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Too Many Files, It Is Using All My Memory!


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#1 mcat

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 08:22 PM

My computer has been getting pretty slow. I have run virus scans and it comes up with nothing, however, when it runs a virus scan it says i have over 400,000 files!!! Plus, i have been getting messages that i have almost no memory left. it will give me a message, "you only have 134 mb of memory left. then a few minutes later, you only have 80 mb and so on.

we have very little downloaded. no games anymore (we removed them all)-it is like something is generating files constantly and i know so little about this i dont know how to fix it.

at one point (a few months ago) i had found something on the microsoft website and i ran it and it gave me back a lot of memory but i dont even remember what that was.

any suggestions???

thanks,
mary

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#2 Animal

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 08:33 PM

You can start here: Slow Computer/browser? Check Here First; It May Not Be Malware

If you still have issues after trying those suggestions, you can post back with some basic hardware specs. For example, what processor you have, hard drive capacity, RAM capacity, What scans you have run, what Antivirus and Anti-Malware applications you have and use.

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#3 jgweed

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 09:54 PM

It might be interesting to determine precisely where all these files are located.
I would first use the Windows "Disk Cleanup" utility (located in the Accessories/System Tools folder).
Then download and install SequoiaView, which will show you where these files are (see the link to it here:
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic3616.html).
Regards,
John
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#4 mcat

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 10:33 PM

i did the sequoia thing and when i apply the color part it looks like everything i have are exe files. what does that mean??

i have a gateway pentium 4, 18.4 gb memory, 512 mg ram capacity.

i ran the x-cleaner and it said to get rid of a bunch which i did what it said, but that did not improve my memory much. i also did that other thing to check things and that did not change anything. i ran some other adware (malware? is there a difference?) and it found like 1500 errors but it did not fix them cuz i didnt buy anything but i dont know which one out of the lot of them to buy or do i need to buy, is there a good free one that will fix??

i have norton antivirus. i run that and it says no viruses but over 400000 files. a while ago i had to disable the part of norton that checks email things because on my desktop it popped up hundreds of messages and they would just keep popping up everytime the computer started.

mary

#5 Gryphonic

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 10:43 PM

Google for Adaware free version and Spybot - Search and Destroy

Also worth looking to see how much hard drive free space you have click My Computer>right click C:>properties....check the pie diagram

#6 Wendy K. Walker

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 02:52 AM

Hi mcat, Welcome to the BC forums.

Your post has caused at least one of my brain cells to activate here. I remember buying and using Norton Anti-Virus a few years ago.

I also seem to remember that EVERY time that I would run a scan, which was like every other day, it would take longer for the scan to complete AND I would be noticing that the number of files that were getting scanned were growing by leaps and bounds.

It had gotten so bad at one time that it actually took Norton just over eight hours to complete a scan and my file count had surpassed 400K too. And I remember posting some questions about it on someone's help forum but I don't recall who's it was.

I was running Windows XP with SP2 and I had something like 258 Mb?? of RAM, and I too was getting those 'out of memory' messages.

OK, that's the good part, the bad part is that I don't remember what the heck I had to do to correct the problem back then.

Heck, as long ago as it has been since that happened to me I'm hard put to remember for sure which programs or utilities I had running but one of them was busily making all kinds of backup copies of stuff on my HD. I don't remember how I'd found out what it was that was causing that to happen either.

Have you checked to see how many of those files on your system are duplicates? If your problem is anything like mine was then about a third of those suckers are all gonna be the exact same size. I don't remember if the file names were identical in my problem or not though.

Wish I could have been of more help but maybe my reply will trigger a memory in someone else's brain that will give you a better lead.

Good Luck,

Wendy
TRUST NO ONE...! EXCEPT For The Beloved Computer Geek Helping You In The MALWARE FORUMS.

Do Unto Others Before They Have A Chance To Do Unto You.

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#7 hamluis

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 08:03 AM

Wendy is quite right :thumbsup:.

Symantec products have that hidden Recycle Bin feature where anything attempted to be deleted...is saved in a hidden file.

http://www.efytimes.com/efytimes/fullnews....9493&magid=

That feature can be disabled in the settings for either the Symantec product...or (I believe) in the Properties of the XP Recycle Bin.

My advice would be to disable it, it really serves no purpose, IMO.

I would also suggest that you consider just running chkdsk and defrag (chkdsk first) on the system, then see if any of your problems go away.

XP Chkdsk, Using the Graphical Version (My Computer) - http://www.updatexp.com/windows-xp-chkdsk.html Skip the first set of instruction, go down to the ones for Graphical Version.

Using Windows Defrag - http://www.geekgirls.com/windows_defrag.htm

Louis

#8 mcat

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 09:18 PM

i defragmented about a week ago, it barely had room to do it. then, i also checked on my properties and the pie grid is just about completely full, i am just about out.

i did change the recycle bin to just get rid of stuff, but i dont see where on my norton that i can change any things on there. how can i delete all of these exe files without going one by one???

thanks,
mary

#9 Gryphonic

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 09:35 PM

your hdd is small and will fill quickly. Consider getting a 2nd internal hdd or an external hdd for data storage (for photo's, movies, music). Then use your 18Gb hdd to run your computer....after you have cleaned it up and try to keep it down to about 80% of capacity.

Here are links for the free Adaware and Spybot S&D programs...use these before you do any archiving

http://www.lavasoftusa.com/products/ad_aware_free.php
http://www.safer-networking.org/en/index.html

Edited by Gryphonic, 23 February 2008 - 09:39 PM.


