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Computer still acting up after no threats found in normal mode.

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Hello @Lavluis

The computer appears to be infected with a rootkit. Please follow the directions below to clean it.

If your computer does not have the Windows Recovery Environment installed and available you can use the following method to run the Recovery Environment from a bootable USB disk.

NOTE: This USB disk needs to be created from a clean computer. You cannot use an infected computer for this process

NOTE: An 8GB USB 2.0 stick is required or at least recommended. In some cases a USB 3.0 disk can be used but some computers have issues booting from USB 3.0 disks.

Example drive (no endorsement implied, example only) - This drive example has not been tested by me. It is an older 2015 model with many good reviews though.
Amazon: Kingston 8GB DataTraveler 101 G2 USB 2.0 Flash Drive (DT101G2/8GBZ)
NewEgg: Kingston 8GB DataTraveler 101 G2 USB 2.0 Flash Drive (DT101G2/8GBZ)

Download a Windows 10 ISO image from Microsoft.

Method A: Using the Microsoft Media Creation Tool
Download the Media Creation Tool: https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=691209

Follow the instructions displayed on the tool to download the Windows 10 ISO image.

In my testing I was not prompted for a license key to download the latest Windows 10 ISO image.
At the time of this writing 2017/12/21 there was only one ISO image offered. Windows 10

32-bit x86  or  64-bit x64

Note: You need to run the version compatible with your system.
You can check here if you're not sure if your computer is 32-bit or 64-bit

Method B: If Method A: above is not working for you then you can try the following method
Microsoft Windows and Office ISO Download Tool (this is not an authorized Microsoft tool, but appears to be legal)
Download: https://www.heidoc.net/php/Windows%20ISO%20Downloader.exe

If you were unable to use the Windows Media Creation Tool in STEP 1 to create a USB disk then you can use this tool to burn the Windows 10 ISO image from STEP 1 above.

Download the Windows USB/DVD Download Tool from Gitbub and save to your computer.
English version: https://github.com/mantas-masidlauskas/wudt/raw/master/Downloads/Windows7-USB-DVD-Download-Tool-Installer-en-US.exe

Then install the Windows USB/DVD Download Tool and run it to burn a bootable USB disk from the ISO image. Browse to the location where you saved the Windows 10 ISO image in STEP 1
Note: This tool should work on XP, Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 10 - it is simply used to make a bootable USB disk. Remember, all of this needs to be done on a clean computer.






Please download the Farbar Recovery Scan Tool and save it to your desktop or other location you know where it's saved to. Then copy it to the USB disk you just created.

Note: You need to run the version compatible with your system.
You can check here if you're not sure if your computer is 32-bit or 64-bit

Shut down the infected computer. Do Not insert the USB disk you created until the infected computer has been shut down.
Once the computer is shut down then insert the newly created Windows 10 USB disk into the infected computer and power it back on and press the appropriate key to bring up the boot menu. The link below will help show you which key for various computers manufacturers is used to bring up the boot menu. Most will be either USB or UEFI depending on hardware and settings. If the computer boots up into the Normal Windows instead of the USB stick it may become infected and need to be completely redone again. Make sure you select the correct boot option.

How to Boot Your Computer from a USB Flash Drive

Once the computer starts to boot up from the USB disk, follow the screens and directions below.





You will need to open NOTEPAD.EXE to help find out which drive is your Windows drive and which drive is your USB disk drive you just created



For the more advanced user you could also use DISKPART to help locate which drive is mapped to your USB disk. In most cases the USB disk will be either D: or E: but depending on hardware the drive could be a much higher level such as H: or higher.

Example only - your hardware will look different

DISKPART> list volume
	  Volume ###  Ltr  Label        Fs     Type        Size     Status     Info
  ----------  ---  -----------  -----  ----------  -------  ---------  --------
  Volume 0     Z                       DVD-ROM         0 B  No Media
  Volume 1     C                NTFS   Partition    931 GB  Healthy    System
  Volume 2     Q   SEA-USB-4.0  NTFS   Partition   3725 GB  Healthy
  Volume 3     D                NTFS   Removable   7636 MB  Healthy

Go back to the DOS Command Prompt (if you used DISKPART type in Exit and press the Enter key) and type in the following and press the Enter key.

CD /D  D: (or E: or whichever drive letter the USB stick is on)

Then type in CD\
and press the Enter key to get to the root or top of the USB disk.

Then type in FRST   or   FRST64  (depending on which version your computer uses) and click the Scan button.

A log called FRST.txt will be saved on your USB Flash Drive. Attach it in your next reply.

If all went well you should now be able to boot into Normal Mode and run Malwarebytes and run a Threat Scan to have it finish the removal process.





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Hey Ron. This is probably a dumb question but my computer DOES have the Windows Recovery installed so, is there anything I can do that doesn't require another computer? I don't have one available ATM and I just want to take care of this already. Just need your feedback so I can get on the USB method ASAP if there isn't anything I can't do with my laptop alone. Thanks mate.

