Solved Low disc space on 34.1GB capacity drive C

May 20, 2012 at 18:10:13
Specs: Windows XP
I have a Compaq Presario which has a 34.1 GB capacity with only 20.3 MB free space. I uninstalled a lot of programs and removed files but it seems to have made no difference. My Documents is using 7.35 MB. I have installed and run Ccleaner, cleaned out my email and made sure the Recycle Bin is empty.. I don't have a clue what is using this space or what to do about it. I also ran a check on the physical drive and it found no problems. I'd sure appreciate any help that anyone can offer. Please keep any replies simple, I'm not a tech by any stretch of the imagination.

See More: Low disc space on 34.1GB capacity drive C

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✔ Best Answer
June 2, 2012 at 20:29:57
"....determined that it's definitely installer files. I just haven't found a way yet that will remove the unnecessary ones safely and prevent them from accumulating again. "

Which installer files ?

Do you mean the Windows Installer files (*.msi) in the normally hidden C:\Windows\Installer folder ???

If YES......

Use the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility and it's Msizap feature.

See response 4:
http://www.computing.net/answers/wi...

However, you MUST have enough free space on C in order to be able to install and run msizap..
You may STILL need to delete something BEFORE you can install the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility and run it
...........

AFTER you have done the above, or BEFORE you do the above you could do this to free up some drive space,,,,

Be careful when using regedit !

If you have a lot of *.msp files in C:\Windows\Installer that are also taking up a huge amount of space too.....

How to determine which .msp files are safe to delete
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/274533

It's about Microsoft Office 2000 causing the problem but the same method can be used to remove Windows Installer *.msp files you don't need in any situation.

NOTE.
2000 and up sets the location in the Registry to where you last found something when you searched in Regedit.
Re-set Regedit to the beginning of the list - click on My Computer - on the left each time you search when something has been found in the registry, otherwise you will not be searching the whole Registry the next time you search.


A better explanation here:

How to Delete Windows .Msp Files
http://www.ehow.com/how_5901493_del...

Instructions

1
Open your Windows Installer folder. In Vista, click the Start button and type "installer folder" to find it. (Do not include the quotation marks.) In earlier versions of Windows, click the Start button, click My Computer, access the C: Drive and double-click the Installer folder.

(My note - C:\Windows\Installer in XP)

2
Write down all of the files in the folder that end in MSP. To simplify the process, you could type them into a Word document.

3
Click the Start icon and type "regedit" into the search box. (Omit the quotation marks.) Click on "Registry Editor." In earlier versions of Windows, click the Start button and select "Run." Type "regedit" into the window and press "OK." (Again, omit the quotation marks.)

4
Click "My Computer" in the Registry Editor.

5
Click "Find" in the "Edit" menu.

6
Type one of the MSP file names into the search bar.

7
Take note of what happens after you type in the MSP file name. If you get the message, "finished searching through the registry," you can safely delete the MSP file by dragging it to the Recycle Bin. If Registry Editor is able to locate the file and places it in the "Data" column, then the file should not be deleted. Doing so may corrupt your Microsoft Office data.

8
Repeat Steps 6 and 7 for each file. Empty the Recycle Bin by right-clicking on it and selecting "Empty Recycle Bin"

NOTE.
2000 and up sets the location in the Registry to where you last found something when you searched in Regedit.
Re-set Regedit to the beginning of the list - click on My Computer - on the left each time you search when something has been found in the registry, otherwise you will not be searching the whole Registry the next time you search.



#1
May 20, 2012 at 18:42:50
34 Gbs is tiny by today's standards. Windows XP itself can easily use half of that space.

You need a bigger hard disk.

Stuart


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#2
May 20, 2012 at 18:46:38
Temporarily disable System Restore (all restore ponts will be lost). Reboot, re-enable it, set the slider so that it uses no more than 1GB, then create a new restore point.

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#3
May 20, 2012 at 20:45:40
I probably do need a larger hard disc. It has my System Restore suspended because of low free space and doesn't allow me to do anything. Thanks for the replies.

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Related Solutions

#4
May 21, 2012 at 02:58:40
Hi Caw,

Have you checked if there are any other partitions?

However this may help, try the search facility for files and folders named *.tmp.

I have a similar problem, that these are not disappearing as expected, and thus the hard disk gradually fills. Ones from Norton Internet Security contribute a lot to this problem.

Does anyone have an idea why this is happening?

I have to go into safe mode to delete these files.

Good Luck - Keep us posted.


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#5
May 21, 2012 at 04:33:59
Thanks for the reply Mike, I will do a search for those files. I will need to read up on partitions. I have seen them mentioned on other posts but don't know what they are. I did come across info in system information that may answer what you are asking. It said 2 partitions, partition 1, disc #0 Partition #0, size- 4.08 GB, Partition starting offset 32,256 bytes

Partition, disc #0, Partition#1, Partition size 34.2 GB, Partition starting offset 4,381,655,040 bytes


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#6
May 21, 2012 at 04:51:18
Only found 1 file like you mentioned Mike.

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#7
May 21, 2012 at 09:29:11
You simply have a small HDD with way too much stuff installed. There's nothing we can do to help you with that. You need to uninstall what you don't use, copy files off the HDD to discs or an external HDD, & possibly replace some the more hog-ish programs with something more lightweight. For example, which anti-virus are you using?

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#8
May 21, 2012 at 11:05:12
Thanks for the reply Riider. I had already resigned myself to looking into seeing if I can install a second HDD on here. I uninstalled all the hogs except for MS Word which is kind of big. I had this one installed a few years ago and was told it would handle all I needed, and it did until recently. I still feel there is a separate problem because all the uninstalling I did should have made a huge difference. A second one may be the easier route tho. Thanks again.

