Prank: How To Create a Fake Computer Virus in Windows

Sometimes you are in a mood to fool your friends but are unable to think of any prank. What could be more fun to create a fake computer virus that once executed displays a ‘shutdown system‘ message and eventually shuts the system down after the specified time has elapsed. Harmless but fun!

Any one can create this fake computer virus. In this tutorial I will demonstrate a step by step procedure on how to create a fake virus in Windows. If you find any trouble understanding the trick, drop a comment.

How to Create a Fake Virus

Step #1. Right click on the desktop and from the menu go to New->Shortcut,

Step #2. A window will pop up, simply type the following command to create a fake shutdown message,

shutdown -s -t 300 -c “This is a fake Virus!”

  • -t represents time in seconds, in this case its 300 secs (5 minutes). You can set to any value you want.
  • -c represents comment. Here you can type any comment which will appear in the shutdown message. Don’t forget to write your message between quotes as shown above.


Step #3. Click Next and then you’ll be asked to enter a shortcut name,

Step #4. Enter any shortcut name that you think is more likely to be clicked by your friends; in this tutorial however, I have entered – firefox. Click Ok and you’ll see a shortcut on your desktop.

However there is one problem, the icon doesn’t seem to be a Firefox icon as seen below, therefore we’ll have to change the icon.


Step #5. For this right click on the icon, click Properties->Change Icon. A warning will appear click OK.

Step #6. Next up, you will have to select the appropriate icon against the shortcut name. If for instance, you have typed ‘Internet Explorer‘ as a shortcut name, scroll and select IE icon for this and in case you have typed Firefox or any other program, you will have to browse through the directory where that program is located. Once you are in that folder, select the icon and hit Enter.

Presto! Now you have a proper icon. However, there is a shortcut arrow appearing on that icon. If you want to make this prank look more realistic, follow the procedure mentioned here to remove the shortcut overlay, else skip it.


Now when ever some one will click on the icon, it will generate a system shutdown message. After the specified time is elapsed the system will shutdown. This will certainly give your friend a hard time figuring it out as to what went wrong with the system.


The best part is that you can’t close it using the conventional way, no matter how hard you try, not even through the Task Manager. There is only one way to stop the counter. Here’s how:

How To Stop ‘System Shutdown Error’ Message

Go to Start->Run or use the WindowKey+R combination,

Type the following command,

shutdown -a

-a represents Abort. The shutdown message will disappear once this command is executed.


Don’t forget to share you experiences after pulling this prank on your friends. Have Fun!



  1. badal at yahoo
  2. dani