Robert (gurdonark) wrote,

Warning! Your Computer is Infected with Nostalgia! Download Reality Now!

I remember an earlier era of the world wide web, when the telnet receded in importance rather like the icebergs of a past cooling, and people one met in everyday life still socialized through dial-up bbs bulletin boards utilizing the lightning speed of 1200 baud. In those early days, when the saber tooth tiger of Windows evolved into the flying gryphon of Internet Explorer, viruses, spyware and malware arose, like mammals destined to evolve into marmosets.

In those days, when one got a virus, or malware that advised one to download a proprietary product created by the malware creator and marketed through malware infection, then one felt less a matter of frustration than a sense of weekly adventure.
I suspect that walking in the prairie used to involve routine panther and grizzly bear encounters in just that way.

Sunday before last, I was watching vlogs at a site I had never visited before. I am pretty sure the site was not run by the fox in the Pinocchio animated movie, who lured little boys into cages through deceit. The fellow's vlog site was throughly vlog-ish, and not an attractive nuisance. Nonetheless, I had my computer giving me "urgent" spyware warning flags and trying to download a panoply of unwanted products to "cure" the problem. It was like old home week on the internet.

I called upon my McAfee anti-viral to step in, and found that it did a good bit of good.
The really annoying irritants in the functionality became less annoying. Still, to my surprise given that this type of malware dates back to the 2400 baud days of the web, the cleansing did not eradicate the problem.

One new problem the malware created proved particularly frustrating. It had an unwanted program that reacted to the first click on a link provided by a google search to divert one from the link one desired to a spammish search engine service. I switched to, which worked surprisingly well and did not have the issue.

I did the requisite internet searches, and found that good old Spybot Destroy is still freeware and still does the job. I downloaded it, donated three dollars to its creators on the theory that every good spambot destroyer deserves a croissant, and fired it up.
It eradicated 75 bits of malware and adware from my system.

The functionality of my computer is now nearly completely restored, although as with many such things each day I have to "fight again" to eradicate these self-replicating unwanted programs. Tihs type of thing, by the way, makes replicators, replicants, zylons, xylons, nylons, berserkers, and wolves entirely credible science fiction creations. For all of that, though, I feel a kind of wave of nostalgia, like those cold soba noodle dishes one eats at certain Japanese restaurants. One huge, audiophonic "slurp!" and one is awash in soy-influenced cold noodle. It's like that, yes, it's like that.

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