Spyware Removal Tips — How to Clean Up Your XP or Vista PC

By: nunitak

May 17 2008


Category: Computers

1 Comment

Snapshot of Intruder Report for Nunitak’s PC from March 2008.


Spybot Removes 162 Spyware Items from Nunitak’s PC !!!

.All were missed by Norton Symantec Scan & Firewall backed up by periodic SUPERAntiSpyware PC scans. I use all three of these softwares. Each one offers some protection which is lacking in the others. They do not knock heads on my computer even if I engage both Norton and SuperAntiSpyware at start. But I usually keep SuperAntiSpyware off at start-up. It is very handy for removing Tracking Cookies and as a 2nd opinion or last resort spotter of sudden malicious software, found occasionally. I use it for scanning my Vista PC at least twice weekly. Norton reports to me in a right-lower popup window when my computer is under attack, best part of 20 times this year even though PC is off more than 2/3rds of the time.

SuperAntiSpyware lets me run a Custom Scan for the frequent offenders that I encounter. You can do the same by noticing where Spyware is found during your Full System Scans. Custom Scan is shorter, so this is a benefit if you are sharp enough to spot the vulnerable directories or folders. It finds more than Norton Custom Scan does for the same locales.

Is Your Vista PC Safe? Using Help for “Windows Security Center” go to that Help section and click to open Windows Security Center. ALL FOUR AREAS should be GREEN! If they are NOT, you must do whatever is necessary to secure your PC. Otherwise it is AT RISK, just like walking outside without your pants on!!!

To Create a Desktop Icon for Windows Security Center — Right click an empty place on your Desktop, select New, select Shortcut. Copy and paste the below (not quotes) in the empty slot for shortcut. Click Next and type in the name Windows Security Center.

C:\Windows\System32\control.exe /name Microsoft.SecurityCenter” [do not include quotes in shortcut]  NOTE that this works for VISTA only.  For XP you must bring up the Security Center by going to START, SETTINGS, CONTROL PANEL, and then clicking on SECURITY CENTER.

Nunitak’s $64 Hint Offered Free: Get Spybot NOW! Clean the buggers out of your PC!!!

The best way to do this is to download Spybot to your Desktop from this site: [free, but you can make shareware donation. Be certain the version you download is for YOUR operating system, Windows XP, 2000, ME, Vista or whatever…]

http://www.safer-networking.org/en/spybotsd/index.html <—download Spybot here (not for Mac, y’all scroll down to Blue labels)

Then close all applications, but stay connected to the internet.

Install the downloaded file by clicking it. After installation it will update itself and then remove many Spyware items.

If there are any items which it cannot remove, shut down your PC and then reboot it in SAFE MODE WITHOUT INTERNET CONNECTION. Consult your OS HELP for booting your PC to “SAFE MODE.” For Vista PCs repeated push of F8 at beginning of boot-up may work. There are other ways. If you are a Klutz, get Savvy Help.

This minimizes open drivers, with none for internet, enabling Spybot to remove difficult Spyware items.

So, when you are in Safe Mode, just click on your Spybot icon. Give it time and do not disturb it while it works!

Update: Once you have Spybot installed, whenever you download updates for other software, revise your other existing software options, or install/uninstall software, a Spybot window will pop up asking if these are authorized Registry changes. Just click the Allow Change button on the bottom left to approve such changes, if you initiated them.

Update: Be sure to use the Update (button) on Spybot about twice a month and then Immunize (button) your PC with Spybot. Download Updates popup lets you choose a Spybot mirror site close to your PC. The national flags on display provide a hint.

More PC Security Help and Online Help for Mac Users (all free)
Free Online Spyware Removal Help for Mac Users
103 Free Security Apps for Mac, Windows and Linux



Nunitak also warns you of the Worst Internet Places to Visit:

Typically anytime you access ANYTHING at such a website, tracking cookies by the score will infect your PC. PopUp window site referrals will install even more insidious spyware. The hits are MULTIPLE each and every time. Talking about 25 to 50 or more Spyware items per visit, friends….

But the Single Worst Place I have encountered so far is one that entices people with free animated screensavers and does show quite a few very attractive ones. But if you do ANYTHING with them, the MOST DIFFICULT of all Spyware to remove infects your computer. They also install other things without asking, including some items which they ask if you want, and when you say NO, they install them anyway.

This includes an unwanted toolbar.

You should have PopUp Prevention on your PC. NO POPUPS should be allowed except for those websites which you frequent in your work. Even some of those may install Tracking Cookies, Key Loggers or other SpyWare. So you will need to scan your PC every day with Spybot. Once your PC has been thoroughly cleaned, the Spybot scan works very fast, only taking a few minutes on my Vista PC which has tons of files and software.

Both Yahoo and Google offer free toolbars that stop unwanted popup windows. When one is blocked there is a clicking noise. This enables you to turn popup prevention off (Allow Popups) if you are at a website that wants to open popup windows you need.

I do not know why they are so interested in my PC as I am not wealthy. But keeping the hackers and spyware operators off has been a continual challenge!

Spybot gets Seven Stars * * * * * * * from Nunitak!


One comment on “Spyware Removal Tips — How to Clean Up Your XP or Vista PC”

  1. SpyBot truly is a great product.
    I used it for years and I was always pleased with the results.

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