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Desktop Icons Got Renamed to Weird Symbols Resembling O's and X's

Posted on 2004-10-22
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Hi Everyone:

        I currently have a friends computer which has a very peculiar problem.  Basically, everyone of his desktop icons have been renamed with strange symbols resembling some type of machine language, like 0's, X's, and geometic shapes.  
My friend told me his pc has been infected with a worm, but, which his desktop and startup menu icons being so messed up, I am not really sure where to begin.  

       Any thoughts or suggestions will be appreciated.

       Thank you.

       George
0
Question by:GMartin
    13 Comments
     
    LVL 91

    Accepted Solution

    by:
    Hello George,

    first startup in safe mode (hit F8 key)
    then run the usual programs : (i recommend using stinger and housecall as first ones)

          STINGER   http://www.chip.de/downloads/c_downloads_11105456.html      
          Spybot :       http://www.download.com/3000-8022-10122137.html
          adaware :  http://www.lavasoftusa.com/
    http://housecall.trendmicro.com/                       online scan for trojans
    http://www.ravantivirus.com/scan/

    http://www.spychecker.com/program/hijackthis.html            download
    http://www.hijackthis.de/index.php?langselect=english            check the log
    0
     
    LVL 9

    Assisted Solution

    by:tosh9iii
    It just might be in a different language.  It could be in Chinese, but since some computers can't display those characters, it appears "garbled"

    If it is language, then you need to set it back to English.  You can do that by going to Control Panel>Regional and Language Options (it's represented by the globe icon)>Advanced>and selecting English from the drop down menu

    The problem is that since it's in O's and X's, you can't read it.  But if you select the top one and then push the down arrow 26 times, it should lead you to English United States.
    0
     
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    by:bradje
    From what you've written sounds like an infection which Nobus has already covered.
    Though once a "friend" changed my mobile phone language to Chinese. Had a terrible time tring to get it back to English!!

    :)
    JB
    0
     

    Author Comment

    by:GMartin
    Hi

           Is it possible to run Stinger outside of windows?

           George
    0
     
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    by:nobus
    No, it cannot be run in DOS
    0
     
    LVL 15

    Expert Comment

    by:Cyber-Dude
    Intresting;

    I wonder; can he change the icons names to what they were? Can he 'rename' and write properly English letters?

    Cyber
    0
     

    Expert Comment

    by:Mangolata
    Oh come on, do you not know how to rename something, right click and rename. DUH!!!!!!!!!!!!
    0
     

    Author Comment

    by:GMartin
    Hello Everyone:

            I now have this situation resolved.  Apparently, one or more of system files of Windows XP had been corrupted by a variant of the W32 worm as indicated by Norton Anti Virus 2002.  One file identified as being corrupted was c:\windows\system32\config.exe.  In any case, I reinstalled XP Home and the desktop, startup menu, and taskbar icon names are back to normal.  Even though I ran the latest Norton Anti Virus 2005 Trialware version, Trojan remover, and some anti-spyware utilities which indicated the pc to be free of infection, I am still a little uneasy about this because the only this I did was reinstalled XP.  I did try to perform an online scan from trendmicro.com, but, the page for performing the scan would never open.  

             On a sidenote regarding the last post by Mangolata, I would like to discourage any feedback which can be interpreted as demeaning and belittling.  Such conduct certainly has the potential of diminishing the integrity of this forum.  Besides, any comment as such takes away from the direction the post needs to go in for proper resolution to important member questions.

              In closing, I want to thank each person for their input and suggestions.  As always, there were some really good ideas brought to light.

              Thanks again.

               Regards,

              George
    0
     
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    by:nobus
    George,

    i had the same thing happening :  >>    online scan from trendmicro.com, but, the page for performing the scan would never open.  <<<

    Mostly i got it resolved by opening in IE >Tools >Security, and lowering the settings.
    In some cases, running first adaware and spybot helped too, before running the housecall


    I hope this info will help you in the future

    Have a nice day

    PS :  I agree with your post  completely, a little bit of courtesy won't harm nobody !
    0
     
    LVL 15

    Expert Comment

    by:Cyber-Dude
    Can you open any other web pages?

    Cyber
    0
     

    Expert Comment

    by:Mangolata
    Sorry Gmartin, i was stressed because my pc was playing up
    0
     

    Expert Comment

    by:Mangolata
    Actually, don't lower the security levels. it put GAIN Gator spyware on without notifying me once when i did that once nobus.

    Just trying to keep your PC safe.

    Mangolata

    :o}
    0
     
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    by:nobus
    The idea is to let him open the page from housecall, But he must reset it afterwards !
    0

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