think I need to delete my hard drive

Discussion in 'Technical' started by monkeyman, Sep 21, 2005.


  1. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    My PC sucks, its normaly slow but for the last day or so it has been even slower to the point that while Im a slow typest I have to wait for it to catch up to me when I type. I says in my system page that I have like 60% of my space still available and yet may programs tell me there is not enouph memory to run them when they are already instaled, Norton told me it couldnt run due to this then that it had been corupted or damaged and needed to be uninstalled and reinstalled so I went through add/remove programs (since I couldnt find my uninstall wizard) and deleted norton and it said it removed it but then it was still there even after I did a restart. It is totaly screwy and I did just run a virus scan through trendmicro.com and it found 1 virus in 1 file that it is deleating and 46 spywares (cookies) and a couple of security concerns that are being updated but I still cant get it to run a lot of stuff including Norton and it has 04 but I have 05 that I can install if I can get the other to uninstall and the PC to start working right or else I figure I will just have to find out how to totaly delete my hard drive so I can reinstall the running programs I use and start over. Any advice short of useing the thing for target practice like I would like to?
     
  2. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    On the Norton stuff it can be very difficult to fix - I'd go to their webpage and try and find a fix there. I just had someone go through this while upgrading ZoneAlarm and after trying everything I knew we wound up just installing a new, different firewall. Once that stuff is in your registry it can be tough to deal with. Next time maybe solve the memory problem first, which is easier and may have solved the Norton problem.

    Not enough memory will really slow things down, and it's caused by a couple of things. First, everyone lets way too much crap run when they don't need too, and that stuff all uses resources. Hit CTRL+ALT+DELETE to see what's running, and you can adjust things so all that stuff doesn't start at startup. Just fire up those things when you need 'em. Second, buy and add more memory. It's probably pretty cheap for your PC and will help things immensly. Also do a ScanDisk and DeFrag as defragging can really speed things up.
     
  3. RightHand

    RightHand Pioneer in a New World Moderator Founding Member

    MM, what you are talking about doing is reformatting your hard drive. Before you do that, try a scan disk and disk defrag. If you're using Windows 95 or 98, you can find these utilities from your start menu under Programs/Accessories/Systems Tools. If that doesn't work and you have to reformat the drive, remember that everything will be erased including your operating system. Be prepared to reinstall Windows OS (if that is what you are running) and all program files you want to use. All your data will also be gone so before you reformat, make sure you have a backup of any necessary data.

    Sometimes, when a hard drive is dying, it slows to a snails pace so this could also be your problem. You may have to replace the hard drive.
     
  4. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    You have eithr a keylogger or browser Hijcker. Very few problems like that are caused by physical disk space. It's extra garbaeg the you don't want tying up resources. Do you run AdAware and Spybot? They are fre and might help. This is a 2.5 MB download of a program I used last week to find a couple things on my sys. The Sword. I think this demo allows you 3 free removals. It will let you see the others but not clean them. After I saw like 14, I paid the $15 or so and bought it.
    http://www.securitystronghold.com/true-sword/TrueSword.exe
     
  5. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Cool, Ill try some of those things. It has sped back up some now. I wish I could do back ups but I cant get it to let me save entire folders to disk it will only let me do one document at a time so its not hardly worth it to try to save each pic or letter. I may be able to get it to stop running some of the stuff and if not then a lot of it isnt realy used and will just get deleted if needed to shut it off. I know when I can afford it the main thing I need to do is just buy or have a buddy build for me a new computer with decent capability, the one I have is non expandable.
     
  6. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member


    What he said, except that cntl, alt, del works for XP. Earlier versions of windows will simply reboot from that combination. With the earlier versions, you need to start, control panel, (and I forget exactly what) something to do with program manager or monitor. One thing VAlkman is absolutely right about is having too many programs running in the background. Keep it to a minimum to support what you are doing when you are doing it. You'll need to fix up your startup files, remove the autostarting programs one by one until you find a nice suite of things to load on boot. Most folks do NOT need as many as they have start at bootup.. Software will usually load itself into the startup files if you let them.

    Usually, "not enough memory" with that set of symptoms indicates a trojan or hijacker is waiting for you to go on line so it can start spamming, spreading itself randomly over the web, or transmitting mined data it found on your hard drive (like SSNs, credit card numbers, all that sort of interesting and useful data.) You can get some support for this theory by watching the little monitor icon in the task bar when on line. If it is continously colored, it is using processor and sending. adding new and more memory will just enable the system to be further corrupted if there is a virus acting. When it come to RAM, more is better nearly all the time. The measure is whether or not things worked well before.

    If you are not (and even if you are) connected, you can see what is going on by looking in control panel under system, and finding the monitoring graphical display. From there, you can narrow down the "thing" that is using processor by one after another shutting down the stuff running in the background. Be careful when doing this, as some of the programs are necessary to support operation. You chould get a warning dialog if you are about to screw up. And, if you do, a reboot will start you up again. These pieces of things to do will not hurt you at all. Messing with the registry is a different story, usually not a very good idea.

