Sunday, August 22, 2004

Today's when all the willpower and focus comes in to play for me. Today I can say that I have put a very serious dent in my marking deficit. I just need to put up the same performance tomorrow and I will be done! Past the deadline, but done nonetheless.

It's so hard to concentrate during the weekdays. So many distractions, so many duties and obligations to fulfill, so this one significant weekend is 'burned' just clearing my in-tray. I guess when I do find the time, and the imperative, I can be a machine, getting what I need to do done; but please, (mental note) not too often, ok?

Sadly, I had to sacrifice the NYeDC's seniors farewell party tonight. I would have loved to go and show my gratitude to 'sif and company for their time and effort in The Odyssey, and have another opportunity to see the 04-05 batch in action and show my support for them as well. Apologies all round for my tardiness.

Meantime, I hope Watson's completely virus-free now. Over the last couple of days I went through a routine of virus scan, delete infected files, edit Windows registry of virus program initiators, only to have to repeat the process again and again when Norton rediscovered the same virus I had just deleted resurrect and infect Watson again. WTH was happening?

Eventually I traced the problem to an innocuous-looking .cab file sitting in the root directory of my c: drive. Scanning it, I discovered it was a compressed file containing all the files the virus needed to activate again. Gotcha! I gleefully deleted it off my c: drive and... minutes later, the virus activated again!!!

Fighting to stay calm, I did a search for all references to the miraculously reappearing .cab file in my c: drive, and there was the culprit: a file in my Windows/Prefetch folder with the same name as the .cab file. This file explained why the virus kept reappearing after I had deleted it. The files in the Prefetch folder automatically download themselves whenever we go online. It's a convenient service MS provides, but it is also exploited by clever virus designers who ensure that their virus continues to be downloaded into the victim's PC after the virus has been dealt with already. Not taking any chances, I also scanned my Registry for any mention of the Prefetch file and deleted them all when they showed up.

Hopefully, I've done all I need to do to kill that damned virus (BTW, it was an IRC Trojan with an accompanying Hacktool, so it could have been quite nasty). I hope Watson's really ok now! Else I'm out of ideas.

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