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Did You Know The Worst Computer Virus Ever !!



The worst MS-DOS virus ever, Michelangelo (1991) was so named because it activated itself on March 6, the birth day of the famous renaissance painter. The virus attacked the boot sector of hard drives and any floppy drive inserted into a computer. Upon activation it destroyed data.


Michelangelo is mostly similar to the original Stoned Virus. In addition to infecting the sectors of the original Stoned virus, Michelangelo infects sector 28 on 1.2 megabyte floppy disks. Upon infection, the Michelangelo virus becomes memory resident at the top of system memory but below the 640K DOS boundary. Interrupt 12's return is moved to insure that Michelangelo is not overwritten in memory.

It has a destructive payload that overwrites all data on the hard disk with random characters, making recovery of any data unlikely, if not impossible. It will only do this if the computer is booted on March 6 (the birthday of the artist Michelangelo, ironically, one of the vendors that sold software infected with the virus was DaVinci systems). In addition, the virus does not check if the MBR has been previously infected, therefore if a similar virus has already infected the MBR, it will move the previous virus to the location the original MBR was stored on, making recovery of the MBR impossible.

The Michelangelo virus had a destructive payload, however it ended up destroying very little. Like its parent, Stoned, it was commonly found accidentally installed on vendor software disks. The first was a PC Paintbrush update disk from Z-Soft released in October of 1991. In the month that the virus's payload was supposed to activate, Intel shipped a Netspool disk (software for network printers on Novell Netware) infected with Michelangelo. Leading Edge shipped 6,000 PCs with the virus in January of 1992. In all, around 20 companies shipped disks or even computers with the virus.