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"Personalize" function not working on my computer, among other things.

Question Posted Sunday July 15 2012, 11:51 pm

I have noticed that some functions on my computer stopped working recently. For example, I click on Personalize to edit my desktop. Normally, the function would open the window but nothing happens. What is wrong? I do not have virus protection software, I handle viruses another way. However, I have never came across this problem. I have hid my desktop icons with the fences program and when I double clicked for my icons to reappear, I noticed there was an icon that wasn't there before. It was Norton Virus Protection icon. I have not installed Norton so I am guessing it could be that trojan that poses as Norton. I have restored my system right after I discovered that but it seems there are still some problems. Help please.

[ Answer this question ]

Additional info, added Sunday July 15 2012, 11:56 pm:
I am leaning more and more towards a virus now. I just deleted all Norton in my computer and right after I pulled up the Google Chrome and the internet kept crashing..

Want to answer more questions in the Technology category?
Maybe give some free advice about: Computers?

DangerNerd answered Monday July 16 2012, 1:45 am:
Hi there,

Wow, this is one of the most intelligently presented computer questions EVER posted on this site! Congratulations on that. :-)

Normally, I wouldn't bring this up, but you are obviously bright enough to get it, so here we go:

There is a difference between a virus, and other forms of malware. A virus is self propagating and would try to infect other computers from your own. More than likely what you have is another type of malware. Fake AV sounds about right in this case.

Some of these are awful to remove. When the first big one, known as: "AV360" came on the scene, you typically had to remove the hard drive from the machine and hook it up as a slave drive on another workstation to remove the primary files on the installation.

Tools are better now, but there are still a few that need to be handled the same way. The first step is to find out what you have on your system.

I suggest trying to install both of these:

Malware bytes:

[Link](Mouse over link to see full location)

... and SuperAntiSpyware:

[Link](Mouse over link to see full location)

If you can't install either of these, you may need some help to get this cleaned up.

Another scan, which comprises both virus and other malware scans is the online scanner from Trend Micro:

[Link](Mouse over link to see full location)

... Betwixt all of these you should be able to recover from most malware. If you get through these and still have trouble, or can't get any of them to run, then please ask another question and provide the details of your experiment so far.

Thank you, and I hope this goes easily for you.

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