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Discovered: December 29, 2006
Updated: February 05, 2007 8:47:29 PM
Also Known As: W32/Dref-V [Sophos], WORM_NUWAR.BH [Trend], WORM_NUWAR.EE [Trend], Win32/Luder.U [Computer Associates], Win32/Luder.O [Computer Associates], W32/Dref-AA [Sophos], W32/Tibs [Norman], W32/Dref@MM [McAfee], W32.Dref@mm [Sunbelt Software]
Type: Worm
Infection Length: 17,559 bytes; 47,235 bytes; 48,259 bytes; 51,310 bytes (varies)
Systems Affected: Windows

W32.Mixor.Q@mm is a mass-mailing worm that drops additional malware on to the compromised computer. It may also drop a copy of Trojan.Galapoper.A (MCID 7483) or Trojan.Peacomm (MCID 9802) on to the compromised computer.

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version December 30, 2006
  • Latest Rapid Release version November 04, 2019 revision 019
  • Initial Daily Certified version December 30, 2006
  • Latest Daily Certified version November 04, 2019 revision 065
  • Initial Weekly Certified release date January 03, 2007

Click here for a more detailed description of Rapid Release and Daily Certified virus definitions.

Technical Description

Once executed, the worm copies itself as one of the following files:

  • %System%\ppl.exe
  • %System%\alsys.exe
  • %System%\taskdir.exe
  • %System%\adir.dll
  • %System%\adirss.exe

It then drops the following file, which may be a copy of Trojan.Galapoper.A (MCID 7483) or Trojan.Peacomm (MCID 9802):
%CurrentFolder%\[7 RANDOM CHARACTERS].exe

The worm also copies itself as [RANDOM CHARACTERS].t into folders containing .exe and .scr files. It also infects .exe and .scr files in folders containing [RANDOM CHARACTERS].t.

It creates the following files:
  • %System%\svcp.csv
  • %System%\winsub.xml

The worm creates the following registry entries so that it runs every time Windows starts:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\ppl.exe"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\ppl.exe"


HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\alsys.exe"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\alsys.exe"

The worm also adds the following registry entries so that it executes whenever Windows starts:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"taskdir" = "%System%\taskdir.exe"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"adir" = "%System%\adirss.exe"

The worm modifies the following registry entry to disable the Shared Access service:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\SharedAccess\"Start" = "4"

The worm ends security-related processes, if one of the following words is included in the window title:
  • anti
  • avg
  • avp
  • blackice
  • f-pro
  • firewall
  • hijack
  • lockdown
  • mcafee
  • msconfig
  • nav
  • nod32
  • rav
  • reged
  • Registry Editor
  • spybot
  • taskmgr
  • troja
  • viru
  • vsmon
  • zonea

The worm then downloads an encrypted configuration file from the following location:

The above configuration file further instructs it to download and execute various components from the following locations:
  • [http://][REMOVED]
  • [http://][REMOVED]
  • [http://][REMOVED]
  • [http://][REMOVED]

The worm then gathers email addresses from the Windows Address Book by checking the file linked to the following registry subkey:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\WAB\WAB4\Wab File Name

The worm also gathers email addresses from files with the following extensions on all fixed drives:
  • .htm
  • .txt
  • .hta

The worm avoids sending emails to the following domains:
  • .mil
  • .gov

Next, the worm gathers email addresses from the following file types:
  • .adb
  • .asp
  • .cfg
  • .cgi
  • .dat
  • .dbx
  • .dhtm
  • .eml
  • .htm
  • .jsp
  • .lst
  • .mbx
  • .mdx
  • .mht
  • .mmf
  • .msg
  • .nch
  • .ods
  • .oft
  • .php
  • .pl
  • .sht
  • .shtm
  • .stm
  • .tbb
  • .txt
  • .uin
  • .wab
  • .wsh
  • .xls
  • .xml

