Monday, 20 February 2017

Computer Crashes When Installing/Scanning Anti-Virus Software 👨‍💻

A week ago, I was finally successful in downloading the Kaspersky 10 for Windows from the right link to install on the organization's (Population Services International) PSI, laptops and desktops.

An anti-virus program crashing during scan adds insult to injury: When I was already trying to do right by removing malware infections from client computer. 

There are few stand-out causes for crashing during a virus scan; while the crash may be related to a problem with the anti-virus program itself, the anti-virus program could be triggering or aggravating another existing system problem to cause crashes. However, frequent system crashes are a symptom of malware infection. Instability within the anti-virus program itself can take down the system. Malware infections can embed themselves within program code and cause programs, including anti-virus software, to malfunction. 

The anti-virus program may also be unstable because of damaged code: update errors and disk corruption can alter parts of the anti-virus program and trigger crashes. The program may also crash the system if you're running more than one anti-virus program at a time since they can attack each other, causing system stability problems and degraded protection and that was just what I experience. 

Due to the delay in getting the right link for their AV software, the users went about downloading free and fake antivirus from the internet on their machines that had me going through a lot of stress. I was able to complete the scan by removing crash-causing elements. 

Before running the scan, restart the computer and enter "Safe Mode with Networking" by holding "Shift" while selecting "Restart" from the sign-in screen power icon. Safe Mode with Networking disables any non-essential functions, which may remove the crash cause and allow the anti-virus program to complete the scan. 

You may be able to fix other crash causes by running Wise Registry Cleaner, Chkdsk or a Windows Refresh Install. With the above method used, I was able to get the machines up and running again. This is some of the everyday problems I face with customer which of course help brightens my knowledge in solving complex problems.

Thanks for reading.

Prepared by:
Daniel Collins
NATC Technician

Thursday, 2 February 2017

Layer 7 Website Blocking Using MikroTik Router

Dear Readers

I am glad to have you updated every month by sharing with you my experiences, challenges and how I go about resolving them.

A week ago, one of our valuable clients (USAID Liberia Strategic Analysis/Social Impact) whom we’re providing internet services as well as IT equipment, complained that they have been going through tough times relating to their internet speed and bandwidth consumption. Every other time we will receive a call or email about this issue. So we first came up with a suggestion that all users be managed on the network by creating a queue and allocating an amount of bandwidth to each user in the router. This method was applied for a while but they changed their mind again saying that they do not want to restrict user’s bandwidth. So, as a tech support and you have to be creative and come up with suggestions that will best suit your client in order to maintain the business relationship.

Since we have provided this solution, they have not called or complained. So I think this was a brilliant idea. They already have an in-house IT officer. We decided to conduct a free training lesson for their IT person on how to use the ‘MIKROTIK’ device which is very easy to configure and is extremely user friendly.

We arranged an appointment to come over and have him trained.

They agreed and the next day I was at their office. I downloaded the latest version on MikroTik software called Winbox that is used to login any MikroTik devices and installed it on his laptop.

We logged into the Core router using this software.

These are the few steps to follow, as listed below.
  1.        Open winbox and login with login name and password
  2.        On the left hand Conner, click ‘’IP’’ and select ‘’Firewall’’
  3.        In firewall, select ‘’Layer 7 protocols’’ and click on the (+) symbol
In the dialog box, fill the name space with the website you wish to block and write this script in the ‘’Regexp: space’’ ^.+(*$ and do this for all websites click on ‘’Apply’’ and ‘’Ok’’.

4.   To make this work on the network, in the same ‘’Firewall" menu, click on: Filter Rules > + > Advanced > Layer 7 protocol to select the website you just added and click OK. In the same menu click “Action’’ and select “drop’’ and “Apply’’.
5.   Reboot the system/router to make changes effective.

Now you are done! Open a web browser test the website you just block.

It should give you an error that saying ‘’ this site cannot be found’’!

The client was well satisfied and happy with the training.

I am not a MikroTik Certified Network Administrator (MTCNA) yet but I can say I am proud of myself and many thanks to NATC, were I started off as an IT Trainee. I am planning to write MTCNA exams soon anyways. Being in the field has brought me close to learning lot of new things every day.

I hope this will guide you through in resolving such problem if you are new to MikroTik systems.

Prepared by:

Daniel W. Collins
Senior IT Technician