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#9
May 21, 2012 at 14:21:23
Hi Caws,

I do not accept you disk is too small and suggest investigating what is taking up the space. If you install another disk, you are avoiding finding the cause of the problem.

Free disk usage analysing utilities can be downloaded.

Have someone more computer literate look over your shoulder.

On the desktop, right click on the Recycle Bin, then click on properties. Check maximum size allowed, I would not have more then 5% on a 40gig drive.

You appear to have two partitions, which means there is one physical disk, divided into two logical disks (C: and D:). Am not sure it has been set up correctly, because it appears C: is very small. Does anyone else here agree with this?

As a matter of interest, where are you based? I am in Hammersmith, West London.

Good Luck - Keep us posted.


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#10
May 21, 2012 at 17:36:31
Hi Mike, thanks for the reply. My name is Curt and I'm from southern Missouri, USA. I'm inclined to agree with your assessment because I have not added a lot of programs but instead have removed them with no increase in space, and space was not a problem after having the new hard drive installed. Thanks for suggesting the disk usage analyzers, I'll give that a try. There won't be anyone more savvy looking over my shoulder though, I live in the boonies and am pretty much it. Have to do it on the cheap if possible.

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#11
May 21, 2012 at 18:55:31
Installer files are using about 3/4 of the space. This ought to be interesting! Probably most can be deleted but which ones.....?

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#12
May 22, 2012 at 04:52:19
Hi Curt,

I meant a friend (e.g. FREE!) when suggesting someone more computer literate.

Google can be your friend at such times, I googled for :-
wxp installer files
and there were many hits from people who have experienced had your problem.

e.g. one led here:-
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/243...

Regards - Mike


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#13
May 22, 2012 at 05:07:19
Thanks Mike, I did check Google also. It's an amazing source of all kinds of information! I haven't had time to get into it yet but some of the discussion I did read was hard for me to understand. I don't have any friends who are very computer literate that I know of so I usually stumble my way through things. I'll read your link and let you know the results. Just discovering the problem's source was a relief. Thanks a lot,Curt

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#14
May 24, 2012 at 17:25:58
It's a good site Mike, and seemed like it would solve all the problems but naturally I hit a snag. Their trouble shooter would download and analyze for hours with no result. I even closed everything on the PC and left it run for about 6 hours with no luck. I'll compose a post to MS Support and see if they can offer any solutions. It really seems to be the way I need to go.

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#15
May 24, 2012 at 19:44:53
On my old XP machine I had a larger drive than that and often piled up a lot more on the hard drive than you have.
I do however recommend a larger hard drive for you, but for a better solution for someone who is more comfortable with only a single working partition, you can clone the old hard drive onto the new larger one with the free software available from the hard drive manufacturer and expand it to fill the entire drive. Then you can wipe the old drive and reinstall it as a second drive for automatic back ups.
The two things that often fill small hard drives with XP are the paging files (virtual memory) and the system restore files. These can be managed to buy you some time, but in the end you will end up with a larger drive (unless you were considering upgrading to a newer computer soon).
Your virtual memory should be set to 1 to 1 1/2 times the size of your RAM (1GB should be 1000MB to 1500MB, etc.) You need more virtual memory if you have less actual memory, for example with 1GB RAM (or more) you may do very well with your virtual memory set to about the same as your actual memory, but if you have 512MB, you may need 1 1/2 times (or more) of virtual memory to run well.
System restore is set to use up to 12% of your drive but you can reset it to use 8% or 10% of your drive as a maximum and the only thing you will loose is some of your older restore points. I do not recommend turning off System Restore or setting it to less than about 8% or when you need those restore points, you will not have them.
Depending on your current settings, this can free up some disk space.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.


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#16
June 2, 2012 at 15:39:16
If you're still having this problem, try downloading Xinorbis. It will search your hard drive and give you a very detailed report on what's using all of that space.

You can download it here: http://xinorbis.com/xinorbis/index.htm

Rayburn


CompTIA A+ Certified


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#17
June 2, 2012 at 18:23:37
Thanks Rayburn. I found another similar one through Mike's suggestion and determined that it's definitely installer files. I just haven't found a way yet that will remove the unnecessary ones safely and prevent them from accumulating again. I tried MS installer and uninstaller but it would just open and hang.

Fingers, when I can afford it I may replace the hard drive or computer if needed. All of my disc space is going to installer files though. That is the immediate problem. I believe that if I can take care of that situation there will be plenty of space for my needs.


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#18
June 2, 2012 at 20:29:57
✔ Best Answer
"....determined that it's definitely installer files. I just haven't found a way yet that will remove the unnecessary ones safely and prevent them from accumulating again. "

Which installer files ?

Do you mean the Windows Installer files (*.msi) in the normally hidden C:\Windows\Installer folder ???

If YES......

Use the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility and it's Msizap feature.

See response 4:
http://www.computing.net/answers/wi...

However, you MUST have enough free space on C in order to be able to install and run msizap..
You may STILL need to delete something BEFORE you can install the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility and run it
...........

AFTER you have done the above, or BEFORE you do the above you could do this to free up some drive space,,,,

Be careful when using regedit !

If you have a lot of *.msp files in C:\Windows\Installer that are also taking up a huge amount of space too.....

How to determine which .msp files are safe to delete
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/274533

It's about Microsoft Office 2000 causing the problem but the same method can be used to remove Windows Installer *.msp files you don't need in any situation.

NOTE.
2000 and up sets the location in the Registry to where you last found something when you searched in Regedit.
Re-set Regedit to the beginning of the list - click on My Computer - on the left each time you search when something has been found in the registry, otherwise you will not be searching the whole Registry the next time you search.


A better explanation here:

How to Delete Windows .Msp Files
http://www.ehow.com/how_5901493_del...

