How can I remove a virus without an antivirus?

Hans Anderson April 25, 2013

How can I remove a virus without an antivirus? Is this possible?

  1. DalSan M
    May 3, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    Something that has recently been added to's Windows Repair (All-in-one) is MalwareBytes AntiMalware. There is an option to scan with MalwareBytes, then fix most Windows issues created by viruses, making it an all-in-one solution for repairing Windows. It is a young program still, so any issues that you may still have by running the program should be relayed to Shane, the creator of the programs on, so that he can try to find a solution and update the program. This software had been recommended by Microsoft Support staff members, which has their seal of approval.

  2. Réy Aétar
    May 1, 2013 at 5:43 am

    if you are screwed up really bad and basic steps are not working then the only option left is reinstall your system

  3. Paul Pruitt
    April 27, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Is the problem that you are worried about the virus preventing you from installing the antivirus program to clean it up? Try a one time online scanners which most antivirus companies have which are harder for viruses to block.

    Also some antivirus that seems to scan before or during final installation. This might be a process deigned to get around viruses defending themselves. Bit Defender is one.

    As a side note Bit Defender now has a free version whose existence is a big development since they are the generally agreed current highest rated antivirus program: I think it will do a pre-installation scan too like it paid version, obtaining its files through the use of a web service I think

    Also try SUPERAntiSpyware. It installs "Alternative Start" into your program menu just to thwart viruses looking for a process call supernantispyware.exe. Basically I think it starts the process with a random name so viruses are less like to try to be able to identify and end it.

  4. Abed Shalashtien
    April 26, 2013 at 7:50 pm

    You Need To Know What Kind Of Virus , You Can't Simply Search Every File On Your Computer Moreover The Virus Could Be A Meterpreter That Binds To A Process Running On The Computer like explorer.exe IF that's the case simply go to run>cmd>msconfig>startup and uncheck everything you don't trust or need and restart your PC.

  5. Oron Joffe
    April 26, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    It depends on the virus, and if you know what it is, you may be able to remove it manually, but as Bruce says, why would you want to do that?

  6. Justin Pot
    April 26, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    You can always research, locate and delete the files that make up the virus, if you want. But you can also write your own web browser from scratch using binary instead of using a pre-built one. It's just more complicated.

    With the variety of free malware removal tools on the web, I think this is really a matter of what's worth the effort. But obviously it's up to you.

  7. Donald S
    April 26, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    I just encountered this on a pc at work that was not joined to the domain. Most of the time a virus only attacks the user profile. Log in under another profile and see if the virus is there, if not move all import files of the infected profile to the root of C: delete user profile that is contaminated, create new profile for that user and move files into the new profile. If you belong to a domain and the user has a roaming profile, delete the cached user profile and have the user sign back in to re-build the profile on the local machine.

    • ha14
      April 27, 2013 at 8:23 pm

      the virus can also propagate from profile to profile and from hard drive or partition to another one.

  8. dragonmouth
    April 26, 2013 at 11:52 am

    If you have an image of your system prior to infection, you can restore that onto your HD. It's a bit drastic but it will get rid of the virus. The assumption being that you regularly image your system as a backup.

  9. Junil Maharjan
    April 26, 2013 at 8:46 am

    It would be hard to identify the the virus but if you are able to identify the antivrus software then you can log into you pc in safe mode then delete the virus. but this may not work 100%.

  10. Alan Wade
    April 26, 2013 at 6:18 am

    Are you unable to install one of the many free Anti-Virus programs?

    If the virus will not allow you to install one, let us know the details i.e. whats happening, any idea which virus etc and we will help you remove it manually.

  11. Jim Chambers
    April 26, 2013 at 1:38 am

    Install Malwarebytes free version and when finished uncheck Try free trial of paid version, It will only run when you do a scan. Have it delete anything it finds.

  12. Bruce Epper
    April 26, 2013 at 12:16 am

    If you know what the machine was hit with, you can usually find instructions telling how to manually remove it. My question though, is why would you want to? There are enough freely available scanning and removal tools out there that there is rarely a reason to attempt a manual removal (in some cases, manual removal is the only option, but most scanners will tell you that and link to a page with appropriate instructions). If it isimply a matter of not wanting to install another background process on the machine, you can just set almost all of them up as on-demand scanners instead of using the real-time option. Or you could get get or create a bootable drive (USB or CD/DVD) with the scanner on it and boot from that when you want to scan the machine (and it would normally give you better results as any rootkits would not be active).

  13. ha14
    April 25, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    depends if you know what hit the pc, you can go to task manager and check every tab there to see if there is suspicious services or process or something eating alot of cpu/ram. once identified you can check the parent process, then delete the folder..;

    How to Determine the Parent Process of a Running Process in Windows?

    Process Monitor
    check which registery entries are read by that process

    you can try hijackthis

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