I have a friend who consulted me for her computer issues. They are described below. Feel free to ask any questions......it might take a couple of days between replies if there are system specific questions, so bare with me!
1. She uses the internet via cable. At random times, her connection cuts in and out. When it goes out, its usually for just a couple of minutes, sometimes it can be seconds. She has contacted our local provider (TWC = RoadRunner), and they have come out and tested and found no cause. When her computer is connected, it has a fast signal.
I haven't gotten into her computer too deep, tonight was the first time looking at it. She isn't very computer savvy (I barely am), but from what she told me.....there are 2 network cables going in to her computer. I know I need more info on what/where these are from. Apparently she claims Best Buys "Geek Squad" installed one terminal onto her harddrive, and TWC installed another. I can't elaborate/decipher what she was implying, so I will need to get more info before anyone can probably give some help.
2. Her computer is SLOW. Granted it is almost exactly 5 years old we know doesn't help. She just wants to see if this computer is salvagable and/or worth upgrading. I'll post system info when I can get it. I messed around with a few things, the first was doing "Disk Cleanup". It took nearly 5 minutes before Windows prompted a new window asking me what to discard. There were 4-5 options with over 200,000k worth of crap. I checked them and clicked to remove. I had task manager open, and saw the CPU usage immediately spike to 100%. About 10 minutes later it was locked up......so I cancelled it.
I found the HD is 75% full. She also DL's alot of music, which I am aware is a murderer in itself to a PC. I advised her upon repair/replacing of her computer, she needs to get an external HD to store her music. Also, I saw that the IE icon is missing........it has the default "broken" icon for Windows. I opened IE and it took approximately 5-7 seconds to open, and about 30 seconds to bring up Yahoo.com (her home page). She has about 3 different toolbars installed, so I promptly removed these.
She has 2-3 spyware programs, and an anti-virus program......which she runs pretty regularly. She told me that cookies are all that seem to be found. Another interesting note she told me was that TWC contacted her and said that her IP address has been traced to be sending out SPAM emails, via spyware/virus. Not sure what they did to correct this issue, but the cable company did do something.
I do have a hijackthis file if anyone would like to look over it. I know I am lacking a ton of info needed to diagnose this, but am just wanting to get into the ballpark on this one right now. I will have more time next week to do some tests/checking.
Any help is appreciated.