How  is it possible to remove old norton definition files on my laptop

Posted on 2008-11-02
Last Modified: 2013-12-09
Dear all experts

I'm using Norton AntiVirus for Windows XP on my laptop and I found that it won't have enough disc space on my system drive.  i know it is possible to remove the outdate / old virus definition files so that it frees up more space (based on a previous question which was posed) based on the following answer -
"Virus definitions are stored in the "C:\Program Files\Common Files\Symantec Shared\VirusDefs\15" folder.  This folder should contain 5 to 6 subfolders.  2 to 3 of these folders will have a name which reflects the date of their creation ("20011017.005" for example).  There also should be "BinHub", "INCOMING", and "TextHub" folders.  You should see two files labeled "DEFINFO.DAT" and "USEAGE.DAT" (make sure that your file explorer is set to display all files and extensions).

Simply delete that folders having date"

Now i try to delete the old files i get the message - 'Access is denied, Make sure that the disk is not full or write-protected and that the file is not currently in use'.

When i deleted these files earlier, i didn't have the problem. I don't know why this message is coming up now.

Please do let me know how i can delete these pesky files.

Question by:newuser2009
LVL 29

Assisted Solution

TeRReF earned 100 total points
ID: 22875026
Make absolutely sure that Norton Antivirus is not running when you try to delete the files. That means visible executables like the one(s) in the task manager or the toolbar, but also any related services that Norton might have running...
LVL 69

Accepted Solution

Merete earned 300 total points
ID: 22875837
Hello newuser2009,
here's some great tools to clean up your hard drive first and get more space.
CCleaner will remove huge chunks of hidden files from the temp folders and old data.
Reduce the cache size of internet explorer, delete all but the most recent system restore points, reduce the amount space allocated for system restore.
So that you donot lose your regestered key please follow Nortons guide
Use the norton removal tool

Safemode is another option to delete folders otherwise unaccessable becvause of services.
Open your task manager and stop all services for Norton.
Consider buying an exteranl USB hard drive pretty cheap these days.
$99 dollars for an external  320 gig USB hard drive, I bought one and works great simply follow the instructions very simple.
good luck.
LVL 38

Assisted Solution

BillDL earned 100 total points
ID: 22885585
XP Home or XP Pro?

I suggest booting into Safe Mode where (hopefully) none of the Norton Services will be running.  Booting into Safe Mode is easy enough to do.  Just keep jabbing the F8 key as the system starts booting, and you should see the following Boot Options:

The grey selection highlighting should default to "Normal", but if you arrow to Safe Mode and press Enter, it will boot into that.
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LVL 38

Expert Comment

ID: 22885590
Whooops, sorry Merete, you already suggested Safe Mode.
LVL 69

Expert Comment

ID: 22891723
no probs BillDL :)

Author Comment

ID: 22929710
Thanks everyone for your comments. I just removed Norton Anti virus completely and installed Avast.

LVL 38

Expert Comment

ID: 22931782
That's great news newuser, and thank you.

If you are looking for the Avast removal tool later, it works ;-)

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