Virus Causes Desktop to Vanish

My computer is currently infected with what seems to be a fairly bad virus.
Initially, the only problem that occurred was simply an inconvenience (and only presumably related to the virus): Upon clicking on a link brought up by a Google search, instead of being directed to that page, I would be directed to a seemingly random search page (one of those that have links to various sites that supposedly are related to what you searched for).

However, the real problems started when I tried to access Control Panel/My Computer or right clicked on the Desktop. (After the Control Panel instance, I did a system restore, hence knowing that the others caused the same problem.)

When I did either of those things, the desktop and start menu bar both suddenly disappeared (leaving only my background image). I could still access the Task Manager, but attempting to run any virus programs causes them to be uninstalled.

Is there anything I can do to solve this problem? I am unable to restore my system any further, so I need another solution.

On another note, I'm fairly certain what caused the virus in the first place: when attempting to watch a streamed video, I was asked to install the latest upgrade to flash...which, I did. That is to say, I installed the program which popped up following this message.

Please do not bother commenting on my idiocy. Believe me, I already know.
6 answers Last reply
More about virus desktop vanish
  1. Boot into safe mode with networking. Download and update malwarebytes. Do a full system scan. You can get the free version here.
  2. I am experiencing the exact same problem. It started out with the redirecting of links and my desktop has now vanished. What do I do? Really need your help!
  3. It sounds like you have some malware on your system. Tap F8 on startup, and choose to boot into safe mode with networking. Download, install, and update malwarebytes. Then do a full system scan. You can download malwarebytes from the link I posted above.

  4. Anonymous and Georgia - if this is what I think it is, in addition to Aford's advice, you might need to confuse the malware by renaming MalwareBytes main setup exe. because the malware is trained to spot the obvious mbam.exe. When you 've downloded it, if it won't install, try renaming the file Bill or George - anything but Sue - sorry - MBAM. before trying the installation again.

    I think it's also going to be necessary to download TDSSKiller from and run that. Even if it doesn't find any Rootkits, it will do no harm and will simply produce three pairs of zeros in the Command form. It's much safer to use than ComboFix which others may advise you to use.

  5. Your best solution to this problem is to reinstall the windows, prefferably vista or 7. Then after you install all the programes you need, make a backup of the system partition which will help you in case of bad situations like this one.
  6. Not so, Victor. Do you know if the OP's have data backups? CD's of all their programs? The right hardware to run Win 7?

    Formatting is a last resort, often done by folks are are too lazy to solve their problem. Virus damage can be wiped out, as I've done in hundreds of computers, with some exceptions, of course.

    And Vista is hardly recommended by anyone, as it's full of bugs and insecurities.
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