While gathering email addresses from the above file types, the worm disregards email addresses that contain any of the following strings:
  • @avp.
  • @foo
  • @iana
  • @messagelab
  • @microsoft
  • abuse
  • admin
  • anyone@
  • bsd
  • bugs@
  • cafee
  • certific
  • contract@
  • f-secur
  • feste
  • free-av
  • gold-certs@
  • google
  • help@
  • icrosoft
  • info@
  • kasp
  • linux
  • listserv
  • local
  • news
  • nobody@
  • noone@
  • noreply
  • ntivi
  • panda
  • pgp
  • postmaster@
  • rating@
  • root@
  • samples
  • sopho
  • spam
  • support
  • unix
  • update
  • winrar
  • winzip

The worm then posts the above email addresses to the following location:\1.jpg

Next, the worm may be instructed to send infected messages to a number of email addresses using its own SMTP engine. The email may have the following characteristics:

The From address is spoofed.

  • One of the following:
  • 5 Reasons I Love You
  • A Bouquet of Love
  • A Day in Bed Coupon
  • A Hug & Roses
  • A Kiss for You
  • A Kiss So Gentle
  • A Little (sex) Card
  • A Monkey Rose for You
  • A Red Hot Kiss
  • A Relaxing Coupon
  • A Romantic Place
  • A Song to You
  • A Special Flower for You
  • A Special Kiss
  • A Sweet Love
  • A Token of My Love
  • A Weekend Getaway
  • Against All Odds
  • All For You
  • All That Matters
  • Angel of Love
  • Annual Fun Forecast!
  • Awaiting Your Love
  • Baby New Year!
  • Baby, I'll Be There
  • Back Together
  • Best Wishes For A Happy New Year!
  • Between Us
  • Bewitching Moonlight
  • Brand New Love
  • Breakfast in Bed Coupon
  • Bubble Bath Coupon
  • Can't Wait to See You!
  • Crazy way to say I Luv U
  • Cuddle Me Please
  • Cuddle Up
  • Cyber Love
  • Dancing With You
  • Dinner Coupon
  • Doing It for You
  • Dream Date Coupon
  • Dream Girl
  • Emptiness Inside Me
  • Eternity of Your Love
  • Evening Romance
  • Every Inch of Your Body
  • Everyone Needs Someone
  • Falling In Love with You
  • Feeling Horny?
  • Fields Of Love
  • For Better of For Worse
  • For You
  • For You....My Love
  • Forever and Ever
  • Forever in Love
  • From this day forward
  • Full Heart
  • Fun 2007!
  • Hand in Hand
  • Happiness And Continued Success!
  • Happiness In Everything!
  • Happy New Year!
  • Happy Times And Happy Memories!
  • He Blessed Our Lives
  • Heart is Breaking
  • Heart of Mine
  • Hey Cutie
  • Hold Me (distant love)
  • Hold On
  • How Much I Love You
  • Hugging My Pillow
  • I Always Knew
  • I am Complete
  • I Am Lost In You
  • I Believe
  • I Can't Function
  • I Dream of you
  • I Give to You
  • I Love Thee
  • I Love You Mower
  • I Love You Soo Much
  • I Love You So
  • I Love You with All I Am
  • I Still Love You
  • I Think of You
  • I Win with You
  • I wish
  • I Woof You
  • I Would Do Anything
  • I Would Give you Anything
  • I'll Be Your Man
  • If I Could
  • If I Knew
  • In Love
  • In My Heart
  • Inside My Heart
  • Internet Love
  • It's Your Move
  • Just You & Me
  • Just You
  • Kiss Coupon
  • Kisses, Hugs & Roses
  • Last Night was Hot!
  • Let's Get Frisky
  • Live With Me
  • Longing for You
  • Love at First Sight
  • Love Birds
