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HELP! Girl's computer messed up bad Answered

UPDATE

She said that her mom just bought two laptops to replace it. So thats good.



It runs windows XP. I dont remember the RAM or anything, it wasnt much.
25-27 gb of hard drive i believe.
well
its got a virus or something bad wrong with it.

its very slow.
i am wondering if anyone knows of very lightweight virus and spyware programs. there is around <4 gb left on the hard drive.

like i said, it cant tolerate much...

i heard that defrag only works on hard drives with 25%+ left, right?

another thing
i think somehow the explorer process is terminating.
everything goes away except the background, and the windows. Then it comes back.
virus?

and...i need answers soon. if possible.

HELP!

Comments

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comodore
comodore

12 years ago

Avast, free any virus, spyware and all that stuff to find all the viruses and clean your computer! It works great, I use it on all my computers...

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

12 years ago

Well, you are running Linux so the games don't take up much. Also, You must not have that much music, either.

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whatsisface
whatsisface

12 years ago

Best way to get the data off is probably to get a linux distro, boot from CD and run it live, then copy any documents etc.. to a flash drive or ipod etc..

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

thats....possible. maybe. the ipod idea is great, i forgot you could use them as external hard drives. too bad mines an old 2gb nano. i dont know. what linux program do you think will work the best?

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 12 years ago

Anything with NTFS read capabilities. Use a Ubuntu live CD, should do what you want with ease.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

tried it in our XP. it didnt work. neither did the SLAX cd or the SLAX thumbdrive... oh well. i can figure it out later.

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 12 years ago

Did you mount the drive? As I remember, if you're using it live you have to mount a HDD before accessing it. Plus, was it the latest version of Ubuntu?

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

you have to what?

no its not the latest
actually i dont know.

either way its a moot point now, theyre getting two new laptops.

oh well.
=]

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Tool Using Animal
Tool Using Animal

12 years ago

Yeesh these people like to spend other peoples money. First and most simply, Go to all programs>accessories>system tools>system restore, and restore from an earlier date. if that doesn't fix it, Then, go to add remove programs and uninstall all the crud teen girls seem to stick on their computers, remove the "search bars" the "cursors", bearshare, limewire et al. reboot go to run msconfig>startup. remove anything absolutely not necessary. reboot download and install adaware and spybot reboot hit F8 after the bios screen, boot into safe mode with networking, run spybot, run adaware reboot run windows update. Might help, however, since you said she only has a litle hard drive and not much ram, I'm going to assume she (they,whoever) installed a copy of XP on a marginal system. So go, find a copy of win2k pro, install that.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

well its a pretty basic computer. she doesnt have a bunch of that stuff on there, actually. I forgot about msconfig, i will do that. Another thing, i think i am going to uninstall the virus program on there, because you cant turn it off. I mean, if you X it out, it just minimizes. What is safe mode with networking? thanks

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Tool Using Animal
Tool Using Animal

Reply 12 years ago

Safe mode is a boot option brought up by hitting F8 between the bios screen and the loading windows screen, it may take a few tries to get it, it loads windows with the bare miniumum to run, if you run spybot etc. in safe mode they have a better chance of catching the spyware. Networking just means you can get online to update. Of go Spybot advanced mode>Settings>System Start>Automatically run once at next system start. Close out spybot and reboot.

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Tool Using Animal
Tool Using Animal

Reply 12 years ago

that's Or go Spybot advanced mode>Settings>System Start>Automatically run once at next system start. Close out spybot and reboot.

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Tool Using Animal
Tool Using Animal

Reply 12 years ago

Oh yes, additionally get rid of Norton of Macafee if on there.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

i had symntec on mine...i hated that crap. I uninstalled everything. I then put on AVG and some other stuff. I might even uninstall that because its wanting me to buy the newest version.

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Labot2001
Labot2001

12 years ago

Buy a new one.

Whhaaaaaat?? :D

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forgesmith
forgesmith

12 years ago

i heard that defrag only works on hard drives with 25%+ left, right?
Nah, it'll work with less, just take much longer without much HD space to play with. Of course there's probably lots of stuff you can wipe off ot it, like the Restore directory, which you might want to do anyway in case the virus contaminated it. Now after running defrag once, run it again. With space opened up after the first pass the second one can do some more work faster, especially if it hardly had any the first time.

another thing
i think somehow the explorer process is terminating.
everything goes away except the background, and the windows. Then it comes back.
virus?
Very low system resources, the graphics get screwy like that. If the CPU (thru Windoze) does a lot of processing for the graphics, when resources are low it doesn't update all the graphics fast enough, stuff disappears and comes back.

Sounds less like a traditional virus, more like worms and spyware eating up resources. Or it could just be it's XP on an old computer with little memory. As the HD filled up there was less room for virtual memory, and what was available got too fragmented to be much use.

ScanDisk then defrag, see what that does. Then delete unneeded stuff, see if there's more improvement. If so, then virtual memory might have been the issue.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

Alright, thanks. I'll do the scan thing too. How do i get to scandisk? Hmmm.....I dunno. I know i can get it to work better than it is now, but how good i can get it to work is beyond me. also: She had been getting the blue screen of death, repeatedly, yesterday. I think she said it said something about a memory dump. The thing is, it didnt shut off. I dont know if that is normal.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

does ccleaner work the same as disk cleanup? It also has some kind of registry repair? I dont know. I'll use the windows programs for now, but once i get it running smoothly again, i'll put in the other programs.

