files now adays as long as you have all the updates. I thin..

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Thanks for the useful info :)
I'll try it later when I have the time for it :)

  • Jan 29, 2005

Celessa

Retired Moderator

Celessa

Okaerinasai - Welcome Home

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Quote by narutofan92oh wow I never really thought they could put files there although they
weren't able to put any spy-ware on my computer but I went to another
friends pc and did the same thing and took out over half a gig of
spy-ware from his pc...and it's running nicely ^_^' -lol- thnx for the
help but I think that if you get the new Ad-Aware SE it should be able
to get those files now adays as long as you have all the updates. I
thin..

lol Actually the new spyware is still missing some of the stuff - because every week there's new Spyware fresh off the cookie oven, and the computer is literally biting off more than it can chew - which would result as to why they weren't able to clean out all the hidden Spyware as properly as you think. That's what my tutorial is for - to clear out files Spyware may have missed, the manual way.

Over half a gig? Hm... never heard of that before - but that's one heck of a spyware problem you have over there, really.

"No matter where you go, no matter how tough life may be, just remember that always in your heart, you will still be loved."

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Frosty

Frosty

: One Luv :

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lol... yea ... the ol school way of removing those annoying spyware. But that just takes too long. they hide literally everywhere and if you are to long folder to folder, thats such a plain... >.<

lol... I just do what... have my microsoft antispyware and spysweeper on and run my hijack this for scan, then use my spyblaster scan, then check those folders just to be sure... lol. *dam spywares* lol.. XP

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Dccafdf

Dccafdf

Victor Van Vinklevoss V

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Thanks for the hint Celessa. It's kind of funny though, I have been having problems with spyware/adware that none of my 4 anti-spyware programs could detect. So I was fiddeling around with my computer, and wondered into the application data and all users/application data folders and found some crap in there myself. Got rid of it, then about what? half an hour later, I log into MT and see this thread by you, lol. Pretty funny.. I guess..

Well, thanks for the helpful thread anyway. I'm sure it'll help alot of people, as this is what I ended up doing too, lol. ^__^

I am Victor Van Vinklevoss the fifth. It is nice to meet you comrades!

  • Jan 29, 2005

DakX

DakX

Inactivity strikes again

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Good tips. Nice of you to share it with us.

Please excuse but my english isn't very wel but I am still learning.

  • Jan 29, 2005

Jinzhou

Retired Moderator

Jinzhou

Forsaken God

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...Or you could just manually delete things in a better way in your registry. Anything you don't want in Run or RunOnce gets rid of spyware.

a lot easier since a lot of spyware is always running on your computer and when you try to delete some of those "hidden" folders/files, it denies it.

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