  • Love for Granted
  • Love is in the Air
  • Love Remains
  • Love You Deeply
  • Made for Each Other
  • Magic of Flowers
  • Massage Coupon
  • Memories
  • Miracle of Love
  • Moonlit Waterfall
  • Most Beautiful Girl
  • My Eye on You
  • My Heart belongs to you
  • My Heart is Thinking
  • My Invitation
  • My Love
  • My Perfect Love
  • New Year... Happy Year!
  • Now and Forever
  • Now I Know
  • Old Together
  • One of the following:
  • Only You
  • Our Love Everyday
  • Our Love is Free
  • Our Love
  • Our Love is Strong
  • Our love is torn by miles
  • Our Love Nest
  • Our Love Will Last
  • Our Two Hearts
  • Our Wedding Day
  • P.M.S
  • Passionate Kiss
  • Peek-A-Boo
  • Pockets of Love
  • Promises Of Happy Times!
  • Puppy Love
  • Raising A Toast To Happy Times!
  • Red Rose
  • Romantic Picnic Coupon
  • Rose for my Love
  • Safe and Sound
  • Safe With You
  • Scale Greater Heights!
  • Search for One
  • Sending Kiss
  • Sending You My Love
  • Showers Of Love
  • So in Love
  • So Unique
  • Solitary Beauty
  • Someone at Last
  • Soul Mates
  • Soul Partners
  • Sparkling Happiness And Good Times!
  • Steamy Dream
  • Steamy Sex Coupon
  • Summer Love
  • Take My Hand
  • Teddy Bear & Roses
  • Tender Whispers
  • Thanks...Love
  • That Special Love
  • The Candle's Light
  • The Dance of Love
  • The Kiss
  • The Letter
  • The Long Haul
  • The Love Bugs
  • The Miracle of Love
  • The Mood for Love
  • The Sweet Taste of Love
  • The Time for Love
  • Thinking about you
  • Thinking of You
  • This Day Forward
  • This Feeling
  • Til the End of Time
  • Till Morning's Light
  • Till Morninig's Light
  • Times Are Hard, I Luv U
  • To New Spouse
  • Together Again
  • Together You and I
  • Touched by Love
  • True Love
  • Trunk Full Of Love
  • Twice Blest
  • Twilight Paradise
  • Two of a Kind
  • Unique Love
  • Unmatchable Beauty
  • Until the Day
  • Vacation Love
  • Waiting for You
  • Want to Meet?
  • Want You to Know
  • Warm New Year Hug!
  • Warmest Wishes For New Year!
  • We Are Different
  • We Have Walked
  • We're a Perfect Fit
  • When I look at you
  • When I'm With You
  • When You Fall in Love
  • Why I Love You
  • Wild Nights--Wild Nights
  • Will You?
  • Window of Beauty
  • Wine and Roses
  • Wish I Could Tell You
  • Wish Upon a Star
  • With All My Love
  • With All of My Heart
  • With This Ring
  • Without Your Love
  • Won't you dance with me
  • Words I Write
  • Worthy of You
  • Wrapped in Your Arms
  • Wrapped Up
  • You + Me
  • You and I
  • You and I Forever
  • You Are My Guiding Star
  • You are out of this world
  • You Asked Me Why
  • You Brighten My Day
  • You Lucky Duck!
  • You Rock Me!
  • You Were Worth the Wait
  • You're My Hero
  • You're so Far Away
  • You're Soo kissable
  • You're the One
  • Your Love Has Opened
  • Your Silly Smile

Message body:

One of the following:
  • Flash Postcard.exe
  • flashpostcard.exe
  • Greeting Card.exe
  • greeting postcard.exe
  • greetingcard.exe
  • greetingpostcard.exe
  • postcard.exe


Symantec Security Response encourages all users and administrators to adhere to the following basic security "best practices":

