Not long ago my security software ran out, and I wasn't sure which one I wanted to go with. While I was deciding a friend recommended at least installing MalWarebytes (which is free) in the meantime. Sorry for the length of this, but I have a weird mess on my hands.
Yesterday morning I got one of those anti-virus "horrors" that stop your machine from working. There were a ton of windows and one thing after another kept popping up. I've had a less extreme version of those happen ages ago, so I knew not to fall for the "get rid of this virus" thing. In the meantime, I couldn't get any program to do anything, including Malwarebytes. I shut the machine down a couple of times, eventually started it in Safe Mode and saw (supposedly) that the machine was generally working properly. From there I was able to start with Defender and eventually get Malwarebytes to scan.
It found 2 items on the quick scan and got rid of those. Then there were 2 items on the full scan. Since then I've been getting Proxy Server "refuses".
My daughter started the machine under a different user name and was able to get on the Internet. Awhile ago I tried going to my own user name and still couldn't get on the Internet (at least no Firefox or IE).
My AOL and Skype are working and connected (even in my own user log-in. Something else happened, though. I had turned on the machine and just as it was about to log in (after I entered my user name) I touched the mouse and the whole screen went black. I shut off the PC, started in Safe Mode and saw nothing. Restarted in regular mode, and I'm back where I was, not being able to get Firefox or IE to be "accepted" by the Proxy Server.
Does anyone have any ideas about what I need to do?
Also, does anyone have reason to think this "foolishness" could have been built into Malwarebytes and that I should uninstall it?
Malwarebytes is just anti-malware, it's not a full anti-virus program. So there's no "foolishness" in Malwarebytes, it's just that you're unprotected against viruses right now.
Get either Avast or AVG quicksmart. Keep Malwarebytes as you still need something to check for malware.
What I wonder, though, is how (even if someone we think is fairly knowledgeable about these things recommends one of these free things (like Malwarebytes), is there some way people can know, for sure, which companies are really reputable and which could be "doing something funny"? I know that when it comes to well known ones like Norton (and similar) people can have different opinions but apparently have no reason to wonder if someone like Norton is building in "foolishness" (or something "funny"). Apparently, people on here (and a couple of people I know) trust Avast (which didn't go well on my PC) and AVG (which I haven't tried).
I'm just wondering if Malwarebytes may be "funny" (or else if anyone knows why it may not work well, even if it isn't "funny" on some PC's).
I did a lot of research before I installed Avast and Malwarebytes on my PC. You'll find reputable computer magazines online which give reviews.
It may be that Malwarebytes has had some kind of malfunction - but I think it's MUCH more likely you've been infected by something else. Malwarebytes is NOT a full anti-virus program - it only protects against a small sub-set, and the free version only runs when you ask it to.
So your computer has been wide open to infection all this time.
MalwareByte's has some pretty fantastic free software for detecting and removing malware. I've never bought any of their stuff, but I'd highly recommend their free tools.
We use Malwarebytes on our secure networks and computers but it's on addition to trend micro. I doubt it's the source of your problems. It seems no anti-virus stops everything.
I'm not a huge security geek so can't say much. All I will say is this.
Of the ones I've come across and used that are free and work well:
AVG - it's the only antivirus on my computer right now.
Spybot search and destroy - more for tracking down malware, keyloggers etc but also good.
Edit: Just did a quick search, you might want to check out these:
http://en.kioskea.net/forum/affich-3573 … re-problem
Thanks. I see others here seem to be OK with AVG too. My problem now is I don't know if it's the presence of Malwarebytes (which scans and removes supposedly, and which appears to) that may be making the proxy server problem; or whether it's something "inbetween" both browsers (when accessed through my user log-in) and the proxy server.
So, now I'm afraid to uninstall Malwarebytes but wondering if it's actually the cause of either that episode yesterday morning or at least of the proxy server problem since it APPEARED to be resolved.
(I'm on a whole other computer right now (wireless), and my "real" one is just kind of stuck, unless I go to the other user log-in, which I can do - but I want to get rid of whatever the problem is.)
WryLit, thank you. It was nice of you to do the quick search. I'm so frazzled with the whole thing my first instinct was to ask on here. It didn't even occur to me to search! (Based on a quick look at some of that on the links, all I can say - so far - is "oh, brother". ).