Instructions

1
Open your Windows Installer folder. In Vista, click the Start button and type "installer folder" to find it. (Do not include the quotation marks.) In earlier versions of Windows, click the Start button, click My Computer, access the C: Drive and double-click the Installer folder.

(My note - C:\Windows\Installer in XP)

2
Write down all of the files in the folder that end in MSP. To simplify the process, you could type them into a Word document.

3
Click the Start icon and type "regedit" into the search box. (Omit the quotation marks.) Click on "Registry Editor." In earlier versions of Windows, click the Start button and select "Run." Type "regedit" into the window and press "OK." (Again, omit the quotation marks.)

4
Click "My Computer" in the Registry Editor.

5
Click "Find" in the "Edit" menu.

6
Type one of the MSP file names into the search bar.

7
Take note of what happens after you type in the MSP file name. If you get the message, "finished searching through the registry," you can safely delete the MSP file by dragging it to the Recycle Bin. If Registry Editor is able to locate the file and places it in the "Data" column, then the file should not be deleted. Doing so may corrupt your Microsoft Office data.

8
Repeat Steps 6 and 7 for each file. Empty the Recycle Bin by right-clicking on it and selecting "Empty Recycle Bin"

NOTE.
2000 and up sets the location in the Registry to where you last found something when you searched in Regedit.
Re-set Regedit to the beginning of the list - click on My Computer - on the left each time you search when something has been found in the registry, otherwise you will not be searching the whole Registry the next time you search.


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#19
June 2, 2012 at 21:07:53
Thanks for the reply Tubes. Yes, those are the files I meant. There are over 20 GB of them. I had come across your post earlier during a search that I did. I noticed that Office 2007 may present a problem. I have that installed on my PC. Any suggestions about that? I'll move some of the files to an external drive and try the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility if it will work with Office 2007.

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#20
June 2, 2012 at 21:26:24
My notes about the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility
here

See response 4:
http://www.computing.net/answers/wi...

tell you I don't think there's a problem unless you use the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to remove Office 2007 or higher or it's component programs with it.

You're using the msizap feature to remove useless *.msi files in this case.

If you're not comfortable with using that, try just getting rid of the useless *.msp files, or for that matter, you could get rid of the useless *.msi files the same way.

I haven't found any explanation for why the Installer folder can accumulate an excessive amount of *.msi files yet - maybe nobody knows for sure.
I've only encountered that once personally, on someone else's computer - I used msizap and so far the problem has not come back on that computer.


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#21
June 3, 2012 at 06:07:31
Thanks for an encouraging reply Tubes. Guess I was tired when I got to it and didn't read closely enough. My neighbor may have an external drive I can borrow and hopefully fix the problem this afternoon. I'll let you all know the results. Thanks again!

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#22
June 4, 2012 at 06:45:35
Another thing you could try to free up enough space to run the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility as in response 18 is to disable hibernation if it's currently enabled. You can see how much space the hiber.sys file takes up if you use the option to display hidden files & folders in Windows Explorer.

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#23
June 14, 2012 at 05:50:25
I finally got the file down to 1.1GB using msizap. Everything seems to be working fine. Thanks for all the help. I did have problems using the tool as it would only flash on the screen for a second and then was gone. Finally after searching I found a post on another site that opened the door for me. The following is a copy of that post.

"http://www.pagestart.com/msizap.html

First: Open a command window:
Next: Change the default folder to: C:\Program Files\Windows Installer Clean Up>
Then: At the command prompt enter:
msizap !g > zapresults.txt
Press the ‘Enter’ key.

Changing the default folder was the trick. I used the program Folder Sizes 4 to open the command from this folder. Running msizap from here was like magic. My Installer folder is now982 Mb instead of 72 Gb!!!!!!"

Thanks again for all the help. I learned a lot from all your suggestions and advice!


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#24
June 14, 2012 at 07:52:56
Thanks for the thanks.

We're glad to hear you solved your problem !.

No problems with Office 2007 I assume ?

"I did have problems using the tool as it would only flash on the screen for a second and then was gone. Finally after searching I found a post on another site that opened the door for me. The following is a copy of that post.
"http://www.pagestart.com/msizap.html

First: Open a command window:
Next: Change the default folder to: C:\Program Files\Windows Installer Clean Up>
Then: At the command prompt enter:
msizap !g > zapresults.txt
Press the ‘Enter’ key."

You made a good point.

In one of the articles I referred to in response 4 here:
http://www.computing.net/answers/wi...

Msizap.exe
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/lib...

It says .....
"Msizap.exe is a command line utility...... "

....but otherwise the other info does not mention that.

I have only used msi.zap that way once, a year ago or more, so I had forgotten it is a command line utility.

You have to go to a command prompt if you want to do anything other than just run msizap.exe, as in, add to the command line.

The > in the line ....

msizap !g > zapresults.txt

....with a space before and after it re-directs the text you would normally see on the screen when you run msizap !g in a command window to a text file, in this case, zapresults.txt.

The text file can have anything before .txt, and you can add the path to where it is saved to be anywhere you like that already exists,
e.g. say you have a folder C:\Junk, then that line could be modified to
msizap !g > C:\Junk\zapresults.txt

Just typing msizap !g in the command window probably shows the text on the screen of the command window that is normally produced, but if there's a lot of text, only the last part of it remains on the screen when msizap has finished running. Re-directing the output to a text file saves the entire output to that file.


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#25
June 14, 2012 at 09:11:31
That reply I posted was simple enough for me to figure things out Tubes. Any less so and it would have been Greek to me! :-) You would have to ask about Office 07. The shortcuts do not work and I'm not sure what else until I have time to look closer. I can't say for certain that it was caused by msizap or the Install Cleaner. Either way I'll deal with that as a fair trade for getting rid of all those files!

