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Acme - Virus for MS-DOS by Urnst Kouch

Virus for MS-DOS

Urnst Kouch
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Published in Crypt Newsletter 9

Author's notes

ACME is a fast and simple companion virus which will create a spawned copy of itself for EVERY .EXE file it can find in the current directory.

ACME is ready to assemble using A86. If you recall, an earlier Crypt letter included an A86-only source listing. (Strict TASM/MASM compatible assemblers will need the manual addition of a couple simple declarative statements.) I included ACME in this form so fans of Isaacson's technique can gloat about the code not requiring "red tape." ;-] A86 will assemble ACME directly to a .COMfile virus, no linker necessary.

ACME currently eludes all scanners and as a companion virus, openly defies every integrity checker I have in my inventory with the EXCEPTION of Stiller Research's. This issue includes a quality report on Solomon's Toolkit, so it's only fair to state that while the documentation for this product seems to indicate that the developers know what a companion infection is, the software does nothing to protect against it in default mode. ACME flies through the Toolkit, for now. Go figure.

ACME will also play a generic ACME-style virus tune late in the afternoon. Those who fancy a musical virus but have never heard one are encouraged to play with ACME. Set your system clock to anytime after 4:00 pm. The musical payload takes up most of the space in this virus, removing it shaves the virus to 242 bytes - nice and small if you like.

The virus purist may recognize the root of ACME as a piece of code known as ZENO - a small, single-step companion infector. ZENO's author is thanked, wherever he/she is.

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