Much of today’s malware can be extremely difficult to identify and remove – despite a user relying on frontline antimalware applications to do the job. So, from my perspective, I don’t see any advantage in running full scans * on a live system – instead, once a week I run a Linux-based antimalware application (a live CD), which scans from the outside looking in. Malware generally can’t hide if it’s not running.
* I do however, run a Quick Scan with both Microsoft Security Essentials, and Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware, on a daily basis. Combined running time for both applications is less than five minutes – so, it’s worth the minimum effort involved.
I can now add one more CD/Flash Drive based, antimalware application to my arsenal of boot CDs – the just released Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta. System Sweeper Beta operates much like Panda SafeCD, Kaspersky Rescue Disk 10, Avira AntiVir Rescue System.
Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta is a recovery tool that can help you start an infected PC and perform an offline scan to help identify and remove rootkits and other advanced malware.
In addition, Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta can be used if you cannot install or start an antivirus solution on your PC, or if the installed solution can’t detect or remove malware on your PC. It is particularly useful for detecting and disinfecting malware infections which give regular AV products running within Windows a hard time.
To get started with System Sweeper Beta – first, download and run the installer which will open up the following series of windows.
Click on any graphic to expand to original size.
Choose the media or the device you want to install the application to.
Then sit back and relax – more or less.
For additional help and information, checkout – Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta Help & How-To.
System requirements (from Microsoft):
The following is a list of minimum requirements for both the computer infected with a virus or malware and the computer on which you are creating the bootable media.
- Operating system:Windows XP Service Pack 3; Windows Vista (RTM, Service Pack 1, or Service Pack 2, or higher); Windows 7 (RTM, Service Pack 1, or higher).
- Required processor:
Windows XP: 500 MHz or higher1.0 GHz or higher
Windows Vista and Windows 7: 1.0 GHz or higher
- Required memory:
Windows XP: 768 MB RAM or higher
Windows Vista and Windows 7: 1 GB RAM or higher
- Required video card: 800 × 600 or higher
- Available hard disk space: 500 MB
The following requirements apply only to the computer infected by a virus or malware:
- The computer infected with a virus or malware must have the same Windows operating system architecture as Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta, either 32-bit or 64-bit.
- In addition, BitLocker must be disabled to use Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta.
The following requirements apply only to the computer on which you are creating the bootable media:
- Internet connection: Required for installation and download of the latest virus and spyware definitions for Standalone System Sweeper.
- Internet Browser: Windows Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher or Mozilla Firefox 2.0 or higher.
Download: at Microsoft
In the constantly evolving world of cybercrime, all users are well advised to scan their computers regularly with an antimalware application that does not rely on the native operating system.
Please keep in mind that Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta, is not an intrusion prevention system – it is not a replacement for your installed antimalware application/s.
If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.