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Malwarebytes for Windows and Windows 7 Freeze/Lock-up

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Posted (edited)

We are aware of an issue involving sporadic freezes/lock-ups of machines running the latest version of Malwarebytes for Windows and Windows 7. This issue is currently being investigated and further updates will be provided in this forum topic. We apologise for the inconvenience this has caused and are working hard to identify the cause and provide a permanent solution.

Known Information:
The following information is know about the issue.

  • Certain Windows 7 (any edition) machines are affected (hardware/software dependent).
  • Only Malwarebytes for Windows version 3.6.1 CU 1.0.508 with Premium activated is affected. Earlier versions are unaffected.
    • To check if you have this version installed, open Malwarebytes and click Settings followed by About.
      image.png.53b0dbef266927e30789cbc1c26697fa.png
  • The machine will sporadically freeze/lock-up with no ability to use input devices or overcome the issue. A hard reboot is required.


Known Workarounds:
It has been reported that either of the following workarounds have a high success rate in mitigating the issue entirely.

  1. Disable Malwarebytes for Windows Web Protection.
    • Open Malwarebytes for Windows.
    • Toggle the Web Protection switch off.
    • Click Yes if prompted by User Account Control (UAC).
    • To suppress the 'Real-Time Protection turned off' notifications, do the following:
      • Click Settings.
      • Ensure the Application tab is selected.
      • Under Notifications, toggle the 'Show notifications when Real Time Protection [...]' setting off.
  2. Revert to the previous Malwarebytes for Windows components package.
    • Download the setup file from the following link: https://malwarebytes.box.com/s/xq78v2de2k893g1h41upzbtqmsc6t375
    • Run the downloaded setup file to over-the-top install the earlier version. This will remove the current version and install the earlier.
    • Note: Once installed, verify Malwarebytes Premium is activated by confirming "Malwarebytes Premium" is displayed on the Dashboard.
    • To prevent the program from automatically updating to the latest affected version, do the following:
      • Open Malwarebytes for Windows and click Settings.
      • Ensure the Application tab is selected.
      • Under Application Updates, toggle the 'Automatically download and install application component updates' setting off.

 

Troubleshooting:
If you would like to assist the on-going investigation into the cause of this issue, please refer to the troubleshooting steps below. Thank you to all those who have provided feedback and troubleshooting information on this issue so far.

Step #1: Malwarebytes Support Tool (MBST)

  • Please download MBST using the link below:
    http://downloads.malwarebytes.com/file/mbst
  • Once the file is downloaded, open your Downloads folder or the location of the downloaded file.
  • Double-click YbWgqUx.png mb-support-#.#.#.###.exe to run the program.
  • If prompted, place a checkmark next to Accept License Agreement and click Next.
  • Click the Advanced menu on the left. Please do not click Start Repair.
  • Click Gather Logs.
  • Upon completion, click OK.
  • A file named HSPwQfy.png mbst-grab-results.zip will be saved to your Desktop.


Step #2: System Information

  • Press the Windows Key + R on your keyboard at the same time.
  • Type msinfo32 and click OK.
  • A new window will open. Click File followed by Save.
  • Give the file a name, select your Desktop as the location and click Save.
  • Drag the saved image.png.1a6ac3572b0304f6862e8f61357f649e.png .nfo file into the mbst-grab-results.zip on your Desktop to add it to the Zip file.
     

Step #3: Provide Zip file

  • Create a post in the following discussion topic by opening the link and clicking Reply to this topic.
  • Attach the mbst-grab-results.zip file located on your Desktop in your post. Click "Reveal Hidden Contents" below for details on how to attach a file.
      Hide contents

    To save attachments, please click the link as shown below. You can click and drag the files to this bar or you can click the choose files, then browse to where your files are located, select them and click the Open button.

    mb_attach.jpg.220985d559e943927cbe3c078b

 

(Optional) Step #4: PSList

  • Please download PSList.zip using the link below:
    https://malwarebytes.box.com/shared/static/jrbrzr4rpbu4rlstl4abq0ghglg24hov.zip
  • Open your Downloads folder. Right-click image.png.3f16433e2b08916416feb94f75943cd7.png PSList.zip and click Extract All.... Ensure Show extracted files when complete is checked and click Extract.
  • A folder will open. Open the PSList folder inside. Right-click image.png.17e27307e4ab2bcef5b040f816976b84.png PSList64.bat (use PSList.bat if you are running 32-bit Windows) and click image.png.84f3013170b06c5705bcb44fa906ee83.png Run as administrator.
  • Note: If you are prompted by Windows SmartScreen, click More info followed by Run anyway.
  • A black console window will appear. Each second, a new text file will be written to the extracted PSList folder..
  • Please leave the console window open and wait for the machine to freeze/lock up.
  • Note: Running the batch file for extended periods of time may potentially result in a large amount of consumed disk space. If this is an issue, output files generated earlier in the process can be deleted. For example, if Output3000.txt is reached in the extracted PSList folder, delete files 1 through to 2000.
  • Once the machine has locked up, force a restart.
  • After the machine has restarted, right-click the extracted PSList folder and click Send to followed by Compressed (Zipped) folder.
  • Name the Zip file PSList-Output.
  • Repeat Step #3 to attach the file to your forum post.
     

(Optional) Step #5: Change network adapter

  • We are currently exploring the possible correlation between this issue and certain network adapters.
  • If you are in a position to disable the network adapter currently in use, please do so and check if the issue still occurs with a different network adapter in use.
    • Click the Start button followed by Control Panel.
    • Click Network and Sharing Center or View network status and tasks under Network and Internet.
    • Click Change adapter settings.
    • Right-click the in-use network adapter and click Disable.
    • Connect to the Internet using a different network adapter (e.g. insert an Ethernet cable).
  • Please let us know which network adapter you disabled, which you switched to and if this had any impact on the issue.
     

Please use the following topic for discussion on the issue:
https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/240530-another-windows-7-x64-freeze-after-the-10508-update

Edited by LiquidTension

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Hi all—

I wanted to share some promising news!

We’ve now been able to consistently reproduce the freeze in house on more systems and we believe we have narrowed the problem to multi-processor synchronization issues with our Web Protection code on Windows 7.

We have an updated version of Malwarebytes that we’re currently testing, so far with encouraging results.

I want to make this update available just as soon as possible, but we want to be sure we aren’t introducing any additional issues, so further testing is still required.  Assuming all goes well, I’m hoping we’ll have more good news for you next week.

We appreciate everyone who’s been working with us to help resolve this problem, even behind the scenes.  Your assistance has been invaluable!

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We've just posted a test preview build that we believe should prevent the freeze from occurring. We are still testing this internally, but wanted to make the build available to those who are comfortable with testing.

Please see the post in our beta forum here.

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A components package update that addresses this issue was released to all users running Windows 7 or above. Please see the following post here.

Thank you to everyone who provided feedback and assistance with this issue.

Edited by LiquidTension

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