It's turn for Microsoft Malware (didn't we talk about spyware earlier?)

After anti-spyware, it is turn for Microsoft Malware removal tool. This solution is designed to clean viruses and worms from an infected computer. This solution is an extension of virus and worm removal tools that Microsoft released in 2004. Those tools were specific to a single virus and some of its variants, and through Automatic Update they scanned 55 million PCs in 2004. The new solution provides more convenience by rolling up all viruses and variants targeted into a common removal tool. These removal tools are available through the following delivery vehicles:· As a priority update through Windows Update and through Auto Update for the more than 112 million Windows XP PCs configured to receive priority updates automatically · As an easy-to-use ActiveX control available at www.microsoft.com/malwareremove· As a download through the Microsoft Download Center (download the tool from here)

Frankly, the spyware versus malware confused me a bit. But with a little help I figured that the spyware is meant for removal of those irritating little programs that slip into our browsers without our knowledge (pop ups, browser hijacking).. the damage is limited to loss in productivity and in severe cases stealing of personal information..
On the other hand malware, is bad program that will affect various programs in your machine and if it is a worm mail itself using your email program's address book. Some known viruses/ worms that anti-malware protects against are: Blaster, Sasser, MyDoom, DoomJuice, Zindos, Berbew (also known as Download.Ject), Gaobot and Nachi...
I wonder though why would MS want to get half - heartedly in this virus business? I mean only have a tool to look for specific viruses?? The answer lies in a line from the download page of the anit-malware "In addition to using this tool, you should use an up-to-date antivirus product to help protect your computer from other malicious software. "
So how do the interact? I started the anti-spyware on my machine, pointed to the malware site and ran the online check on my XP SP2 machine.. XP SP2 pop-up blocker first gave warning about the download of the Active X from the site. Then the Anti-spyware complained:
"An Unknown Internet Explorer ActiveX requires Approval": Do you want to install? This was funny 'cause the ActiveX was not unknown.. Anti-spyware has the capability to identify the safe ActiveX and it didn't mark it as safe for the anti-malware ActiveX. In the details though you could see the following:
Name: Malware Cleaner ActiveX ControlDescription: Malware Cleaner ActiveX ControlPublisher: Microsoft CorporationDownload URL: http://www.microsoft.com/security/controls/WebCleaner.cabInstalled files: C:\WINDOWS\Downloaded Program Files\WebCleaner.dllAdvise: While this is not a known spyware threat, you might want to analyze this program before either allowing or blocking it.

Since the publisher is identified, you could breathe a sigh of relief but for novice users this will be too much of an ask.

And then NOTHING happened!! i wonder why??
i got to downloading the tool and running it on my machine. the tool just informed me that there was no malware and exited. I am left wondering if the ActiveX dowload doesn't provide any visual feedback that my machine is clean or is it that my machine blocked something that did not let the anti-malware work properly...
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Comments

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