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#26
June 14, 2012 at 22:03:51
It's running the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility and removing Office 2007 or higher or it's components as far as I have been able to determine that causes problems, and you didn't say that you did that. Just installing that would not cause any problems. Using just msizap shouldn't cause a problem with Office 2007, in theory.

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#27
June 15, 2012 at 04:59:57
Yes I ran the Installer Cleanup to gain space when I couldn't get msizap to run. Funny, I would have thought that Installer Cleanup would be the safer of the two.

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#28
June 15, 2012 at 11:45:27
If you used the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to remove Office 2007 or any of it's components, you were WARNED that Microsoft removed the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility from it's web site because of problems with using the utility with it / those. I DID NOT tell you to run it for that purpose,
Running just msizap !g
only removes *.msi files (the normally hidden folder C:\Windows\$NtUninstall........$\...... and all of it's contents) that the msizap utility finds to be useless, as far as I've been able to determine so far.

Windows Installer CleanUp Utility
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Window...

Excerpts:

It looks up registry references and files related to Windows Installer that were installed by various programs, and forcibly wipes invalid entries out. It works in all 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Microsoft Windows.

The utility will only change registry values and files associated with the Windows Installer portion on the program. It will not remove many files from the computer and is only to be used as a last-ditch attempt when dealing with a buggy program. The utility can only be run by users who are logged in as system administrators.

The utility was retired by Microsoft on June 25, 2010, due to conflicts with Office 2007. It was replaced by a Microsoft Fix It, which can be found here:

Fix problems with programs that can't be installed or uninstalled
http://support.microsoft.com/mats/P...
.......

How to uninstall or remove Microsoft Office 2007 suites
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/928...

........

You may or may not have problems if you try to install Office 2007 or higher or any of it's components again on the same Windows installation, because you DID run the the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to remove Office 2007 or any of it's components


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#29
June 15, 2012 at 12:12:33
I tried Fix It several times and never could get it to work. It would run for hours and do nothing. I'll try to install Office on the same installation and if that fails I'll just uninstall and go from there. After all the headaches of trying to get rid of those files reinstalling Office seems pretty minor.

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#30
June 15, 2012 at 13:33:53
"I tried Fix It several times and never could get it to work. It would run for hours and do nothing."

If you tried that AFTER you used the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to remove Office 2007 or any of it's components, it CANNOT WORK !

"I'll try to install Office on the same installation and if that fails I'll just uninstall and go from there"

"You may or may not have problems if you try to install Office 2007 or higher or any of it's components again on the same Windows installation, because you DID run the the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to remove Office 2007 or any of it's components."

You CANNOT unistall Offfice 2007 the normal way if you used the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to remove Office 2007 or any of it's components !!.



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#31
June 15, 2012 at 15:31:40
You know Tubes, I'm not a computer tech, I'm a woodworker in a lousy economy. I would have preferred someone else fix the thing but could not afford to do that so I did the best that I could. I tried Fix it before Windows Installer and it did not work then. I believe it was because of a lack of disk space. So I made space with Windows Installer if I remember correctly. Toward the end of it all I mostly said the heck with it and was trying whatever I could make work. I'll stumble through uninstalling Office also no doubt. I have much more patience and skill in my woodshop with familiar things than I do on a messed up PC! :-) I do appreciate your feedback even if you may feel I should just unplug and go back to my tablesaw!

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#32
June 15, 2012 at 21:59:52
HI Caw,

glad you sorted it out. Clearly it was a bit of a struggle , but you got there in the end. Good job you did not buy another disc as this would not have removed the problem.

Possibly the problem will return and gradually eat up space, which will need freeing again eventually. As I mentioned earlier, I have a similar problem with .tmp files, but no one picked up on it (any thoughts - Tubes (I have w2000)) .

In case you have not already done so, please give thought to security.

You should regularly backup all your personal stuff, ideally to somewhere remote of your pc. It does not have to be the entire disc, but sometimes this is easier.
e.g. in my pc I have two discs C: and D:.
D: is purely for security and I copy personal stuff there to a folder called backup.

I also have an external disc, to which I copy the entire C: using Norton Ghost.

Good Luck - Keep us posted.


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#33
June 16, 2012 at 08:37:47
(Mike Newcomb - see the latter part of this post)

I'm not a technician either.
I'm a Journeyman Carpenter (although I wouldn't call myself a woodworker) , and also did simpler residential related tasks other trades do the right way according to codes, but I am no longer doing any of those things as an occupation since about 5 years ago because of chronic back problems (I'll be 61 in August). I worked mostly as an unofficially self-employed person on my own, so I experienced a lot of of gaps where I had no work. Garages, smaller renovations including whole basements, fences, framing houses, bathrooms, finishing carpentry, floor tiles, shingling, etc., etc. . When I worked for some company before that, it was concrete form related, framing three or four storey apartment or condo or house related, or things a home improvement center has contractors do related to carpentry in general, including installing windows and doors.

I did take a three year electronics course way back in high school (66/67 - 68/69) that took one year off of an Electronics Technician course in certain provincial technical schools, but I chose to not pursue that further.
My experiences with computers began in 1989 when my Dad got a Sanyo 286. I've acquired a lot of knowledge about them since then, but I've never taken an official computer related training course. I've been helping people solve their computer problems, or digging up and pointing them to info about their computers, online since about Sept. of 2002, starting out on a web site that has since ceased to exist.

"I tried Fix it before Windows Installer and it did not work then. I believe it was because of a lack of disk space."

Yes, that may have been your situation

You can always come to a web site such as this one if you're not sure what to do about computer problems and describe your situation to see if someone has a solution or suggestions about what you could try.

I do have Office 2007 installed on one computer, but I have never used the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility to un-install it or any of it's components because of what Microsoft discovered, so I don't know what your situation is.
.......

