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Something is eating my harddrive.

Last response: in Windows Vista
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October 7, 2008 8:18:19 PM

I don't know what it is.


I'm running Vista SP1 by the way.


Just yesterday I noticed my Hard drive space read 514 GB free of 596 GB.

This seemed odd, considering all I've got is World of Warcraft and World in Conflict installed, and all the other programs and features combined could hardly add up to more than 30 GB. So I resolved to check and see if my memory moved.


Today it did. I woke up and my memory had dropped from 514 to 512.

2 whole GBs had vanished.




I've run Spybot Search and Destroy, AdAware, and AVG Anti-Virus and they didn't come up with anything drastic. Just dumb tracking cookies.

I deleted all my temporary internet files, but that only gave me 1GB back.


This is compounded even more by the fact that I go to completely innocent websites, and nowhere would I pick up a deadly virus that would eat my memory. Much less so because I run FireFox with noscript.


This can't be simple updates for programs. What's going on?

More about : eating harddrive

October 7, 2008 9:12:56 PM

my 'windows' directory alone is 25 gig, LOL. Add in program files, swap files, hibernate files, etc and so on and I'm really not surprised to see 514 out of 596. That;s not saying there isn't something going on here but on the face of it I can't say it looks alarming.

As to losing 2 gig overnight, hmmm, if it keeps happening then yea, something is amiss, but if over the next week or so it stays somewhat stable then you might write it off as a red herring - watch it and see would be my advice

and if the current used up space seems too much to you then maybe get an explorer view of your c drive and turn on 'viewing system and hidden files' so you can see those swap files and whatnot and add them up.

edit: actually my hiberfil and page files together are 10 gig
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October 7, 2008 9:43:34 PM

It's now down to 509 GB. This only about two hours after I first posted this thread, by the way.

Would you call that amiss? Someone suggested it's just system restore, but somehow I don't think so.

I just don't see how I could get a virus. As I said, not only do I only go on innocent websites, but I'm running firefox with noscript!


I'm defragging my harddrive as we speak; seeing as if that'll fix the problem.
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October 7, 2008 9:43:56 PM

Yeah, my C:\Windows\ directory is ~18gb, so it's not that hard to be using 80gbs of space.

I did have a problem like this once where I had a virus that just kept duplicating itself. My normal virus scanner didn't find it, so I tried several different ones in safe mode until one finally found it. Keep track of the free space over the next couple of days.

EDIT: Yeah, you posted like 20 seconds before me, so my suggestion of keep track of free space is kinda irrelevant now. Try using a different scanner.
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October 7, 2008 9:49:16 PM

br3nd064 said:
EDIT: Yeah, you posted like 20 seconds before me, so my suggestion of keep track of free space is kinda irrelevant now. Try using a different scanner.


Like what?

Could the sudden decrease in space have something to do with defragging my harddrive? It just boggles my mind how I could get a virus.


That's odd. Even though I told "Internet Options" to delete all history, cookies, passwords and the like, it appears to have made no difference in Firefox. Everything is still there.
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October 7, 2008 9:51:57 PM

Both avast and avira are god free scanners. I'd try them in safe mode just to be more thorough. Defragging doesn't add or remove any files, it just organizes them so the hard drive can find them quicker.
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October 7, 2008 9:54:37 PM

508 GB now.

Where can I download those scanners? Do I download them and then start in safe mode and scan? What does safe mode do that'd make a difference?
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October 7, 2008 10:08:31 PM

Just a question, if in Security Center I get a note under Firewall that says:

Note: Two or more firewalls running at the same time can conflict with each other.


Does that mean I have two or more firewalls running at the same time?
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October 7, 2008 10:13:12 PM

Are you using a 3rd-party firewall? Windows vista has it's own firewall, but if you decide to install your own, you should turn of the windows one to reduce conflicts.
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October 8, 2008 3:45:17 AM

I do Turn off Windows Firewall, but instead of saying it's okay another one is running, I get warnings that say I have no firewall running at all.


By the way, I called a computer expert and he said it's probably just system restore. That makes four people who've said it's probably that. :) 


Since the notion that I got a deadly virus is very, very unlikely, I think I'll just sit tight for now. If it drops down into the 300s I'll know something is up but for now I think I'll just wait.
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October 8, 2008 4:27:40 AM

Sounds good. Sorry for making you all worried about possibly getting a virus.
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October 9, 2008 2:17:00 AM

Well I turned off system restore and got 60GB of space back. :) 

Guess that's that.
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October 9, 2008 2:29:39 AM

You can adjust how much space system restore is allowed to use. Having at least a few restore points can come in very handy - saved my installs on more than a few occasions - and hard drive space is cheap.
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October 9, 2008 2:32:10 AM

Wow, I never paid attention to it. I didn't know system restore could use that much space.
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Anonymous
December 25, 2009 3:35:35 PM

yea I had the same problem in Vista I deleted everything in my browsers except passwords usernames details , that gave me an extra 2gig and then I created a system restore point myself each week manualy if there was no problems, as system restore is very helpful when something mayjor goes wrong.. I was convinced I had a virus that wasnt being detected as my hard drive space was going down very rapidly... I also turned automatic updates to ask me when to install as some of them you dont need and they can be very large files I think .............. anyway hope this helps someone else have a good one wherever you may be :)  :)  :)  :)  :) 
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