General discussion

Low disc space pop up*

This is my dads laptop and im tryng to help him clean it up being as i know a little bit more then he does about computers in general, (like using online forums to look for answers before trying to handle something) lately its been popping up with "low disc space click here to delete files"

Gateway laptop, maybe 2 years old tops
OS- Windows Vista Home premium
2 hard disc drives, 46.3gb cap. on the local drive, 9.55 gb cap on recovery drive.
model #NX86OS (i guess of the drive itself idk)
gateway m# PA6A if that matters

we've uninstalled tons of programs we dont use anymore, and ones that just arent neccesary, had a problem with activex 10, got that taken care of
have the latest of AVG that never finds anything, (have not run it in safemode yet, wanted to post this first to get some ideas on what to try)
just downloaded Superanti spyware free edition because i realized he had nothing for spyware or malware for that matter, its running right now, its already finished the memory and registry files, found an adware tracking cookie and a rogue antispyware bot in those, then in the files themselves its found a keylogger actual spy.

My dad went through the laptop again this morning uninstalling programs to free up room and changed a few preferences i didnt know were available such as one to do with thumbnails, and another for icons to show empty folders even if they contain something, like pictures for instance, he said when he was done he had freed up gigabytes, but i dont remember a specific number, and now its down to 140mb free. theres one game, but its not very large. he has napster for downloading music for bass practice but usually removes the music once he gets it on disc unless he paid for it, but even that isnt very often, im really at a loss as to whats taking up his memory, im not a laptop kinda a person i have a tower with 120g with a multipartion hard drive and its os is windows xp home edition, so with him having vista i really lack the experience with it to know what to do.

one specific problem i cant prevent is my stepmother comes on this and just goes nuts, not with downloading so much but shes on myspace a lot and goes to all those websites that offer the free profile graphics adn crap like that and just uses whatever. ive managed to block quite a few being as thats how the last laptop died from virus' and what not. hence running the super antispyware. =] im going to go wait til that finishes scanning then run avg and super in safe mode. then post back with the results, if anyone can lend an idea, or tell me im looking in the wrong direction it would be great =]

haha update.. i was about to post this and glanced at the SAS and now theres an additional 20 tracking cookies and another keylogger actual spy.

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if youre coming to answer this

please see my other post about Keylogger Files

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Try this . . .

Download and install CCleaner (Google it), and run it. It'll clean up a lot of temp files, cookies and such. After it runs, do a defrag to reallocate dead drive space. Now, run AVG in Safe Mode.

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Re: uninstalling programs ...

, in effect, moves them to the System Restore area. That won't free any disc space unless you clean that by making a new restore point and then cleaning everything but that one from the Disc Cleanup Wizard.

I found TREESIZE from http://download.cnet.com/1770-20_4-0.html?query=TreeSize+Free&searchtype=downloads a good tool to see where the space used is sitting.

The totally used disc space from the pie chart in the drive's properties equals the total disc space used reported by treesize PLUS the disc space used for System Restore (that is reported as 0 by treesize, because the contents of that folder are inaccessible normally).
After the above cleaning the System Restore area should be practically empty.

But there are known cases where it still contains 20 GB or so of mysterious files. That needs other measure to delete.

Kees

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