Mike Newcomb

The problem with trying to delete lists of temporary files yourself is Windows will stop doing that at the first temporary file it encounters that is presently being used by Windows, or that can't be deleted at that time for some other reason. You can easily determine which file it was that caused the problem and de-select it from the list, but there may be many other files that can't be deleted at that time.

Mentioned by JohnW in this topic about getting rid of things that are un-necessarily taking up space, or that can be changed from default settings to take up less space....
http://www.computing.net/answers/wi...

TFC - Temp File Cleaner by OldTimer
http://www.geekstogo.com/forum/file...

Excerpts:

Description
TFC (Temp File Cleaner) will clear out all temp folders for all user accounts (temp, IE temp, java, FF, Opera, Chrome, Safari), including Administrator, All Users, LocalService, NetworkService, and any other accounts in the user folder. It also cleans out the %systemroot%\temp folder and checks for .tmp files in the %systemdrive% root folder, %systemroot%, and the system32 folder (both 32bit and 64bit on 64bit OSs). It shows the amount removed for each location found (in bytes) and the total removed (in MB). Before running it will stop Explorer and all other running apps. When finished, if a reboot is required the user must reboot to finish clearing any in-use temp files.


TFC only cleans temp folders. TFC will not clean URL history, prefetch, or cookies. Depending on how often someone cleans their temp folders, their system hardware, and how many accounts are present, it can take anywhere from a few seconds to a minute or more. TFC will completely clear all temp files where other temp file cleaners may fail. TFC requires a reboot immediately after running. Be sure to save any unsaved work before running TFC.


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#34
June 16, 2012 at 10:43:26
Tubes, it seems we have similar backgrounds in regards to work. I had a little electronics in high school, about 6 years later than you, then began to work on an associates in a junior college. I dropped that when I considered the schooling would never end if I wanted to stay current. I was a good student but didn't enjoy school all that much. Also had a teacher there I despised! :-) I moved to the Missouri Ozarks and eventually got into carpentry putting up pole barns. Ended up framing homes mostly in Dallas and Little Rock then began to work more for myself locally. Eventually I started a small cabinet business with a neighbor then split with him. I still do cabinets and furniture but with the lousy market in a rural area I'm back to doing odds and ends to fill the gaps between jobs. The gaps aren't filled all that well but I'm still eating. Regarding me and computers- I get by. Keep a business website, read the news and check email. :-) This little deal is the furthest I've delved into doing any actual work on them. I'll muddle through the office problem too. Again, thanks for the assistance!

Thank you too Mike. I'll check out the backups you mentioned. I'm satisfied that removing the files was the best solution. Even if I could have gone to a larger HDD it doesn't make sense to do that in order to store volumes of useless files!


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#35
June 16, 2012 at 13:05:06
I'm in Alberta, Canada myself.

My user name came from a friend I helped out by installing two ~ 10 watt rms vacuum tube mono receivers so that he had a stereo system, and wiring up switches and wiring so that he could connect various things such as a turntable I provided, or a tape player, when he had no money to spare - he had some decent speaker cabinets, but nothing else at the time. I still have those mono receivers and the turntable.

If I had become an Electronics Technician at the time I would have been repairing mostly things that had vacuum tubes in them. I had no idea how important personal computers would become. There were only main frame computers back then, that only governments, institutions, and large businesses could afford to buy.

I never used particle board (MDF etc.) for things such as shelves in bedroom closets - it was usually fir plywood or solid fir - and used very little of it otherwise.
I made a few cabinets when called for, including a hanging internally lighted one for a small one-of burger business that allowed plexiglass panels to be installed or removed or replaced easily for the items offered and their prices.
In one case, I replaced all the cabinet doors in an existing kitchen, with oak veneered plywood that had a continuous oak "pull" molding (rather than handles or knobs) I glued onto their bottom or top edges, and fitted them with Blum hinges. I lucked out when I went looking for the plywood and found enough sheets with a similar interesting looking grain pattern that would normally cost more as "booked" sheets, so I was able to cut up the sheets so every door had a nice looking grain pattern. Six ? brush / roller applied coats of mostly clear rather than yellow UV resistant urethane. It took up most of my Dad's entire garage to do that.
I made some bolt together furniture out of red cedar 4x4s. . A ~ 6 foot long two tier aquarium stand for myself, for others a ~ 10 foot couch that has a custom made (by someone else) canvas sling and custom made large pillows etc., and a large three (four ?) tier stand for sound equipment, vinyl LP records, etc, at least ~ 6 feet long, ~ 6 feet high. I planed the 4x4s by hand when required so they were all 100% square, and for some I sawed them in two passes on one or two sides on a 10" table saw (3 1/4" max cut depth) so they were slightly smaller yet all sides were the same width.

"Keep a business website..."

Have you tried selling what you can make online ?

"Even if I could have gone to a larger HDD it doesn't make sense to do that in order to store volumes of useless files! "

The useless files, yes, but if you were using Office 2007 that's a loss of what you were using.

Here's what involved regarding installing a larger hard drive....

-- if the computer was made in about 2001 or earlier, it's main chipset and bios probably supports recognizing max manufacturer's size 137 gb drives (= 128 gb binary size in the bios and in the operating system)
To get around that.....
- you can install free (from the drive manufacturer) or or paid "drive overlay" software to get around that, but you have to be very aware and careful when you do certain things because of that.
- if your model has the necessary slot, you can buy a PCMCIA (PC Card) drive controller adapter that supports recognizing any size of hard drive
- a USB to drive controller adapter is NOT an option when there will be only one hard drive connected to the computer - an existing Microsoft Windows 2000 or later installation will NOT load from a USB connected external hard drive due to Microsoft's wishes.

