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MalwareBytes program vanished from pc after restart

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Hello all,

Question. Has anyone experienced that his/hers MalwareBytes program suddenly is disappeared from his/hers pc? This morning I had this very strange experience. My MalwareBytes program was completely vanished from my pc. This after a Microsoft initiated restart. After what they called a stopcode problem.

What happened? 

I have a Microsoft Surface Pro 3, Win 10, Fall Creators Update, 64 bit.
Yesterday, 18-04-2018, after waking from Sleepmode my computer ran into a problem (according to Microsoft). As they say it was a stopcode problem and when I want to speak to a helpdesk employee I had to say that it was a Driver Power State Failure. OK.
After their restart my computer was a mess, the type cover was not working anymore and the next morning I discovered that my MalwareBytes program was disappeared from my computer. Completely vanished. Nothing there anymore.
Have you ever heard of such a thing?

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Greetings and welcome,

This was likely the result of a known issue which occurs sometimes during Malwarebytes program version upgrades.  For some unknown reason, when installing a new version after Malwarebytes removes the old version it is supposed to launch the installer for the new version on system restart, but fails to sometimes which results in the system having no Malwarebytes installed.

To fix it all you should need to do is reinstall it.  You may do so by downloading and installing the latest version from here or you can check the folder C:\ProgramData\Malwarebytes\MBAMService\instlrupdate to see if the installer for the latest version, 3.4.5, is already there from the attempted upgrade process from before when it failed to reinstall on reboot (that could save you a bit of time and internet bandwidth).

Please let us know how it goes and if you have any additional issues or questions.

Thanks

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@exile360
Thank you. 
There is no such folder as C:\ProgramData on my machine, so the installer file you mentioned is surely not there.
Of course I reinstalled MalwareBytes. I did that with the exe-file I kept when I originally bought the program. And after the re-installation I got a message that there was a newer version which I installed as well. The result of that all is that I now have version 3.2.2 working on my machine, which is different from what you are suggesting. Nevertheless it is working fine and from now on I will watch every day the developments.
I also downloaded and saved the newest version 3.4.5. via your link. Thank you.
The installer file you mentioned although is still not there but for me personally that is the least of my problems.

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If you are on any version of Windows newer than XP then the ProgramData folder does exist, it's probably just hidden.  If you open any folder and type %programdata% or C:\ProgramData into the address bar at the top it should take you there.

I would recommend going ahead and upgrading to version 3.4.5 so that you have the latest, most complete protection as several new protection features and detection capabilities have been added over the last several releases.  You should be able to install it over the top of your existing version without any issues.  If you do have any trouble, let us know and we'll guide you in getting it installed and functioning properly again.

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@exile360

Thank you. I installed the latest version 3.4.5. I found the folder as you suggested it, but no file instlrupdate. Not even after the update. Does not seem very important to me.

Thank you again.

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Actually, it's a folder called instlrupdate and inside it should be the downloaded installer for the most recent upgrade that Malwarebytes downloaded when you were prompted to install a new program version.  That's where it stores them, just in case you ever need it.

That said, as long as you've got the latest version installed now, it doesn't really matter.  Just let us know if you have any further problems or issues and we'll do our best to help.

Thanks

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Yeah, it probably hasn't been created yet since it hasn't needed to download an upgrade/new version now that you have the latest installed.

Anyway, I'm glad you have it installed and working again and if there's anything else we might assist you with please don't hesitate to let us know.

Thanks :) 

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11 hours ago, exile360 said:

Greetings and welcome,

This was likely the result of a known issue which occurs sometimes during Malwarebytes program version upgrades.  For some unknown reason, when installing a new version after Malwarebytes removes the old version it is supposed to launch the installer for the new version on system restart, but fails to sometimes which results in the system having no Malwarebytes installed.

To fix it all you should need to do is reinstall it.  You may do so by downloading and installing the latest version from here or you can check the folder C:\ProgramData\Malwarebytes\MBAMService\instlrupdate to see if the installer for the latest version, 3.4.5, is already there from the attempted upgrade process from before when it failed to reinstall on reboot (that could save you a bit of time and internet bandwidth).

Please let us know how it goes and if you have any additional issues or questions.

