I'm not a very adept computer person so I hope this post helps someone else who may be having the same or similar problems. Sorry if it's a bnit long but I wanted to go through my issues and attempts to solve in case it rings a bell with others having the same fate.
Four days ago my son noticed a problem with his computer. Whenever he did a websearch and clicked on a result, the computer was going to a website OTHER than the search result he clicked on. Didn’t matter what search engine he used AND it happened using Internet Explorer OR Firefox. In fact, the only way to get to a website he wanted, say “Ford.com” was to type it in the address bar. Even then, about half the time it would shoot off to another website as it was loading the one he had typed in manually.
I noticed that my desktop computer which is networked with my kids’ computer had the same problem. I shut theirs down and started doing some research which made it sound like I had a browser hijacking problem. I had never heard of this before. A few searches made it clear that SpybotSD was the way to go to try to correct the problem.
I downloaded the program but couldn’t get it to install. I shut my computer down and turned on the Kids’. SpybotSD downloaded and installed easily. I ran it and it found the culprit and got rid of it. 1-2-3! I shut theirs down and then spent I can’t say HOW many hours trying to get my desktop to run the program. Nothing worked: the comp wouldn’t start in safe mode. I downloaded and ran 3 other “spyware” programs from Hippofiles and tucows. They loaded fine and ran fine but none fixed my problem.
I downloaded SpybotSD onto a disc at work and tried loading it on my infected desktop at home. It finally installed AFTER I turned off the box on installation that says something like “check for updates immediately”. The problem was, once installed the live monitoring part of Spybot appeared to work but the search and destroy part I so desperately needed would not run. I’d double click the desktop icon or do the click on “start-all programs-Spybot” clickfest but the hourglass would appear and then after a few seconds disappear but the program would not load.
Rebooting the comp did nothing. In fact, I noticed that sometimes the darn thing wouldn’t even reboot. It would freeze saying “loading personal profiles” or it would lock when the log on screen came up or sometimes it would lock after appearing to boot up properly but the mouse cursor wouldn’t move!
In desperation I did more Google searches and found this forum. There at the top in one of the Sticky notes was an entry about Spybot not running. Well, not being very good with computers I had more problems. They were caused by me not understanding computers very well. SO, I hope this helps others:
The suggested Step #1 messed me up because after following the steps I didn’t see any file with the “.scr” file extension I was told to look for. I thought I was screwed!
On to suggested Step #2. I followed the steps but guess what? I didn’t see any file with the “.exe” extension! Somehow, I recalled the .exe files were explained to me as executable applications. Well, I saw TWO files that were applications. One was SpybotSD and I started with that one. I followed the steps and changed the name to a name of random letters. I double clicked on it and IT WORKED! Spybot SD started running! SO I went to update the database files and it wouldn’t do it. I ran the scan without updating and it found and fixed several problems. Then I updated it with no problems. I ran the scan again and a few more problems were found and fixed.
I loaded Internet Explorer and Firefox, did a simple search and THEY BOTH WORKED FINE!!!! Spybot fixed my computer! I’ll be sending a donation shortly. Hoped this helps someone who has this problem.