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OK, computer savvy people. I know this is not a computer forum by judging by the members it seems like that. Here is the problem:

I run 2 HDD one as a primary and second for back ups. I have two partitions on each of them: one for operating system (XP Home) and programs and second for data. Access to Internet it through cable modem and router. I have Symantec antivirus software and personal firewall always up-to-date. Also I update Windows regulary.

Two days ago I noticed that when accessing one of the folders – just a number of photos – windows explorer would shut down generating standard windows error messages. I happened several time. Also without warning computer rebooted itself twice yesterday! I checked the antivirus software is up-to-date. I ran virus check – no problems.

What should I do? I may try to go back to my back up system partition when I installed a clean operating system with some programs but it would mean loading (again!) some programs. Any suggestions?
 

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hrm, it sounds like you may have a failing hard drive. Do you notice any delays while accessing files or even booting up? Do you hear any strange noise(s) when you are accessing the hard drive? I would run chkdsk. To run chkdsk, open a command prompt go into the partition you want to check (I would check them all at this point) and type chkdsk. Another way you can run this program is to open My Computer right click on the partition that you want to check and choose properties, go into the tools tab and click check now.

Also, make sure your OS has all the critical updates installed!!

good luck
 

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First, look to see if the avserve or lasss (notice 3 s's) process is running in task manager. If it is, you have a flavour of sasser.
Second, turn off system restore, do a find on avserve and _up files with a five digit number in front such as 12345_up.exe, if you do find them, you have a flavour of sasser. I haven't seen sasser shut down XP machines, only 2000 ones.

If you can't find anything go here to download a stand alone virus cleaner that is good for the last 40 big hitters. Go into the preferences and click "boot sectors" and "scan all files", leave the rest that are already selected.
Don't forget to turn off system restore before looking for viruses, XP does a dam good job of protecting it's restore points and viruses in them. My computer/properties/system restore.

Sasser won't get on your machine if you have done the updates or run the XP firewall or do NAT routing.

Lemme know!
:)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Guys!

Did I say this forum is AWESOME! Better than any computer forum.

Can't wait to get home tonight and apply the solutions. Will let you know.
:)


PS. mgthe3, i just noticed you were born in the most famous year (same like me!;) )
 

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With Windows Xp, if you turn off system restore you will lose all of your backup restore points, so be sure you want to do this. I would try restoring your system to a previous state first to see if the problem goes away.
 

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If its not a virus, I find that Norton Windoctor does a fantastic job of fixing strange Windows problems.
 

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That's true Husky, but if you want to clean an XP machine, you have to turn it off. Unless you make changes to a machine that makes it start hurling, there is no reason to keep old restore points. System restore hides its contents from deletion and even detection sometimes. Ya turn it off, clean, an turn it back on--just in case ya wanna get dicey with the OS every once in a while.

:D
 

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Discussion Starter #9
OK,

1. checked task manager - lsass.exe is running. Compared with list of tasks just after I made a clean windows installation a few month ago. The lsass.exe was there.
2. disabled Windows system restore
3. enabled Win XP firewall

4. run search for files as recommended by mgthe3 – nothing.
5. went to windows update – system up to date.
6. did search (from windows security site) for Saseer – apparently system is clean.
7. went to McAfee for the Stinger – found nothing.
8. My Symantec is up-to-date.
9. run disk check – no problems found.
10. open Windows Explorer and went to the suspect folder – the Windows Explorer crashed!

What next? Run Windows re-install? I have OEM so it would format HDD………


:8:
 

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So its only this ONE folder that crashes windows explorer? Have you tried, say, changing whats in that directory? Perhaps you can move those files using the command prompt from there into another folder and see if it makes that folder crash as well. Its possible you have yourself a very unique situation where by coincidence, you have a certain number of files or types that windows goes nuts over.
 

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Have you tried running AdAware or Spybot? I had some similar behavior a few months back and used AdAware and found lots of spyware running that I did not even know was there. You can get AdAware for free at http://www.lavasoftusa.com/ and Spybot is available at http://www.spybot.info/

Beware of software masquerading as spyware detection that is actually spyware. The above 2 are reputable products.
 

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Spybot search and destroy has been the best thing for removing browser helper objects which make systems slow...make sure you update it before runnin it. When you see the MS DSO exploits uncheck them as well as the Media Player hit.

The lsass process is legit--sasser.d makes one called lsasss--notice the 3 s's. Sneaky huh?

As for explorer crashing......strange....I like the copy file in DOS fix thing though--good recomendation.

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
1. I am running the spyboot software and trying to keep it up to date.
2. I think I found the reason the Win Explorer is crashing – I put to this folder 3 large images – several hundred megabytes each. I scanned 8 x 10 photos at high resolution. Deleted the files and Explorer is not crashing anymore.
3. Started computer this morning and when it went to this site I re-booted twice!
4. Spyboot has detected number of problems in Windows registry. Most of them missing help files, missing shared dll’s, some wrong application paths. But always says “nothing done”.
5. My next step will be to go back to the “back up” drive and see what happens. It will take me some time to load the extra software but it seems like the easiest solution now.
 

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I run system mechanic 4(google it)
It does a good job of keeping your registry clean.
And it does a lot of other things.
It does a real good job of Defrag, retrieves unused memory, cleans up Internet files, etc, etc.

Even if you don't want to buy it, I think there is a free trial.

Homer
 

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Since you mention the files were very large images, its possible explorer was set to "thumbnail" view and it crashed preview or whatever program it uses to show the little thumbnails.

As for random reboots, I recommend Norton Windoctor, its different from Diskdoctor which is basically a fancy Scandisk. Windoctor finds all sorts of problems in the registry, as well as any missing files you should have (but may have been screwed up by a virus or adware).
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I learned something yesterday during long "corporate" conference call - never give up!

So I am still fighting my computer. Eric, you are right, the Win Explorer was set up to thumbnails view and since the images were very large it simply crashed.

Just a while ago in desperation I disconnected from the Internet (unplugged the cable from the router) and restarted the computer. An error message appeared (see the pic).


After rebooting computer again (this time I did it!) I plugged it to Internet – no problem. Instant access (hence this message!). .What ever it was it seems to me that I am slowly recovering. .Luckily my Windows as well as Norton Antivirus is on automatic update so the system seems to be up-to-date. The Spysearch and destroy does good job as well.

Thanks guys for all your advises. It is great to be part of such knowledgeable group.

Now, I enabled Windows Firewall. I think I will also install one of the Eric and hfelknor mentioned.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
You guys responded so quickly and to the point that I thought I owe you an update.

I could not really fix the problem. I t seems that somehow Windows got corrupted. Anyway, I went to my backup disk where I kept a mirror image of the operating system and programs. I worked beautify. No problems out there. So after updating all the security patches for Windows, antivirus software and loading some additional programs I created a mirror image again. Just in case.

Thanks again for your quick responses.
 
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