Removing Viruses and Malware with a Rescue Disk

Elsewhere on the site we’ve looked at ways to prevent getting scammed or indeed getting malware on your system, but what if you’re unlucky enough to already have some form of digital infection? Thankfully, there’s a relatively straightforward way to remove malware and viruses from your computer.

Malware Busters

For this tutorial we’ll use a pre-configured rescue disk from Kaspersky. We’ll need to transfer, or burn, the disk contents to a CD or a USB stick and boot into the safe environment through one of those mediums.

Step 1 – Make sure you have a blank CD or a USB stick that’s at least 1GB in size. The Kaspersky Rescue Disk is downloaded as an ISO (which is an image file containing all the disk information), and can be downloaded from https://www.kaspersky.com.au/downloads/thank-you/free-rescue-disk.

Step 2 – To transfer the ISO to USB download Rufus; which is an executable that doesn’t require any installation, and can be downloaded from: https://rufus.ie/. Insert your USB stick and double-click Rufus. Check that the Device label is pointing to your inserted USB stick, if not then you may need to close Rufus, remove the USB, then re-insert the USB and re-start Rufus. The remaining options can be left as their defaults.

Step 3 – Click the Select option, and using Windows Explorer, locate the downloaded Kaspersky Rescue ISO – it’ll be called krd.iso. Click the Start button to select the image and continue with the process. This will copy the contents of the ISO to the USB while also making the USB a bootable device.

Step 4 – If you’re using a CD, start by inserting the CD into the drive. Locate the downloaded Kaspersky Rescue ISO, right-click it and choose Burn Disc Image from the context menu. Tick the Verify disc after burning option, and click the Burn button to start the process. Once the ISO is burnt to the disc, you can power off your computer.

Step 5 – You’ll now need to allow your PC to boot up into the Kaspersky Rescue CD environment. Power up your PC and open the Boot Option Menu. This could be accessed by pressing F12 (depending on the make and manufacturer of your PC motherboard). With the boot options available, select either the CD or USB stick and press Enter.

Step 6 – The PC will now boot into the Kaspersky Rescue Disc environment. This is a custom Linux operating system with all the necessary security tools pre-installed. First, you’ll need to choose which language to load the environment. Use the arrow keys, and press Enter for your language choice. After that, choose the Graphic Mode.

Step 7 – Begin by accepting the license agreement. After that, the rescue disc will check its status and open a window asking for you to start scanning the system. However, it’s best to check you’ve got access to the Internet in order for it to update first. Close down the Rescue Tool window, and click on the Network box in the bottom-right. Connect to WiFi, or Wired as required.

Step 8 – Once connected, relaunch the Kaspersky Rescue Tool from the desktop icon, agree to the license once more. Before you begin, click on the Change Parameters link in the Kaspersky Rescue Tool window. This will enable you to choose which drives the tool can scan for infections and malware. Tick all the drives in your system.

Step 9 – When you’re ready to continue, click on the Start Scan button in the Kaspersky Rescue Tool window. This will begin the process of scanning all the drives selected in the previous step. Be aware, that, depending on the size of your drives and the amount of data on them, this could take quite some time.

Step 10 – While the scan is working, you’ll see the object that the tool is currently processing. You’ll also get a brief run-down of any threats currently found, time taken, and number of files scanned. Once complete, you can view a report by clicking on Details. Hopefully, you’re malware free, and you can remove the USB/disc and reboot the system.

Russ Ware

Russ has been testing, reviewing and writing guides for tech since the heady days of Windows 95 and the Sega Saturn. A self-confessed (and proud) geek about all things tech, if it has LED's, a screen, beeps or has source code, Russ will want to master it (and very likely take it apart to see how it works...)

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