The Lite Side

How to Protect Macs and Windows PCs from the MSBlaster Worm

- 2003.08.19

Better late than never, the Lite Side recommends you carefully read our guide to protecting yourself from the MSBlaster worm.

Macintosh Instructions

  1. Refer all your PC using friends (this includes those using Virtual PC) to the Windows section of this guide.
  2. Get back to work.

Windows Instructions

The MSBlaster virus may enter your computer through a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows. This virus/worm was designed to cause computers to launch an electronic attack against Microsoft's Windows help website on August 16, 2003.

If you are using one of the following Microsoft Operating Systems, we recommend that you follow the instructions below to remove or safeguard your computer. Even if your computer isn't infected now, it could be in the future.

  • Microsoft Windows NT 4.0
  • Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 Terminal Services Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 2000
  • Microsoft Windows XP
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003

Please take the time to follow the steps outlined below to help ensure that your computer is safe and clear of the MSBlaster virus.

  1. Close all open programs and press and hold down the following keys simultaneously: Ctrl (Control), Alt, and Delete
  2. Click the Task Manager button
  3. Select the Processes tab
  4. Click the Image Name column to sort the list in alphabetical order
  5. Select the msblast.exe file by clicking on it once. Then click the End Process button. If you do not see msblast.exe in the list of running tasks, proceed to Step 6, as you should still check your system for the Worm and apply the Microsoft patch. (Some operating systems require that you log in as Owner/Administrator in order to install this patch)
  6. Now you can close the Windows Task Manager screen by clicking the X in the upper right hand corner.
  7. Next, determine which operating system you are using. Microsoft has different patches to protect each operating system, so you will need to know which operating system you have on your computer.
  8. Click on the Start button, go up to Run. Type winver and press the Enter key. The window displayed will indicate which operating system is being used: Windows 2000, Windows XP, etc.
  9. Once you have determined your operating system, go to <http://www.microsoft.com/technet/treeview/default.asp?url=/technet/security/bulletin/MS03-026.asp> and click on the link for your operating system.
  10. Click Download on the right side of the page.
  11. Choose Run or Open from this location.
  12. Confirm security warning popup by clicking Yes.
  13. Follow popup instructions.
  14. Once your computer has finished go to <http://securityresponse.symantec.com/avcenter/FixBlast.exe>, when prompted click Open.
  15. When it has finished, you will have successfully checked your system for the MSBlaster worm and installed the patch.

Please note: If done incorrectly, some of these steps can cause problems with your Operating System. You should carefully review all terms, policies, and instructions on any of the websites that you visit while following these steps. Please note that while the Lite Side is providing this information to help you remove the MSBlaster virus, neither the Lite Side, Low End Mac, Cobweb Publishing, Microsoft, nor Symantec is not responsible for any damage done to your computer by your attempts to remove this worm.

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