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Virus removal in a virtual machine

Last response: in Windows 7
a b $ Windows 7
September 24, 2010 11:05:11 PM

Hello everyone. My thought for today is: If you have a virus on your computer, can you remove it if you have a virtual pc installed and use that with anti-virus and malware removal software. Is it the same as using linux booting from a disc or USB, or will the virus stop you loading your virtual machine? Thanks.
a b $ Windows 7
September 24, 2010 11:51:06 PM

If you have a virus in a Virtual Machine just reboot, it's virtual, if you have a virus in your installed OS, it can interfer with the Virtual Machine
a b $ Windows 7
September 25, 2010 3:58:14 PM

So in that case it depends if the virus will let you access the virtual PC? But if it will, can you remove it through the virtual machine?
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a b $ Windows 7
September 25, 2010 9:52:41 PM

probably not, but I am not sure
a c 215 $ Windows 7
September 25, 2010 10:06:49 PM

It technically could be done, but the best you could do is share your entire hard drive on the network (which is NOT a good idea regardless of the presence of a virus), map your host drive as a network share inside of the guest, then tell the virus scanner to scan the mapped network drive. You would not be able to scan the host machines registry, and thus would not be able to guarantee removal of the infection.

The best way to clean a virus is to boot into safe mode and run the scanner from there, but the only guaranteed way to remove a virus and be able to trust the machine again is to back up your data, wipe out the drive and reinstall the operating system.
a b $ Windows 7
September 26, 2010 12:14:10 AM

I use a virtual machine to test shareware software for viruses, Trojans and other nastiness. When my virtual machine gets infected I simply delete it and get a fresh copy from a previously created backup which only takes a few seconds. So why bother removing a virus from a virtual machine unless you are researching the virus.
a c 215 $ Windows 7
September 26, 2010 12:31:41 AM

I think the OP is asking about using a virus scanner in a guest OS to scan the host system and remove an infection... at least that's what I gathered from the original post.
a b $ Windows 7
September 26, 2010 2:01:45 AM

I think I misunderstood the posters question in my previous posting. If I understand the question correctly now then, there is no point in running a virus scanner in a virtual machine to scan the host machine because if the anti-virus program is unable to see or remove the virus when running in the host machine the virtual machine software is unlikely to be able to do a better job and in fact will be probably considerably worse.
a b $ Windows 7
September 26, 2010 2:40:14 AM

I would agree
a b $ Windows 7
September 26, 2010 6:52:21 PM

I would like to thank you all for your replies. I am just glad that I haven't got a virus and have to experience all the problems it brings. The last virus I had was CHERNOBYL Virus which I got about 11 years ago. This could be another thread asking when was the last time you got a virus.
a b $ Windows 7
September 26, 2010 11:26:05 PM

me, a long time ago, I remember it well, it disabled Norton and wrecked havok with my computer, that was a education!, in fact it was when I had just joined Tom's