Q&A Need Some Advice Please

Joined
Jan 3, 2018
Messages
3
OS
Windows 10
Antivirus
Norton
#1
Hello everyone,

Here is my situation. I have a computer right now with no operating system. It has 1 SSD, 1HDD, and 1 DVD drive. It went from having a pirated version of Windows 7 to a pirated version of Windows 10. I saw a process called KMS- R@1n always running in the background. I learned that it was simply an activator used to keep Windows 10 genuine. Every source I found told me that it was harmless. The computer was also being used to download games illegally and occasionally the security software being used at the time (Avast anti virus and COMODO firewall) would detect the cracks. These detection's were interpreted to be false positives to the user at the time.

For sometime I thought the computer was infected because the CPU usage would be unusually high when the computer was at idle but this was rectified using a clean boot. What caused the unusual CPU usage was conflicting software/drivers. The clean boot brought the usage back to normal. Windows 10 was still acting kind of glitchy/buggy and I was just not satisified.
I ran scans with multiple cyber security programs:
-Avast! (both the full-regular system scans and the boot-time scan) showed no threats detected,
-Malwarebytes(full scan including rootkits) showed no threats detected
-Anvisoft Rescue Disk showed no threats detected
-Avira Rescue disk showed 3 threats all of which were Trojans. Avira took the action of renaming the first two and ignoring the third. I took this to mean that they were false positives because no other program detected them. However I still deleted the associated files from the disk and performed another scan. When I scanned the second time no threats were detected.

Being the paranoid person I am I decided to format my SSD (where the OS was kept) and update my BIOS. I also bought a legitimate copy of Windows 10 which will be arriving shortly. However there is still some data on my HDD, some of which I need. I've scanned the HDD again with Avira rescue disk and Anvisoft Rescue disk, both came back clean. Do you think the contents of the HDD are free from infection? I was thinking of moving the files I need to an external hard drive and format the HDD but will that just infect external hard drive? Do you think it is safe to use with the computer once I install Windows 10 on the SSD? I was also planning on purchasing Norton Security instead of the free antivirus and firewall I was using before, do you think it is worth it or am I just throwing money down the drain?

I would like to thank you all for welcoming me to this forum, I heard this was the best place on the internet to go for help regarding cyber security.
 

shmu26

Level 65
Verified
Joined
Jul 3, 2015
Messages
5,408
OS
Windows 10
#2
Hello everyone,

Here is my situation. I have a computer right now with no operating system. It has 1 SSD, 1HDD, and 1 DVD drive. It went from having a pirated version of Windows 7 to a pirated version of Windows 10. I saw a process called KMS- R@1n always running in the background. I learned that it was simply an activator used to keep Windows 10 genuine. Every source I found told me that it was harmless. The computer was also being used to download games illegally and occasionally the security software being used at the time (Avast anti virus and COMODO firewall) would detect the cracks. These detection's were interpreted to be false positives to the user at the time.

For sometime I thought the computer was infected because the CPU usage would be unusually high when the computer was at idle but this was rectified using a clean boot. What caused the unusual CPU usage was conflicting software/drivers. The clean boot brought the usage back to normal. Windows 10 was still acting kind of glitchy/buggy and I was just not satisified.
I ran scans with multiple cyber security programs:
-Avast! (both the full-regular system scans and the boot-time scan) showed no threats detected,
-Malwarebytes(full scan including rootkits) showed no threats detected
-Anvisoft Rescue Disk showed no threats detected
-Avira Rescue disk showed 3 threats all of which were Trojans. Avira took the action of renaming the first two and ignoring the third. I took this to mean that they were false positives because no other program detected them. However I still deleted the associated files from the disk and performed another scan. When I scanned the second time no threats were detected.

Being the paranoid person I am I decided to format my SSD (where the OS was kept) and update my BIOS. I also bought a legitimate copy of Windows 10 which will be arriving shortly. However there is still some data on my HDD, some of which I need. I've scanned the HDD again with Avira rescue disk and Anvisoft Rescue disk, both came back clean. Do you think the contents of the HDD are free from infection? I was thinking of moving the files I need to an external hard drive and format the HDD but will that just infect external hard drive? Do you think it is safe to use with the computer once I install Windows 10 on the SSD? I was also planning on purchasing Norton Security instead of the free antivirus and firewall I was using before, do you think it is worth it or am I just throwing money down the drain?

I would like to thank you all for welcoming me to this forum, I heard this was the best place on the internet to go for help regarding cyber security.
If you reformatted your main drive, it is clean.
If you are concerned that your external hard drive might be infected, scan it with a few different on-demand scanners, such as HitmanPro, for instance, before copying any files to a clean location.
 
Joined
Jan 3, 2018
Messages
3
OS
Windows 10
Antivirus
Norton
#3
If you reformatted your main drive, it is clean.
If you are concerned that your external hard drive might be infected, scan it with a few different on-demand scanners, such as HitmanPro, for instance, before copying any files to a clean location.
Thank you for the reply.
 
Likes: shmu26

shmu26

Level 65
Verified
Joined
Jul 3, 2015
Messages
5,408
OS
Windows 10
#4
I just noticed your last question, about whether Norton is worth the money.
Norton is a very good, solid, set-and-forget AV suite.
But the protection will not be vastly better than Avast free, for instance.
All the good AVs, free or paid, have very small differences between their levels of malware detection.

The thing that really makes a big difference -- the difference between a clean machine and an infected one -- is proper user habits. There is a lot on this forum about it.
But one thing is clear: if you keep on downloading cracks and illegal stuff, eventually your system will get infected. It is just a matter of time and luck.

Another thing that can improve your PC security is additional security software that runs alongside your AV. For instance, Voodooshield is a popular choice. There are plenty of others. But don't run 2 AVs. If you want to do a combo, you need to do it smart.
 
Joined
Jan 3, 2018
Messages
3
OS
Windows 10
Antivirus
Norton
#5
I just noticed your last question, about whether Norton is worth the money.
Norton is a very good, solid, set-and-forget AV suite.
But the protection will not be vastly better than Avast free, for instance.
All the good AVs, free or paid, have very small differences between their levels of malware detection.

The thing that really makes a big difference -- the difference between a clean machine and an infected one -- is proper user habits. There is a lot on this forum about it.
But one thing is clear: if you keep on downloading cracks and illegal stuff, eventually your system will get infected. It is just a matter of time and luck.

Another thing that can improve your PC security is additional security software that runs alongside your AV. For instance, Voodooshield is a popular choice. There are plenty of others. But don't run 2 AVs. If you want to do a combo, you need to do it smart.
I just noticed your last question, about whether Norton is worth the money.
Norton is a very good, solid, set-and-forget AV suite.
But the protection will not be vastly better than Avast free, for instance.
All the good AVs, free or paid, have very small differences between their levels of malware detection.

The thing that really makes a big difference -- the difference between a clean machine and an infected one -- is proper user habits. There is a lot on this forum about it.
But one thing is clear: if you keep on downloading cracks and illegal stuff, eventually your system will get infected. It is just a matter of time and luck.

Another thing that can improve your PC security is additional security software that runs alongside your AV. For instance, Voodooshield is a popular choice. There are plenty of others. But don't run 2 AVs. If you want to do a combo, you need to do it smart.
Hey shmu26 I ended up purchasing Norton security for two years. I also finished installing Windows 10 and the Norton says my computer is clean and protected. After experiencing this paranoia I will be sure to correct my user habits as you suggested. No user in the household will be downloading any sort of illegal/sketchy things again. Thank you again for taking the time to help me. I am happy I found this community.
 
Likes: shmu26

Similar Threads

Similar Threads