- if the computer was made after about 2001, it's main chipset and bios is probably 48 bit and supports recognizing any size of hard drive.
- the Windows XP CD you use to install Windows, or the Windows installation, must have SP1 or later updates embedded into it in order for drives larger than 137 gb manufacturer's size (= 128 gb binary size in the bios and in the operating system) to be recognized as their full (binary) size in Windows.
- there is free cloning software available on the web sites of most of the brands of hard drives that makes it easy to clone the entire contents of the original drive to a larger drive, but you must have enough free space on the original drive to install the software and run the program properly after it has been installed.
(The software must detect at least one of the drives is their brand or a brand they support e.g. Seagate also supports Maxtor hard drives and one other brand of hard drives that i don't recall)
In the case of a laptop or netbook that one one drive can be installed internally in, you can install the larger hard drive in an external drive enclosure, or use some other USB to hard drive adapter, the USB port MUST be able to actually supply 500 ma of current. When the software has been cloned, you simply install the larger hard drive in the laptop.


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#36
June 17, 2012 at 05:21:53
Yes, one of the few air conditioned rooms in our high school was my math class. We had a humongous computer in the back of it. I wonder what happened to that dinosaur. I worked part time for a Magnavox dealership back then. When units came in I did the basic stuff like check all the tubes or set the speed on turntables. If that didn't fix it then one of the guys that knew something would finish them up. I did the same sort of playing around the house too. Had speakers through the house wired to switches mounted on plastic stained glass with a light behind it. Wired my brother's mono record player to play through his stereo 8 track and my portable cassette to play through a stereo turntable. :-) Naturally both eventually messed up the stereo units but it was fun.

I did a job last week in red cedar. We had large logs sawn in half and used the to make stairs to a basement. We peeled them, tenoned the ends of the logs and set them into mortises in the stringers. It will have a log handrail also to match others already in the house.

I get inquiries from the website sometimes but the problem is the cost of shipping large items. Most of what I do is large. I would love to find a niche using online marketing though, just haven't had any brainstorms yet. I use the website mainly as a sort of brochure for more local prospects.

I regret messing up Office and having that ahead of me but feel it was worth it to get rid of the clutter. If it happens again hopefully I can do a better job of cleaning them out. I think I bought this PC about 2004. If I get a little extra cash some day I'll probably get a larger drive or replace the unit itself. It's been reliable so I'll probably just upgrade. I tend to keep and repair rather than replace. My primary transportation is a 69 F250 pickup that I've had for about 26 years! :-)


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#37
June 17, 2012 at 08:43:46
Hi Caw,

I would think for your level of word pressing any old version of Word will do.

Surely you do not want to do anything spectacular?
Early versions can be found for virtually nothing.

e.g. I use Wordstar, but if needed have also Word 97 installed on my pc.

If someone emails me a Word document that cannot be read by Word 97, (e.g. docx) I have a reader that can handle them.

Good Luck - Keep us posted.


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#38
June 17, 2012 at 10:22:14
Mike Newcomb - did you see the last part of response 33 ?
.....

Caw57

If there was a main frame computer in my high school, it was probably in the Office area - I don't recall.

Connecting something mono to something stereo should not have done any damage at all - something else probably went wrong.

I toyed with the idea of building a log house, investigated that, but never got around to doing it. I don't recall building anything with logs otherwise.

A guy who was in apprenticeship school in the same session as me one year (it was required we take two months of that for each of four "years"), John ? Goodman, specialized in building barns and housing based on barns using the old fashioned methods, though not from logs.

Yes, the shipping cost of large items is a problem, especially when they're heavy. In some cases there may be a local trucker near the customer who would be glad to do it for less money, but the potential customer may have to find out about that.
....

If you find that you cannot install Office 2007 successfully again (at least not unless you install XP from scratch)....

Support for legacy Word 6 *.doc files is built into Wordpad in XP, however, it can't read Word *.doc files made by newer versions of Word properly, and it can't read *.docx files at all.

If someone sends you a file from a newer Word version, the Microsoft Office web site has a free reader for newer versions of Word you can install, and free readers you can install foe Excel, PowerPoint, etc., and if you also install the recommended Compatibilty pack, you can read any of those files from any version of Office even when it's newer than Office 2007.

Note that if you install the Word reader, it becomes the prgram that opens all *.doc files by default.
In some cases old *.doc files will only read properly in Wordpad.

OR - you could install the freeware open source Open Office suite, which can read AND Edit files made by Microsoft Office versions, however, it's interface is quite different looking in comparison to Office programs.

I try to fix whatever I have when something goes wrong with it rather than getting a new one too.

Although, tend to procrastinate when it's not essential that it be fixed.
I have a 75 Volkswagen van that's been sitting for years that runs but had a dash fire years ago and needss body work, and my Dad has a 91 Vanagon that runs but it needs exhaust and cooling system parts and body work and it's been sitting for three years.
I drove a 78 Volvo 244 for years until a couple of years ago, that was a handy work vehicle when I used roof racks, before that several other older cars, usually had one at a time. The first car of my own was a 69 Ford Falcon.


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#39
June 18, 2012 at 04:06:05
Hi Tubes, thanks for the information:-

"Windows will stop doing that at the first temporary file it encounters that is presently being used by Windows, or that can't be deleted at that time for some other reason."

Clearly a bug in windows, in that it should continue to the next file and try again.

My problem is .tmp folders build up and are not being deleted automatically, gradually taking much disc space. Yesterday these represented about 45 of 49 .tmp folders and files

These folders are being created by Norton Internet Security (NIS), which opens them all on starting, thus they cannot be deleted automatically.

As it is not easy to delete and restart NIS, I occasionally start in safemode and delete them manually.

