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Unread postAuthor: Pete Zaria » Wed Apr 11, 2007 2:22 pm

paaiyan wrote:Pete, what do you do for a living?


I own a Seattle-based IT company (we do networking, security, consulting, computer repair and custom built PCs) . Sorry, I won't tell you what it's called or give you the URL, I like to stay pretty anonymous online. But I'm pretty happy to be the forum's resident computer guru.

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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Wed Apr 11, 2007 2:37 pm

Oh I don't expect social security numbers or anything man, I was just wondering what you did. I get people all the time that give out advice and have absolutely no real training or knowledge. They annoy me.
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Unread postAuthor: spuzi14 » Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:03 pm

Ok, I removed that stuff from startup. I restarted but wasn't at the computer so I didn't get to see if there was a difference or not. I'll check later.

What's malware? Is there any reason my computer has a systray but shouldn't?

I don't want to keep McAfee. If that Updreg.exe is a virus then apparently McAfee sucks carrots. I think I will go with Ad-Aware since I've had it before and it seem to work good.

Thanks for the help! It's actually very important I keep my computer working because my mom uses it for her business and she doesn't know how to fix it. Is there anywhere else I can trim RAM usage?

EDIT: I was looking through my Add/Remove Programs list and I see I have Acrobat 4.0 and 5.0. This is definetly a waste of space but I couldn't get just 4.0 to uninstall. I also have this ABBY FineReader 5.0 Sprint. I'll google it but what is it/do I need it? It'd be a huge help if it could disappear since it's sucking up 107 MB!
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:10 pm

Malware is a general term for things such as trojans, hijackers, viruses and spyware. Short for malicious software. To get rid of McAfee don't just shut those off, uninstall it completely. Sometimes if you run two anti-virus programs it can cause problems. I know a guy that had to do some major work to get his AV programs off, they both thought the other was a virus and tried to delete each other. I thought the concept was pretty funny and ironic but that's just me.
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Unread postAuthor: Pete Zaria » Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:13 pm

@spuzi14,
Glad that worked for you.

Keep in mind, AdAware is an anti-spyware program, NOT an anti-virus program, and you need BOTH. I recommend the following:

Antivirus: Avast - http://files.avast.com/iavs4pro/setupeng.exe It's free but you have to register it (they email you the key).
Antispyware: AdAware SE - http://www.download.com/3000-2144-10045910.html
Firewall (if you dont already have one) - Comodo - http://www.download.com/Comodo-Firewall ... ag=lst-0-1

There's lots more you can do to trim RAM usage. Email me and I can send you some literature on it.

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Unread postAuthor: spuzi14 » Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:16 pm

Well if I download all this anti virus/spyware stuff...am I really making any forward progress with memory? I mean I might be able to protect my computer from a virus and all that but if it's not really usable then it's pointless.
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:23 pm

What are the specs on your computer, RAM processor speed, hard drive size, that kind of thing.
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Unread postAuthor: COD_FILLETS » Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:29 pm

If you need a virus/spyware scan, and dont want to install any software (well, technically). Try House Call from Trend Micro or Panda Active Scan from Panda Software (just scroll down a bit, its on the bottom left).

By the way, it appears that that same site has the HijackThis tool.
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Unread postAuthor: spuzi14 » Wed Apr 11, 2007 4:30 pm

I assumed that I could get the information paaiyan wanted by going to start>programs>accesories>system tools>system information. I looked but I don't think I found what you wanted. How can I get you the info? I just got that strange feeling that I skipped something really obvious and I'm gonna kick myself for asking how to get the info :cry:
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Wed Apr 11, 2007 4:33 pm

Start, control panel, system. That'll tell you your RAM and processor speed. For hard drive size go to my computer, right click C:, click properties. Give us total size and free space.
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Unread postAuthor: Pete Zaria » Wed Apr 11, 2007 7:12 pm

spuzi14 wrote:Well if I download all this anti virus/spyware stuff...am I really making any forward progress with memory? I mean I might be able to protect my computer from a virus and all that but if it's not really usable then it's pointless.


I recommended those programs because they use very little memory and don't impact system performance as much as say McAfee or Norton would. Avast runs in the background but uses only about 12mb of ram. AdAware does not run in the background, it runs only on demand, and therefore uses no ram in that context.

As to your comment, is a really fast system useful if it's highly vulnerable to viruses, either? No. There's a balance half way in between.
I personally run a dedicated hardware firewall (I use a Linux box, but most people could use a nice Linksys router and it'd work excellently) so that I don't have to run firewall software on my PC.
I also don't use antivirus but I don't recommend that for most people.

There's a great 600kb tool called cpuz that will tell you everything you want to know about your machine's hardware - here it is: http://www.cpuid.com/download/cpu-z-139.zip You don't have to install anything, it runs right from the zip file, just open cpuz.exe .

@COD_FILLETS,
Not to be argumentative or anything, but just FYI, ActiveScan and HouseCall aren't very, uh, in-depth. They miss a lot of "details". Plus, both of them actually DO install software onto your PC, they just use the browser's interface instead. Avast, AVG, etc.... require barley any more work or HDD space, and do a much better job.

I'm writing a book on PC Maintenance & Security for the home computer user. It's a very non-technical, layman's-terms explanation of things. I'm tempted to post chunks of it here for you guys to review and use, but I'm afraid of it getting pirated and posted on P2P services before I publish.
Of course, now when the book comes out, you'll all know who Pete Zaria is... :(

Peace,
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Unread postAuthor: spuzi14 » Wed Apr 11, 2007 7:49 pm

Ok paaiyan...

Intel Pentium III Processor
730 MHz, 320 MB of RAM
The total disk capacity is 14.3 GB
I have used 9.34GB
That gives me 4.96 free GB

I'm gonna consult with my parents to make sure they're ok with this.
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Unread postAuthor: COD_FILLETS » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:01 pm

Pete Zaria wrote:@COD_FILLETS,
Not to be argumentative or anything, but just FYI, ActiveScan and HouseCall aren't very, uh, in-depth. They miss a lot of "details". Plus, both of them actually DO install software onto your PC, they just use the browser's interface instead. Avast, AVG, etc.... require barley any more work or HDD space, and do a much better job.


They obviously are not going to be as good as an actual installed program on your computer but they provide a useful review/second opinion.
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:35 pm

spuzi14 wrote:Ok paaiyan...

Intel Pentium III Processor
730 MHz, 320 MB of RAM
The total disk capacity is 14.3 GB
I have used 9.34GB
That gives me 4.96 free GB

I'm gonna consult with my parents to make sure they're ok with this.


Well, that's half your problem. That's pretty outdated. Newer programs have higher requirements. Heck, I got mine two years ago and upgraded a few things and it can barely run some of the new stuff. Your computer just isn't made to run a lot of this stuff. You just need to prioritize things.
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Unread postAuthor: spuzi14 » Sun Apr 15, 2007 8:11 pm

I downloaded Avast and please allow me to say HOLY CRAP! It found some malware and adware. I moved them to the "chest" and haven't done anything since. I would guess they aren't good but what are they?
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