Spyware? Virus? Windows being weird?

I have XP and recently, whenever I’d delete something, it would take a long time to delete; if I click in the windows explorer window, it’ll say not responding at the top for a minute. then it’ll ask me if I want to delete it, at which point I answer. Then it does what I answered and the program responds again and everything is normal. I’ve been thinking defrag. Thoughts?

Could be spyware, something eating up your processor and causing a slowdown. Run your virus scanner and Ad Aware. If it picks something up, but can’t clean the files, you’ll have to restart in Safe Mode then run the scanner again, do that by hitting F8 during the boot up sequence.

At what point during the boot up sequence?

Adaware doesn’t detect anything for now.

I dunno, I usually just tap the key during the entire time. That’s weird though, there has to be something that’s causing the slow down. Maybe you should try running a Scan Disk then a Defrag on your drive.

if you’ve been deleting a lot of stuff this sort of thing can happen. Give it a defrag and it should go back to normal. I had similar issues after going on a big purge of useless stuff a few weeks ago.

I actually had that same problem Sin.

When I emptied my recycling bin, it fixed itself… so it may be a memory issue.


I’ve been contemplating defrag for a while, so I’ll give that a shot tomorrow. I have deleted a few large things not too long ago. Speaking of deleting large things, I downloaded a dysfunctional last samurai and I can’t delete it, it keeps telling me the program’s still running. I uninstalled the program I downloaded it with (DC++) and what I used to try to load it (DivX). It still won’t delete, not even in Safe Mode. Thoughts? I also just gave Adaware another shot in safe mode. Nada. Finally, another thing that’s been bothering me is that IE keeps “trying to access the internet” while i’m not doing anything. I deny it access, but I’m not too sure what its trying to do. Esp after I run adaware.

Checked running programs/used and HijackThis? <_< Might be helpful. Check if any weird programs are running and check where they come from. Ad-aware can’t find everything.

The best way to delete a file that reads as being in use is to boot your PC up using the consol.

You can access it the same way you boot into safe mode, (i.e. during boot up press F8 after the memory test), just select the command prompt option from the list.

When the PC finishes booting you’ll get a dos command prompt, just navigate to the directory and delete the file manually.

drive_letter: (Where drive_letter is C, D, E, … don’t forget the : at the end)
cd directory_name (Change directory)
dir (List content of directory)
del filename (Where filename is the name of the file you want to delete. You might be able to write it as the first 6 characters of the filename~1, but for some reason it doesn’t always work with XP)

As for your performance problem, I’ve noticed the same thing on my laptop in the last few weeks, one morning I got up and it was just much slower for some reason. It’s not a question of disk fragmentation because that simply can’t explain the sudden drop in performance I noticed. I haven’t had the time to dig into the problem because of midterms, but I plan on doing that this weekend. I’ll let you guys know if I find something that might be relevant (unless I’m just too lazy and decide to format).

DT: yes, it found nothing unusual.

DS: I’ll try that.

The problem is getting worse, its getting harder to navigate through my files just to open a couple .doc files I needed for today.

I’ve been having a series of problems with my PC as well. As I mentioned a while ago, my PC’s power supply fried, I had to buy a new one. Since then, I’ve had the following problems:

  1. It takes the PC 15 MINUTES to start up; 10 just to BEGIN to turn on, and then 5 to load up all the programs. Because of that, I’ve just been leaving the PC on all the time instead of turning it off when not in use, as I used to. I’m not sure if that has anything to do with the other problems:

  2. It’s slowed down. Not that it was ever a model of performance, but now you can count the seconds -in some cases, minutes- while ANYTHING I tell it to do finishes manifesting.

  3. It freezes if I try to do too many things at once (like keeping too many windows open at a time).

I’ve defragmented it many times, and used Disk Cleanup (however, the later points me to many old programs, and I’m not sure if I can safely delete them all.)
I’ve ran all my virus scan programs (AVG, Ad Aware and SpySearch.) I’ve found a few viruses, including some the programs couldn’t delete, but some research I did seems to indicate these aren’t so much viruses as program errors or updates that the scanners don’t recognize. They are:

Dropper.Delf.3.L -A Trojan. AVG couldn’t eliminate it so it quarentined it instead. It keeps finding it again, tho. That’s why I’m not sure it’s really a virus.

HTML_IFRMEXP.GEN -Found by a scanning website I went to, it then told me it was a weakness on Outlook Express, and I should update to OE version six. But I HAVE OE 6!

So what do you people think? Software or Hardware? And how do I fix things? Some of my friends are telling me to just save my stuff and have the PC reprogrammed. But I’d like to be SURE that’s necessary first.

Sinistral: If your computer is running slowly, and you’re also getting claims that something is trying to access the Internet without your leave, I’d be inclined to suspect spyware or a Trojan horse. Try downloading and running HijackThis, and seeing what it says is running on your computer.

Whatever happens, it looks to me like a format is well overdue on your system. When you get a day off with nothing vital to do (That’s gotta be asking a lot) you should format and reinstall. I’d at least start backing up files now, just incase something really bad happens.

Cool. A computer help thread. Mind if I post my woes?

DiscCleanup won’t finish even half way. It gets stuck when it’s looking to see what can be done, before it gives the list where you can check off what you want it to delete/tidy up, on “Compress old files.” XP.

What service pack of Windows XP?

SP1 and I ran hijack this and it didn’t find anything. Nothing seems up right now. I did a defrag while I was gone. It is still taking a while to open folders in windows explorer.

The fact that Hijackthis didn’t find anything shows that something pretty serious is up. Hijackthis usually at least picks up a lot of stuff that isn’t bad for your computer, but “looks” suspicious.

From what you’re describing, coupled with the fact that you’ve been largely unsuccessful in locating any sort of spyware/adware leads me to believe that you’ve been infected with the sasser virus, which will agressively prevent any sort of action taken in removing it from your system.

If you’re lucky, then you’ll be able to use a removal tool to take if off. More likely though, you’re simply going to have to reformat your computer.

How do I find out if I’ve been infected by Sasser?

Edit: I do believe I have it on my pc. Are there easy ways of getting it out by a tool or do I have to absolutely follow symantec’s online instructions?

Exact thing happening to be Sin. Also, just recently I did a spyware check and deleted everything. Right after that, I’ve started getting popups like CRAZY. I’ve never even got them before, but I decided to take a check and I had some spyware, so I delete it… Now I start getting all these popups…


And for god sakes, make sure System Restore is disabled. It causes nothing but trouble.