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Task Manager Corrupt - Vista - Shareware Replacment?

by NorthBeachnik / August 20, 2009 9:04 PM PDT

I have an HP Pavilion 9810, Win Vista S1,2.0 GHz, 3mg RAM.

After conquering a Trojan or two with the help of a CNet moderator on the Spyware, Virus board (using Kaspersky Online Scan, CCleaner, Malwarebyte, SuperAntiSpyware, Avast, etc.) I was left with two problems. I fixed one involving my dial-up conection by Restoring just the fax modems software. I still have a problem with my Task Manager. That is to say that I really don't have a usable one. My Task manager appears to be corrupted.

All I see when I rightclick in the System Tray is a box with processes (it doesn't say processes but I recognize them. I can't do anything to them though. At the bottom rightof the frame of that box is a windows symbol and the term "Services" I can click on that nd get to services. The worst is that I cannot close this box at all, whether it is in processes mode or services mode. it blocks a quarter of my screen

If I go to Windows Defender I can see not only processes and services but also programs that are currently running and programs that start up. However I can't disable or do anything to most of the programs that start up.

Yes, of course, I can back up everything on my HD and then wipe my hard drive and restore it to its condition the day I bought it 1 year ago or more...and then reload everything I've bought and loaded/downloaded since and reload all my data files, photos, videos, etc. Right. If only I have all the time in the world.

So Isn't it possible that one of the shareware/freeware programs that I've seen on MajorGeeks (or for that matter something i do not yet know about here at might be a good substitute for Windows task Manager for Vista? Or might even be better?

Thoughts or recommendations please!

Thanks in advance!


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That Task Manager problem *may* be easy to fix.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / August 20, 2009 9:28 PM PDT

Not sure of your procedures here, so I will say how I do this.

1] Right click the Taskbar, (not the System tray although that works as well), select Task Manager, and click. The Task Manager appears.

2] My own Task Manager shows a menu bar, and also shows different tabs for Applications, Processes, Services, Performance, Networking and Users.

If yours does not show these, then place your mouse cursor on the border at the top of the window, 'just below' the main window border, and double click. All the menu and tab options should appear.

3] If you can see a button called "Services..." bottom right of that window, then you are in the "Services" tab of the Task Manager, not the Processes tab.

4] I can see the problem when you say you click the Services button and cannot close that box at all. When I click on that Services button, the "Services Console" is displayed, but it is underneath the Task Manager window. All I have to do is to move the Task Manager window to see it. If your Task Manager window is full screen, then click the middle button in the top right hand side of the window to reduce its size, so you can move the window around.

Does that help?

if you have any other problems, let us know.


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It Worked - Got Task Manager 100% Visible Again
by NorthBeachnik / August 20, 2009 9:49 PM PDT

Thanks, Mark. I've got Task Manager back working. Now if only I could figure out how I could possibly have 83 processes running when all I am doing is surfing the web! Happy My physical memory usage is 61% (my ReadyBoost flashdrive had an accident away from the laptop and I need to get a new one). My CPU is running from 24 to 47, sometimes 67% usage. I hate Vista.

I also need to figure out how to get access again to the online component of my HP Games. They were fine and my access was fine until the other evening when I downloaded Comodo Firewall Pro v3 from Majorgeeks. I didn't realize that the Geeks version was outdated. A Moderator at the Comodo Board has been helping me (utilizing an unofficial Comodo uninstaller they have on their site). the program is gone from my computer...mostly. But I still can't connect to HP Games (i.e. Wild Tangent). I just get a "you must be behind a firewall message' along with "lower your Internet options settings to medium. I've done everything and am waiting for my guy at the Comodo Board to reply and suggest something else. I do, however, have a sneaking suspicion that if I go to restore I can just restore the games software only. I seem to recall seeing "games" listed in the are for restoring software. Uh, oh. It's 4:ooam and I'm rambling about my laptop and its problems.

Thanks for your advice!

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Seems fine
by Jimmy Greystone / August 20, 2009 11:39 PM PDT

That all seems fine.

There's a lot of things that get taken care of on your computer in the background, which is why so many processes. If you don't like that, I suggest you go find an old 486 off ebay and run MS-DOS on it.

Also, free RAM is wasted RAM, so you WANT near max utilization. Just think it through logically for a moment. If that RAM is always free, or not being utilized, then what good is it doing you? It'd be like a room in a house that just sits empty and you never use it for anything. It's just an additional load on your furnace and AC. You may as well at least use it for storage of some stuff so it's not cluttering up the rest of the place.

And processor use will go up or down based on what you're doing. And one of the things that is very hard to explain to people, is that you are not the center of the universe. Things go on with your computer -- useful things -- that you are never aware of, but if they ever stopped your computer would grind to a halt rather quickly.

Still, any time you wind up with a trojan on your system, you should ALWAYS format and reinstall. Otherwise you never know what other little "gifts" it may have left behind that aren't being detected. Virus scans are reactionary, remember, meaning there's a period of time between when someone comes up with a new virus and it's discovered "in the wild", captured, analyzed, and a defense is created. Sometimes it's a matter of hours, sometimes it's days, weeks, or longer. I remember one particularly nasty bit of malware a while back. It would encrypt your entire drive silently, and then it would decrypt your files a set number of times before demanding a ransom to deactivate itself. Then there was a variant on this theme, where there was no greed involved, just malice, since the program was set to basically destroy all the data on people's drives on a set date. Companies like Symantec, McAfee, and Kaspersky were working feverishly for weeks trying to crack that one, and almost literally at the 11th hour, they found a flaw in the malware that let them defuse it. But it was a close call that could have very easily gone the other way. So, there's always some time period between when a threat is detected and you're actually protected against it, and formatting is about the only way you can be absolutely certain you got rid of any leftovers.

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Glad you got it sorted.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / August 21, 2009 6:18 AM PDT

Vista is a different beast to XP. I was regularly checking my running processes in XP's Task Manager, and making sure it never got too high, I had mine down to 35 running processes.

But with my Vista I have many more running processes. I'm at 64 at present, but I know some of mine are down to my quad core processor, where processes appear to double up, (or quadruple in my case). I haven't yet checked through them all because its a new machine, and I am still bedding in. That's me bedding in, not the machine; I'm still learning it. Happy

One thing you can do if you haven't already. In that Processes list you can select what columns to show, (View > Select columns). I've chosen the "Details" column and this gives a brief description which may give an indication, especially if there is something suspect. In my case I saw brs.exe*32 in processes, with no description other than brs, so I right clicked the entry, selected Properties, and found it was related to Cyberlink, which is my power DVD software.

Memory usage does seem a little high, especially if you have no running applications, but maybe you can see what is taking the CPU usage time in the Processes tab by clicking the CPU column header twice. This lists processes in CPU usage order, and is easier to catch. Then you can check what the processes are in Google.

I know little about ReadyBoost, but I wonder if you need it with your 3GB of RAM. I would have thought that was sufficient.

Your online game problem doesn't seem related to this Task Manager one. Have you tried accessing these games in another browser? It does look like a firewall problem, but what firewall do you have installed now if you uninstalled the Comodo firewall?


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Thank-you so much I had the same problem
by joeldietzjr / August 29, 2009 10:42 PM PDT

I had the same problem, followed your instuctions, and viola ! worked like a charm...Thank-you so much, Joel Dietz

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