System is bogged down after adware / spyware cleanup

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AMD +3700 based system.  OS Win XP SP2.

Appologies for posting what is essentially a software problem in a hardware
group. But, you guys and gals seem to have a good handle on this stuff.  I
used to think that I did, but this one has me really stumped.

After cleaning my system of nagging adware / spyware my system runs like it
were moving through glue.  For example, after logon I must wait 5 minutes
before the desktop is populated with icons.  After clicking an icon I must
wait again.

A check of processor, memory, hard drive reveals nothing out of the
ordinary.  So I must assume a problem with some process.  I have d/l and
installed Process Manager.  I find nothing out of the ordinary.

Some recovery tools are problimatical.  Inorder to run the anti-adware /
spyware tool, I had to disable System Restore.  That in turn erased all my
restore point files.  Now when I try to even create a new restore point, I
get a message that says that System Restore won't work at this time, sorry
for the inconvenience.

I tried running SFC.  I keep getting prompts to insert the correct cd and
the one that I have isn't the correct one.

The one bright bit of information.  Under Safe Mode, I don't experience any
of this kludgyness that I have described above.  So I am sure that this is a
software problem.

BTW Norton was totally useless in detecting the adware.  Spybot Search &
Destroy most effectivly removed the bugs.

Now, when I run in normal mode in addition to the glue factor, I get a
message that "Symantec Application Core Service has tried to read beyond
xxxx and will be shut down, sorry for the inconvenience..."  Than I get an
option to send error info to symatec or cancel. It doesn't matter which I
choose, as soon as I click one it's immediatly replaced by the error
message. This is an endless loop.  I found one solution; it eliminates any
and all error messages from popping up.  Not good.

At this point I am strongly considering backing up my critical data,
formatting the drive and reinstalling everything from scratch.  Please help
me avoid this if I can. I got a lot of stuff that would need to be

Brian K

Re: System is bogged down after adware / spyware cleanup

On Sun, 24 Feb 2008 03:04:29 -0500, "Brian K"

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Recheck everything, there may be some malware you have
missed.  Check for new files, search by creation or modified
date, whether those be malware recreating itself, malware
being newly downloaded (disconnect system from lan/wan
(Internet) until it is not just seemingly cleann but working
properly), or system logs (including Event Viewer) that may
indicate a problem.

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Perhaps your search was thorough, or perhaps you have not
found everything.  You don't mention exactly what a "check"
entails, nor what specific anti-spy/malware/virus software
you used unless all that are mentioned was everything, but
one thing to try is running "HijackThis" to see what's
loading at boot time and disabling those things.  Another
thing to do is look in the windows and user temp folders,
deleting anything you can't identify.  Also look in the
recycle bin for hidden files and the windows/ folders but be
more cautious about indiscriminately deleting things than
you'd be deleting from the temp folders.

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Which tools have you ran?  I hope not any that were
advertised from some popup the malware itself generated.

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IMO, you should acquire the correct CD, it may be useful in
the future as well as now.

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If critical system files are missing you might try
reinstalling windows on top of itself, as well as
reinstalling applications.  If you make a backup of the OS
partition prior to doing so you can always restore that and
be back where you started.  The only real question is how
much time it's worth trying to salvage the current
installation instead of starting from scratch.

Just to rule out a few things you might also want to run
some hardware checks, memtest86+, a HDD manufacturer's
diagnostic utility, and prime95 (or Orthos if a multi-core
processor based system).

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I'd just uninstall Norton products, they tend to bog down a
system all by itself.  If you really really want to run the
Norton software, uninstall it then reinstall it, or if it
crashes uninstalling, reinstall without uninstalling first.

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Doing that is certainly the most comprehensive and sure way
to resolve this, with bad problems it's just a matter of
estimating and feeling lucky about whether you can fix the
problem in less time without doing so.

Re: System is bogged down after adware / spyware cleanup

Norton is one of the worst offenders in using up system reources.Especially
when starting up.

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Re: System is bogged down after adware / spyware cleanup

Please note: this is an older generic mailing I used to use, so some of the
links for the forums may not be valid any more. I have not checked all of
them. The links for Hijack This are relevant to your problem, but I suggest
you look at the others anyway!

Check out the following to get rid of your problem.

Get this file if you are having a browser search problem:
After downloading it, right click it and choose Merge.

Download/run Cool Web Shredder from

For Info on Cool Web Search Variants

Download/install/run Ad-Aware from /
This will detect any spyware on your system. When you run Ad-Aware, click on
the ref update to get the latest up-to-date

ref file, run Ad-Aware and delete everything it finds.

You can also download/install/run:
Spybot - Search & Destroy from
Sometimes this will find problems that are not found in Ad Aware.
This program has two entries to it (Easy and Advanced). Unless you know what
you are doing, run it in Easy mode and also

select Immunize after it is run. Make sure you read the help on this first.

Sometimes, this article helps.

If you still have problems, download/run HijackThis from:

 Be very careful with this program though. Do not remove anything that is
referenced by it until you get advice on what to

remove as it will list some good items as well as bad ones.

and read the quick start on how to create

a log file that can be sent to a forum that can provide assistance on
removal of unwanted problems.
 Post the logs to an appropriate NG here where they specialize in
spyware/hijacker removal: /

There are many Forums that offer Free "Hijack This" log review. /,1 / / /
Take your pick - they all offer excellent support -

Hope this helps,


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Re: System is bogged down after adware / spyware cleanup


I already have Ad Aware and Spybot Search & Destroy.  Spybot was the only
one that delt with the particular malware that was bugging me. The others
gave me a clean bill of health when it was evident that wasn't the case!

Where I am now.  I keep getting an error message that Symantec Service
Framework needs to be shut down.  It won't dismiss and keeps coming back in
an endless loop. None of the installed programs have detected anything
virus, adware or otherwise.  I must assume that something got "broken" in
the clean up process.   I can't even uninstall Norton AV because of that
infernal error message!  The other problem is response time of my computer
is at best cludgy. OS: Win XP SP2 Home Ed. From Logon I now usually wait 10
minutes before the desktop populates with icons.  Clicking any icons takes 5
minutes before the application launches.

Once an application starts running response time goes back to normal for
that application.

I am wondering if a repair install of XP might fix things or, would it only
make matters worse.

Everybody, thanks for your help so far.  I hope with your help, we can bring
this puppy home. :}

Brian K

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