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My PC had a major crash last Tuesday 7TH March. Lost a load of stuff; spent 12+ hours over several days on the phone to tech support; had to reinstall WinXP. MY ISP is NTL Broadband.:(

I understand this was a UK problem and may have been restricted to my area (north-west). Did anyone else in the UK have a problem? It seems some people were simply off-line forsome time,while others, like me, had hours of tech support, either phone or hands-on techie, and ended up having to reinstall WinXP.

The point of this posting is that I have a sneaking suspicion that the problem was aggravated by NTL's free Netguard anti-virus etc. software, which I have not and will not reinstall. Does anyone know anything about this?

NB. No doubt (Redwing) and (Silverfox) were glad of the rest. (Redwing), please note you are protected by brackets from you know who. Ditto (Silverfox).:waving:
 

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Monkey with a Football
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colbee,
If you or anyone else is ever facing losing data because of a computer crash or system that won't boot up or keeps crashing, please contact me before you let tech support or some repair shop have at your system.

I have done extensive data recovery both personally and professionally for years and I have several techniques available that can save your data about 90% of the time, even if you still need to reload your system from scratch. Most don't cost anything.

Tech support people and repair people don't have the concern, knowledge or tools to save your data, pictures, favorites, etc. before they "fix" your computer by blowing everything away or replacing your hard disk drive.

Unless you just prefer to start over from scratch that is.
 

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Rudy,:waving:

Thanks, I will bear it in mind for the future; I don't think anyone would prefer to start from scratch. Problemwas, apart from everything else, I lost my network adaptors/connections -they had just disappeared from my Network Connections, so I had no internet connection capability. Of course,in a similar situation in the future, I would use a pal's PC to ask your advice.

This forum gets marvellouser by the day.:)
 

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I just got my puter up and running after spending about 4+ hours reinstalling winXP:p Lost everything....Alot of pix of my bike and friends bikes:(gone
 

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Monkey with a Football
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I coulda saved them. Actually, you coulda saved them.
Sorry. That's a way too common problem with those systems these days.
Next time.
 

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Rule of thumb, never trust pictures or other files you want to keep for a long time to a hard drive, always back up on CD or such like media.
 

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Monkey with a Football
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I've stopped harping on backups and archiving because over the years, I've found it to be a post-mortum religion, at best.

It seems to be prevalent among the "everything will be fine" Microsoft/AOL/Norton mentality crowd for the most part but it exists everywhere.

As far as getting the backup lessons learned to stick, it seems to be best served with some pain.

These days I just try to help them recover files before they wind up destroying everything.
 

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exavid wrote:
Rule of thumb, never trust pictures or other files you want to keep for a long time to a hard drive, always back up on CD or such like media.

I always do, just the ones I lost where the ones I didn't get burned to a cd yet:baffled: All my fault for not doin it right away:(
 

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Hey Rudy,

Thanks again for the advice. Are you able to say if there is a particular anti-virus etc. product that should be avoided, and one that is preferred? Cheers:waving:
 

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I've been using Grisoft's AVG anti-virus program for quite some time and like it better than Norton, PCillin, or any of the others I've tried. Best of all it's free! The program automatically updates daily (or not as you prefer) so it stays up to date all the time. It also scans incoming email for nasties. Try it out at:

AVG Antivirus program
 

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Monkey with a Football
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colbee,

I have been using AVG free and pro for years, in fact before anyone was generally aware of it, and it has never let me down.
I now have the state agency I work for buying about 45000 licenses a year for it state wide and was practically run out of the meeting when I recommended it to the security admin group 4 years ago. Now almost all of them use it.
It has never let them down.

What is the best? The one that never misses, one that is not bloaty, one that is fast, one that is not intrusive, one that uninstalls cleanly, and lastly the one that is free.

AVG fills most of those bills nicely.

The ones that have failed me or my clients or failed the above specs in the past are:

Norton
McAffee
Several smallish nonames.

Actually the best is the one that is not needed at all. That's why 95% of my systems are running Linux which is immune to viruses, worms, spyware, and most other forms of attack, if configured properly. Once you get tired of computer malware problems, let me know and I'll suggest some very good alternatives and help you with them.
 

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Thanks Rudy,

I think I'll give AVG a try. I hope you won't mind if I mention a couple of other things, just so I make sure I'm doing things right. I understand that in order to install an AV prog, the PC should have all traces of any previous AV removed. Is this right? The reason I ask is that I wonder exactly what caused my PC crash.

The history: Dell Dimension 2400; bought new Sept. 2003. Norton AV 2003 already installed.