    The best starting point is booting in safe mode, doing the scan disk and defrag from there to start. You can also do the rest of the scanning from safe, bearing in mind that when you do, the system is running only essential applications, and the problem may lie elsewhere. Exception: If you have an antivirus, you may be able to get it to run in safe, and do a scan with it. I have had a lot of trouble with Norton and McAfee in the past,, especially if they are not a current version. Trend Micro is what we use at work, along with the M$ updates, seems to work well, and is pretty automated with the company firewall. I don't use a firewall at home, it slows things down entirely too much. I have adopted the idea that prevention or cure of entry beats hell out of preventing the exit.

    I have AVG, Hijack this, AdAware SE, Spybot, and Spyware begone. That combination seems to work pretty well. Get the freeware versions at least, and upgrade to AVG, AdAware as soon as you can. Relitiously upgrade and scan often. (I do once a week when I'm home.) Also, go to the Microsoft website and get the free upgrades for your OS.

    If all else fails, copy your data to a CD or some sort of removable media, get your OS and software disks gathered together, and have the great joy of formatting the hard drive. The procedure for that is not difficult, but is tedious as all hell, it requires a complete reload of all software, resetting all your preferences and all that sort of thing. I can tell you from practical experience that it take less time and trouble to do a reload than hunting down and removing bad registry entries. YMMV and good luck.
     
  7. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Oh and I have the spyware thing from Yahoo that I run a time or 2 a week.
     
  8. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member


    What he said, except that cntl, alt, del works for XP. Earlier versions of windows will simply reboot from that combination. With the earlier versions, you need to start, control panel, (and I forget exactly what) something to do with program manager or monitor. One thing VAlkman is absolutely right about is having too many programs running in the background. Keep it to a minimum to support what you are doing when you are doing it. You'll need to fix your startup files, remove the autostarting programs one by one until you find a nice suite of things to load on boot. Most folks do NOT need as many as they have autostart at boot. Software will usually load itself into the startup files if you let them.

    Usually, "not enough memory" with that set of symptoms indicates a trojan or hijacker is waiting for you to go on line so it can start spamming, spreading itself randomly over the web, or transmitting mined data it found on your hard drive (like SSNs, credit card numbers, all that sort of interesting and useful data.) You can get some support for this theory by watching the little monitor icon in the task bar when on line. If it is continously colored, it is using processor and sending (or trying to if you are firewalled.) Adding new and more memory will just enable the system to be further corrupted if there is a virus acting. When it come to RAM, more is better nearly all the time. The measure of enough is whether or not things worked well before the problem started

    If you are not (and even if you are) connected, you can see what is going on by looking in control panel under system, and finding the monitoring graphical display. From there, you can narrow down the "thing" that is using processor by one after another shutting down the stuff running in the background. Be careful when doing this, as some of the programs are necessary to support operation. You should get a warning dialog if you are about to screw up. And, if you do, a reboot will start you up again. These pieces of things to do will not hurt you at all. Messing with the registry is a different story, usually not a very good idea.

    The best starting point is booting in safe mode, doing the scan disk and defrag from there to start. You can also do the rest of the scanning from safe, bearing in mind that when you do, the system is running only essential applications, and the problem may lie elsewhere. Exception: If you have an antivirus, you should disable it if it autostarts. Then, after the scan and defrag, call it up, you may be able to get it to run in safe, and do a scan with it. I have had a lot of trouble with Norton and McAfee in the past, especially if they are not a current version They do NOT like safe mode. AVG doesn't care. Trend Micro is what we use at work, along with the M$ updates, seems to work well, and is pretty automated with the company firewall. I don't use a firewall at home, it slows things down entirely too much. I have adopted the idea that prevention or cure of entry beats hell out of preventing the exit.

    I have AVG, Hijack this, AdAware SE, Spybot, and Spyware begone. That combination seems to work pretty well. Get the freeware versions at least, and upgrade to AVG, AdAware subscriptions as soon as you can. Religiously upgrade and scan often. (I do once a week when I'm home.) Also, go to the Microsoft website and get the free upgrades for your OS.

    If all else fails, copy your data to a CD or some sort of removable media, get your OS and software disks gathered together, and have the great joy of formatting the hard drive, at least three times to make sure. BIOS allows that, and most experts tell you three is the minimum to destroy any vestigial files. The procedure for that is not difficult, but is tedious as all hell, it requires a complete reload of all software, resetting all your preferences and all that sort of thing. I can tell you from practical experience that it take less time and trouble to do a reload than hunting down and removing bad registry entries. When you get every thing reloaded, scan the data backups with your AV programs BEFORE loading on the hard drive, there is a finite but small chance the viruse is in the data. YMMV and good luck.
     
  9. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    Yahell sucks. IMHO, Get rid of it, waste of time and aggravation. Too narrow.
     
  10. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I just have it because it came with the IM service and figured it would be better than nothing.
     
  11. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    www.donwnload.com

    get spybot (totally free) and ad-aware. Run them and you should see a difference. It doesn't sound like harddrive memory issues, but spyware and adware.

    I setup a system for my brother yesterday and purchased spysweeper. It works well and catches things before they work and it can automatically run at night.
     
  12. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I git the free truesword download twice and got rid of 5 or 6 things and that seemed to help then finished uninstalling Norton 04 and installed norton 05, now I just have to get it to open for me.
     
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