Regards - Mike


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#40
June 18, 2012 at 08:39:15
Mike Newcomb

The Windows core (kernel) itself makes new temporary files that it using every time you use it for a particular session. You can't delete those while they're being used. When Windows is restarted, most of if not all of those same temporary files are deleted before Windows has fully loaded and it makes new temporary files, so there's no need to be concerned about most of if not all of those temporary files.
There's also a time limit for how long some temporary files are stored before they're automatically deleted.

Some programs may do similar, and you can't delete any of the temporary files it made while they're being used.

That Temporary File Cleaner program will get rid of many of the temporary files that are common, buit it wasn't designed to take into account third party programs other than some internet browsers.

Why are you concerned about the temporary files for NIS ?
How much space are they taking up ?

If you don't have enough free space on the partition Windows is running from, there are lots of things you can do to free up more free space, without you losing anything significant.
E.g. when you have Folder Options set to show hidden and system files and folders, if the space taken up by the C:\Windows\Installer folder contents is huge, that can be fixed,

I used Norton products for many years, but I haven't used Norton (later Symantec) anti-malware products since System Works 2003, which had NAV 2003 included, because good free anti-malware software became available that impacts the performance of Windows a lot less than the Norton products made after that time did. Although it appears current Norton products don't slow down Windows as much as they once did, I have found no reason to BUY any anti-malware program these days - there are lots of choices of free ones you can use, and in any case, no one anti-malware program can get rid of all malware these days.


If you look at the settings in NIS itself, you may be able to change settings regarding how much drive space, max, is used by it's temporary files.



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#41
June 18, 2012 at 11:54:33
HI Tubes,

I use NIS 2006 and cannot go higher as my os is w2000.

Over time the folders build up, eventually using gigabytes of space which then causes other disk space requiring applications to slow down.

Since deleting them yesterday, checking now, I find 4 have appeared.

There are a couple of windows ones (SET29.tmp and SET51.tnp) that have been there since 2003. On checking I find windows has them open.

Regards - Mike


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#42
June 18, 2012 at 13:21:20
Mike Newcomb

Do you have less than about 10% free space left on the partition Windows is running from, which is usually but not necessarily C in 2000 (or XP) ?

Files and folders that are NOT being accessed CANNOT slow down Windows, other than programs that scan a lot of files and folders such as anti-malware program's Full scans will take longer to finish running, and it makes no difference whether there are more of those, UNLESS having them present on the partition Windows was installed on results in there being about 10% free space or less on that partition, in which case, the less free space there is below about 10%, the slower everything in Windows will run.

Side notes.
Defrag (or other defragmentation programs) may take longer to finish when you load Windows normally when you have more installed because there are many programs that that can be running that will cause it to restart. If you run it in Safe mode Defrag (or other defragmentation programs) will likely take less time to finish because fewer programs that may cause it to restart will not be running in Safe mode.

Are you still able to renew the subscription for NIS 2006 (pay again to renew it) ?
I was only able to do that for NAV 2003 for a couple of years after the initial year.
If NO, it's useless for detecting new malware.

I don't have an existing 2000 installation that is working properly on any of my computers to look at.
In XP (MCE 2005) I have three similar files in C:\Windows - Set3.tmp, Set4.tmp, and Set8.tmp (the only *.tmp files that start with s) - the Modified date for them , which is what is displayed when you hold your cursor over the file, is 08/10/2009 (Aug 10), and when you RIGHT click on them and choose Properties, the Created date is April 27 2009, which is the same date as when the Windows folder was created, so that's when I initially installed Windows.

All three of those files are relatively tiny.

I don't recall what I did on 08/10/2009 (Aug 10) that would have changed the Modified date, which is intially the same as the Created date.

So - some *.tmp files for the Windows core (kernel) are NOT deleted automatically.
So what ?
I've never bothered to delete temporary files, other than Temporary Internet files made by IE.
I've nearly always had more than 10% free space left on the partition Windows was running from on any computer.


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#43
June 19, 2012 at 17:00:07
I'll probably just go with the Open Office Tubes. The interface won't matter to me as it's something I seldom use. I need to prepare a bid and don't feel like messing with MS Office 07 right this moment. I used to use Abiword for that but my pastor sent me stuff on MS Office to put on the website I put together for our church so I installed it off his disk. I'd looked at Open Office briefly before so I may as well give it a shot.

It sounds like timber framing that you're describing. That would have been very interesting to do. Probably not a huge demand but some great work. I put up quite a few log homes from several manufacturers in earlier days. They were the "kit" homes with varying degrees of simplicity. I enjoyed them all though and seeing the finished home was worth all the effort. I don't believe people were putting up as many as what they did about 20-30 years ago.

There's an 86 Taurus in my drive that's been sitting for at least a year. It has very low miles on it as it was owned by an older lady that didn't drive much. I discovered that the electronics fail on those old jewels though and it's difficult to track down the particular culprit sometimes. It was the first year they made that model and the computer has very little to say about what ails the old girl. I also have a 68 F-250 parked out there very similar to the 69 with fewer extras, like no AC. I picked it up when my truck broke down and intended to use it as a parts truck but drove it instead as it was in too good of shape to cannibalize. The transmission quit on it though so I did rob a a few parts. If I ever get my head above water again I'd like to rebuild the tranny and go through both trucks.


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#44
June 23, 2012 at 04:37:51
HI Tubes, to answer your points.

a) normally I have 6 - 8gb free on a 40gb disk for w2000.

Over time I find this this reduces to 1 - 2gb, due to the NIS2006 .tmp folders not automatically deleting, and the system becomes slower.

I put this speed problem down to lack of disk working space, plus it being fragmented.

b) here in the UK, NIS2006 updates as normal (virtually every couple of days), and extending the registration is available for purchase annually from Symantec/Norton.