In China we are flooded with virus, malware tc etc - we use AVG and Spybot - and they both seem to do the trick better than any other combination so far
Malware bytes removes spyware,adware,malware and bot scripts. MB isnt antivirus program. If you can't connect to internet because of this infection then either winsock entries are corrupted or browser is infected.Try reinstalling browser or download portable browser to see if it makes any difference.
skyfire, thanks. I knew that the malwarebytes only does the scanning/removing thing; but I was thinking it was better than nothing until I figured out which "real" security software I want/should get. (Some mind-numbingly, conflicting opinions have been offered by a couple of friends/relatives.)
Anyway, what you said about the browser is what I guess I was wondering (without knowing what to wonder ).
I don't know if skyfire is still here, but I'll just ask if anyone knows this:
Since it's both IE and Firefox that get "Proxy service refuses" is that an indication that something other than both of those browsers are where the problem is? Or, might whatever is the problem be affecting both browsers either individually, or at once "root causes"?
Also (I feel bad asking all this, but) what is a portable browser?
Lisa, I just need to confirm you're understanding this: Malwarebytes isn't the free equivalent of Norton AV or Trend Micro or Avast or AG. It's an extra program that you use alongside one of those, to catch a particular kind of virus. And it only works when you open up the program and hit "scan" - the rest of the time it's doing nothing.
Marisa, thanks. Yes. I do know the difference (and I know it hasn't been the wisest thing not to be quicker to decide on Norton-type software. My problem was that I have two subscriptions (one on an XP machine and one on a Vista) that both ran out fairly close together, and I was aiming to get the same one for both. In the meantime, one machine is older and has a "history", and then I have friend "in the (software) business" who has me frazzled about problems different softwares have (which then made me not install any, out of being frazzled - which then led me to being frazzled because I had none, which then made me feel panicked enough to try Avast (as a way to have something I could least scan with), which led to problems created by a combination of Avast and not shutting off Windows Defender, which led to my uinstalling Avast (with warnings from my software-friend about how to make sure nothing was left behind), which then led me to go with his recommendation of Malwarebytes (which he only later told me he didn't really have experience with and wasn't sure about. ).
So now, I have a machine that isn't working right and one that's (knock on wood) working absolutely perfectly, and I'm afraid to do install or uinstall anything on either of them. (In the meantime, I'm on here in another user account that's kind of like the machine is brand new, and I'm worried about using it too much before I get some new security software. ) (At this point, a day and half or so into the "crisis", I can tell I've entered a venting mode. )
She is using the same computer and modem to post presently.
I Imagine when your modem failed, you could not connect at all?
Oops, I missed that. In an earlier post she was working on another PC, didn't notice she'd got back on with a different user account.
In that case, shouldn't she be downloading some kind of antivirus NOW, so she can run a proper scan? As I understand it, Malwarebytes won't find everything?
I didnt consider that - of course, after any potential infection, I run the virus scanner, the malwarescanner and the spybot!
I guess i caught up with what I thought might be a quick and easy solution..
an AV scan is def the first course of business.
That's what I've been trying to tell Lisa. Using that computer with no virus scanner and no spybot is asking for further trouble, and she could even be spreading any existing virus infection to other people.
Thank you, Marisa and sunforged. Yes, I can use the "real" (PC) computer with the different user. I did run Malwarebytes several times, and it was only the first two times that turned up anything. It said "nothing malicious" (what was going on was clearly one of those security software things that they try to fool people into buying the software). Both of the first two scans (the quicker one and the full one) showed up the 2 objects and got rid of them. Windows Defender (I know it's not the best) showed the machine to be working properly several times. I'm leaning toward thinking the settings on that one user account were changed, maybe by Malwarebytes. Once Malwarebytes apparently fixed the 2 (4) objects the machine seems fine except for that proxy server thing.
The one good thing is that because the machines in the house have been set up for outside companies and business there's lots of layers of protection (lots of blocking goes on to the point where it can sometimes get aggravating). I've had Norton on both machines up until recently. Part of why I've been dragging my feet about installing something new is I've had a couple of people warning me about all the "disasters" that can happen if you leave existing installations and/or have other stuff mixed in.
Anyway, I've been using the laptop most of today after seeing the desktop can get the Internet through the other user account.
sorry for late reply. Type "portable firefor" on google and download it. Portable browsers doesn't require installation & you can run them from USB drive or any random directory. Why i'm asking you to download ? because i want to see if malware infection is to browser or your registry entries related to winsock/internet.
