Problem with my sister's computer

By ingeborgdot · 8 replies
Apr 17, 2010
  1. My sister's computer has had an issue where her two daughters accounts have gone crazy. Almost all the programs are gone. Where did they go and how do we get them back? I tried putting in a new account but no programs install for that either. What has happened? Vista 32
  2. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    Did you scan for infections?
  3. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    Yes. Checked hdd with hdd tools also.
  4. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    It would help us help you if you could list all the diagnostic steps you have done so far. Pertaining to the harddrive diagnostics did you run the longer tests as well as the short ones?

    Also, tell us about this computer: hardware specs, OS, and security software. How old is it? When dod these issues begin?
  5. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    Ran ALL the tests from seagate and all passed. AMD quad core 5000+, vista ultimate 32bit. 2 years old. It began with an Adobe issue where no matter what we do adobe won't install. That is a whole other story. We tried many things to fix it and I think maybe something that we tried did something to the programs. We tried the take ownership which maybe did it. I am not sure though.
  6. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    Adobe has had some serious issues lately. Also, what firewall are you running and did you try installing with said firewall shut-down?
  7. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Can you post the error message you see (just select the error window and Ctrl-C should copy the message then paste into a post)

    And when does it occur? Beginning? during or end of install or ??

    And are you saying you see it with all programs or with Adobe?
  8. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    She just has the windows firewall.

    It occurs at the end of the install. I can't remember what it says. I will find out.
    Adobe reader.
  9. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    This probably isn't pertinent other than we've been discussing Adobe,. This something my sister sent me two days ago from her work, particularly the head of IT.

    Subject: Acrobat Malware Problem

    To All,

    Adobe and several IT Security firms have identified a flaw built in to Acrobat and Acrobat Reader that could allow malicious software to compromise your computer. This is a new exploit that was discovered and implemented in less than one week. This is especially significant for our company and you personally as the attacks are specifically geared to personal and financial information. This is also relevant because using PDF documents is a fairly new avenue of attack in general, and therefore most people do not identify them as a security risk. Fortunately there is a very simple adjustment to protect your computer from this attack. Here’s a link with a screen-shot to guide you through the process, but it’s so easy you really don’t need it. The procedure is:

    · From the Acrobat menu choose “Edit”, “Preferences”.

    · Select the “Trust Manager” option.

    · Remove the check mark from the “Allow opening of non-PDF file attachments with external applications” box. Then click OK.

    Depending upon the version of Acrobat you’re using the procedure may vary slightly, but it should be similar in most versions. I would suggest you adjust your computers at home to disable this exploit as well. This is one of those rare attacks that I think will become pervasive in very short order because it is aimed at a file type that very common and considered very safe. As always let me know if you have any questions or need any help with any of your computer systems.
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