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Cannot retrieve data from external hard drive due to VIRUS

Hi friend,

I need a big help. My computer was infected by various spyware and viruses, so I saved all my data files (~18GB) to an external hard drive before formatting my computer. Now I am not able to retrieve any piece of my data Sad

When I tried to read the external hard drive, my computer does recognize the hard drive as drive F:, but then it took for ever to run an AUTORUN program. When I disconnected the hard drive from my computer, the computer popped up a window saying that virus was found in F:\autorun.inf and the virus type was Trojan Horse. It seems to me that the autorun file in the hard drive was infected by this virus, which kept me from reading the data.

I have tried many data recovery software which doesn't modify the data in the hard drive. But I have no success so far. If you have any suggestions or ideas, please let me know. I appreciate your help very much.

Thank you,

Ashley

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Try LINUX

In reply to: Cannot retrieve data from external hard drive due to VIRUS

No you don't have to install LINUX. But you can use a LiveCD and get your files out of that drive...

You can also disable AUTORUN on that drive by holding down the SHIFT KEY when you plug it in.

Bob

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TO BOB: What is LiveCD?

In reply to: Cannot retrieve data from external hard drive due to VIRUS

Hi Bob,

Thank you for your reply. I have tried to disable the autoplay and the computer was able to display the data folder (all my data is under this one single folder). However, when I click to open the folder, it again took a long time. I would hear the sound of reading hard drive, but after a while, when the reading sound stopped, the drive disappeared from 'My Computer' window.

What do you mean by LiveCD approach?

I appreciate your reply.

Ashley

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LiveCD

In reply to: Read this prior discussion.

Thank you. I will burn such a CD. I am not sure what it will look like or what to do after I boot the computer. Will it be a Linux environment? Any command do I need to use to look for, read and copy the external hard drive?

Thank you.
Ashley

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No commands... See another discussion.

In reply to: LiveCD

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Thank you

In reply to: No commands... See another discussion.

I am downloading the Knoppix ISO. It is so slow. Hope it works.

Ashley

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Infected external drive...

In reply to: Cannot retrieve data from external hard drive due to VIRUS

How long is "forever" ? Try to wait until it stops- what happen ? Try to disable auto-run by pressing "SHIFT" as soon as you plug in the external drive for a few seconds or release when the disk activity light stops blinking.

Somehow, try to open the drive to see the contents. Find the autorun file and delete it or rename. Do likewise with any .inf files or file you do not reconize as yours. These files are dropped by the virus.

Try safe mode to do the above.

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infected external drive

In reply to: Infected external drive...

Thank you for your reply.

While I am downloading the Knoppix ISO, I tried to wait long enough until the hard drive indicator turn green. I am able to read the file folders (including the hidden ones) Happy However, I didn't find a autoplay or autorun.inf file. Where to find such files?

Then, when I further clicked on the folder, and waited for about 10 minutes, the whole drive disappeared from 'my computer' window. I have to unplug the external drive and then plug back in to see it again.

I used the shift key to disable autoplay. How to disable it permanently? Also I did the above NOT in the safe mode :(, any bad things could happen to my computer hard drive?

Thank you.

Ashley

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Yes, try safe mode.

In reply to: infected external drive

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Help needed on buring a LiveCD

In reply to: Yes, try safe mode.

Hi,

I have download a Knoppix from the internet, and burned it to a CD using Roxio. However, it is NOT bootable. What could be the problem? I burned it as a data CD.

Thank you.

Ashley

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It's not a data CD.

In reply to: Help needed on buring a LiveCD

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Can't see GUI

In reply to: It's not a data CD.

Thank you. I made the CD bootable but there is a new problem. At the end of the booting process, the GUI is not properly displayed. I can't read anything. It seems the OS doesn't support the video card I am using. I am using the Knoppix version 5.1.1. Is it because the version is old? My desktop computer is 4 years old.

Thank you for your help.

Ashley

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Ahh, time for the cheat sheet.

In reply to: Can't see GUI

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More Problem

In reply to: Ahh, time for the cheat sheet.

Since I am not able to view the GUI, I don't know how to exit from the GUI and go back to the boot screen. Could you please me how to do it? Also should the command I type in be like:

knoppix fb800x600

Is it correct?

Ashley

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I press the reset button.

In reply to: More Problem

Unlike Windows we are booting from CD so no danger... Remember I don't duplicate web pages here. But you should try that command...

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Are you sure...

In reply to: More Problem

...you have chosen to burn an ISO image ? Making a data CD bootable (in which the data is the ISO image file)is not the same as burning an ISO image, whereby the ISO image file is broken up into its separate components. The choice to "burn an ISO image" at the burning program does this automatically, and if the ISO image includes files to make the CD bootable, you need not do anything further. KNOPPIX version 5.1.1 is the latest version. However, there is a DVD version (also 5.1.1 ) of 4G in size !

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Knoppix doesn't help on reading external hard drive

In reply to: Are you sure...

With all the help you provided, finally I am able to boot my computer with a Knoppix LiveCD. However, I encountered the similar problem when reading my external hard drive.

It does recognize the hard drive and open the main folder in it. Then after I click on the subfolder which contains most of my data files, it took a long time (5~8 minutes) to try to read. In the end, it gives up with a popup window saying something like 'it seems the folder (or disk) doesn't exist any more'.

Is it possible that the viruses cause this problem? I tried before to clean the external hard drive using Symantec Antivirus in Windows, but had no success; The external drive simply disappeared from 'my computer' window when I did that.

I am also considering to use Norton Data Recovery software, but I don't know if it is safe and useful. Anyone knows about that?

Thank you.
Ashley

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OUCH!!!

In reply to: Knoppix doesn't help on reading external hard drive

This means the drive data or surface has suffered damage. It is now likely and my bet it is so that only drive data recovery houses will be able to get your files out.

Try http://www.drivesavers.com

Bob

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Data Recovery

In reply to: OUCH!!!

So, you are not recommended to try Norton Data Recovery?

Ashley

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No.

In reply to: OUCH!!!

Symantec's direction in products is why I never recommend them.

I noted Drive Savers but you have not made it clear that you were wanting to try more DIY recovery. In fact the amount of steps it took for you get get a working Linux CD and not researching the video mode tells me it is likely best for you to head to data recovery centers now.

You could try the demo's of ZERO ASSUMPTION RECOVERY or GETDATABACK but I fear that it's time to move to the usual solution.

Bob

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