Why do people complain about getting spyware on their computer? They put it there, didn't they? I'd consider my good friend to be an intermediate computer user (he knows how to install Madden 2004, say NO to popup boxes, etc) and he NEVER gets spyware on his computer....why? Because he isn't a stupid moron, unlike YOU. He answers "no" to unrecognized popups and he uses KaZaA for all his dirty work. Try it, it really works. You'll also save your parents a lot of heartache so they won't have to come downstairs in the morning to find 30 obscene popups on the computer screen which appear to have "just got there by themselves". Believe this, a parent came over to me the other day and told me that "dirty windows pop up by themselves" on his computer. I didn't have the heart to tell him "Mr. Schwartz, I hate to break it to you but it's your son. Your oldest one. The one that you love. No, the other one goddammit. He's a pervert." I just couldn't say that to him, so now the poor parent is left believing that MSN solicits porn and that his son is a little angel. Oh well.

Now I'm sure you've all learned your lessons and you'll never use Internet Explorer again. So here's how to clean up the existing mess:

Start > (if applicable, Settings) > Control Panel.
Click on "Add or Remove Programs".
Remove anything you don't recognize, or need. If you don't know what it is, you don't need it.
Again, if you don't know what it is, you don't need it.

Go to "" and download Ad-Aware Personal Edition. Scan your system with it and delete everything it finds. If you had Gator E-Wallet installed on your computer, you no longer do now. The program sucks anyway...

Go to "" and download "Spybot - Search & Destroy". Scan your system.

Go to "" and download Webroot Spysweeper. Scan your system.

Go to "" and download AVG AntiVirus. Scan your system.

...And just to make sure no one will EVER find out!
Open up Internet Explorer, hit Tools > Internet Options. Hit "delete cookies", "delete files", and "clear history" (that last one is important). Next, find your router and perform a hard reset on it just to make sure the router isn't keeping track of all the web sites you've visited. (Attention DSL users, have your username and password handy, you'll need it to re-set up the router. If you have cable, you're good to go). When asked about the router having been reset, say "I don't know" (very important). Lastly, fill up your hard drive with tons of crap until there is no space left. Then delete it all. This will ensure that the history you've just deleted cannot be "undeleted."

Congratulations, you're all done.

Bringing out the professional in you.