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Wait, did I just …

Today I had one of those stupid computer moments — you know the ones, like clicking delete on a file and then immediately saying “oh WAIT I NEEDED THAT”. It’s the same exact feeling you get when you realize your car keys are still in the ignition at the same exact moment your locked door is swinging shut.

One of our tasks this week at work is to reformat our machines. That’s been enough of a task as it is; of course I forgot to back up a directory, so I spent half of yesterday trying to figure out how to do something I figured out how to do a year or two ago.

Late last night I reimaged my machine, figured I’d finish it up today at work, and shut ‘er down. This morning when I fired it up, I hit Google headlines, and clicked on some random news link. Immediately a banner popped up and I had that split second where I thought, “hey, did I apply all the patches to this machine?”

Obviously not.

Before I could yank the network cable out of the back of the machine, I’d been “0wned” (as the kids say). Like a fireworks display on fast forward, windows flickered opened and closed at the speed of light. The message “Installing SpySherrif” whisked by as programs began installing themselves. I’d been had. I tried to get to Google just to see how bad the damage was, but the only page I could bring up was one which read, “Your machine is infected with spyware, please visit www.(I Don’t Think So).com for our cleansing tool!” Yeah, right — I feel real safe downloading even MORE software from them.

I spent the majority of today trying to fix the problem. I’ve downloaded spyware cleaners, ad-removers, antivirus programs and Microsoft patches, but all of them were a little too late — somewhat akin to buying a pack of condoms “the day after”. Since I only loaded the machine yesterday there was little point in “restoring”. I spent an hour or so scouring the registry, but even with everything I could find removed, Google.com is still taking 15 seconds or so to come up. Something’s amiss.

And so, after spending an hour or two copying my files back up to the network, I’m reformatting again. Every now and then, even the best of us slip up.

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1 comment to Wait, did I just …

  • Pat Loisel

    Sorry for all the work you’re having to do, but at least I don’t feel like such a fool for all the stupid things I’ve done. Now we know even “Superman” has his Achilles heel!