PULLMAN, Wash. — At least 34 Washington State University computers have been taken
out of service because of a destructive virus. The so-called Chernobyl Virus, set to activate on
April 26, scrambled hard drive data and rendered computers temporarily useless.
As a result of the virus infection, WSU has closed a student computer laboratory at Todd
Hall. New BIOS chips, a critical piece of the computer operating system which is ruined by the
virus, are on order. Once the new chips are installed, the lab will be back in operation.
The shutdown comes at the worst possible time for students and faculty. With finals and
graduation approaching, the computer labs are at their busiest.
Student Computing Service officials say it is possible to restore data from hard drives in the
laboratory computers thanks to a back-up system. However, individual computers attacked by
the virus will likely lose their data.
More Chernobyl Virus damage has been reported in student residence halls and scattered
campus locations.