Thanks

I also had the problem with malwarebytes not showing up after a standard reset and if I remember, I had this happen the LAST time there was an update.  It's a known issue - why not fix it so it doesn't happen?  Besides, after following your instructions, it's stuck on the install screen.  I like it when things just work - I'm not using your free version, so that makes it even worse when things don't work.  Please advise - also, the installer (if it ever works) wasn't attempting to download what you say is the latest version - it was something like 3.1 or something like that.  I just accepted because I was hoping it would get it back up and running. Not.  Now it's stuck - I can't close it with cancel and when I try to stop the task from running via task manager - it says Unable to terminate process "The operation could not be completed.  Access denied"?!  WHAT?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  

Edited by DeeCee
to add more garbage that's going wrong

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Up until recently the cause was unknown therefore it couldn't be fixed, however I heard from a member of Support earlier today that a new build of the installer is now available which corrects this issue.  It turns out that it was being caused by a bug in the Inno Setup installer used by Malwarebytes (not their code, so not their bug to fix) where it was launching 2 instances of the installer simultaneously which caused it to fail.  The new installer corrects this so hopefully it won't happen any more going forward.

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In your case it sounds like something else may be going on so you might need to try performing a clean installation by following the instructions in this support article.  If that doesn't fix it please let us know and we'll proceed with diagnostics to try to determine what's going on and what steps to take to correct it.

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46 minutes ago, exile360 said:

In your case it sounds like something else may be going on so you might need to try performing a clean installation by following the instructions in this support article.  If that doesn't fix it please let us know and we'll proceed with diagnostics to try to determine what's going on and what steps to take to correct it.

I followed the instructions in the support article link and have attached the file as requested.  MB did install but real time web protection won't enable - I can't slide the bar to on and the popup saying to turn on web protection - like I wouldn't want the main thing to work - well, that showed up about 3 minutes after I stopped trying.  I'd say those diagnostics are needed.

mb-clean-results.txt

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Yeah, that's not good, but we should be able to get you fixed up.

To start, please do the following to see if this fixes it:

Right-click on the Malwarebytes tray icon and select Quit Malwarebytes and click Yes to the User Account Control prompt
Next, click on START and type cmd in the search box and once you see cmd.exe listed at the top, right-click on it and select Run as administrator.  This should open up a command prompt.
In the command prompt, enter the following text and press Enter:

SC DELETE MBAMWebProtection

Once that is done, open Malwarebytes again and it Web Protection should work.

If that fails, please do the following so that we may take a look at your installation and system configuration to proceed with troubleshooting the issue:

  1. Download and run the Malwarebytes Support Tool
  2. Accept the EULA and click Advanced Options on the main page (not Get Started)
  3. Click the Gather Logs button, and once it completes, attach the zip file it creates on your desktop to your next reply

Please let me know how it goes and if necessary, provide the logs as requested.

Thanks

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6 minutes ago, exile360 said:

Yeah, that's not good, but we should be able to get you fixed up.

To start, please do the following to see if this fixes it:

Right-click on the Malwarebytes tray icon and select Quit Malwarebytes and click Yes to the User Account Control prompt
Next, click on START and type cmd in the search box and once you see cmd.exe listed at the top, right-click on it and select Run as administrator.  This should open up a command prompt.
In the command prompt, enter the following text and press Enter:

SC DELETE MBAMWebProtection

Once that is done, open Malwarebytes again and it Web Protection should work.

If that fails, please do the following so that we may take a look at your installation and system configuration to proceed with troubleshooting the issue:

 

  1. Download and run the Malwarebytes Support Tool
  2. Accept the EULA and click Advanced Options on the main page (not Get Started)
  3. Click the Gather Logs button, and once it completes, attach the zip file it creates on your desktop to your next reply

 

Please let me know how it goes and if necessary, provide the logs as requested.

Thanks

FAILED 1060: the specified services does not exist as an installed service.  I don't know if this makes a difference, but the cmd prompt opened up to system32 when this is an 64 bit machine.  Before I attach a zip file with undoubtedly a lot of information about my computer and definitely more information than I want banging around this forum, are you the only one that can access this file or can anyone open it?  Do you have phone support?  Obviously something is wrong not of my doing, but to have to leave message after message takes a lot of time.  Let me know about the file access please and thanks.

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It's a public forum so anyone with an account here could download your logs, so since privacy is a concern I'd recommend contacting Support directly via one of the options on this page and a member of the Support team will work with you one-on-one.  Just bear in mind that it may take a while as their queue is pretty full right now last I heard (earlier today I was told that wait times are around 3~5 days currently to get a response).

As for the other things you mentioned, yes, it should show as System32.  That's quite normal, even on a 64 bit operating system (MS stuck with their traditional naming convention for the system folder for software compatibility; 32 bit programs redirect to the SysWOW64 directory, which is the 32 bit version of the folder on 64 bit operating systems; confusing, I know, but that's how it is).

