Week Computer?

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MaryBeth

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Is there a power source that could wear down like a battery inside of a computer? I mean, I know of the tiny batter that runs small stuff, but I mean like a large one. My computer slowed down like it was so week it could not turn on my monitor or open a site. I had it clean as a whistle (thanks to Tech Support Guy).
Any ideas?
Thanks.
 
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Good Morning MaryBeth, I gather you are describing a circumstance where your machine currently is running very slowly, or are you meaning it does not give any screen images whatsoever.
Is the monitor LED (near the monitor on/off switch) changing state to a steady green or is it some other state or colour?
qldit.
 

MaryBeth

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I had to replace it and am burrowing my son's. Mine would not open a site. It would take so long it would time itself out. My monitor would not even come on. It started taking it's time, then at the end took over 4 hours to turn on. Like it was so weak see? I have dsl, yet you could count seconds for each bar to show up in system tray. It seemed like it was bogged down but nothing to bog it down. I thought maybe, there is a power source in there that could need replaced?
I am so embarrassed, I see I spelled weak, week! haha maybe no one will notice! 0_o
 
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Good Morning MaryBeth, when you say "turn on" I assume you mean from off, to boot-up to a desktop.
Although you feel that this problem is weakness and possibly could well be, it is more likely your machine has been affected by thousands of replicated viral kinds of things.

When machines reach this stage (if that is the case) it is really pointless trying to disinfect them. A reload is usually a better option.

As a testing type option, I usually run a Live Linux program on these machines, this is an operating system that simply runs off a CD using RAM, this is not dependent on any hard drive or existing operating system stuff. So it is very helpful.

As a simple test, could you try booting on your Windows installation CD and see how long your machine takes before you get a screenful of pre-install information.
Don't proceed with installing anything this is only a test to see how long it takes.
(hopefully the boot order will have the CDROM before the hard drive, if not it may need altering)

This Puppy Linux I am using is an excellent tool to test to see if machines can function, it can be downloaded (70 Megs) and a bootable CD made from that ISO file. (special compressed format file, needs different burning procedure)
If you would like to try this method I will walk you through it.
You will need a CDburner, a download capability for 70 megs, and a few other small items running in Windows.
The test machine would need to have 128 megs of RAM.
There is some info here http://www.puppylinux.org/user/viewpage.php?page_id=1
This is a very interesting and rewarding exercise.
Cheers, qldit.
 

MaryBeth

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Forgive me for not getting back sooner. Been busy with setting up or resetting my son's computer up, plus my email never told me I got a reply.

I keep my computer scanned for viruses, spyware, I keep a firewall up. I keep my hard drive cleaned off. I watch my available mb. Is that what you meant? I don't think I had a virus. If my mother board was going down, would it act like that?
 
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Good Morning MaryBeth, generally if there is a problem with the M/B you would have no operation or repeated crashes.
If the voltages had some major problem you would not expect a desktop generation to be possible, the super-slow operation is usually viral related and is caused by the machine resources being absorbed virtually entirely in useless operation or by some other party.

If there is a chance I might be correct (which is generally not the case!) there is a problem trying to eradicate the problem by installing another A/V system.

The only other suggestion is an online viral scan.
But i can't reccommend any.

See what others might suggest.

Cheers, qldit.
 
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If you can't boot in under 4 hours, you will probably just need to reload windows. Even if its not a virus, you could have a corrupted file that would cause the massive slowdown.

You could also try downloading the diagnostic utility from the hard drive manufacturer's website and run it - your hard drive could be shot??? Also, run memtest (google it) and see if it shows anything - anyone else think either of these could be the problem?
 
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What is your anti-virus? Is it Norton? If so, try to uninstall. If it does uninstall, you'd be better off getting something else. I have seen four computers in the last week that had exactly the same problem, all of which were solved by simply removing Norton. If you don't have Norton, I'd say it is still the antivirus suite.
 

MaryBeth

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Thanks everyone. So much to think about. I have AVG. I cannot work on it at all right now so I am just out of luck I guess. It all sounds like I should have reinstalled XP? Is that the jest?
 

MaryBeth

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I was also using easy clean. Wouldn't any of that found a corrupt file?
 
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Good Morning MaryBeth, Many modern malware nasties are obviousy targetted at the major anti-malware products.
Norton is a classic example, AVG isn't far behind.
I have found these programs regularly have been comprimised, quite possibly by corrupted updates.
I do feel your confidence may be misplaced.

The problem is not as simple as just reloading Windows, (if it is probable viral related) it really needs the drive to be completely cleaned and tested so that you can begin with a reasonably sterile environment.

The "madboot" floppy disk has tools on it to allow your current hard drive to be overwritten completely with zeros, which effectively cleans the drive. This is caled a low-level format.
This madboot disk free image is available off the net and makes a nice useable floppy with other tools you will find helpful.
http://www.tucows.com/preview/345398

A nice little hard drive testing program is also available here, you might try obtaining the trial version and making a bootable CD or floppy with it. It is called HDDRegenerator.
http://www.dposoft.net/
It has a nice scanner in it that will let you know if your drive has a problem before you begin any exercises, running it does not affect any drive data or system.

Cheers, qldit.
 

MaryBeth

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Thank you so much for all your help. I wish I would have called for help before it got so bad. Although I did not know what to ask for help for! I cleaned off the hard drive and did all I was told to do. This is so discerning. I am having to share with my son, and that means I get very little computer time!
I will keep what you told me for a future date when I get time to work on mine. Thank you again, gldit.
 
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Good Morning MaryBeth, as an intelligence gathering exercise you could obtain this little free Smartcop stand-alone A/V program, it is very handy to have unpacked and ready to run on a flashdrive or some simple media for quick tests.
http://www.s-cop.com/free-scanner.html
It is virtually incorruptable and can be very useful for deleting massive infections, but the machines may not function afterwards.
Your mention of the probelm becoming progressively worse over a period is consistant with a malware replication event.
It would be an interesting exercise for you to try this and see what your count might be or if so.
1,500 replications or thereabouts was the best I know about, this included several different viral variants.
That machine took only thirty minutes to boot and several minutes to open a window. It also timed out repeatedly on-line.
I think FijiJohn said he got one with 6,000 odd replications.
You may well have a record in your machine.
All the best.
qldit.
 

MaryBeth

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Will you please tell me what the difference in symptoms of needing a new hard drive would be? Or even a motherboard?
 
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