Author Topic: Test the usb-stick you have got for Christmas...with H2Testw  (Read 5213 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline polonus

  • Avast √úberevangelist
  • Probably Bot
  • *****
  • Posts: 33926
  • malware fighter
Test the usb-stick you have got for Christmas...with H2Testw
« on: December 22, 2009, 08:54:07 PM »
Hi malware fighters,

Whenever one finds a promotional pendrive or USB stick under the Christmas-tree it could have come with malware inside. A good advice for everyone is to format their USB stick from the start. To format means select through explorer the USB-stick, right click the mouse on format.
Why this advice is given, read here: http://isc.sans.org/diary.html?storyid=7789

But there is a better option still, my malware fighting friends, it is a good advice to start your USB stick's life on your machine by running the free program H2testw  (download from: http://www.heise.de/software/download/h2testw/50539).
H2Testw has been written by one of the authors of the German-speaking magazine c't (a biweekly).

There are quite a number of cheap USB memorysticks coming onto the market where the inbuilt controller tells the OS it has say 2GB available, while there is only 1GB aboard. The final outcome will be corrupted  files!

Re e.g.. http://www.heise.de/ct/meldung/Datenverluste-durch-manipulierte-USB-Sticks-173028.html and http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/Hama-ruft-manipulierte-USB-Sticks-zurueck-Update-178610.html for examples of bad pendrives or USB-sticks (both articles in German, but Google translate is your friend and will produce a rather comprehensible English translation)

H2testw is a handy-dandy tool and this for three reasons:
1) it will overwrite flashmemory, eventual malware existing on the USB-stick will be removed/deleted beyond repair (for the common undelete software)
2) after running it one knows that the stick has the mentioned capacity aboard indeed
3) eventual bad blocks are being recognized, this preventing you to place important files unto a malfunctioning or lame USB-stick

The program as a default comes in German, but upon starting it up one could switch to English.

NOTA BENE that means IMPORTANT: never run H2Testw on a stick with important data on it when you haven't place this files somewhere else on the computer or secure online- everything on the USB-stick or pendrive will be overwritten! But again that is also true when you format USB-sticks...

And finally enjoy the pendrives/USB-sticks that Santa brought you,

polonus
« Last Edit: December 22, 2009, 09:30:12 PM by polonus »
Cybersecurity is more of an attitude than anything else. Avast Evangelists.

Use NoScript, a limited user account and a virtual machine and be safe(r)!

Offline polonus

  • Avast √úberevangelist
  • Probably Bot
  • *****
  • Posts: 33926
  • malware fighter
Re: Test the usb-stick you have got for Christmas...with H2Testw
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2009, 01:33:36 AM »
Hi malware fighters,

A linux user in another forum commented this on the corrupted usb stick issue (some promised 1GB and actually could deliver 400 Mb) for x86 machines:
Quote
You could also use this: http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php
Just use a GParted live CD (which is handy to have anyway) to format it, and you'll be free of malware, trialware, shovelware, or whatever else they put on it without risk.

So never trust an offer for what it is, if it is too good to be true then it often is...

polonus
« Last Edit: December 24, 2009, 01:44:43 AM by polonus »
Cybersecurity is more of an attitude than anything else. Avast Evangelists.

Use NoScript, a limited user account and a virtual machine and be safe(r)!

Offline Shiw Liang

  • Avast Evangelist
  • Super Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 1432
Re: Test the usb-stick you have got for Christmas...with H2Testw
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2009, 04:14:32 AM »
Mine is a good pendrive^^
Hehe I passed 3 times the washing machine and the data is not even deleted or corrupted.

Offline nmb

  • Avast Evangelist
  • Massive Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 3054
Re: Test the usb-stick you have got for Christmas...with H2Testw
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2009, 08:55:53 AM »
Hehe I passed 3 times the washing machine and the data is not even deleted or corrupted.

you must be lucky..

my ipod couldn't bare it for once..  :(  :'(

btw, my pen drive passed the H2Testw..

nmb
« Last Edit: December 24, 2009, 09:00:20 AM by nmb »