  • Use a firewall to block all incoming connections from the Internet to services that should not be publicly available. By default, you should deny all incoming connections and only allow services you explicitly want to offer to the outside world.
  • Enforce a password policy. Complex passwords make it difficult to crack password files on compromised computers. This helps to prevent or limit damage when a computer is compromised.
  • Ensure that programs and users of the computer use the lowest level of privileges necessary to complete a task. When prompted for a root or UAC password, ensure that the program asking for administration-level access is a legitimate application.
  • Disable AutoPlay to prevent the automatic launching of executable files on network and removable drives, and disconnect the drives when not required. If write access is not required, enable read-only mode if the option is available.
  • Turn off file sharing if not needed. If file sharing is required, use ACLs and password protection to limit access. Disable anonymous access to shared folders. Grant access only to user accounts with strong passwords to folders that must be shared.
  • Turn off and remove unnecessary services. By default, many operating systems install auxiliary services that are not critical. These services are avenues of attack. If they are removed, threats have less avenues of attack.
  • If a threat exploits one or more network services, disable, or block access to, those services until a patch is applied.
  • Always keep your patch levels up-to-date, especially on computers that host public services and are accessible through the firewall, such as HTTP, FTP, mail, and DNS services.
  • Configure your email server to block or remove email that contains file attachments that are commonly used to spread threats, such as .vbs, .bat, .exe, .pif and .scr files.
  • Isolate compromised computers quickly to prevent threats from spreading further. Perform a forensic analysis and restore the computers using trusted media.
  • Train employees not to open attachments unless they are expecting them. Also, do not execute software that is downloaded from the Internet unless it has been scanned for viruses. Simply visiting a compromised Web site can cause infection if certain browser vulnerabilities are not patched.
  • If Bluetooth is not required for mobile devices, it should be turned off. If you require its use, ensure that the device's visibility is set to "Hidden" so that it cannot be scanned by other Bluetooth devices. If device pairing must be used, ensure that all devices are set to "Unauthorized", requiring authorization for each connection request. Do not accept applications that are unsigned or sent from unknown sources.
  • For further information on the terms used in this document, please refer to the Security Response glossary.


The following instructions pertain to all current and recent Symantec antivirus products, including the Symantec AntiVirus and Norton AntiVirus product lines.

  1. Disable System Restore (Windows Me/XP).
  2. Update the virus definitions.
  3. Run a full system scan.
  4. Delete any values added to the registry.
  5. Reenable the SharedAccess service (Windows 2000/XP only).

For specific details on each of these steps, read the following instructions.

1. To disable System Restore (Windows Me/XP)
If you are running Windows Me or Windows XP, we recommend that you temporarily turn off System Restore. Windows Me/XP uses this feature, which is enabled by default, to restore the files on your computer in case they become damaged. If a virus, worm, or Trojan infects a computer, System Restore may back up the virus, worm, or Trojan on the computer.

Windows prevents outside programs, including antivirus programs, from modifying System Restore. Therefore, antivirus programs or tools cannot remove threats in the System Restore folder. As a result, System Restore has the potential of restoring an infected file on your computer, even after you have cleaned the infected files from all the other locations.

Also, a virus scan may detect a threat in the System Restore folder even though you have removed the threat.

For instructions on how to turn off System Restore, read your Windows documentation, or one of the following articles:

Note: When you are completely finished with the removal procedure and are satisfied that the threat has been removed, reenable System Restore by following the instructions in the aforementioned documents.

For additional information, and an alternative to disabling Windows Me System Restore, see the Microsoft Knowledge Base article: Antivirus Tools Cannot Clean Infected Files in the _Restore Folder (Article ID: Q263455).

2. To update the virus definitions
Symantec Security Response fully tests all the virus definitions for quality assurance before they are posted to our servers. There are two ways to obtain the most recent virus definitions:
  • Running LiveUpdate, which is the easiest way to obtain virus definitions.
  • Downloading the definitions using the Intelligent Updater: The Intelligent Updater virus definitions are posted daily. You should download the definitions from the Symantec Security Response Web site and manually install them. To determine whether definitions for this threat are available by the Intelligent Updater, refer to Virus Definitions (Intelligent Updater).

