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How To Remove Viruses From A Computer

Computer viruses are a real pain in the ass! Deleting and repairing infected files can be challenging, but not impossible. Follow the steps below for general instructions on how to remove computer viruses from an infected computer.

A few signs of virus infections:

system reboots or slowdowns, computer will not boot, files disapperaing.
Remove Trojan horse viruses, worms, etc..

  1. Download, install and update Anti-Virus Software.
  2. Disconnect from the Internet.
  3. Open Internet Explorer - clear your cookies and cache.
    • To delete cookies in IE: Tools >> Internet Options >> on the General tab choose Delete Cookies. You will be asked 'Delete all cookies in the Temporary Internet Files folder? Click OK.
    • To delete the cache in IE: Tools >> Internet Options >> on the General tab choose Delete Files. Be sure to place a check in the box that says 'Delete all offline content'. Click OK
  4. Restart the computer in Safe Mode.
  5. OPTIONAL: If you are using Windows ME or Windows XP or Vista, disable System Restore.
    • Sometimes viruses can hide in System Restore files in which case turning off off system restore will delete those files. (Warning: If you disable System Restore you will remove all previous restore points, which means that you will no longer have the option of restoring the computer to a date when the computer was last functioning normally.)
  6. Run a full system scan on the computer. This might take some time depending on how much data the anti-virus software needs to sift through. Be patient, let the software do it's job.
  7. If you find that the anti-virus software is having trouble removing a virus you might need to run MSCONFIG and figure out which startup process is responsible for loading the infected file.
  8. After all viruses have been quarantined or removed, reboot the computer and connect to the Internet then run Windows Update - select all critical updates.
Tips To Help Keep Viruses Off Your Computer:

  1. Do not open email attachments - unless you can verify they are 100% safe.
  2. Stay away from questionable websites.
  3. Be careful when downloading using P2P (Peer to Peer) file sharing software. Always scan your downloads with anti-virus software before you open them!
  4. Keep Microsoft Windows up-to-date using Windows Update.
  5. Keep your anti-virus software up-to-date and run scans periodically.
  6. Run a software firewall - you can download a firewall here and you can find out what a firewall is by clicking here.
  7. Do not install any software unless the source can be verified. When in doubt search for the software title on Google - you can do that here.
  8. Stop using Internet Explorer and switch to a more secure web browser, for example: Mozilla Firefox!

Warning: These methods are not guaranteed to remove all viruses. This article is meant as a general tutorial and a place to start when attempting to remove viruses.
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what is a virus?
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    boot virus
    macro virus
    polymorphic virus
    resident virus
    Trojan horse
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