#10 mcat

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 10:03 PM

my memory is so used up i cannot even download any other spywares or anything. if i delete any programs on my control panel, it doesnt seem to change that much! as i am sitting here, i can check my computer properties, it says 8.4 left of memory, i check again 2 minutes later and it is 6.3 and so on. i had 224 earlier today. i cannot believe this, is there any way to get rid of a large chunk of these files all at once?? i know there is a way to do it, i have done it before but i cant remember what i did!!!

thanks,
mary

#11 Queen-Evie

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 10:27 PM

What files do you want to get rid of?

#12 mcat

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 10:37 PM

i want to get rid of a lot of whatever that 400,000 files is. i dont even know what they are and i dont know how to check what they are. i just really dont know anything about any of this. all i know is when a virus scan runs it shows over 410,000 files and i have just about no memory left and i want to fix it. computers can be so annoying!!!!

thanks,
mary

#13 Billy O'Neal

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 10:57 PM

I recommend you uninstall Norton. It is a large pile of trash anyway. It usually hogs about 256MiB of RAM all by itself. You can use the Norton Removal Tool to remove it completely. Once thats done:

Download and install an antivirus program, and make sure that you keep it updated
New viruses come out every minute, so it is essential that you have the latest signatures for your antivirus program to provide you with the best possible protection from malicious software
Two good antivirus programs free for non-commercial home use are Avast! and Antivir
Two good paid for antivirus programs are NOD32 and Bitdefender
Note: You should only have one antivirus installed at a time. Having more than one antivirus program installed at once is likely to cause conflicts and may well decrease your overall protection level. It may also impair the performance of your PC.

In the event that you are using Norton's Firewall:
Install and use a firewall with outbound protection
While the firewall built into Windows XP is adequate to protect you from incoming attacks, it will not be much help in alerting you to programs already on your PC attempting to connect to remote servers. I therefore strongly recommend that you install Comodo Firewall, which is free.
See Bleeping computerís excellent tutorial to help using and understanding a firewall here
Note: You should only have one firewall installed at a time. Having more than one firewall installed at once is likely to cause conflicts and may well decrease your overall protection level. It may also seriously impair the performance of your PC.

After that, you can use WinDirStat for a grapherical representation of your hard disk. That will show you where the space is being used.

Hope this helps,

Edited by Billy O'Neal, 23 February 2008 - 11:12 PM.

Twitter - My statements do not establish the official position of Microsoft Corporation, and are my own personal opinion. (But you already knew that, right?)
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#14 Wendy K. Walker

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 12:06 AM

Hi mcat,

Whatever you do you want to be real careful when you start deleting files that end in ".EXE" or ".exe", especially if you don't know what they are for, because most of those little buggers are what makes your PC run and your programs work.

I wish that I could remember exactly what had been causing my problem as it was identically to the problem that you're having right now. I don't, however, think that Norton was the main cause, though it well could have been.

I know that I had a couple of programs that seemed to have been involved in my problem, one of which was SpyWare Killer Pro. I don't remember all of the particulars about that bugger but I do remember that it had some kind of an anonymizer associated with it, and for some reason I'm thinking that that program was the main source of my aggravation.

Do you have the CleanUp utility by Stephan Gould... available for free download here --> http://www.stevengould.org/index.php?Itemi...t&task=view or CrapCleaner aka CCleaner on your machine? v 2.05.555 is available for free download here --> http://www.filehippo.com/download_ccleaner/ Just click the 'Download Latest Version' link at the top right of the page.

If you don't have them try to get al least one of those buggers downloaded and run it. Both of those utilities will clear up tons of space on your hard drive, BUT be sure to read the instructions on how to set those things, or ask one of the Moderators how to set them before you make that first run because I know that if you set CleanUp wrong it can flush away ALL of your files.

Likewise with CrapCleaner... you can wreck havoc on your registry if you run that registry tool without knowing what you're doing.

I know that you told Gryphonic that you couldn't download the utilities that they suggested because of lack of memory, but you gotta give something a go here and these two things aren't as large as the two that Gryphonic suggested.

You might also start a thread here --> http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/f/103/am-i-infected-what-do-i-do/ <-- describe your problem and post a link back to this topic so that people on that forum can take a look at what's been going on on this thread

If you do post there DO NOT POST A HJT Log there. If the security people want to see one they will tell you what to do.

Good Luck,

Wendy


Wendy
TRUST NO ONE...! EXCEPT For The Beloved Computer Geek Helping You In The MALWARE FORUMS.

Do Unto Others Before They Have A Chance To Do Unto You.

HP Pavilion 512n [Rescued from a pile of trash on the side of the road] 128 MB SDRAM, 60 GB Hard Drive, Windows XP, Home Edition, SP3, COMODO Anti Vitus and Firewall.

#15 mcat

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 10:31 PM

interesting.......i tried to delete norton, it wont let me, keeps giving me an error, i went to the website, it tells how to fix that, it didnt work-BUT at least i disabled it. as soon as i disabled it, the memory stopped going down by leaps and bounds. then, i downloaded that crap cleaner one and i got back a whole bunch o memory. then, since i had room i did the other one too-clean up 452 and i got more memory.

so, what now?? any suggestions for a good anti-virus?? what things do i need total? how many adware things, how many and what other things??

i sound like such an idiot, i am just really ignorant when it comes to all this. is there a good book to learn from??

thanks so much to everyone for your help. i am continuing on with all the suggestions til i am where i want to be, it is just a lot to do!!!

thanks again,

mary




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