I have found many helpful solutions on this site, but this is my first post. so forgive me if im posting in the wrong section.
I'm a tech by profession and work mostly on virus/spywar. Normally that's no problem i can use various tools and edit them out of the registry no problem. however, yesterday i had an HP Pavilion a518x come in that was beyond my control. to the point even in safe mode with 512mb of ram it took ten minutes to get into the log in screen. that's fine i waited it out and plugged in my thumbdrive with a-squared2, avg antispy, and Analyze This on it. they all installed but i decided to run the Analyze This before the scans. i checked off 68 very obvious things that shouldn't be present and clicked fix. no luck, after 5 seconds i got an error from Analyze this not even "windows" and the program shut down. so i restarted and ran the other programs i had installed, got rid of a few thousand problems that way, but not enough. off the top of my head i know there was WINDOWS ANTIVIRUS 2006, WINDOWS ANTIVIRUS 2007, WINDOWS ANTISPYWARE 2007, ERROR CHECK, ROGUE SUSPECT(three diffrent downloads of smitfraud, that i have used on other machines would not run), STARWARE, and the fake windows security alert/notifier. many, many more to.
still after running those programs with system restore off i could not get into a regular log in and safe mode still took an eternity and wouldn't even let me into the administrator profile. there was no password it just shut down. so, as i normally do i ran a dell system C.D (the user didnt have his discs) on it and did a repair. i was prepaired to have to reactivate windows etc afterwords. now, it gets me to the regular log in page and when i click to log in sure enough i need to activate before i log in. ok, great except when you click yes to register the computer restarts itself. i have tried this numerous times with the same result. and you cannot register in safe mode.
so my question is "now what?" the customer has numerous costly programs.. word, quicken, picasa, photoshop and more and no disks. so a reformat is a definite last resort, even if i saved all of his data and found all of his outlook, quicken etc he would have to go out and buy all new disks or risk getting himself infected agian by trying to pirate them. which he proved he is not capable of. any help would be GREATLY appreciated. :S
reposted in virus/spyware forum, my bad