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My windows 7 PC was hacked and someone installed the Linux OS

Posted on 2014-01-15
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Last Modified: 2014-01-16
Hi:

It appears that my desktop machine was somehow hacked last night.
It's a windows 7 machine.

I was working late last night. When I got up to work today, all that I saw
was the Linux Mint 16 desktop. I rebooted and it did not go through the
windows boot process.

A caveate here is that I did have the Linux Mint 16 iso in a folder on that machine.
In the last week, I was attempt to install a Linux VM through VirtualBox.

Was my entire windows data wiped out?
Trying to figure out how best to proceed here.


Thanks,
JohnB
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Comment
Question by:jxbma
7 Comments
 
LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39782914
[In jest] A ghost, perhaps.  

Not even safe mode?

Do you see your files on the PC?
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:Emmanuel Adebayo
ID: 39782928
If you can log to the PC, check the boot.ini configuration and also you should see the windows direcory and you files on the hard disk.

You might just need to copy all your data if yu don't have the latest backup and reinstall Windows OS.

Regards
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:jxbma
ID: 39782972
I don't see anything at all referencing windows in the boot up process.
This logs me directly into the Linux desktop.
In the Linux file browser, all I see is "Linux folders".

Attempting to boot into safe mode brought me to the GNU GRUB  startup screen.
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39782987
Could you post a screen shot of the file browser window showing the folders in the main drive?
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Author Comment

by:jxbma
ID: 39783079
Can't get to internet from the Linux Box through browser.
As near as I can tell it looks like a standard Linux system.
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LVL 50

Expert Comment

by:jcimarron
ID: 39783185
jxbma--
Are you saying you cannot get to any Windows files, commands, etc?  
Can you get to a Windows command prompt?  If so type msconfig.exe. Enter.  Now you should be at System Configuration Utility.  The Boot tab may allow you to choose to make Windows the Default operating system assuming Windows is still on the PC.

If no help, do you have a backup of the system?
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LVL 48

Accepted Solution

by:
dbrunton earned 500 total points
ID: 39783331
At this stage you need to take the hard disk out of your machine and attach it to another computer, via USB is satisfactory.  Just as long as your hard disk is not the first one to boot.

Boot the computer and use it's flle explorer to see if it can see any Windows file system on your disk.  If it can then pull all your data off it immediately.

If it can't then you are in trouble.  And I'll presume that this has happened.

In which case try GetDataBack http://www.runtime.org/data-recovery-software.htm  Get the NTFS version and make sure it is the demo one.  Install it on this computer and run it over your disk and see what it makes of it and whether it can recover any data.  If it can then pay the money for full functionality.

Also look at Active @ Partition Recovery software http://www.partition-recovery.com/  Again free to try.  If it sees stuff pay for full functionality.
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