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2009/09/26: "Artoo Deetoo, you know better than to trust a strange computer!"

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Douglas Adams once remarked, "Humans, who are almost unique in their ability to learn from the mistakes of others, are also noteworthy for their apparent disinclination to do so." I generally like to modify this to "... ability to learn from mistakes which do not cause immediate pain," since some people also refuse to learn from their own mistakes. Such as, in this case, me.

To whit: I very stupidly opened a somewhat suspicious file, unleashing a trojan on my system. I have thus spent the past two hours (well, about 40 minutes of which was spent on my bike while stuff just ran) fixing things. This included needing to repair the Windows XP installation. And now I can't reinstall Windows Update, my antivirus, or my firewall. This is seriously infuriating, and I have only myself to blame. I'm gonna wait a bit, then I'm gonna reinstall XP with a full reformat. Fuck.

EDIT: Okay, I've reformatted everything, and what with one backup and another, I've lost nothing except for my Photoshop install. This'll be only a little bit ... anyway, the latest comic will be delayed.

15 Comments (auto-closed) (rss feed)

KennyMan666

And this, kids, is why you keep your Windows installation on a separate partition.

Though it's possible that wouldn't help at all in this case.

So maybe it's more along the lines of "And this, kids, is why you don't accept candy from strangers."

Dizzy H. Muffin

And also don't run EXE's with clipart-icons and came with a mysterious DLL and a gibberish-filled .nfo file. marishrug.jpg

sRc

the last time I foolishly ran a Trojan I was trying to undelete and recover some files from an old drive that had some infected files, and I was TRYING to run it isolated inside a virtual machine with VMWare. one accidental double-click of the file in XP instead of in the virtualized Windows 95 VMWare brought my machine to its knees. luckily that was right when Vista came out, and I was planning on installing it dual alongside XP, so I just left the XP alone and moved on to Vista

Young Demon Lord

Way to go, dude.

So, what have we learned today?
. . .
Okay, now, what should we have learned today?

And what were you trying to do, anyway, that led you to a shady executable file?

Dizzy H. Muffin

I was trying to do YOUR MOOOOOOOOM

Reformat has been successful, as was reinstall of various security bits (and of Firefox). Reinstalling XP SP3 now.

SoF

You seem to change installations with every new season. I expect we'll be seeing another one of these posts around Christmas...

Dizzy H. Muffin

Bah, humbug. :P

Solarn

Why did you even try to run a file you didn't know everything about?

Dizzy H. Muffin

I think we can answer everything like that with "because I was being stupid."

The Ace Of Scarabs (Tv-Troper)

I hate it when stupid people catch Internet AIDS by passing around an amusing Powerpoint slideshow because it's amusing, not realising that it's infected.

Remember kids, scan before opening anything!

Anonymous Hacker

There is a good argument for keeping a VMWare/VPC instance for running dubious software.

Dizzy H. Muffin

That's what I was thinking!

Of course, if I had been thinking at all, I would've deleted it right away.

Young Demon Lord

There is a good argument for keeping a VMWare/VPC instance for running dubious software.

Not only that, once 3D acceleration for virtual machines improves (I know VMWare is experimenting with it right now), we'll be able to isolate Windows like it deserves, and still play Touhou, all while using an OS that's actually stable and secure enough for important tasks.

Windows could be reduced purely to a gaming platform when virtual machines in general master 3D acceleration.

Young Demon Lord

Sorry for the double-post, but I'm a (9). There was supposed to be a "</linux-fanboyism>" at the end of that little paragraph of mine.

Serves me right for not paying attention to the stuff right above the comment entry forms.

Joe4evr

And this is why I made an image of my OS right after I installed (and set the preferences of) my very own copy of Windows 7.