The latest Intelligent Updater virus definitions can be obtained here: Intelligent Updater virus definitions . For detailed instructions read the document: How to update virus definition files using the Intelligent Updater .

3. To run a full system scan
  1. Start your Symantec antivirus program and make sure that it is configured to scan all the files.
  2. Run a full system scan.
  3. If any files are detected, follow the instructions displayed by your antivirus program.
Important: If you are unable to start your Symantec antivirus product or the product reports that it cannot delete a detected file, you may need to stop the risk from running in order to remove it. To do this, run the scan in Safe mode. For instructions, read the document, How to start the computer in Safe Mode . Once you have restarted in Safe mode, run the scan again.

After the files are deleted, restart the computer in Normal mode and proceed with the next section.

Warning messages may be displayed when the computer is restarted, since the threat may not be fully removed at this point. You can ignore these messages and click OK. These messages will not appear when the computer is restarted after the removal instructions have been fully completed. The messages displayed may be similar to the following:

Title: [FILE PATH]
Message body: Windows cannot find [FILE NAME]. Make sure you typed the name correctly, and then try again. To search for a file, click the Start button, and then click Search.

4. To delete the value from the registry
Important: Symantec strongly recommends that you back up the registry before making any changes to it. Incorrect changes to the registry can result in permanent data loss or corrupted files. Modify the specified subkeys only. For instructions refer to the document: How to make a backup of the Windows registry .
  1. Click Start > Run.
  2. Type regedit
  3. Click OK.

    Note: If the registry editor fails to open the threat may have modified the registry to prevent access to the registry editor. Security Response has developed a tool to resolve this problem. Download and run this tool, and then continue with the removal.

  4. Navigate to and delete the following registry entries:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\ppl.exe"
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\ppl.exe"
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\alsys.exe"
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\"Agent" = "%System%\alsys.exe"

  5. Restore the following registry entry to its previous value, if required:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\SharedAccess\"Start" = "4"

  6. Exit the Registry Editor.
5. To reenable the SharedAccess service (Windows 2000/XP only)

The SharedAccess service is responsible for maintaining Internet Connection Sharing and the Windows Firewall/Internet Connection Firewall applications in Windows. (The presence and names of these applications vary depending on the operating system and service pack you are using.) To protect your computer and maintain network functionality, re-enable this service if you are using any of these programs.

Windows XP Service Pack 2
If you are running Windows XP with Service Pack 2 and are using the Windows Firewall, the operating system will alert you when the SharedAccess service is stopped, by displaying an alert balloon saying that your Firewall status is unknown. Perform the following steps to ensure that the Windows Firewall is re-enabled:

  1. Click Start > Control Panel.

  2. Double-click the Security Center.

  3. Ensure that the Firewall security essential is marked ON.

  4. Note: If the Firewall security essential is marked on, your Windows Firewall is on and you do not need to continue with these steps.

  5. If the Firewall security essential is not marked on, click the "Recommendations" button.

  6. Under "Recommendations," click Enable Now. A window appears telling you that the Windows Firewall was successfully turned on.

  7. Click Close, and then click OK.

  8. Close the Security Center.

Windows 2000 or Windows XP Service Pack 1 or earlier
Complete the following steps to re-enable the SharedAccess service:

  1. Click Start > Run.
  2. Type services.msc

  3. Then click OK.

  4. Do one of the following:

    Windows 2000: Under the Name column, locate the "Internet Connection Sharing (ICS)" service and double-click it.
    Windows XP: Under the Named column, locate the "Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) / Internet Connection Sharing (ICS)" service and double-click it.

  5. Under "Startup Type:", select "Automatic" from the drop-down menu.

  6. Under "Service Status:", click the Start button.

  7. Once the service has completed starting, click OK.

  8. Close the Services window.

Writeup By: Ka Chun Leung and Mircea Ciubotariu