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No, not really. Unless you can access the Internet from the Recovery Mode and download a fresh copy of FRST and run it. You can't use the current version you have as it's corrupted by this rootkit. 

You really do need access to another computer to safely clean it. You can try as said above it can't make it any worse, it just may not work to fix, remove the infection.

Let me know



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Ron, Thanks for the reply.

Still having some trouble. Here's 2 questions:

1. Is step 2 necessary only if I wasn't able to use the Windows Media Creation tool to create the USB disk?

2. The USB Disk made has Windows 10 from the Windows 10 ISO Image. I have Windows 8.1 on my infected computer. Should I update the infected computer to 10 OR use a computer with 8.1?

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UPDATE: I just went ahead and ran the usb through as mentioned. I need to post the log when I get to my computer but I ran the scan, it mentioned that it saved on the USB, then I restarted into safe mode and ran a threat scan. Nothing was found. I'll keep you updated if anything.

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If you can. Download a new copy of FRST from another computer and save it to the USB stick.

Shut down the infected computer. Then boot it back up into Safe Mode. Insert the USB stick and run FRST from there and save the log and post back

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Ok thanks man. I will update you by tomorrow because I get limited access to a clean computer. BTW, I have this scanning and repairing prompt on my acer screen during startup on my infected laptop everytime. Does this affect anything? Just curious.

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Well, to be exact, it says"Scanning and repairing drive (\\?\Volume{779c3be7-1a8d-4e74-9020-64b9db29322e}): 100% complete" underneath the Acer startup screen. Does this mean I'll have to remove this scan and start the whole process again?

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Oh my bad, man. This happens everytime. The reason I ask is because I read that I shouldn't run any other scan/virus protection programs run until the removal process is complete. So if it's not a problem, should I go ahead and run the FRST on safe mode then?

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So it won't even boot into Normal Windows mode?

I'm going to be out on the road for the next few hours. I'll check back on you later tonight.

If you can run FRST from Safe go ahead and I'll check the logs. But this doesn't look good. If disk check won't ever finish.


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Please excuse my noob talk. It always does the disk check everytime and then runs through to normal mode just fine. It's always done the disk check. I just thought it might affect the malware removal process is all. I'll complete the logs sometime tonight or this week. Thanks for all the clarification mate.

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I do not expect this fix to work, but we'll go ahead and run this fix to clear out some other items. The logs show signs of having the SmartService rootkit which normally would not allow Malwarebytes or FRST to run properly. We'll see how it goes but unless this rootkit is somehow broken on your computer you'll need access to another clean computer in order to remove this infection.

Please download the attached fixlist.txt file and save it to the Desktop.
NOTE. It's important that both files, FRST or FRST64 and fixlist.txt are in the same location or the fix will not work.

NOTICE: This script was written specifically for this user, for use on this particular machine. Running this on another machine may cause damage to your operating system.

Run FRST or FRST64 and press the Fix button just once and wait.
If the tool needs a restart please make sure you let the system restart normally and let the tool complete its run after restart.
The tool will make a log on the Desktop (Fixlog.txt). Please attach or post it to your next reply.

Note: If the tool warned you about an outdated version please download and run the updated version.






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Wow, very interesting. Looks like it must not have been able to install correctly. Let me have you run the following, please.

Did the Disk Check stop and not run when it restarted this late time?




Please run the following steps and post back the logs as an attachment when ready.


  • If you're already running Malwarebytes 3 then open Malwarebytes and check for updates. Then click on the Scan tab and select Threat Scan and click on Start Scan button.
  • If you don't have Malwarebytes 3 installed yet please download it from here and install it.
  • Once installed then open Malwarebytes and check for updates. Then click on the Scan tab and select Threat Scan and click on Start Scan button.
  • Once the scan is completed click on the Export Summary button and save the file as a Text file to your desktop or other location you can find, and attach that log on your next reply.
  • If Malwarebytes won't run then please skip to the next step and let me know on your next reply.


Please download AdwCleaner by Malwarebytes and save the file to your Desktop.

  • Right-click on the program and select RunAsAdmin.jpg Run as Administrator to start the tool.
  • Accept the Terms of use.
  • Wait until the database is updated.
  • Click Scan.
  • When finished, please click Clean.
  • Your PC should reboot now if any items were found.
  • After reboot, a log file will be opened. Copy its content into your next reply.


RESTART THE COMPUTER Before running Step 3

Please download the Farbar Recovery Scan Tool and save it to your desktop.

Note: You need to run the version compatible with your system. You can check here if you're not sure if your computer is 32-bit or 64-bit

  • Double-click to run it. When the tool opens, click Yes to disclaimer.
  • Press the Scan button.
  • It will make a log (FRST.txt) in the same directory the tool is run. Please attach it to your reply.
  • The first time the tool is run, it also makes another log (Addition.txt). If you've, run the tool before you need to place a check mark here.
  • Please attach the Additions.txt log to your reply as well.





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