Saturday, 2 August 2008

On spywares and computers...

Mood: Woke up at 9:30 a.m., had breakfast in bed with hubby...feeling well-rested and relaxed.
About two weeks ago, husband phoned me at work telling me something weird was happening with our desktop. He said it's been infected by thousands of viruses. I said that's impossible. We've got Norton Anti-virus installed. When I got home, I checked it. A spyware has entered my computer and installed itself! Norton Anti-virus was giving a notification that it has blocked the spyware but why it was able to install itself, I don't know. Tell you what, I think Norton is useless!
Anyways, this spyware is called Antivirus2008. I wrote this entry to warn you my fellow bloggers and internet users about the Antivirus2008 spyware. Please be aware that this is not - repeat, this is NOT an anti-virus like it says it is. It disguises itself as anti-virus tool. It is a spyware that has an unknown publisher. It is a misleading application that gives exaggerated reports of threats on your computer. It runs itself each time you switch your computer on and it is difficult to remove from the hard drive. I followed each and every step available onthe internet but nothing worked. The only thing that I think will work is to reformat the PC which is downright annoying and very much a hassle!
My desktop was an Acer Aspire with only 512MB memory. It's not a very powerful computer but I developed an attachment to it. I've had it only for more than a year! Hubby didn't want me to take it to an Engineer to have it reformatted and had been thinking of getting me a new computer anyway so he got me a Compaq Presario, 2GB RAM, with a 17" screen, with 3 USB ports. I was so happy! I always thought that Compaqs were good. But surprise, surprise! In less than 10 days, the two USB ports to the right were malfunctioning! I couldn't do anything!!!!! Couldn't print, couldn't connect to the internet, couldn't use the mouse, nada! Arrrgghhh!!!! I spent almost all night trying to fix it and perhaps spent a fortune calling the PC World Help Line to get instructions from the Tech guys. I got fed up and went back to the shop the following morning and returned the laptop. Hubby didn't want another Compaq to replace the defective one so I looked around and picked a Sony Vaio instead. This time, it is better! Although it is equipped with only a 15" screen, I like it better. A lot lot better. And yes, all the four USB ports are working! I think I should be thankful that the Compaq was faulty as this gave me the chance to get a better one!
Now, going back to my old PC, I wish I had a different Anti-virus in my system. I now have MacAfee and it is working very well. What I like most about it is that when I surf the net, it tells me the harmful downloads in each website. It has a Site Advisor. I think that once my 3-month trial period expires, I will get a 12-month subscription to keep my laptop safe. God knows what's lurking in cyberspace. My old PC is now in the shed. A few days ago, I asked hubby to take it out of the shed and put it in the front living room so I could reformat it and get it working again. The computer was covered with an old blanket to protect it from dust and what have you. Hubby didn't realise that the blanket was hanging down and he tripped! The desktop flew into the air and crashed on the ground. Meanwhile, hubby got stung by nettle around the shed. He's ok but the poor desktop wasn't. It's back in the shed and I haven't seen it yet. Although I have got a beautiful laptop, I don't think I will have the heart to look at my poor old desktop shattered in pieces!

Top Photo - the Compaq Presario that I got first. It is sleek and elegant-looking. Shiny black in colour. If it wasn't faulty, I would have kept it.

Bottom Photo - the Sony Vaio that I have now. It is quite smaller and doesn't look as elegant but it is very good. It is lighter and easier to carry around. It's got clearer screen and no pre-installed rubbish that slows down the system. Very good choice. I would recommend it.

Sony, get me an opp and I will write a very good review about you and this laptop!!! Umm, wait, I just did!

PS: I just want this to be clear, although I have signed up with PayPerPost, this is not a paid advertisements for MacAfee and Sony, this is purely based on what I have experienced. PayPerPost so far hasn't given me any opportunities yet!!!


beth said...

Hi Len,

sorry to hear about this. you're right, computer can crash anytime, at your most unexcpted and most needed sometimes. i know i used a lot of pictures and test banks when i lost my computer before (2006) to malfunctioning, that after that i had to secure all important files in portable hard disk drive (save them in 2 different ones to be safe) and DVDs. all these viruses give us headache. am happy you have your laptop now.

redkathy said...

That spy ware will pass McAfee too so be careful! I had is last week and had to reformat my laptop. BTW Sony was a good choice, Dell is better! I have a Compaq desk top. It's ok but nothing like the Dells I have purchased since.

Margaret said...

What a nightmare! I'm happy to have a mac, but worry that viruses will expand to them eventually. I hope you get your problem all cleared up soon!

Ruthi said...

Hey, congrats my friend on your first opp. I can see that PPP finally approved your blog. Happy blogging. Take care.

Ruthi said...

Opps.. sorry, didn't get that last part. my Bad! i had to go back and read your post again and found out that you have no opps yes, sorry i was so excited when i see the ppp logo at the bottom of your post that's why i assumed that you already have taken an opp. anyway, you will soon get your opp just be patient. nice post too. keep it up.

Soy said...

Hi Len, I dropped by through Ruthi. I love your conversations with yourself! :)

Makis said...

Oh no! It's really long to just remove those squirmy viruses. With our experience, Norton was really useless for us. Aside from an Antivirus program, we really installed a badass Firewall. Plus, a change of browser minimized all these headscratchers. Hope you were able to fix it na!