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vrf windows message "SHUTDOWN" --- remotely

Question asked by VRFuser on May 9, 2004
> it wasn't caused by any virus

Good news!

> as far as i know the only application that was
> running at that time were vee and excel

There's usually a *ton* of stuff running. Press Ctrl+Atl+Del, "t" (to select
Task Manager) and click the "Processes" tab. All that stuff is running.

> only my colleague and i have an access to the reskit
> for NT/win2000 in which the gui for shutdown is found.

Oh heck, you don't need that. Any stock NT can remotely shutdown any NT that
it has any kind of connection with. You won't find a whole lot of people
that know how to do this, but it can be done. The only way to prevent that
is to explicitly disallow remote shutdown with the Local Security Policy.

As for processes that crash... user mode code that crashes cannot hurt the
system. Kernel mode code that crashes can reset the system. Usually you'll
get a BSOD, but that's not guaranteed. Sometimes when kernel mode code
crashes your screen goes dark and then you get your BIOSs' sign on message.
As your computer boots up you're left with slack jaw, wondering what just
happened to that program you've been working on all night. If you didn't hit
Ctrl+S, it's gone!

SICL has occasionally crashed in the past, but I've never personally seen it
reset a machine. I do have a few reports from customers that the machine
reset for no apparent reason. All the logs seem to indicate this is the case
too, so it's not just customers getting grumpy. In the one case of this
behavior that was solved (so far anyway) we replaced an old HPIB card with a
newer Agilent card. The problem hasn't recurred in over two years now.

Which points out another potential possibility: hardware. Malfunctioning
hardware that hits the reset line will indeed reset the computer. Of course
if this is on more than one machine then it probably is some software cause.

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