Cleaning Your Windows Computer-Computing Services - Carnegie Mellon University

Cleaning Your Windows Computer

Symptoms of Infection or Compromise

How can you tell if your computer is infected or compromised? The following is a list of symptoms you may have noticed:

  • Popup ads increase in frequency
  • Popup ads appear even when not browsing the web
  • Web browser home page changes without authorization
  • Computer seems less responsive
  • Persistently slower than usual Internet access
  • Programs fail to start because Windows is low on "resources"
  • Regedit, Task Manager, or Control Panels fail to start with "permission denied" errors when you have administrative rights
  • Windows Firewall cannot start
  • Antivirus software cannot be updated or fails to enable
  • Crashing or blue screening often

If your computer is experiencing any of the above symptoms, continue onto the Steps to Clean. You should also refer to Computing Services' Security News page for information about recent infections or compromises.

Related Documentation

Last Updated: 9/20/12