Microsoft has released another antivirus product – Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta. This new tool allows us to boot a minimal windows OS from a clean media and run an antivirus scan on a PC. This is helpful if the computer won’t boot due to viruses or has a root kit.
I don’t think Microsoft has announced it yet but it is getting notice on the Internet. The web page to download it it says it is is now in beta and suggests that it is now being recommended by Microsoft tech support for virus problems. Note the page link may change but you can visit microsoft.com and search on ‘standalone system sweeper’ to find it.
The way it works is you use an Internet connected PC to download and create a boot CD/DVD or USB. Note that there are 2 versions for 32 or 64 bit operating systems.
Rootkits are particularly difficult to find and remove because they hide themselves from the OS. This should be a good tool for finding and removing rootkits.
Other antivirus products offer similar tools – download, create a boot CD and boot and clean your PC for free. I have personally used Kaspersky, BitDefender and Avira rescue disks.
Microsoft offers other antivirus tools –
- Microsoft Security Essentials. Free antivirus from Microsoft.
- Microsoft Safety Scanner. Free on-demand scanner, download and run, expires in 10 days.
- Microsoft web and telephone virus removal support. No charge.
- Microsoft Defender. Included with Vista and 7, available for XP. Free anti-spyware.