Dealing with Malware that Hides Programs the Start Menu and in Windows Explorer

I recently had a client’s PC get infected by some malware that removed all of their programs from the start menu as well as making all files invisible in Windows Explorer.

I ran almost every antimalware program I could think of trying to remove this infection.  I even went all the way back to Spybot Search and Destroy,  Surprisingly, Spybot did find things that the other scanners did not.  I will not be so quick to discount it as too old in the future.

Malwarebytes would not install on this system, I thought the ma;ware was preventing installation.  As it turns out, I needed to install with the “Run as administrator” option.  This option did not exist on the XP system I was working on.  Further research indicated that the option had to be enabled.  I found a Microsoft FixIt tool here, http://support.microsoft.com/kb/294676, that will do the job.

Also, I found another useful tool called Unhide.exe that will reverse the changes made by the malware that cause the start menu and Windows Explorer items to disappear.  Unhide can be downloaded from here, http://download.bleepingcomputer.com/grinler/unhide.exe

The original links can be found here:

http://forums.malwarebytes.org/index.php?showtopic=85715&st=0&p=434006&#entry434006

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