Sixteen Bits Online

MAY 1996

Virus Attack

Owen Cook discovers a bit more about his files than he bargained for...

Microsoft’s Anti Virus program puts a file in directories called CHKLIST.MS, but I didn’t know this, so read on.

Son in Law installed my computer, icons appeared like magic and I had no idea what was going on, in the end he showed me how to do a DIR and CD and a few other commands in DOS, then he left for the West. I did a screen print of all the directories, this was valuable information !

Some time later daughter brought a game home from school, there was that association; kids, school friends, disks and VIRUSES. One day I decided to see what had happened to the directories after this game was installed and LO, in the directories there was CHKLIST.MS, without doubt, I had a virus.

Close to panic I looked up the Help Directory of Sixteen Bits, ring between 7.30 and 8.30 PM it said, but at 3.00 PM, I couldn’t wait, so directory by directory, I deleted CHKLIST.MS. At 5.30, all had been eliminated and I trundled off for a few beers, proud that I had killed my first virus.

I nearly died the next morning when I found CHKLIST.MS had reappeared. Again in panic, I deleted them all again, then very carefully looked at every file on my computer. Starting in DOS, I found one file called HPPCL.P00, with an extension like POO, it had to be a joke, maybe part of the virus, so ZAP, I deleted that file.

Next I found a file called MSDOS.SYS, this was suspicious, it had MS in it, an extension called SYS, yes, this was the system file for the virus, so it had to go. When I tried deleting it, there was a message saying it was a read only file, and could not be deleted, HOW INSIDIOUS, a virus system that could not be deleted !

I was near tears, a $2000 computer killed off by a lousy virus, to hell with the expense, so I rang Son in Law in the West and explained my predicament. I can still hear him laughing.

And HPPCL.P00? Well it just came back, and to this day, that is still a mystery.

Sixteen Bits Online - May 1996