A good anti-virus program and
firewall is always recommended, you need more if you want to
computer clean of spyware,
parasites, etc! The list of recommended programs below help
you rid your computer of what is
already on there and protect you against future attacks.
Symantec Products -Norton
System Works 2004 includes your anti-virus, utilities, ghost,
password manager, clean sweep and web tools. Personally I
don't like the password manager, and that is nothing against
Symantec, I just don't like the idea of something controlling
and holding my passwords. I have also chosen not to have Ghost
installed on my computer, the
others are as always, in my opinion something a
computer should never do
without! As for Norton Internet Security 2004, I was not
impressed with it and chose to go with Norton Personal
Free Anti-virus programs recommended are:
AVG Although you should
be aware that the Norton products will still find items on
your computer that both Avast and AVG have been incapable of
finding or cleaning.
Trend - Housecall or
Symantec Security Check a
weekly online virus scan at one of these two is highly
Also some recommend or claim that it is OK to run two
anti-virus but two firewalls conflict. Personally I have been
running two firewalls ever since I installed Windows XP in my
computer and we all know just
how much my computer has been
safe from harm. I strongly recommend against running two
anti-virus programs on your computer
because they indeed can conflict each other and lead you to
believe you are protected but in truth you are not.
Free Firewall recommended
If you are running Windows XP with SP2 installed you can get
away with just running the Windows firewall, I am using both
the Windows firewall and Norton Personal Firewall.
Along with these products I believe the following products are
highly recommended for top security of your system. With the
following installed on your computer
along with your firewall and anti-virus, malware has got very
little chance to infect your
SpywareBlaster - Once
this is installed you will want to update it immediately, open
the program, click on Updates then click on the check for
updates button. Once you have done this then click on
Protection and under Quick Tasks choose Enable all Protection.
You are now protected from all the malware that SpywareBlaster
it's list. Be sure to check for updates often. If you are a
member of Ask Maggy Mae or even if you are not, by watching
Spyware Info forum you
will be advised when a member or Admin at AMM have checked for
updates. One thing to remember with SpywareBlaster is to make
sure once you have updated the file that you go back to
protection and choose Enable all Protection again to add the
new files to your protection list.
- Once this is downloaded you will need to extract it. It will
extract to C:\ie-spyad. Then you will need to go to that
folder in order to install the file onto your
computer. The easiest method to
install this is to do the following:
install.bat file and a dos window will appear
You will see 5
options but you want to install so just enter the number 2
from your keyboard
It will then ask
you to confirm enter the number 1 from your keyboard
It will then
tell you that it is installing and it was successful and
tell you to press any key, well we
don't have an any key on our computers so just press your
space bar and you'll be fine (hehehe)
You are then
asked if you want to return to the main menu or exit just
enter the number 2 from your keyboard and the dos window
successfully installed ie-spyad. I
don't update this one very often, but occasionally I'll go
check to see if there is a newer one than I have and if there
is I update.
Spy Sweeper - Once this
is installed click on options to update it. Under Shields you
will find all that Spy Sweeper will do for you, I highly
recommend checking all options.
WinPatrol tutorial - Very
seldom updated because the way this wonderful program works it
doesn't need updates, but do watch for new versions coming
out. This program is always free but becoming a PLUS member is
a one time fee and covers ALL future upgrades to the program.
I am in the middle of writing a tutorial on how WinPatrol PLUS
can help you to read your own HiJack This logs and eliminate
the need to rely completely on others to help you. I intend to
teach as many people as I can to keep their computers safe!
Windows Scripting Host -
Please do not be fooled by
Symantec's note on this page, please read below about this
subject, disabling Windows Scripting Host is something I
If you don't care
too much about your computer's
safety you can use the following products.
Spybot S&D - I don't recommend
you use this product if you want to keep your computer clean
AdAware - I don't recommend you
use this product if you want to keep your computer clean from
HiJack This -
How to Run - Running this and having someone look it over,
even just to tell you that your
computer is clean.
- once you click on the link here you will be brought to the
Shields Up site (grc.com). Click the Proceed button the next
page you will come to you will see the following
is to click on the File Sharing, Common Ports and All Service
Ports buttons to make sure your firewall is running properly
and you are running in TruStealth mode. Clicking the others
will just teach you more about
protecting your identity on the internet. Check this once
a week to be sure you are still in TruStealth mode, if you are
not please follow the instructions to protect yourself. There
is some excellent reading in there so please educate yourself.
EMS Free Surfer MK II is
the best popup stopper I have ever used. I highly recommend
this. Remember with most popup stoppers, if they stop the
popup window for example when you want to post a reply in MSN,
just click the "ctrl" key when clicking reply and
the popup window will come up. If you are running Windows XP
with SP2 installed you will not need a pop-up stopper so there
is no need for this program, for anyone else Please do use it
or another that works as well as this one.
DCOMbobulator tests your
computer for the DCOM to see if it is available and
vulnerable, if it is this little utility will safely disables
it for you. Don't worry, your
computer runs just fine with it disabled.
UnPlug n' Pray checks to see if Universal Plug and Play is
installed in your computer and
if it is enabled. If it is enabled it will disable it if you
choose. I highly recommend this as your
computer is vulnerable if it is
If and only if you do not use Remote Assistance you can use
Shoot the Messenger to disable Windows Messenger. When you
read that page you will find the following:
disabling the Windows Messenger service will have no effect
upon your use of any other instant messaging applications.
They will continue to work without trouble.
This is not true, you need Windows Messenger service if you
are going to use Remote Assistance. Now for the average user,
they are not going to need Windows Messenger and can very well
shut this down. It can be fixed later if for some reason you
are in need of assistance with Remote Assistance, but if you
are someone who wants to be ready to help someone via remote
assistance and quickly if need be I don't suggest using this
utility as your remote assistance will not work if Windows
Messenger is disabled. How do I know? Because I've disabled
Windows Messenger before and could not use Remote Assistance.
And the only version of Windows Messenger that is needed on
your computer in order to use
Remote Assistance is the version that comes with Windows XP
4.7 I believe it is.
XPdite is another utility you can download and run to
check that your system has been patched. If you have service
pack 1 or Microsoft's patch installed into your XP then your
system will already be protected from this vulnerability. But
if you are not sure this utility will tell you and patch you
if you are not protected. XPdite is not required once you have
SP1 installed in your computer
and the DCOMbobulator is not required once you have SP2
installed in your computer.
tools for cleaning your computer
in this thread
but I strongly recommend that they are not used unless
For additional reading:
How did I get Infected?
- When you enter this page it scans your
computer for parasites and lets
you know if you are infected. Also gives you a description of
the known parasites.
has been the site that has educated me about spyware and