It’s Monday and I’m sane again

So on Saturday I contracted my first virus in 4+ years of Windows computing. I obviously wasn’t careful enough and have no one to blame for myself. That said, these things have gotten REALLY annoying to remove.

The main infection was a Vundo Trojan – not particularly dangerous, just extremely annoying. Dialog boxes and pop-up windows everywhere. My first step was to pull up the Task Manager and do a quick scan of running processes. Any I didn’t immediately recognize, I Googled – most were new programs running because of my little Logitech/Bluetooth adventure from a couple days ago – but one I got zero results for: C:\Windows\System32\nyyyutbm.exe. Looks like a typical spyware file name, but since I hadn’t gotten anything, I figured I’d do a full sweep.

Now since system files can’t be removed in a normal instance of Windows, first I had to boot into safe mode in Windows, and cruise over to TrendMicro’s HouseCall. Running that determined I had Vundo and removed part of the infection, along with some other miscellaneous stuff. I followed that up by a full system scan with AdAware and Spybot, and returned to a Windows desktop free of nasties. Still not sure why Google came up with no results – maybe I just got lucky enough to find a new mutation of the bug.

Anyway, that got me thinking about the fact that I was still using Windows for most things when I told myself I wouldn’t after my last installation of Ubuntu Linux. So I switched over and started playing around with it. I’d left it because of some little bugs that I didn’t feel like messing with at the time, but I was a little bit more determined now. First thing to solve was my issue with Ventrilo in Linux. It’s buggy at best, but I found a suggestion to manually replace Wine’s sound card driver with a version used in Windows, msgsm32.acm. This fixed everything. Three cheers for community support.

Next up was making it look the way I wanted it to. I enabled the Compiz and Beryl effects (now run jointly under the name Compiz Fusion) and downloaded ccsm, the effects configuration tool. After that I installed Emerald, a themes manager for CF, and downloaded the WhiteMod theme. It was still missing something, though. After some Googling, I came across AWN and it’s sexy twin, AWN-Curves. This walkthrough, again from the Ubuntu community, got me up and running with that. So I ended up with really a very nice-looking desktop that ran WoW and Ventrilo, and gives me all the wonderful functionality and power of Linux in a too-sexy-for-my-shirt package:


Not too shabby. Hopefully I last this time!