My computer has a virus—what should I do? (Preliminary malware troubleshooting)

KB Solution ID: SOLN2505|Last Revised: October 08, 2014


  • You suspect that your computer is infected with a virus or malware

  • You were directed by ESET Customer Care to complete Preliminary malware troubleshooting



Before proceeding

  • Back up any important or valuable files on your computer.
  • If you cannot connect to the Internet on the infected computer, see the following Knowledgebase article before completing the steps in this article:

  1. Bookmark/save this article
    Before proceeding we highly recommend that you bookmark this article in your web browser , print it for reference or view it on another device so that you can easily return to it and continue on to the next given step (for example, in step 4 you will have to access this article again after restarting your system in Safe Mode).
  2. Repair Executable (.exe) File Association
    Executable file associations specify how a computer opens most programs. Malware can sometimes disrupt file association and block certain programs. To repair executable (.exe) file associations:
    1. Right-click the link below, select Save As (Save link as for Firefox users) from the context menu and select your Desktop as the save destination:

    2. Once the download is complete, navigate to your Desktop and double-click the exe-fix.bat; or right-click it and select Run as administrator.

  3. Run ESET Rogue Application Remover (ERAR)
    The ESET Rogue Application Remover (ERAR) will detect and attempt to remove rogue applications that are infecting your computer or making undesired changes to your registry.

  4. Run the ESET Online Scanner (using default settings)
    The ESET Online Scanner looks at your system from a different perspective than a typical ESET Computer scan. To run the online scanner, follow the steps in the Knowledgebase article below: 


    Leave detected threats in the quarantine

    Files in the quarantine will not run on your computer again as they are stored there in an inert, encrypted format that is useful for analysis.
  5. Restart your computer and observe system behavior
    If, after completing steps 1-4, you restart your machine and no longer notice the issues / symptoms that brought you to this article, you do not have to continue to step 6. If your issue / symptoms persist, continue to step 6 below.

    Complete all steps

    If steps 1-4 alleviated the symptoms you were experiencing, but you were unable to complete one of the steps above, we strongly recommend that you go back and attempt that step again.

  6. Gather logs and contact ESET Customer Care
    To complete this step, send a copy of a Scan log, Detected Threats log and SysInspector log to ESET Customer Care following the steps in the Knowledgebase articles below: 

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If you're not already an ESET customer, ESET Support Services are available to clean, optimize and secure your system. Call 866-944-3738 or click to schedule an appointment with ESET Support Services today!

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