So you’ve gone around visiting some shady websites promising free stuff or serial keys, and now karmas come to bite you in the ass in the form of malicious adware. Whether it has installed an annoying popup that forces you to download a shady antivirus program, or a hidden tracking program that sucks up your resources, malware is annoying.
Malware is probably one of the biggest reasons why your computer “feels” slow. Your once blazing computer that started excel in 4 seconds did not suddenly forget how to do things quickly. It’s most likely that there are things that are slowing it down. Malware is generally picked up by browsing through shady websites. Websites that offer free serial keys for legitimate programs such as photoshop/games are notorious for being a haven for malware. Random junk email also has the potential to infect your computer with a nasty Trojan or a virus.
So you’ve gone and infected your poor computer. What can you do? The best step is to install some basic programs that get rid of spyware/adware/viruses. Many of these programs are free. SuperAntiSpyware or Adaware do pretty well in keeping most of the nasty stuff from crippling your computer. An even better way to clean your computer is to run your computer in safe-mode and then run these programs. To run your computer in safe mode, click on the start menu; go to the “run” icon, and type “msconfig” without the quotes. Once the msconfig menu comes up, go to the tab that says boot.ini, and check the box next to /SAFEBOOT. After you run the programs and get rid of any malware, just go back into msconfig and uncheck /SAFEBOOT to boot back normally.
Running Anti-virus is also a good idea to keep your computer running smooth and uninterrupted. AVG is a good free alternative that you can run to remove any major problems.
Some viruses/malware are particularly destructive, and will prevent you from running an antivirus program, or the anti-virus program might not even pick up on your specific problem. The best way to deal with this? Google. Even typing a general description of the problem into Google will probably yield you 10 answers from people who have already gone through the same virus as you have. The world is full of people who are diseased so don’t be afraid to seek help on Google.
If all this fails, you can reformat your computer which will guarantee that your computer returns to the pristine state that it came in; provided there are no hardware issues. If you’re not sure, grab the nearest geek, or bring it to a computer service firm. Maybe even ours.