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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    C Drive Suddenly Full

    I have a 98SE that I use for the same things over and over. I know this computer and know what I do on it with very little variation in any of it. I noticed on Sunday that things were loading weird. Instead of appearing almost instantly, they would fade in from bottom up as if it was the building the page as it went. Fade is not the right word, but can't think of how to explain it. Same with closing, working its way down. Definitely odd, but computer seemed to working okay. I had noticed a bit of lag and slowness for a day or two but blamed it on Win98 and/or my ISP, which sometimes has a lot of lag and slowness. The inevitable happened and late that night I started getting messages that the c-drive was full. Sure enough, the little pie chart showed completely, 100% full. This computer is partitioned into 2 partitions. The second drive showed no change. I know whats on the Cdrive and its about 25% if that much. Earlier in the day, I ran AdAware, SpyBot, and AVG scan. All clean. In trying to narrow down the problem, we (me and hubby) concluded no virus because his computer also gave clean scans and gives him no symptoms whatsover. Our 2 computers are networked only so that both access the Internet, no file sharing.

    We both have done quite a bit of minor troubleshooting in the last 15 years, so we've learned quite a lot during that time. We're down to 3 options. Malware, AVG, or restore point. Reasoning for this is: Malware, well obvious. I could've picked up something and scans didn't find it. AVG: is it possible that AVG is not compatible with Win98 and somehow ballooned something in there? We've had no problems with AVG on any other computers, including Win98's.

    The restore point: About a week ago, I started to make a restore point on Win98 from DOS using scanreg/restore or something like that. Can't remember exact command. I was very careful and thought I backed out of successfully. IF I did not, could that have caused some file in there to balloon up and swallow the Cdrive?

    Our next plan of action is to hook that drive up as a secondary drive on another computer. If we did that, would we be able to look around the bad drive and try finding the bad file(s)?

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts on this matter. I apologize for this being such a long post but I'm not sure what information will be helpful to you.

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  3. #2
    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    I wanted to add that this drive now will not boot up. We tried booting from safe mode, a start disk, and from DOS. It will boot from any of those, but when we try to do ANYthing at all, it freezes.

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    Those are all symptoms that someone hacked into your computer and was using it to store files and distribute them over the internet. That happened to me a couple of years ago, and I had to just format the hard drive and start over from scratch. Fortunately, I had recent backups of all my data files.
    Legare Coleman

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    You should be able to install the drive as a secondary drive on another PC. Before you do that, have you examined the drive in DOS? Looked for unusual files, large files, a large number of files, etc.?

    Joe

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    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    No, Joe, we have not been able to see what files are there. The computer still sees the drive, but if we try to do anything it freezes. Thats why we thinking about putting it in another computer as a secondary drive. We were not sure it would work. We will try and let you know. If we figure out the problem, the solution might to useful to other folks.

    Legare, thank you for those comments. We had seriously considered that and it is a definite possibility. I sort of thought, however, that a hacker would not want to be so obvious as to use up 100% space! Too suspicious <img src=/S/megashout.gif border=0 alt=megashout width=33 height=17> IMHO Or maybe it was a stupid hacker and who made a mistake <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    Just in case, you should be sure and have a backup of the other system before you put the drive in the PC.

    Joe

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    Hackers will frequently open up a hacked system for anyone on the internet to upload to (exchange illegal files) and then publicize the computers address. Those uploading are not monitoring what space is being used. They just use the system until it crashes.
    Legare Coleman

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    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    We have this hard drive hooked up as a secondary drive so are able to see and delete files from DOS. We are seeing duplicates of many files. There is a folder in the Program Files directory called Windows 2. We are in the process of deleting same. They are HUGE files and the poor puter is taking its time deleting same. As I asked before, *IF* a restore point had started running, would this account for all those files. Or what else could create such activity.

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    I'm just guessing, but it sounds like you might have created a duplicate copy of Windows and all the files on your system. My guess is that you "restored" your system as a parallel installation to the existing installation.

    I wasn't aware that one could create a "Restore Point" in Windows 98. Could you provide some documentation on this ???
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    This sounds more and more like what happened to me when a hacker broke into my system and was using it as a web server. I would strongly advise you to get your data files off that drive and then completely reformat and rebuild that drive before booting from it again. If it was a hacker, and you just delete those files, the code that the hacker installed to let him use the system will still be there and when you boot from the disk again, the same thing will happen.
    Legare Coleman

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    I think I've found what you did. Take a look here and see if this is the command you used to create your "Restore Point". My reasoning is that the article states "you will need up to 3 MB of disk space for each backup". How large is your hard drive ???

    I turned it up using this Google search.
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    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    Yes, that is the command I used. I thought I did nothing other than look at whatever option was there and backed out of it. Sounds like I did not. I found out about the Win98 "restore" through the Cnet forums and some of the links you found.

    Things are going from bad to worse, however, and I'll spare you most of the frustrating details. The Cdrive has been reformatted but now is expressing some difficulty in accepting commands. So we think that either the drive crashed or my actions made it crash. Problem now is trying to copy the data off the Ddrive but that is my problem.

    As always, THANKS <img src=/S/thankyou.gif border=0 alt=thankyou width=40 height=15> for all your help !!

  14. #13
    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    A few final comments... As hubby was attempting to dissect and copy files, he discovered a folder on the *D*! drive called "restore" which of course contained huge files. Dangit, I almost fried the entire hard drive! <img src=/S/aflame.gif border=0 alt=aflame width=16 height=16> He was thankfully able to copy all of the files from the Ddrive except for one folder that showed as corrupt. Thankfully (again) most of that folder was backed up on CD. It still remains to be seen if the drive is usable, although now I'm very leery of it. I think I may have totally destroyed it!

    So the lessons to be learned <img src=/S/bash.gif border=0 alt=bash width=35 height=39> and I post this for your future reference in helping others. BE VERY SURE of what you're doing if you're trying to set a restore point on Win98, or use DOS without fully understanding what you're doing! <img src=/S/compute.gif border=0 alt=compute width=40 height=20>

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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    I don't believe that anything you might have done from the command line could possibly have done any harm to the drive on a hardware level. Take a look at this page and try following their format and reinstall steps.
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    2 Star Lounger miladytn's Avatar
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    Re: C Drive Suddenly Full

    One more thing to add for future reference and help to others. Several attempts were made to reformat that drive, including fdisk, more than once. I did not do it so forgive me for not knowing proper terminology. But one thing would say the drive was empty, another thing would say it was full <img src=/S/scratch.gif border=0 alt=scratch width=25 height=29> and so would not take any commands etc. Hubby did a reformat on the master boot record. Finally <img src=/S/fanfare.gif border=0 alt=fanfare width=31 height=23> it is fixed and is happily accepting all programs, including a silly game we never could get to work before <img src=/S/clapping.gif border=0 alt=clapping width=19 height=23>

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