Saturday, September 6, 2008

Malicious Intent and Finding a Cure

I woke up yesterday morning, let the pups out and read the front page of the paper while I waited for Toby and Allie to do their thing. It was a beautiful day. I'd be riding within the hour. I fired up my computer to check the prevailing surface winds and as soon as the screen lit up I could see that there was a problem. No more Graham Watson Tour de France cycling background for my wallpaper. Instead, I now had a bright blue screen with a large box declaring that my computer was infected with two viruses (or more specifically, malware). Within the box was a handy tool, "Antivirus xp 2008" with which I could fix the problem. Yeah, right.

I opened my home-page (Google) to type in "Antivirus xp 2008" and noticed that there were a couple million links to this little bugger. It didn't look like it was going to be that difficult to fix. However, clicking on one of the links would do me no good whatsoever. There was a nifty browser hijacker associated with this malware and the only links I was going to have access to were those it allowed and none of them interested me. I was able to navigate to bookmarked pages but once the page opened up the script was often times incomplete of just gibberish. Frustrating is too kind a word.

Norton and AVG were of no help to me.

I used Tammy's laptop to navigate to some of the links associated with the search above but I wasn't having much success. After a few hours I decided that allowing some sick _____ to rob me of a beautiful day of riding would only make matters worse so I suited up and went out and worked off some frustration.

I was tempted several times to cut my ride short and head for home to fix my laptop but I was steadfast in not allowing whomever caused me this aggravation to totally ruin my day. And they didn't.

As I got out on the main road which would take me out of Lakeville I could sense it wasn't going to be difficult to get lost in this ride. Not lost in the sense that I wouldn't know where I was but another kind of lost; lost in the moment. And I was doing a good job of that until my cellphone vibrated to life somewhere just north of the road pictured to the right. It was work calling. They were looking for the results of a visit I'd had with my doctor two days earlier. I pulled over for a few minutes and took care of business only to interrupted a few more times in the next half hour by calls from work and the clinic where I was seen. I imagined what it would be like to be retired and to not have to jump through their hoops any longer.

I was riding highway 40 out of Chaska with a darkening sky to the west. I seriously considered taking highway 45 to the southeast toward Jordan and then home but by doing that I felt I was still giving in just a bit to the temptation to go home to work on my computer and so I didn't, even if it meant getting wet on the return.

I got home and checked to see if my AVG scan picked up anything of interest on my laptop. It was locked up. I went and showered then sat down pretty much intent on reformatting it. I attempted several fixes first but I was still having some serious issues with the computer freezing up. I'd wasted enough time.

Most of my stuff is backed up but I spent a half hour going through the motions to make sure I wasn't forgetting anything important. And that was that. I used my last couple hours before going to bed doing the basic reformat knowing that I'd have to finish the rest later.

I can deal with this sort of inconvenience. It's a hassle but nothing I can't take care of myself. I feel bad for people who may not be able to help themselves and have to pay someone to undo the damage.

On a brighter note, my brother's former wife, Kim, loaned me some family video which had been taken in the mid to late 1980's. I spent a couple nights last week going through it. I uploaded this one to my YouTube account. Check out the news from 9-28-1986 and listen as Lindsay gives an early peek into her singing ability.

1 comment:

Pdog said...

I bet Best Buy would have had that fixed for you in a matter of minutes!