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Deleting temp files in safe mode
Thread poster: Kim Metzger

Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 11:21
German to English
May 15, 2006

I just spent an entire day editing my Windows XP registry and doing other fun things to remove a virus named SpyStormer from my computer. I did this will the paid assistance of a Norton AntiVirus tech.

Only one thing remains to be done: delete all temporary files, but this can only be done in the "safe mode" - otherwise I am denied access to my own files.

In normal mode all the files are visible but when I went to safe mode by clicking on F8 while the computer is starting up, I was unable to see any temp files in the temp folder. To find the temp folder, I entered %temp% in "run".

Please help me find those temp files. Thanks in advance.


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Endre Both  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 18:21
Member (2002)
English to German
Temporary files are stored in more than one place May 15, 2006

Hi Kim,

I'm not sure I can help you, but one thing to consider is that temporary files are usually stored in more than one place on the computer.

On Windows XP (what system do you have?) %temp% takes you to your own profile's temp folder.

There should also be a %systemroot%\temp folder (usually c:\windows\temp), and there are also temporary files stored by your internet browser. In the Internet Explorer, to delete them, you go to Tools/Internet Options/Temporary files/Delete files (translated from German).

But on the other hand, deleting temporary files is just an additional safeguard. If your registry has been cleaned, the malware won't be started on next startup, and you should be able to delete any related file without problems.

If you want to be very sure, you can check the places on your computer specified in the following manual removal instructions:
http://vil.nai.com/vil/content/v_137581.htm

Endre


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mónica alfonso  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:21
Member (2004)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Have you tried to free room in your disk May 15, 2006

using the System tools?
This procedure usually deletes temporary files.


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xxxtlmurray
Local time: 12:21
English
You may need to address permissions, too May 15, 2006

There is something else going on here, as you should not be hindered from deleting your own prefs manually, if in fact you have admin rights. Actually, I think you should be able to do it with most *any* permission level, so this bothers me. Have you checked permissions on the various temp folders?

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Luisa Ramos, CT  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 12:21
Member (2004)
English to Spanish
Windows XP own tools May 15, 2006

As Mónica seays, there are utilities in Windows XP to do this, and other very necessary things, automatically. Have you tried them? Removing all unnecessary files -including temp files- is very easy and should be done periodically, on a regular basis:

Click Start
Select Programs
Select Accesories
Select System
Select Disk Cleanup
(this will analyze your disk -in light of the fact that you apparently never have done this, the analysis will take quite a while). The routine will then ask you which files you wish to remove. Make sure the Temp files are selected and hit OK.

Another important routine is the Disk Defragmenter, in the same path, except the last step changes to Disk Defragmenter. There is an advantage here. You may have the system analyze whether the disk needs defragmenting or not. In case it does, I suggest you leave it running during the night. Disable your antivirus first.

If you already know about these procedures, I hope you forgive me for being repetitive.


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Corza
Mexico
Local time: 11:21
English to Spanish
the mystery of temp files May 15, 2006

I also waonder where they come from??? I now know that many -if not all- these files come from Internet. I discovered that many of my temp files belong to the attachments in my e-mails and some others belong to my "Favorites" in Internet. If you open an attachment and then go to "save as" you will be able to see the name and the location of the file they are stored in. Good Luck Corza

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Alexandra Speirs  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:21
Italian to English
+ ...
temporary folders May 16, 2006

But from Explore resources (or whatever it's called in English), you can't see the temporary folders created by the e-mail programme. The only way to clear space is to delete old e-mails with attachments from both the In Box and the Out Box.


Corza wrote:

If you open an attachment and then go to "save as" you will be able to see the name and the location of the file they are stored in.


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xxxtlmurray
Local time: 12:21
English
Where they come from May 17, 2006

Corza wrote:

I also waonder where they come from??? I now know that many -if not all- these files come from Internet. I discovered that many of my temp files belong to the attachments in my e-mails and some others belong to my "Favorites" in Internet. If you open an attachment and then go to "save as" you will be able to see the name and the location of the file they are stored in. Good Luck Corza


Most temp files don't really "come from the internet". Most temp files, and almost always any file whose extension is .tmp or .temp, is created as a temporary work area by an application. In an ideal world, the applications would perform housekeeping and clean up after themselves when they're done, but alas, they don't.

Mail attachments are really much the same. To open an attachment, the e-mail has to pass the data to the application (Word, Excel, whatever) so the e-mail application has to find a spot to write some data for the other app to use. These too should be cleaned up, but sometimes they are not.


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xxxtlmurray
Local time: 12:21
English
It's an Explorer setting May 17, 2006

Alexandra Speirs wrote:

But from Explore resources (or whatever it's called in English), you can't see the temporary folders created by the e-mail programme. The only way to clear space is to delete old e-mails with attachments from both the In Box and the Out Box.


In it's default state, Windows does not let you see hidden and otherwise protected files files and folders, but this can be changed in Explorer's view options. I don't really the exact names of the settings -- I'm on a Mac -- but they are obvious.


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Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 11:21
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Deletingtemp files in safe mode May 17, 2006

Many thanks to all of you for trying to help. Before I paid $70 to Norton for help cleaning up the malware, my computer was crashing every few hours - at one point I lost an entire day's worth of translating - I know that didn't need to happen - my own fault for not having autorecover activated.

Now that problem has been cured even though I still have 12 nasty files in my temp folder (the folder I get when I type %temp% in run).

I can't delete them in normal mode and when I go to safe mode they're invisible. I also did a disk cleanup and it shows zero KB in the temp folder, although there those 12 files are still there.

I guess I'll just have to leave them there - they don't seem to be causing any problems.

Thanks again for your ideas. Kim


[Edited at 2006-05-17 22:29]

[Edited at 2006-05-17 22:30]


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xxxtlmurray
Local time: 12:21
English
Deleting undeletables May 18, 2006

Kim Metzger wrote:
Now that problem has been cured even though I still have 12 nasty files in my temp folder (the folder I get when I type %temp% in run).

I can't delete them in normal mode and when I go to safe mode they're invisible. I also did a disk cleanup and it shows zero KB in the temp folder, although there those 12 files are still there.


You can't see them in Safe mode because Safe Mode has invisibles disabled. Enable invisibles, and maybe you can see and unload them.

They might have unneeded system attributes. You can clear attributes through the command line [attrib *.* -r -s -h], and they don't have to be visible to do this.

Some of them might be at the time. If an application that needs a temp file is running when you try to delete, you won't be able to delete it.


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