Big computer n00b here, however I come in need of help. While working on a paper yesterday, all the windows I had open closed and my computer opened about twenty consecutive warning messages that stated that the hard drive was having issues opening certain files (didn't take the time to read which ones but I know they were all in 'My Documents'). Another window that appeared to be a Windows Program opened, called 'System Check'. System Check informed me that I had found about 14 'critical errors' in my hard drive, including that it was spinning 20% faster than it should be and some other issues I didn't quite understand.
The program gave me an option to fix these issues, which it then set out to do after I clicked "fix problem". It fixed about half of the issues it had brought to my attention and the rest were unresolved. It then asked me to upgrade to the full version of system check so that it could fix the remaining issues. At this point I became very suspicious that my hard drive wasn't the cause of this (although I acknowledge that it might be fried now anyways) and that I had stumbled upon a virus. I ran Super Anti Spyware, something I do once a month regularly, and it detected, along with a number of cookies, 3 counts of a disabled TaskManager, or so it said. this is the only thing I can do with my computer as error messages have invaded my screen like constant pop ups and I have no access to my homepage, as well as the programs in my bottom lefthand windows tab have been either hidden or removed from the hard drive. (I don't know which one it is)
The reason I was able to run the anti spyware program is that it was in my little tool bar on the bottom right hand portion of the screen. My homepage is totally black and all the icons have been wiped out.
What I want to know is if this sounds more like an actual hard drive problem or a virus, and if so which kind of virus if you can even determine that from the information provided. If it happens to be a virus, is it likely that my computer is damaged? It's a Dell XPS, I'd say it's four or five years old (I got it refurbished from my dads friend who ruined the video card a couple years ago).
Edited by Orange Blossom, 20 March 2012 - 04:33 PM.
Moved to AII from Vista ~ OB