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Harddrive Suddenly Full


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#1 mobius981

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 04:11 AM

Hi, I could really use some help
I have a VISTA OS on a 120GB Lenovo laptop with 1gb RAM. I have always had about 42 GB free on my HD and suddenly it shows only 5 GB free. I have cleaned up temp files etc, of course, ( I try to clean up the harddrive once a month) and i don't have a bunch of music/pics on board. I struggle with Vista anyway...I have had a computer since 1985 and I have never had so much trouble. could there be a corruption problem with the HD? What would anyone recommend? Thanks very much in advance. BTW one program I have indicates the USMTC2 folder is 9 GB, but when I look at the size in the C drive, it shows much less.

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#2 oldhippie

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 07:27 AM

This is just a thought, could the back up feature that that comes in Vista have been set to automatic back up to your hard drive?
I used it once to back up to DVD and it backed up 16 GB, I do not have that much in my documents, pictures, or music so I believe that a back up of my programs was also made.
  • click on the start button
  • select control panel
  • open back up and restore
You should be able to see when the last back up was performed and where the data was backed up to.
You can change the settings from this window as well.

Edited by oldhippie, 15 January 2008 - 07:33 AM.

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#3 Kevin_D

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 10:23 AM

It doesn't look like hdd corruption problem it looks like some malware problem therefore I'd recommend you to run several malware tests using for example AVAST(unfortunately I know nothing about its compatibility with Vista).

#4 rigacci

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 10:29 AM

Vista seems to keep a lot of redundant files. I did an upgrade to ultimate and it had a LOT of temp files leftover. I am not too certain on whether I can safely delete them.

You might also want to turn on your event viewer. You can the check it (systems or applications category) for any messages of activity or errors over a period of a couple of days.

Good luck.

DR

#5 hamluis

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 11:31 AM

You can run chkdsk /r from the Recovery Console, command prompt, Start/Run or Explorer...to get an accurate disk space count and clean up the hard drive.

Chkdsk Explained, Understanding What Chkdsk Does - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314835/EN-US/

How To Run CHKDSK In XP - http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?...b;en-us;Q315265

XP Chkdsk, Using the Graphical Version (My Computer) - http://www.updatexp.com/windows-xp-chkdsk.html

Louis

I did take note that you are running Vista, but I assume that chkdsk is still a viable tool.

Edited by hamluis, 15 January 2008 - 11:32 AM.


#6 M...

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 11:31 AM

Hello mobius981,

To find out what is consuming so much disk space, you might try using a tool like WinDirStat:

http://sourceforge.net/projects/windirstat/

The following indicates that WinDirStat does run on Vista, but you might need to run it with elevated privileges:

http://blog.windirstat.info/20070830/is-wi...sta-compatible/

The following two links about WinDirStat are threads from a person in a similar situation using Vista:

http://sourceforge.net/forum/forum.php?thr...forum_id=314709

http://sourceforge.net/forum/forum.php?thr...forum_id=314709


Another program that provides comparable information is SequoiaView; it works on XP, but I'm not sure about Vista:

http://w3.win.tue.nl/nl/onderzoek/onderzoe...n/sequoiaview//

#7 mobius981

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 01:18 PM

All RIGHT!! you are all awesome lifesavers. I began simply and checkdisk (annoying in VISTA, requires restart) got me two more gigs freespace. Then I checked event viewer. nothing.

THEN I downloaded WINDIRSTAT and sure enough unknown file of nearly again the size of correct used space on my harddrive. 48 GB! Of course you can't find this unknown file on Vista's regular programs (at least I can't).

Then I did turn off my automatic backup...don't need the reminder thank you. Because I do believe this is a shadow file/backup issue.

then I went to the 2nd blog at WINDIR STAT as advised:
http://sourceforge.net/forum/forum.php?thr...forum_id=314709

and followed directions. Then I ran windirstat again. At least the file is now down to 38 GB (even though I entered 3GB on the command line) so at least I have some breathing room and I will keep at it until it is beaten into submission;-)

Thanks so much!! This is a big problem IMHO, more input for myself and others would be appreciated.

#8 hamluis

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 03:20 PM

Don't know if your system is unnecessarily hanging on to temp files of any sort, but...you might want to run Disk Cleanup.

http://windowshelp.microsoft.com/Windows/e...7139d91033.mspx

Also, if you are using a backup program AND system restore, I suggest turning off SR.

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/tutorials/windows-vista-system-restore-guide/

...and if you are using any Symantec defense program, be aware that one of the features includes an automatic backup of files which you think you have deleted. This can be turned off by changing the program settings.

Louis

#9 mobius981

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 02:37 PM

OKOK folks, here's more.

Got the hidden file down to 36.7 gig with 20.5 free. Not good enough. turned off VISTA automatic backup (!). Still no joy.

More research. According to WINDIRSTAT blog on hidden files, this is a problem with the Lenovo computers :huh:

To keep it simple: Lenovo bundles a backup (Rescue and Recovery) program under Lenovo Care. VERY special. So I opened it and found I had not configured the backup process (didn't know) after computer purchase. It defaults to backing up to the local C: drive without notification or space limits...eek...and herein lies the problem.

Soooo...open Rescue and Recovery and go to Back Up Your Hard Drive. what I did was this:

I cancelled automatic backup here also.
I went to Manage your settings and eliminated anything automatic (i.e. scheduling)here also just in case.
I was able here also to limit the cache for backups to 2 GB in my case. Check the box.

I changed the backup drive from C: drive to my external USB backup harddrive.

Guess what?!!!!!! Doing that erased all the former backups from my C: drive. Bye Bye hidden file (in about 3 seconds). Hello 57 GB of free space.

Then I would suggest running a backup to the external drive just for safety.

Beware all Lenovo owners: take care of this one.

BTW, an earlier post suggested malware...:-) I think I found it!!!

Best Regards to all for the help and hope this helps someone else...it sure freaked me out.

#10 usasma

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Posted 17 January 2008 - 07:01 AM

I'm glad that you've found a fix for it! Thanks for letting us know - as this will help others searching for help about this same problem.
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#11 oldhippie

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Posted 17 January 2008 - 07:10 AM

Thank you for the information on a specific problem with the lenovo!
Funny how I just learned something when I was trying to help you.
Thank you.
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