German PC vendor Medion gave some of its customers an unwanted blast from the past when it shipped laptops loaded with a 13 year-old virus.
The Medion systems contained a boot virus known as Stoned.Angelina. The virus stores itself in the DOS boot sector of floppy disks and in the master boot record on hard disks.
The company said in a notice on its Danish website that the infected machines had been sold through Aldi retail stores in the country.
Medion did not say that the affected machines were limited to Denmark, but none of Medion's other international sites bears the notice.
Security vendor Symantec said that there is little security risk from the virus, which was discovered in 1994.
The virus is designed to do nothing more than attempt to spread and replicate. However, F-Secure noted that an edit made to the DOS boot sector by the virus could possibly damage floppy disks.
Most antivirus applications will detect and eliminate the threat. Medion recommended that customers clean up their systems by reinstalling the operating system from the recovery CD included with the system.
Viruses occasionally find their way onto devices during the manufacturing process. Dozens of iPods were infected via a computer at a manufacturing plant last October, and McDonald's had to recall 10,000 infected MP3 players in the same month.
Stoned.Angelina found its way into a Seagate manufacturing plant in 1995 and infected a batch of 850MB IDE hard drives.
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