Three Questions, One Answer
- How can you run a virus scan if you can’t get Windows up and running?
- How can you use a different brand of antivirus on a PC that you don’t have administrative rights to?
- How can you run an up to date virus scan on a PC that does not have an internet connection?
Do you have any suggestions?
Free Rescue CDs
In my opinion, the simplest solution is using a Live Emergency Rescue CD. It’s most likely to work in all three cases as long as the PC can boot from the CD/DVD drive.
Many of the leading AntiVirus vendors offer a bootable CD with their brand of antivirus on it. Here is the typical procedure for using them.
- Download an ISO or other CD image file from the AV vendor (See downloads below)
- Burn the image to a CD (How?)
- Insert the CD into an infected PC and reboot
Notes on Use
The rescue CDs that I’ve used often boot up quickly. Once booted, many of them ask you what you want to scan and how you want to handle suspected infections. If you can set the AV scanner to automatically report or remove infections, you can typically walk away from the PC while it’s working and come back after it’s done.
There is one drawback. Most of these rescue CDs can’t be easily updated. If you keep using one too long, it’s less likely to detect the latest infections. I recommend that you always download the latest ISO and burn a new CD. The cost of a blank CD is well worth the extra time and headaches that an Emergency Rescue CD can save you.
Download Free AV Rescue Disks