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7rojo7 12th May 2006 02:31 PM

virus on apple?
I opened my mail today and somethimg took over the program Mail, in the menu bar the Format and Edit buttons were flashing, at first I didn't realize what was happening and the program just seemed stuck but the cursor would work normally but no command would be carried through, when I clicked on the edit button it flickered and I could see the paste function highlighted. I had to force the program to quit by going to the finder, the shortcut didn't work.
I relaunched the finder and relaunched Mail but the radio button in the dock called a finder window with Mail selected, now no other radio buttons in the dock work properly. I launched mail from its icon and found many copies of the same message, I deleted them closed the program, shut down the computer, waited a little, restarted the computer.
The dock still doesn't work, I launch Mail and find more of the same messages (advertisement from a dealer) and I delete them, Mail starts to open new messages at a terrifying rate and I'm trying to use the close all windows shortcut with no success. The new message windows have now covered my entire screen. I noticed something else happening in the menu bar where cut was highlighted in the edit menu. I forced the program to quit and all the windows went away. I relaunched Mail and the message was still there there was some action in the menu bar and all my messages were opening in sequence and I noticed that the cut function is highlighted when I click on the Edit button I immediately forced quit as I'd realized that it was cancelling all of my messages and shut off the computer and here I am, in the office trying to find out if anybody knows what this thing is and what I have to do to get rid of it. I called the dealer and asked if anyone else had called them and so far no one has. It may just be a coincidence that it was their message that was being duplicated, I still have it on my server.
Most people here use PCs and there are very few Apple savy types here. I'm looking at down time I believe, because I'm afraid it might eat more than my messages, I have an important project in the final stages, I don't want to chance something that tragic.
Anybody else hear about viruses like this on an Apple?
OSX 10.3

raydo 12th May 2006 02:48 PM

i doubt that it's a virus
try running diskwarrior

it you don't have access to diskwarrior
press and hold command and s keys
till you see unix screen
at prompt
type fsck -f (space after k)
after file system check and repairs are made
at prompt
type: exit

xist 12th May 2006 03:13 PM

Also, delete any spam logging on your web mail server (i.e., before opening Mail again. I do not use Mail so I cannot help you on specific Mail's issues. You can find a lot of suggestions in the Apple Discussion groups

7rojo7 12th May 2006 03:45 PM

it you don't have access to diskwarrior
press and hold command and s keys
till you see unix screen
at prompt
type fsck -f (space after k)
after file system check and repairs are made
at prompt
type: exit

that didn't work, holding down the command (apple) and s didn't give me a unix screen

which caches should I delete?
I just repaired permissions and things seem better, really the whole system semmed funny until I did that.

Reptil 13th May 2006 12:28 PM

to get to these unix commands and the terminal is too scary, you can use an app called Clix:

Also it helps to buy a book about OSX. if you're really interested.
I have read (a.o.) "Mac OS X unleashed", but there are lots. Get one that also includes how the terminal works, not just OSX.

Apps like mail can be a tad quircky sometimes. and when unresponsive I do tend to get impatient and click alot around in frustration. Result: when the machine catches up with what I've assigned it to do, there's a lot of activity. I know that will happen, heh just frustrated gooof
My G4 still copes with everything I feed it, what a beautiful machine.

Ok, if you're worried about (non existant) virii, or applications phoning home (happens all the time) I can recommend "Little Snitch". If installed NOTHING happens without your consent.

Geert van den Berg 13th May 2006 01:15 PM

Virus could happen, but also check if it's not some sort of Apple Script you accidently downloaded, or maybe now some Automator file.

It happened to me once, was an Applescript in disguise of an MP3, my whole screen went crazy, but I think Apple solved this problem with a security update already, could be a new one though.

But one thing, those script need to be triggered by an action that you do, like clicking on it, so it could very well be something else, since I don't think a script could create so much trouble to the OS. After a reboot all was fine for me.

Reptil 13th May 2006 01:21 PM

you mean that leak where Safari would execute shell scripts disguised as .zip files?
that was sloppy. Apple dropped the ball there a bit. (too concerned about iPods heh)
but a virus? it didn't procriate did it? or am I missing something?

I created a mock shut off Safari open safe files, and am running Little Snitch. Is there any other issue I should adress?

Reptil 13th May 2006 01:35 PM

mmmmm yes. but mp3 that is not mp3 but a script can be opened by itunes for instance. I'm just saying it is easy to change that. OSX should recognise what type it is, you are right there, but it can be fooled.

Reptil 13th May 2006 05:34 PM

no, true. I wouldn't click on it either.
bit of common sense.
some applications do execute commands by themselves, like "phone home".
adobe stuff being a good example.
a good insight of what is really going on is recommendable, for any machine.
and it's not that difficult.
apple did a really good job in making everything user accessable IMO.

Lagerfeldt 14th May 2006 05:11 PM

Try OnyX (download from and do cleaning and maintenance.