There various type of infections: virus,malware,spyware,adware and many other to name.Antivirus deals with typical infections like malware,bot,script kidies but not all type of infections that's why we've programs like MB or secunia. Note that single antivirus never deals with all infection types.
skyfire, thank you. I don't have a USB drive (I'm generally a "minimalist" when at all possible ), but if it comes down to it's good to know I may need to get one.
In all the scanning and looking I've run into, somewhere (more than one place) among it I kept seeing that machine is working properly and saw a couple of things that indicated the registry is OK. What I keep seeing, though, is "no malicious files". Even when MB found the virus "objects" it first found 2 on an initial scan and got rid of those; and then found 2 on a full scan and got rid of those. I know I don't know anything about this stuff, but I'm wondering if the "2" that were found may have involved the fact that I have 2 browsers. I'm just thinking, especially based on what you said, that there's a good chance it's the browsers.
I did uninstall Firefox and got a new installation (through the user account that doesn't get rejected by the proxy server.
I may see if I can get a USB drive to try running it from that. Thank you again for the help. I have a feeling this is all part of that anti-virus "sales program" virus that didn't get all cleared out when I didn't fall for the "get rid of it, click here" thing. It was one that clearly "showed" the user all the things a virus can do (from stopping seemingly all programs to have a big window to a porn site pop up). I know I don't know anything about this kind of stuff, but I can't help wondering if part of their thing was to do something that stopped access (at least from the one user account) to the Internet from both browsers. (Both user accounts are mine and both are administrator accounts. One works OK. The other doesn't.)
Anyway, thanks again.
I use malwarebytes and it's ok - just make sure you manually update it. In fact I was busy using it plenty of times yesterday because I also got some malware on my laptop. I would suggest taking the names of the viruses down and then doing a search on the internet for how to remove them. Sometimes malwarebytes only manages to remove most of it, but some of the files still remain and then you get re-infected.
Malwarebytes shouldn't be used as your only protection though, you'll need a virus protection program too such as AVG or Avast.
I remember I got a virus that sounds similar to yours a few months ago (lots of windows popping up telling me computer was infected) - it came through windows update. But I can't remember what it was called now. The malwarebytes log should tell you.
Susan, thank you. Good point. The Malwarebytes log is something else I didn't think to look at for any names/identifying things. When all this happened it was - like 5:30 yesterday morning. It's been a kind of all-day affair (although I've abandoned it from time to time to do other things). I was bleary-eyed by 11 a.m. when I finally got sick of it and left it for awhile.
Just my own two cents, I don't think it's malwarebytes that's causing you a problem. Malwarebytes is great at removing malware and I've noticed that when there's a virus in my computer it usually doesn't let malwarebytes work because it knows it will wipe it out. It sounds like there'a virus in your system. If it's not too late for you to install AVG free version you might be able to do an AVG scan while you're in protect mode. That may be a way to get your virus out. It also sounds as if some of your computer settings are being hijacked or that the virus has embedded itself in the registry.
it's a good program. but after using it, AVG and others still had problems So once, when I switched to CCcleaner Avira and Comodo. Seriously, before that I had to do several windows reinstalls b/c of viruses even with AVG. just do research and comparisons online and you'll see Avira is better than AVG. Malware bytes can;t say much it messed up on me 3 times and let viruses and thinsg in.
Use Comodo as it adjusts to your computer but you may be annoyed with all the alert notices but at least you don't have to reinstall windows for 3 to 4 hours and then reinstall vital programs.
Avira gets my vote for best AV - MSessentials has been getting some great reviews to
Just a thought - sometimes programs, not always bad, can change your settings within Firefox -
In Tools ---> options--> advanced --> network --> settings --> connections
Your proxy settings should be "system settings"
But that issue should have been resolved with a Firefox reinstall.
What messages do you get in IE when connections fails?
Your only current issue is an inability to connect to the internet with one user account?
sunforged, thanks. Yes. There are two user accounts, and I'm on here now on the "second" one. I can get to IE and Firefox (which is what I'm using now).
The message I get with is something very close to, "Proxy Server refusing connection at this time". Someone else (who isn't around) set up my desktop on a network type of thing, so for the next several days I really don't have a way to even know what the settings should be. It's not the end of the world to have to come into a different user account, but I use this machine for "real" work (besides just HubPages stuff), and that's where things have kind gotten closer to the "end of the world".