One more thing to check that might fix this though, before you go through the long wait.  Open C:\Program Files\Malwarebytes\Anti-Malware and locate mbam.exe and right-click on it and select Properties.  Click on the Compatibility tab and make certain that all of the checkboxes there are unchecked, and if any are checked, uncheck them and click Apply then OK.  Then do the same for the following files:

MBAMService.exe
mbamtray.exe
mbamwow.exe

Next, click START and type services.msc and scroll down the list until you find MBAMService and double-click on it.  Make sure that its Startup type: is set to Automatic, and if it isn't, use the drop-down menu to set it that way, then click on Start if the service wasn't listed as Running, then click Apply then OK.

Do the same thing for the Windows Management Instrumentation service and let me know if that service has any problems/won't start.  And finally, do the same for the Base Filtering Engine service as well as the Background Intelligent Transfer Service.

Let me know if any of that helped or not and how you'd like to proceed.

Thanks

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If none of the above worked, I've got one last thing for you to try:

Step 1

Download MB-Clean.exe from here but do not run it yet.  Next, download the latest version of Malwarebytes from here.  Make sure you save both files in a place where you can easily find them such as your desktop.

Step 2

Boot into Safe Mode

Note: these instructions only apply if you are running Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1.  If you are running Windows 10, then you should follow these instructions to boot into Safe Mode.

  • Restart your computer.
  • When the machine first starts again it will generally list some equipment that is installed in your machine, amount of memory, hard drives installed etc. At this point you should gently tap the F8 key repeatedly until you are presented with the Windows Advanced Boot Options menu.
  • Select the option for Safe Mode using the arrow keys.
  • Then press Enter on your keyboard to boot into Safe Mode.

You should then be presented with the Windows Login screen.  Log in to Windows.

Once you're in Safe Mode, go ahead and run MB-Clean.exe, then, once it has you reboot, do so, but again, boot the system into Safe Mode as instructed above.  If prompted by MB-Clean to allow it to install Malwarebytes again for you, decline.  Once that's done, go ahead and run the Malwarebytes 3 installer you downloaded in Step 1 above.  If it prompts you to reboot, again, do so, but boot the system into Safe Mode once more.  Once in Safe Mode, open Malwarebytes and try to enable Web Protection.  If it works, restart your computer one more time, but this time allow it to start normally and see if Web Protection now functions.

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This is still happening (Malwarebytes vanishes from computer) with latest versions of the program on Windows 7 machines that I support, so I'm not able to determine the exact scenario or details of what's happening as the USER IS NOT AWARE THAT IT IS GONE! This is a BAD SITUATION as it can be MONTHS before I get a call from the owner/user. 

I can't believe this - I think it's a HUGE vulnerability -- these are paid for licenses and this update/upgrade process needs to be a bit more failsafe for users that aren't very computer savvy - the most vulnerable users in the first place!

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Hi,

I regret to read of things like this.

Caution:  This thread first started in Spring 2018.

There have been a number of version releases since then.

It would be best that you start a brand new post of your own.  So you can get proper focused help.

It would help to start by getting diagnostic-data-collection from each of the affected cases.

    Download Malwarebytes Support Tool
    
    
    Once the file is downloaded, open the Downloads folder/location of the downloaded file
    Double-click mb-support-1.4.0.615.exe to run the report
        You may be prompted by User Account Control (UAC) to allow changes to be made to your computer. Click Yes to consent.
        
    Place a checkmark next to Accept License Agreement and click Next
    You will be presented with a page stating, "Get Started!"

    Do NOT use the button “Start repair” !
    Click the Advanced tab on the left column
    
    Click the Gather Logs button
    
    A progress bar will appear and the program will proceed with getting logs from your computer
   
    Upon completion, click a file named mbst-grab-results.zip will be saved to your Desktop. Click OK
    Please attach the ZIP file in your  reply.

Thank you.

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It is quite possible that the affected systems have been impacted by a known issue with some recent builds/releases of Malwarebytes where, due to an error in the upgrade install script the existing version of Malwarebytes is uninstalled as it should be in preparation for the new version to be installed, but it fails to actually launch and execute the installer for the new version once the uninstall of the existing/previous version has completed.  This results in Malwarebytes being absent from the system until it is reinstalled manually.  This has been corrected in the most recent releases, however users impacted by this who were unaware of it since it first occurred obviously would not have reinstalled the product and so they would not have the latest version, or any version on their systems.

The latest version of Malwarebytes can be downloaded from here and going forward, assuming this issue does not show up in any future releases, it should remain installed unless removed deliberately by the user.

If this is not the cause, for example if Malwarebytes is still installed but just isn't running on system boot then please do follow Maurice's instructions posted above for additional troubleshooting (and it may be helpful to do so anyway, just so we may try and verify that the scenario I indicated was indeed the source of the problem).

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