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Mystery Downloading


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#1 Tydna

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Posted 09 December 2006 - 02:21 AM

I'm using Windows XP Media Center Edition (SP 2)...

My computer's network connection is CONSTANTLY downloading data -- even though nothing I can see is running.

I've used Spybot, AdAware, AVG, and about every other Anti-Virus/Spyware/Malware product I can think of. I've used FileMon and TCPView (as well as HijackThis)...

Any ideas, anyone? Any tool that I could use to find out WHAT is downloading this mystery data?

Thanks in advance.

-Tydna

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#2 jgweed

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Posted 09 December 2006 - 10:46 AM

Remember that your computer has a steady conversation with your ISP when connected. What has caused you to believe that your computer is downloading data? What firewall are you using, and have you reviewed whatever logs it provides? Does this happen when you do not have your browser open? Can you determine where this downloaded data is going by checking the increase in size of folders over time?
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#3 Tydna

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Posted 09 December 2006 - 01:17 PM

The reason I think I am "infected" is because from the moment I turn on my computer and my network connection is established -- my packets received count begins to increase in increments of 5,000-6,000 every second. This is before any program connects, any browser, etc. -- it happens instantly and never seems to stop.

I use the Windows Firewall with no exceptions.

I can't see where the data is going -- how would I need to go about doing that?

#4 Tydna

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Posted 12 December 2006 - 12:21 AM

Anyone got any ideas?

#5 quietman7

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Posted 12 December 2006 - 08:28 AM

I use the Windows Firewall with no exceptions.

The Windows XP firewall protects against port scanning but has limitations and it is no replacement for a robust 3rd-party two-way personal firewall.

1. The XP firewall is not a full featured firewall. Normal firewalls allow you to specifically control each TCP and UDP port but XP’s firewall does not provide you with this capability. Instead, it takes a point and click approach to enabling or disabling a few common ports.

2. The XP firewall does a good job of monitoring, examining and blocking inbound traffic but makes no attempt to filter or block outbound traffic like most 3rd-party personal firewalls. Thus, the XP firewall does not identify which programs attempt to initiate outbound network or Internet communications nor does it block the traffic when suspicious activity occurs.

This feature can be helpful in preventing many types of malware attacks that may attempt to open ports or communicate with outside servers without the user's knowledge or consent. It also means that if your system has been compromised, a hacker could use your machine as part of a distributed denial of service attack.

Free firewalls available for download:
• Zone Alarm Free for Personal Use
• Kerio Personal Firewall (available in a full and limited free edition)
• Kerio Personal Firewall 2.1.5 (last freeware version that was strictly a firewall and not bundled with extra features that hog resources and slow down system performance) - Alternate download
• Outpost Firewall Free
• Jetico Personal Free
• Sygate Personal Firewall Free 5.6

If you choose to use a 3rd-party firewall, you need to disable the Windows firewall. Running multiple software firewalls on a single computer can cause conflicts that are hard to identify and troubleshoot. Only one of the firewalls can receive the packets over the network and process them. Sometimes you may even have a conflict that causes neither firewall to protect your connection. However, you can use a hardware firewall (your router) and a software firewall (Kerio or ZoneAlarm) in conjunction.
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#6 Tydna

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 11:22 AM

The problem isn't outgoing traffic -- it's incoming.

As soon as I connect, I start receiving packets of data by the thousands. My connection is at a virtual stand-still.

I can't pinpoint what service it is or what service has been hijacked...but it's there and outside of re-installing WinXP, I don't know what to do.

#7 quietman7

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 11:50 AM

Then lets have a deeper look as to what's going on with your system by creating a hijackthis log. This will help to identify and remove malware files that may be responsible for your problems.

Please read and follow all instructions in the pinned topic titled "Preparation Guide For Use Before Posting A Hijackthis Log". You may have performed some of these steps already. About half way down are instructions for downloading HijackThis and creating a log.

When you have done that, post a log in the HijackThis Logs and Analysis Forum, NOT here, for assistance by the HJT Team Experts. A member of the Team will walk you through, step by step, on how to clean your computer. If you post your log back in this thread, the response from the HJT Team will be delayed because your post will have to be moved. This means it will fall in line behind any others posted that same day.

Start a new topic, give it a relevant title and post your log along with a brief description of your problem, a summary of any anti-malware tools you have used and a summary of any steps that you have performed on your own. Please include the top portion of the HijackThis log that lists version information. An expert will analyze your log and reply with instructions advising you what to fix.

Please be patient. It may take a while to get a response because the HJT Team members are very busy working logs posted before yours. They are volunteers who will help you out as soon as possible. Once you have made your post and are waiting, please DO NOT make another reply until it has been responded to by a member of the HJT Team. Generally the staff checks the forum for postings that have 0 replies as this makes it easier for them to identify those who have not been helped. If you post another response there will be 1 reply. A team member, looking for a new log to work may assume another HJT Team member is already assisting you and not open the thread to respond.

If after 5 days you still have received no response, then post a link to your HJT log here.

After posting a log you should NOT make further changes to your computer (install/uninstall programs, use special fix tools, delete files, edit the registry, etc.) unless advised by a HJT Team member. Doing so can result in system changes which may not show it the log you already posted. Further, any modifications you make may cause confusion for the member assisting you and could complicate the malware removal process which would extend the time it takes to clean your computer.
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