Got Malware? Before you Reformat and Reinstall Everything, Try the Malwarebytes Fix

Malware is a generic term for all types of malicious programs that attack computers: adware, backdoors, rogues, trojans, viruses and worms. These malicious programs can render a computer inoperable and can even be quite dangerous.

The danger lies in their ability to steal passwords and your personal data as well as their ability to use your computer as a “zombie”or host machine to install additional malware on your computer and to send out malware to infect other machines on your network or over the internet.

Malwarebytes is a program that I have used on several computers that have been infected by malware.This free anti-malware program is very effective at removing even the most advanced malware and deserves to be given a try by those who might find themselves infected by one of the many types of malware rampant on the internet today.

The program also includes a number of other features, including a built in protection monitor that blocks malicious processes before they start.

When you go to http://www.Malwarebytes.org you will see that there is a free download and a “full” version that you can purchase.

Buttons for these two download options are on the left hand side of the webpage. Download the free version and save it to your desktop. It downloads a setup file named: mbam-setup.exe.

The following are instructions for installing and running the Malwarebytes (MBAM) program:

  • Make sure you are connected to the Internet

  • Double-click on the file mbam-setup.exe, that you saved to your desktop, to install the application.

  • When the installation begins, follow the prompts and do not make any changes to default settings.

  • When installation has finished, make sure you leave both of these checked:

  • Update Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware

  • Launch Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware

  • Then click Finish.


[I have installed Malwarebytes from a CD where I had downloaded the mbam-setup.exe file. If you cannot connect to the internet and you elect to install the mbam-setup.exe program from a CD you made on another computer, just un-check the ‘update’ and ‘launch’ checkboxes referenced above, before you click ‘Finish’.]

After you click Finish, MBAM will automatically start and you will be asked to update the program before performing a scan [that is, IF you can log onto the internet. If not, just skip the updating process.]

If an update is found, the program will automatically update itself. Press the OK button to close that box and continue.

If you encounter any problems while downloading the definition updates, manually download them from www.malwarebytes.gt500.orgmbam-rules.exe/ and just double-click on mbam-rules.exe to install.

When the program opens, make sure you go to the SCANNER tab, then:
  • Click on the "Perform Quick Scan" option.

  • Then click on the Scan button.

  • If asked to select the drives to scan, leave all the drives selected and click on the Start Scan button.

  • The scan will begin and "Scan in progress" will show at the top. It may take some time to complete.

  • When the scan is finished, a message box will say "The scan completed successfully. Click 'Show Results' to display all objects found".

  • Click OK to close the message box and continue with the removal process.


Back at the main Scanner screen:
  • Click on the Show Results button to see a list of any malware that was found.

  • Make sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected.

  • When removal is completed, a log report will open in Notepad.

  • The log is automatically saved and can be viewed by clicking the Logs tab in MBAM.

  • Exit MBAM when done.


Note: If MBAM encounters a file that is difficult to remove, you will be asked to reboot your computer so MBAM can proceed with the disinfection process. If asked to restart the computer, please do so immediately. Failure to reboot normally (not into safe mode) will prevent MBAM from removing all the malware.

Now that you’ve run Malwarebytes once, reboot your computer and run it again. If it finds anything else, make sure you remove those items and then reboot.

On computers I have worked on, I ran Malwarebytes every day for about two weeks in order to make sure nothing was hiding. I also encourage you to run your antivirus program every day for a couple of weeks so that it can help to catch any malware that might be lurking on your computer.

When you’re convinced you’ve cleaned the computer and find no more malware, run Malwarebytes once a week to make sure it stays clean.

Always let it search for updates (there is a button that allows it to ‘check for updates’ before you click the Scanner tab with the ‘start scan’ button.)

Another useful tool that I have found in removing malware is to look at the website: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/. Here you can find information on the malware that is reported in the Malwarebytes logfile. Of course, you can just Google the malware and get info, too. I like bleepingcomputer.com because it has a lot of forums and is useful for learning about malware and for learning about your computer and computer problems in general. If you post your logfile from Malwarebytes into the malware forum page on bleepingcomputer.com, you can even get help from their experts on cleaning your computer.

If you decide to try www. bleepingcomputer.com as an aid to getting rid of your malware, go to the webpage and look at the tabs across the top of their page. The Forums tab takes you to all their user forums. On the Forums tab, scroll down to the Security section (way down the page), then click on “Am I infected, What Do I do? Forum”. Here you can search for information on malware that is similar or the same as yours, or you can post the contents of your logfile (Copy and paste the contents of your Malwarebytes logfile into a posting on this forum. Be sure to paste the complete log to include the top portion which shows Malwarebyte’s database version and your operating system version.)

In order to post to a bleepingcomputer.com forum, you need to sign up for their free membership, but this is quick and easy and they don’t use your e-mail address for nefarious purposes.

One more thing to note about Malwarebytes.org : They also have programs to delete locked malware files on your system (FileASSASSIN). They have a program that removes registry keys that harbor malware code (RegASSASSIN). And they also have a program called StartUpLite that allows you to speed up your system startup.

You can read about these on the Malwarebytes.org website and decide if they are for you or not.


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this. It's what I need.

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