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

CCleaner is disk cleanup and more. I've heard stories where CCleaner cleared up 5 Gigabytes of hard drive space.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

first time i ran it i got off 4.4gbs.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

yeah i love it, that program is great. I need to run it more often.

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forgesmith
forgesmith

Reply 12 years ago

How do i get to scandisk?
Quick way: Start -> Run -> (type in) scandisk, it'll run. It's a standard Windoze program, the system should already know the path to it.

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

12 years ago

Make her purchase a large external hard drive, back up, and wipe the Hard Drive. Then reinstall Windows. Once she has an external hard drive, she should be able to install most if not all programs to it.

If nothing else, purchase a new hard drive that's more than 20 something GB from NewEgg like this and just toss the old one.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

i dont think she wants to buy anything. i'd buy it for that use and my own use, but...i'm saving up for a mill, and its $975. Then almost $500 of acessories...i dont have the money to spare. but maybe, just maybe i can get my parents to get one. we really do need one. thanks

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

Okay. All I can say is that you might as well get a larger hard drive because in this day and age, you can't do much with 20 GB of space.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

yeah. She and her mom are the only ones who use it. They only use internet explorer, and...she uses AIM. thats about it. so they dont have much of a need for a bigger one(although i agree with you). thanks

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

Oh, well if that's all...

A flash drive would even suffice. You can run Pidgin or trillian from one. And even firefox.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

i'm going to re-try putting SLAX on one of my flash drives. hopefully i can do somethin with that....

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

Yeah, cool. Let us know how it goes.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

slax didnt work on a cd, and isnt working as of now on my thumbdrives.

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

That sucks. Have you tried pendrivelinux?

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

nope what about ubuntu(?) i have a cd of it right here.

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dsman195276
dsman195276

Reply 12 years ago

ya, i used to run fire fox off of my flash drive.

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

I run it off my flash drive, as well as Skype and Trillian.

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NachoMahma
NachoMahma

12 years ago

. I would: 1) Back up any important data 2) Reformat the HDD and start from scratch.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

that would be ideal, but...its so slow now that i dont know how much information could be salvaged. I mean, it works, its just so slow it takes forever to do anything. I might do that eventually. It needs to be done for SURE. I dont have a USB hard drive though, and i dont know how to do it if i dont have one of those. She had been getting the blue screen of death, repeatedly, yesterday. I think she said it said something about a memory dump. The thing is, it didnt shut off. I dont know if that is normal.

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forgesmith
forgesmith

Reply 12 years ago

You would need a second internal hard drive, erased clean, with a fresh WinXP install, put on the anti-virus and anti-spyware software, then put that in her computer first as the only drive. Run some stuff, verify the system is running faster. Then make that the master, make the old one the slave. Run the anti-everything from the new main drive against her hard drive, which should now be drive D:, then ScanDisk and defrag. Worst case will be salvaging from the old to the new hard drive, but that should hopefully fix the old one.

Offhand I doubt any virus will infect from slave to master, provided you do nothing to even look that the old HD is there and immediately release the anti's. But you can also burn the anti's on a CD then run them from the CD on an old CD-ROM drive, since it can't write to the CD it can't infect. Likewise you can boot from a CD with a CD-ROM drive and stay protected.

In any case, refurbished / recycled HDs are dirt cheap on eBay these days at larger sizes than she has. Heck, they're throwing them away these days. You could grab one easily.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

erm.... a little too much computer stuff there, and a bit much more work than i think is necessary. although if i cant get it fixed...clean XP install it will be. i'm thinking at the moment, worst comes to worst, i run linux on a live CD. Can i run virus programs on that that will find the viruses? Another thing. Whats the deal with running in Safe mode? Can I install the virus programs in safe mode, scan in safe mode, and do all that in safe mode? What about the scandisk? And disk cleanup? Defrag? thanks!!

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xACIDITYx
xACIDITYx

Reply 12 years ago

I don't think you can run virus programs through linux unless you have a virus scanner on linux. And even then, I'm not sure it will scan Windows Partitions. It's worth a shot, though, and may work.

You should be able to do all of that in safemode.

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dsman195276
dsman195276

Reply 12 years ago

um, you can do everything in safe mode. just your drives don't work.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

what do you mean the drives dont work?

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dsman195276
dsman195276

Reply 12 years ago

in safe mode all your drives are disabled, as in you can't use them. like your CD drives and usb drives. so you can't install a disk.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

ah so i'd have to install the spyware and other programs first from a flash drive, restart, and boot into safe mode to do the scan and stuff...(i'd restart anyways).

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dsman195276
dsman195276

Reply 12 years ago

ya. i have had problems with my computer to. i would use XsofSpySE for finding viruses.

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dsman195276
dsman195276

12 years ago

sounds like my computer! um, well the EX terrimitating thing i have not been able to get rid of. you will just have to live with it. for viruses try XsofSpySE it works well. and have been able to get rid of lots of the stuff.

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Gjdj3
Gjdj3

12 years ago

I mainly agree with Skate. You should definetly back up, then wipe the drive. Once you reinstall Windows though, only put the stuff you really need back on the computer. Leave the rest on the external. From there... encourage your friend to download excess stuff to the external. It'll save space on the main drive.

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John Smith
John Smith

Reply 12 years ago

(see comment to skate) I told her to see if she can delete some stuff. it seems like its so screwed up now that our main priority is to get it so that i can run the rest of the stuff, like the disk cleanup and stuff.... i dont think it ever had defrag done to it, haha thanks