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Journal FortKnox's Journal: The Good, the Bad, and the Fugly (aka My Weekend) 34

The Good: And with the 11th pick of the 2004 NFL Draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers select Ben Roethlisburger, Quarterback, Miami of Ohio. Wow, I'm surprised he fell all the way to 11. I'm totally pumped at having him. Here's hoping he overshadows the overhyped Eli Manning...

The Bad: My wife, moving my 'older' computer to a new desk. "Honey, why won't this turn on when I hit the button?" Ugh, didn't have a chance to look at it, but I'm hoping its just the video card getting knocked halfway out of the slot (its happened before).

The Fugly: I check my computer Sunday morning. Every exe, dll, sys file on my new machine has a virus on it. Looks like about 5 different viruses.
My antivirus (AVG) checks incoming files, d/led files, etc. It scans every night. I have a software firewall (ZoneAlarm) that makes sure no one is breaking in... yet every DAMN THING on my machine is infected. I was kinda hoping that AVG had a glitch in one of the updates or something, but seeing as iexplore.exe was infected and I couldn't open it, I was screwed. My other machine didn't turn on, and I had far too much to do to actually work on either. The only other thing it could be is we had an 'under a second blackout' in my house on friday morning, so it was sitting on the login screen all day (antivirus and firewall turn on when I log in). But even so, why didn't it find the virus friday night? If anyone has any idea how this coulda happened, I'm all ears. It sucks that it happened, but it sucks even more that I have no idea how it happened, so I don't know how to safeguard myself so it won't happen again.

Tonight I have a class, so I won't get in until after 8:30... so maybe I'll have time to get my old machine back up. Then I'll have to wait until tomorrow night to wipe my new box clean and start all over again from scratch. Damnit all to hell.

How did your weekend fare?
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The Good, the Bad, and the Fugly (aka My Weekend)

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  • 'Cause that's the OLD SKEWL infection vector. :-)

    Maybe it was an Activex virus, turn up security in IE (set EVERYTHING to 'Prompt') or get a real browser. :-)

    • get a real browser. :-)

      I know you're probably half-kidding, but yea, seriously.

      Q. Who uses IE anymore for anything other the stupid sites that require it?

      A. Evidentally FortKnox

      Q. Does he not realize the beauty, the joy of tabs?

      A. Evidentally Not. Sam needs to get evangelical on him.

      All that being said(in as smart ass a manner as possible I might add), it sounds like you're going to have to sacrifice a few hours to the dark gods of Redmond. Which suxx0rs.
      • yeah yeah yeah... I know, I know, I know.

        I just use IE at work, so I naturally use IE at home, too.

        I'll d/l firebird or whatever its called as soon as I reinstall :-P
        • I just use IE at work, so I naturally use IE at home, too.

          I use Windows at work, yet somehow I manage to come home and use Mac OS. Just because you haven't figured out how to get a real browser at work doesn't mean you have to torture yourself at home. I have IE at work, and it drives me semi-insane to not have tabs. Do you not understand the magnificence of tabs?! Yes, that would be magnificence, as in Greatness, Lavishness, and Imposing Beauty!
          • Same here... IE at work (because I have to), Mozilla on Windows2000 at home or Safari/Mozilla on my iBook. No problems whatsoever switching. Well, yes, when using IE at work I keep hitting Ctrl-T without effect, but appart from that ;-)

            As for infections: I'm not really sure FortKnox, but are you using XP? I've seen that some virusses get reinstalled because they hide in the system restore of Windows XP. Happened to the PC of my GF. AVG kept finding and finding the same virus over and over. The solu

          • I use IE to look at the corp intranet pages, but NS7 for slashdot and everything else. I use NS7 at home and love it. :-)
          • When I came into work and found that I'd be using Vinders was install Mozilla and set it as default browser. I still use IE every now and again because people DON'T KNOW HOW TO CODE THEIR WEB PAGES, but its infrequent, at best.

            And then there's tabs. Like I once said:

            "But seriously, tabs are the shizz-nit. They're the new Coke. Okay, not the new Coke, but maybe when they brought back Classic Coke (which is what they still call it, even though they've not had new Coke for like twenty years). They're like

        • I think it's still Firefox, but they may decide to change it again at any moment.

          It was nice trying to ask someone if they had installed it during the changes. "Did you install Phoe-Fireb-fox?"

          Tabbed browsing kicks ass, though. :)
          My favorite? Bookmarks - Folder - Open in Tabs. (When I have a 3-button pointing device, bookmarks - middle click folder name.)
        • Really.

          Or of course you could switch to Mac, but this is a taller order. NB: Zero (0) active worms, spyware, ActiveX shit on OS X.

    • Yeah, short of getting a real OS, I'd say get a real browser. I've converted some Windoze-using friends to Mozilla, just by giving a brief demo. It's not flawless, but at least it's not designed to be integral to the OS, so your risk is lower.
    • Install? Nope. On Windows with the default configuration, you don't need to explicity "install" software from a CD, to get infected. Mere insertion, is enough to execute code from the CD (with the user's full access, of course -- no sandbox), without any additional user interaction. Autorun, cursed be thy name.