(I just went to system settings/proxy (etc) and see that's there's something about "use dial up when necessary". Something that was new after the whole virus/clean-up thing was that I did see a "dial up" thing at the bottom of the screen. I asked my daughter (a grown up, not a kid, by the way) if she'd managed to get online by some kind of dial up thing I didn't know about; and she hadn't even seen it. Now, though, I'm kind of afraid to mess around with changing that setting (because I pretty much know that I don't know what I'm doing).
You dont need a network administrator to tell you that your firefox setting should be set to "system settings"
Im not suggesting that you change your system settings. Im saying make sure your firefox is using them.
A possible way to redirect your browsing (virus behavior) was to change your proxy settings.
Your firefox (not network settings) should be set to "system settings" as i showed above.
After following standard virus removal process, i was getting the same error as you mention --> I reset firefox to the appropriate settings and then was fine.
again ,its a program setting in Firefox, no harm in trying
small lightbulb just went off.
Look at the settings in your current firefox that is working and then make sure the the non-working firefox has the same settings
and to protect yourself in the future -
http://lifehacker.com/5559102/microsoft … -positives
also make sure you have a firewall of some sort up - even if its just the default Defender
once your clean - not a bad idea to create a disk image of your current system state and configure some sort of automated update to an external drive
sunforged, great lightbulb. Thanks. I'd say I don't know that didn't occur to me (and I kind of don't), but I pretty much have gone beyond being capable of too many lightbulbs with this stuff that's been going on over the last day or so. Again, thanks.
Lisa, did you read Sunforged's following post?
You are not protected. You are not protected. Every second you are on that PC without installing some kind, any kind, of anti-virus protection, you are putting yourself at risk.
Malwarebytes is not anti-virus protection.
Marisa, thanks. I know. I haven't been at all comfortable with the situation.
It's been quite awhile now that I've been without Norton. I need to decide which one to get - and I need to get it on both computers. I've had Defender on all along, but I know that's not enough. We do have lots of firewalls going, though. I know that's not enough either, and now that I know the machine is fine I'll figure out which one to sign up for in the next day or so.
but this leads me to the next post that I wanted to aim at everyone on here..
Marisa, Sunforged, and others who have been kind enough to try to help with this:
Thank you. I really appreciate people taking time to try to help.
I'm almost embarrassed to share this, but I discovered what the problem was. ("OK, Self, just say it..." ) I needed to reset the proxy server.
After I was on here the other day, and after Sunforged mentioned the settings, I went to the settings on the other user account. I started looking at them and just thought, "I can't deal with this right now." I pretty much used the other computer all yesterday and did nothing but "menial" stuff. In order not to seem as stupid as I know I must on here, I'll just be honest and say I think I have some kind of mild depression (or something) these days (which is pretty much why I haven't been able to deal with trying to think which anti-virus software I wanted to install, after previously running into some "complicated deal" with one of them that made problems and required a whole, big, deal for my "software-designer friend" to share his own experience with something similar.
So, anyway, I've dragged my feet about signing on for something new, only because I couldn't deal with yet another "can of worms".
Well, back to the problem. It wasn't Malwarebytes that did anything "wrong" or that caused a nasty problem. (Although, since the virus the machine got was that "anti-virus-product sales" thing, rather than a "real, malicious" virus; I'm still not convinced this particular free software didn't come with "a reason" to want to get the paid version - but I digress.
Anyway, it was Sunforged's suggestion that got me to even look at the settings. When I finally felt ready to deal with it again, I went in to find the settings. Just because I was lazy I did a help search for proxy server settings; and that's where I ran into the thing about why it has to be reset and how to do it. That did it. I got "reset successful" and restarted the machine, and my main user account was up and running.
So, it turned out that those repeated "no malicious objects founds" that I was getting were apparently correct and that Malwarebytes, if nothing else, at least got rid of that "sales" virus. That's why, too, I kept getting "computer working properly" messages when I kept checking.
So, again, thank you, for taking the time to try to help. I pretty much feel like an idiot to discover it was something this "stupid" causing the problem. I figured I may as well add the "end of the story", though, in case anyone else ever runs into a similar situation. I thought about starting (yet another) thread to say how great this community is, but we all know that. So I figured my "thanks" would be more appropriate as an embarrassing epilogue to this thread.
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