Saturday, March 21, 2009

Another virus thwarted

It seems like every few months I get a virus that I have to deal with. My favorite thing is to switch to another hard drive with a clean install and then copy my files back off the old hard drive via an IDE to USB adapter. However I did not have a spare laptop hard drive available and the first two I won on eBay did not work!

The last two virus' on my computer both came from searching the web. I remember when it was safe to search the web. In one case I was looking for help in fixing a LCD TV that just has a blue screen. The second time was from searching for how to remove the password from a laptop hard drive. It seems like there has to be a way to remove the password short of tossing the whole hard drive. I had Windows XP SP3 installed with all the updates, AVG running and telling me what sites are safe to visit, you name it I was protected, but it all failed to protect me.

The symptoms of the infection included lots of pop ups so I installed Spybot Search and Destroy. It found 38 problems including something that had shut down the Windows firewall. Upon restarting the computer, the virus was still there, so next I ran AVG in safe mode. It found two files and removed them. They were some sort of Trojan Horse Generic, but the virus was still there.

So then I went into manual virus removal mode. The first weapon was startup.exe, there were two strange programs running so I shut them down. That did not work, they came right back, as can be seen in the picture below. I found the files in the windows\system32 directory after I had turned back on the ability to view hidden system files in file manager. Then I tried to delete them or even to rename them all to no avail. Next I restated the computer in safe mode and was able to delete the files and also disable them using startup.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Earthquakes, rumblings, and volcanoes

This is an ongoing story and I thought I would update it. Below is the seismometer located on Redoubt Alaska. Needless to say it was going crazy Sunday March 15th. It has since calmed down once again. Here are some links of interest;

Pictures from the small eruption at Redoubt;

Article about earthquakes in Richland Washington;
Article about earthquakes in Geyser California;

This is a picture of the smoke starting to rise over Redoubt.

Now for the big catch. According to their seismometers there are other volcanoes about ready to do something. Unfortunately I cannot get web cams to capture pictures from the other volcanoes.

A while back I commented on the strange rumblings that are going on. Well, they continue but after being quiet for a few weeks the number of earthquakes is on the rise once again. This picture below shows that there were 1003 earthquakes in the US in the last 7 days. That number is like off the chart! When I first started watching there were about 700 earthquakes a week in the US.

They were worried about Yellowstone. Now they are worried about Alaska. Alaska is really a rumbling. Note the cluster of earthquakes just to the left of the upper blue box. Is that a likely volcano site or what?

Then there is California. Need I say anything about that? You cannot even read 'Los Angles' for all of the earthquakes that are happening around there. There is also a hot spot in Geyser California, north of San Francisco.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Hp Laptop Motherboards

Is it just me or are there a lot of HP motherboards with a broken power jack? Replacing the jack will not fix it as the board is damaged around the back, center connector.

The real solution is to run a 24 gage jumper wire from the shiny pad to the left just behind the power jack and just in front of the modem plug to the center connector of the power jack on the bottom side of the circuit board. That will replace the burned out traces on the top side of the circuit board. You might just be able to solder the jack on the top side if the run is not totally destroyed already. In most cases there is nothing left to solder it to on the top side of the board.