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Laptop Crashed. Trojan suspected?

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In normal surfing last night I happened upon a link at my favorite filth (saait.net) website and its assortment of daily links. One was labled "do not click this" which I promptly clicked when I had reached it.

Instantly my computer locked up. I was able to power down and power back up. Once powered up my internet explorer would no longer work, so I pulled up system restore and restored the system to a couple days earlier and all seemed well.

However a couple hours ago (today) I decided to do a little cleanup so I downloaded the latest microsoft critical updates, updated my spyware blaster software. Then I attempted to run Adaware. As soon as I clicked scan my computer-- once again locked up and then turned off.

Now when I turn it on it ever so slowly boots up (you can here the laptop harddrive clicking very slowly). After about 5 minutes it gets to the windows login screen, then the screen goes black and it just sits there until I hold the power button down for 5 seconds to turn it off.

Any help?

Computer is a Compaq Presario V2000z AMD Turion 64 - WinXP SP2


Today I formatted the computer (not quick format) and reinstalled XP and my drivers. I am currently in the process of using my ipod to transfer AVG Anti-virus as well as Adaware and SpyWare Blaster over to it. I plan on running all 3 and see if anything shows up. I am aware that some trojans/viruses can survive a full format by hiding in the Master Boot Record. If by chance this happened with my laptop will I be able to find it using above programs?

**Update 2**
Well after going through all of that as well as installing Kaspersky all seemed fine. It ran perfect for two days until just now when internet explorer once again stopped functioning. I am currently running an AVG scan and will follow with a Kaspersky and Adaware, but am really unsure what I can do at this point? I've done a full format... I mean really what could be causing this???

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

**Update 3**
I'm typing this post from my laptop!

I ran hijackthis to no avail. Everything on my system came back as safe. I also attempted reinstalling Internet Explorer twice also with nothing different.

Finally I started to think that this wasn't being caused by a trojan at all?? So I started to uninstall everything on my computer that I thought could have interefered with IE at all. First to go was winamp, but it didn't help.

Next was a download accelerator called Freshdownload. The lightbulb went off instantly here. I went under its settings and started disabling everything about browser integration. As soon as I hit apply and opened up IE - EVERYTHING WAS WORKING!

Now I've used this program for years and am 99.9% sure its free of spyware ect. However, I believe it's attempt to integrate itself into my browser was being blocked by one of the many antivirus/antimalware programs I have running since the trojan hit a couple days ago. The link between Freshdownload and my loss of broswer functionality was hidden by the fact that I never restart my laptop - I only hibernate it. So it was a couple days before I actually attempted a shutdown and Freshdownload attempted to integrate (because I never restarted my computer as stated after its installation.)

I went ahead and uninstalled FreshDownload and all really seems to be running fine.


Edited by bgreenlee, 16 December 2005 - 09:46 AM.

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