      Insert CD, scan it for viruses, looks ok so then install. Oops. See the problem with at picture? By the time you scan, you're already infected and your scanner has been patched to report fals

  • funny, i had some computer weirdness as well. I shut my PowerBook down, well, not a "real" shutdown. I just closed the lid, which then puts it into "sleep" mode.

    But the next morning (saturday morning) I noticed it was running very hot, like it didn't really shut down and the cpu was burning all night or something. When I opened it up, nothing, so I held the power button down and it did a force shutdown. I waited 10 or 15 minutes, and by then it was cooled off, and powered it back up, OS X (10.3.3) loaded j
  • I was not impressed with their performance when Netsky-b got into the building. My nortons's nuked it, my cow-orker's macafee did its job but Housecall and AVG could even detect that the machine was infected. I'm testing PC-Cillin though on my aunt's PC (newbie computer/internet user, perfect honeypot for viral infection), hoping it works out b/c Mac and Nortons charge way too much for most users.
    • Funny you should mention that. Just today I'm having trouble with McAfee and Netsky. McAfee pops up an alert that the Netsky virus is in a file in C:\windows\temp, deletes it, and recommends a complete scan. I say okay, it does a complete scan, finds nothing, and a couple of minutes later, it pops up an alert again, repeat ad nauseum. The filenames differ each time (random string of characters with .TMP extension), and this continues even after I've manually deleted/expunged the entire contents of the direc
      • No email on that machine. The one I do have email on, though, I have gotten email viruses, but AVG is smart enough to check them as they come in instead of after I open them.
        • So which viruses did you get? Have you looked them up to see how they spread?
        • The one I do have email on, though, I have gotten email viruses, but AVG is smart enough to check them as they come in instead of after I open them.

          EEK! I'm just inferring, but you sound too confident.

          It sounds like you may have a procedural problem that is leaving you vulnerable: relying on a scanner to keep viruses out of your email. This is guaranteed to not work. The only protection against viruses is to never execute untrusted code, whether it has been looked at by a scanner or not. A scanner ca

  • I had a HDD die on me on Thursday night/Friday morning. It's a 250GB SATA drive in a RAID 1 array, so I didn't lose any data (well, I haven't lost any data yet) but it's the first hard disk drive to have died on me in over 15 years of hard disk-based computing.

    Of course, it's annoying that it's dead (the drive spins up but the integrated SATA RAID controller on my motherboard hangs the boot process when it's attached, but proceeds if the drives disconnected, which I think is a strange way of notifying the
    • Put the HDD in the freezer for 10 minutes and try it again, I had an old 15 GB 7200RPM come back from the grave like that.
      • Thanks for the suggestion but, as it was part of a RAID 1 (ie, mirrored) array, getting data off of the drive isn't that much of a priority: I'd rather that the drive was just replaced.

        Before I RMA the drive I might try it though. I've never had an excuse to try the "HDD in the freezer" trick so it would be nice to see it work.
        • Before I RMA the drive I might try it though. I've never had an excuse to try the "HDD in the freezer" trick so it would be nice to see it work.

          Could screw up the RMAing aspect, though, especially if you admit it and/or get caught... If you don't need to access the data on the disk, I'd save the trick for either an expendable drive or one you really need to access.

  • I found my Linux server powered down this morning. I didn't do it, cursory examination of logs don't reveal anything helpful. I was dusting and cleaning around it, it's possible I powered it down myself, but that seems unlikely. I think I would have heard it, it's not like I'm using super-quiet fans or anything.

    Anyway, for what it's worth, here [rdewald.com] are my standard tips for avoiding the kind of disaster that befell you.
  • So the gearbox in one of the cars had been getting a bit temperamental of late. It was refusing to go into 4th. Then fourth returned, but third wouldn't engage. So I spent the weekend working on gearboxes. Dropped the dodgy gearbox out of the car (via my hand -- ouch). Opened it up, hoping to see obvious signs of wear, but to no avail. I could see the synchro hub moving forwards and backwards, but it was being mechanically blocked by something, and I couldn't see what.

    Rather than dismantle it completely (

  • Don't even think about anything else... Now you know.
    • It's all about housecall [slashdot.org]. I don't run an antivirus, a firewall, or anything else to protect me from virii and other such stuff. I scan once a month, or right after somebody else has been on my computer.

      The only time I have ever gotten a virus was after somebody else had been using the computer (who had gotten the other 4 computers in the room infected with the same virus from installing his counter strike stuff).

      I vote for "know what you're doing" as the best virus protection. The only problem is this
  • by turg ( 19864 ) *
    Okay, I'm behind the curve on picking up new expressions so I have a question about "fugly." Is it an exact replacement for "ugly" (or "very ugly") or is it a more specific type of ugly?

Your fault -- core dumped