However it is much cheaper to purchase a new NIS2006 from ebay, which often supports 3 pc's, and use its code to extend registration.

c) there are a couple of small SETnn.tmp files used by W2000, surprisingly created in 2005, *BUT* modified in 2003.

Regards - Mike.


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#45
June 23, 2012 at 08:14:56
Mike Newcomb

When you have less than about 10% free space left on the partition Windows is running from (the one Windows itself was installed on), in your case, less than about 4 gb, EVERYTHING in Windows will run slower than it would if you had more free space on that partition. The less free space you have below about 10%, the slower Windows will run, the more often the smaller than it should be Windows page (swap) file on the hard drive will need to be accessed, the more hard drive activity there will need to be.

Defrag was a very useful utility for improving the performance of the operating system in the past when computers were MUCH slower, but for modern computers, running it cannot improve the performance of Windows any more than about 10%, and even then that's a temporary improvement - the less free space you have on the partition Windows is running from, the faster new files will get fragmented. If Windows is running more than 10% slower than it once did, there are other things that are slowing it down.

There are many ways you can fix your not enough free space problem.

See the last part of response 33. The topic I pointed to has posts that mention several ways of reducing the space things in Windows take up, as well as using the TFC program.

NOTE that sometimes the normally hidden C:\Windows\Installer folder gets HUGE on some Windows XP and 2000 installations rather than being a reasonable size.
If you don't have showing hidden files and folders (in My Computer or Windows Explorer) enabled, go to Control Panel - Classic view - Folder Options, click on the View tab, click on the circle before Show hidden files and folders to place a dot in the circle.
You may ALSO need to click on the square box before Hide protected operating system files to remove the check mark in that box.
Click on OK at the bottom of the folder options Window.
E.g. My C:\Windows\Installer folder is presently showing 2.59 gb when I hold my mouse cursor over it.
If yours is MUCH bigger than that, SEE RESPONSE 18 AND 20 IN THIS TOPIC !


Install another hard drive if it's a desktop computer, or install a larger hard drive on any computer.
You DO NOT NEED to install everything that did not come with Windows on C if you have another hard drive partition to install the software on. Instead of choosing the Express install or similar, you choose a Custom install or similar and install the software on a different partition drive letter - if you do that, only a small amount of the program's data is installed on C.
There is free cloning software available from the maker of one of your installed hard drives that allows you to copy the entire contents of an existing hard drive to a larger hard drive, however, there must be enough free space available on the original drive to install the software and for it to run properly
For a laptop or netbook, you install the larger drive in an external enclosure connected to the computer via a USB connection, or use some other USB to hard drive adapter, run the cloning software, then swap the larger hard drive for the original one. .
Or, there is other free software available that you can burn onto a CD or DVD and boot the computer from that disk to do the same thing, but I don't know much about that.
........

I'm surprised that you are able to still get a new subscription for NIS 2006.

As I recall, the NAV in NIS 2006 had a reputation for slowing down your operating system much more than most anti-malware software does, and much more than newer Symantec anti-malware software does. I usually use the free version of AVG on the XP and up Windows installations of my own, and on the Windows installation of other people's computers I work on.
You could try looking on the Symantec web site, or elsewhere on the web, to see if there is info about deleting it's own un-necessary temporary files made by it, but if they're still being used, then they're probably essential.

"there are a couple of small SETnn.tmp files used by W2000, surprisingly created in 2005, *BUT* modified in 2003."

Are you sure you haven't stated that backwards ? The date you see when you hold the mouse cursor over the file is always the Modified date. In any case, if they're small, obviously they are not taking up significant amounts of free space. You only see the Created date when you RIGHT click on a file or folder and look at it's Properties.


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#46
June 24, 2012 at 01:48:25
HI Tubes,

a) my reply (now too late to edit for correction) in #39 should have read:-

"These folders are being created by Norton Internet Security (NIS) 2006, which opens them *ALL* on starting, thus they cannot be deleted manually and are not deleting automatically.

As it is not easy to delete and restart NIS, I occasionally start in safemode and delete them manually."

This releases space back to around 6 - 8gb which his plenty.

b) installing W2000 (previous os was W98) opened the floodgates to virus's etc., which was never a problem before.

NIS2006 cured this and continues to protect against. It is known to be a bit heavy on resources at times, but it does the job and has done so for years.

c) the 'out of order' dates I stated for the SETnn.tmp files are correct from 'Properties'. This stems from having to replace the disk in 2005, and restoring all files from a backup security dump.

Regards - Mike


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#47
June 24, 2012 at 10:50:20
The NIS temp files taking up space would be of no concern if you freed up more free space on the partition Windows itself was installed on, one way or another.
I have told you about or have referred you to info about many ways you can free up more free space. They probably are limited regarding how large they can get to be.

".... installing W2000 (previous os was W98) opened the floodgates to virus's etc., which was never a problem before."

Most malware these days is NOT a virus - it's something else.

I used Win 98SE nearly every day on one computer until it's mboard developed failing electrolytic capacitors and would no longer boot, circa the end of 2010. (I bought the mboard new in Dec 1999.)
Several years before that I found I could no longer get free anti-malware software that would run on 98SE. I had no anti-malware software installed from then until the mboard stopped booting, and Windows was never contaminated with malware that "stuck" in all that time. There was some malware that attempted to load when I was online, but I was always able to either close Internet Explorer one way or another, or in some cases I had to hold the power button in until the mboard shut off but when I restarted the computer, or in any case, the malware had not actually installed anything.
I came to the conclusion that the bad guys were no longer making malware that actually affects 98SE, and probably ME and previous.
However, if the computer was infected with OLD malware, that's another matter - but that never happened in my case.

Win 2000 is vulnerable to much of, if not all of. the malware that can affect XP.


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