149 - Computer Virus Removal

A virus removal is the process of manually or automatically deleting or disinfecting a computer virus, malware, spyware or other malicious program on a computing device. The process is applied to protect a computer from possible data corruption, loss or system inaccessibility.

Realizing your PC or laptop might be infected with a virus or malware is worrying, but with careful and decisive action, removing a virus is quicker and easier than you might think.

How do I detect a virus?

It’s not always obvious that your computer is infected. Some of the warning signs your PC or laptop might have a virus are:

• A very slow running computer.
• Pop-up messages that appear out of nowhere and are hard to get rid of.
• Computer programs starting that you don’t recognize or didn’t start up yourself.
• You can hear the sound of the hard drive in constant action.

Any one of these symptoms might be caused by a virus. If you’re experiencing two or three of them at the same time, that’s a strong indication that you’ve got a virus. If you haven't already, download an antivirus program now.

You can download free antivirus from the internet

• Download AVG Anti Virus
• Download Avira Anti Virus
• Download Avast Anti Virus

If your PC or laptop does have a virus, take the following actions

#1 Remove the virus

Step 1: Enter Safe Mode

01 Do this by turning your computer off and on again.
02 Then, as soon as you see anything on the screen, press the F8 button repeatedly.
03 This brings up the Advanced Boot Options menu.
04 From there, choose Safe Mode with Networking and press Enter.
05 For now, keep your PC disconnected from the Internet.

Step 2: Delete Temporary Files

While you're in Safe Mode, you should delete your Temporary Files using the Disk Cleanup tool.

01 Go to the Start menu.
02 All Programs or just Programs.
03 Accessories.
04 System Tools.
05 Disk Cleanup.
06 Scroll through the Files To Delete list.
07 Choose Temporary Files.

Deleting these files might speed up the virus scanning you’re about to do and could even get rid of a virus if it was programmed to start when your computer boots up.

Step 3: Download a Virus Scanner

There are two types of scanners that can detect and delete computer viruses and malware: real-time and on-demand:

A real-time scanner, like AVG Antivirus free, scans for viruses in the background while you’re using your computer.

An on-demand operating system scanner, like Microsoft Safety Scanner, needs to be run manually each time you want to scan.

Download Microsoft Safety Scanner

Using both types of scanner might be necessary to remove the virus. So if you don’t have a virus scanner installed, this is the time to reconnect to the internet and download it.

Even if you can’t connect to the internet you might still be able to download Microsoft Safety Scanner because you started up your computer in Safe Mode with Networking.

Step 4: Run a Virus Scan

Run the on-demand scanner first, then your real-time scanner. One of them should be able to identify the virus and remove it. But running both scanners increases your odds of success.

If need be, remove a virus manually

Some viruses must be removed manually. You should only attempt this if you are experienced at using the Windows Registry and know how to view and delete system and program files.

#2 Recover or reinstall any damaged files or software

Assuming the scan detected and removed the virus, you might need to reinstall any files or programs that were damaged by the virus.

This is where backups come in handy, and we strongly recommend you make them regularly.

#3 Improve your defenses

Keep your protection up to date

Updating your antivirus software will help protect your laptop or PC against viruses and malware. Keeping it up to date is critical because new viruses are being created all the time.

Make backups

Make regular backups of your files and store them on an external hard drive. This can help prevent the loss of important information should you get another virus. If you haven't been making backups before, now is a good time to start.

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