The Art of Removing Shortcut Viruses from an Internal Hard Disk

The most frustrating thing while working on a computer is when the system starts malfunctioning due to a virus attack. As there are new viruses emerging every day, it is not just enough to have a proper anti-virus system in place; you should run checks from time to time to avoid any sudden disasters from occurring.

How viruses work

Like a medical virus, a computer virus maliciously attacks various programs on the computer, sometimes duplicating or modifying them, causing the computer systems to respond strangely.  Shortcut viruses typically attack the internal hard drive creating shortcuts within the original folders. These folders can be neither opened nor run.

The invisibility cloak

The question most users ask is how this can happen despite having installed an effective anti-virus program. The answer to this question is that there not all anti-virus software are able to detect shortcut viruses. Shortcut viruses typically attack the large folders, often renaming them as well. However, it is not difficult to remove these viruses and try and prevent them from reappearing.

How to detect shortcut viruses

These affected files usually end with the following file extensions:

  • EXE
  • VBS
  • LNK
  • INI

These are usually a combination of Worm and Trojan viruses.

How do systems get affected?

Using corrupt external devices on your system and introducing your system to the virus is the first cause of ‘infection’. Downloading particular files from the internet could also be the cause.

How to prevent shortcut viruses

Method 1

Download a shortcut virus remover tool, for example Trojorm Removal tool. It can be extracted using a file decompressor. Run the tool and enable it to scan. Open the folder using the “open with” option and choose Notepad.

Search for H and edit is accordingly before saving it. Now select “open with” choosing Window Based Script Host. Running this will result in the shortcut viruses disappearing, enabling you to view your files.

Method 2

The second option would be to use the Command Prompt method. This should ideally be used if the first method fails to work effectively. Go to Start, then select Run and type CMD, followed by the letter of the internal hard drive, e.g., G or F. Then type ”attrib g:*.*/d/s-h-r-s” (after attrib the appropriate letter should be typed). The files will now be visible and shortcut viruses will be removed.

Method 3

There are many shortcut virus remover programs available. Some can be purchased and downloaded online or bought in a store in the form a DVD. These programs just have to be run on your computer system and they will clean and remove the shortcut viruses with a few effortless clicks.

Some of the most popular ones that can be used are Short Cut Virus Remover 3.1 and Short Cut Remover BAT. These do not take much space on the system as well.

Un-hiding the folders and files

Once anti-virus systems are used, files may just disappear, causing panic. The following steps can be used to get the ‘lost’ data back. Follow the instructions below in order to retrieve the folders, files and data thought to have been lost in the process:

  • Go to Control Panel, Appearance and Personalization and click on Folder Options
  • Select “Show hidden folders files and drive”
  • Un-tick “hide extensions for known files and hide operating files”
  • The files will appear in a semi-transparent state with appropriate extensions
  • Go to Properties using the right click option
  • Uncheck hidden

The files that were hidden by the virus should appear in their original locations. They can be run and used with ease. All information stored in these folders will be there for you to access. They weren’t removed by the virus at all.

For future prevention

There is always a possibility that the viruses will return and affect your system, but installation of the following software will shield your computer systems from further malicious attacks in the future. In order to preserve and maintain your system a weekly scan with an anti-virus system will help detect any problems that may arise and help take appropriate action.

Some of the software that can be used include HFV, SmadAV and Malwarebytes. They will help to prevent future mishaps from occurring.

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