Solved

C: Drive appears full

Posted on 2014-03-18
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Last Modified: 2014-03-23
I have a Windows 7 Pro 64Bit with a 1.5 TB Hard Drive with about 1 TB of FREE disk space.
Gradually during the day the Disk appears to "fill up" until it indicated ZERO disk space.
I have run CCleaner, Malwarebytes, Spybot and Clamwin and removed two Trojans and a bunch of Spyware.  But the problem continues.

THE ONLY THING THAT RESTORES THE DISK TO ITS CORRECT STATE IS REBOOTING.

Anyone know what process is causing this and/or how to fix this?

Biggles1
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Question by:Biggles1
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Assisted Solution

by:x-men
x-men earned 100 total points
ID: 39936503
run "Stinger" (you can get it from vil.nai.com)
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by:IMGIDC
ID: 39936517
its worth checking for virtual memory size given.....
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by:Seth Simmons
Seth Simmons earned 100 total points
ID: 39936950
when it goes to 0, i would look at the file system to see where the usage is

WinDirStat and TreeSize should help with that

https://windirstat.info/download.html

https://www.jam-software.com/freeware/
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by:joensw
ID: 39937195
hi

Is it a laptop and do you use hibernate a LOT not sure if you know but certain windows utilities actually take up a whole lot of space on you drive here are two of the big offenders ... do be warned though disabling these inst always the best option.

Disable Hibernation – When you hibernate your system, it saves the contents of its RAM to your hard drive. This allows it to save its system state without any power usage – the next time you boot your computer, you’ll be back where you left of. Windows saves the contents of your RAM in the C:\hiberfil.sys file. To save hard drive space, you can disable hibernate entirely, which removes the file.

 Disable System Restore – If reducing the amount of space System Restore uses isn’t good enough for you, you can disable System Restore entirely. You’ll be out-of-luck if you need to use System Restore to restore your system to an earlier state, so be warned.
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by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 200 total points
ID: 39938004
>>  Anyone know what process is causing this and/or how to fix this?

Large number of possibles here.

One, there is still a malware infection in this system.  Perhaps a MBR infection.  I'd be inclined to remove hard disk and attach via USB to another system and use that system's anti-virus to check it.  Before doing that, however, run TDSSKiller http://support.kaspersky.com/viruses/disinfection/5350 and see what finds.  Even if it finds nothing consider testing the drive on another machine.

Two, check your network traffic.  Above normal?

Three, monitor your hard disk space.  Check it before using a browser and after.  Does the browser seem to chew the hard disk space.  Monitor your hard disk space during the day and see if any application cause it to chew disk space.  I'd suspect the browser more than anything.
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Author Comment

by:Biggles1
ID: 39938068
Thanks for your suggestions guys.  To answer your questions:
Hibernation is NOT turned on (its not a Laptop).

I also ran Kaspersky TDSSKiller as well as CCleaner, Malwarebytes, Clamwin and Spybot and removed 2 Trojans and some spyware.

I am reluctant to blame the browser (Temporary Internet Files) because the system goes from having more than half a Terrabyte Free space to Zero Free space!

The mystery is that rebooting restores the free space!
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by:
dbrunton earned 200 total points
ID: 39938201
>>  The mystery is that rebooting restores the free space!

Then monitor the disk space during the day, and see if you can pin down an application that could be doing the usage.
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by:nobus
nobus earned 100 total points
ID: 39938992
use task manager - select performance tab  -resource monitor
check what is using your disk
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by:nobus
ID: 39939354
Biggles, did any post help, or what was the solution.
if yes - why the C grade??
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Expert Comment

by:Seth Simmons
ID: 39939364
please explain what the solution was
you selected multiple comments and didn't respond on some suggestions that were made
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Author Comment

by:Biggles1
ID: 39939374
Really sorry guys...

I have yet to try some of the solutions.  Initially nobody seemed to note that "rebooting reduced used space to its correct size".

All solutions that were proposed did provide some information, and I certainly learned the existence of some useful programs like Stinger, Space Sniffer and WinDirStat.

Please correct the C to an A.  IO don't  know how that happened.
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LVL 91

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39939386
Biggles - thanks for the feedback - exchanging info is the way here to get info.
you don't have to close this yet, just test at your own speed - then evaluate.
remember, we're here to help you - but give us the info to do so !
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Author Comment

by:Biggles1
ID: 39939730
OK. Thanks for you patience and dedication!
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Author Comment

by:Biggles1
ID: 39942128
Hi Guys,

Thanks for your patience.  I downloaded and ran:
Stinger.  Found no Malware (not surprizing after all the Antimalware I ran - see above)
SpaceSniffer and WinDirStat.  Wonderful programs.  They both showed essentially the same thing:  C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\PC Tools\sMonitor contains logfile.etl which is over 100GB!!

A search on Google said that an older version of PC Tools has a bug, and recommended de-install and re-install the latest version. I de-installed Registry Mechanic (the only part of PC Tools that I have), but did not re-install.

I am wondering if its safe to delete logfile.etl.  Trying to open it says its corrupt.

In case anyone is interested, I have been using "Portable Apps".  Check it out if you have not already!!! You can run SpaceSniffer from Protable Apps off of a Flash Drive, without installing on your PC.
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Author Comment

by:Biggles1
ID: 39942133
PS:  I forgot to say that de-installing Registry Mechanic did NOT remove
C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\PC Tools\sMonitor and logfile.etl.
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by:nobus
ID: 39942616
i would just delete it - if you want to play safe, copy it to another disk
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