Later upgraded to Norton Systemworks 2004. Last December I missed the subscription renewal by a few days; then when I did renew I had to jump through all sorts of hoops and download pages of instructions, and had to uninstall the existing installation using a downloaded program from Symantec.

That really p****d me off, but I did it. Then I had problems running Live Update - more hoops to jump through. I'd had enough by then, so I unistalled Norton using the Symantec prog. I decided to use the free Netguard AV provided by my ISP NTL.

This specified that all other AV progs be removed (which I had already done). This was around middle of January.

Netguard seemed OK, although there were a few niggles I couldn't quite put my finger on.

Then last Tuesday I did a test using Netguard Diagnostic Utility (just routine) which required the AV to be disabled. The result was OK. After that I did a virus scan and that was OK. Then......CRASH!

I got a solid blue screen with white writing, saying something like - a major problem had been encountered and the PC (or Windows) had shutdown to prevent damage. This happened 3 times in succession before I eventually got back to my desktop. I'd lost a load of progs and my i/net connection - no i/net connections in my Network Connections window.

So, I'm on the phone to Dell support, and during the hours of testing and diagnosis before reinstalling Winxp etc. I noticed that (in the Registry, I think), there were still entries for Norton 2003 and Symantec, which I thought had been removed.

Anyway, the upshot is I am now up and running and the original Norton 2003 AV (now updated via LiveUpdate)has been reinstalled from the Dell CD-roms that came with the PC.

Sorry to be long-winded, but the question is - what do you think would be the best way forward as far as it concerns AV?
 

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Another vote for AVG. Even if it weren't free, I would still like it better than Norton or McAfee.

At the going rate, ( $0.00) it's unbeatable;)
 

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It's usually best to remove previously installed Anti Virus programs before putting in a new one. If you turn off a previous one so that it won't start up automatically on boot up you could leave it there. The main thing is you don't want two different programs of that type trying to run at the same time it can create some interesting conflicts. You should also have a registry cleaner, I use "Clean My PC" which has performed well for me, it's also good to have a spyware, malware or adware tool also and here I can recommend Ad-Aware SE Personal. It's done job well for me. It's a pain but if you run programs like "CleanMy PC" to keep the registry junk down and an adware program such as "Ad-Aware" you won't be having such a mess in your files.

The registry is a piece of your operating system that maintains a lot of the particulars of your system and controls what peripherals and programs do what. It points to the drivers for your various printers and such like. If it gets corrupted or too full of old useless information your computer can slow down or take a dive for the count. A registrycleaner is useful because often when you delete a program or driver it will leave references in the registry that should have been removed along with the deleted stuff.

Malware, adware and such is stuff that gets loaded into your computer when you visit some sites. It can cause advertisements to pop up even when you aren't connected to the internet, it can be stuff that spies on what you're doing and what sites you visit and lots of other really neat stuff... Not! A program to look for and eliminate this stuff is beneficial to keep your computer up and running quickly without a bunch of pornographic ads popping up.

My AVG anti-viral program runs on boot up every time I turn on my computer the other two programs I run about once a month to keep things clean and quick. One other thing I might mention is turning off your computer at least once a day. If you leave it running all the time Windows doesn't have a chance to delete temporary files it uses in operation and that can use up a good bit of disk space.

End of redundant computer stuff.
 

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Monkey with a Football
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colbee,
Norton has always been one of those products, like Microsoft itself who could not imagine that you would not want their product so they didn't worry too much about what got left behind. This, compounded by Norton (and sometimes McAffee) making deals with the likes of Dell and others to install trial versions of their products for delivery to it's lucky customers...you.

Norton is a real pig that way. Many clients who have purchased computers have either returned them after trying to remove Norton, or have blown the install and reloaded the OS from scratch, just to get a clean install. That is the cleanest way to get rid of Norton but also the most time consuming. Unfortunately, if you use the Dell cd to do it, you will also end up with a fresh trial copy of Norton as well. Unfortunately, Dell drivers are also on the CD and necessary for the hardware on many models but not all.

I have found that AVG will run even on systems that have another AV software on it in many cases. It is usually enough to just disable the other AV software and leave it there.

That is what I would recommend in your case and others like it.

Either that or go Linux and escape it alltogether.

Here is a thread that references a Norton Remover... I have not tried it but no one is saying that it doesn't work:

http://www.techzonez.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-7265.html
 

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Gentlemen (that's Rudy and exavid, just in case any others likeWedring and Fliversox get any ideas),

I'm very grateful for your advice and will act upon it soonest. Anybody whodoesn't regularly visit these forums does not realise they are missing out on the BEST Goldwing website and the greatest (excluding me, of course)bunch of guys and gals one could wish to meet.:toast:
 
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