Free space on HDD mysteriously written to.

  m800afc 23:08 15 Jan 2008
Locked

Today I had a warning balloon indicating that I was low on disc space. I was surprised as I had about 160Gb free last night. I investigated and discovered that I now only had 4.7 Gb free. Clearly something had written to my free space. I uninstalled most of my games, for which I have discs, and this gave me 57Gb free and enabled my computer to work a little better.
I have WinPatrol and AVG 7.5 working in the background, but neither reported anything. I also scanned with SpyBot S&D, CCleaner and AdAware. None of these reported anything. I have tried system restore to two different points but these both failed. I will uninstall some more apps and try system restore when more disc space is available.
Is there a way I can free up the parts of the disc that have been overwritten?
I am using XP Pro SP2

  Technotiger 23:15 15 Jan 2008

I suggest a Defrag, this should speed things up a bit at least.

What shows up if you right-click on C: drives icon in My Computer and click on Explore - this should show what is taking up all that hard drive space.

  SANTOS7 23:21 15 Jan 2008

150+ gigs missing over night, don't think any amount of defragging is going to solve that issue, i think it is virus related whereby a file becomes open ended and it continually writes to your HDD...

  Technotiger 23:26 15 Jan 2008

Hi, I did not expect defrag to solve the issue, just somewhere to start.

  SANTOS7 23:28 15 Jan 2008

Not there, i think at this stage it would be a waste of time, considering you are talking about 150 gigs and not 1.5....

  SANTOS7 23:30 15 Jan 2008

I have seen this before, long time ago, all a bit vague now but will do a bit more delving see what turns up...

I would for now concentrate on virus scans and the like...

  Burpie 23:36 15 Jan 2008

Log on as Admin.

Open Task Manager and tick the box "Show Processes from all users".

Set the options in Task Manager as explained here

click here

Monitor which process is responsible for the writes and report back.

  SANTOS7 23:46 15 Jan 2008

having looked through a couple of other forums there is a suggestion it might be system restore related, you might want to turn off system restore, reboot PC and see what happens...

  m800afc 18:00 17 Jan 2008

I have gone through my hard drive, folder by golder. I was very surprised at what I found. One of my music folders, amounting to 109GB had been copied to another part of the same drive. I have absolutely no idea as to how this happened. It does however explain why none of the virus/malware applications spotted it.
I am much happier now, because I don't think I have a virus.
Any ideas how it happened. Do I need to do anything further?

  Peter 18:24 17 Jan 2008

.

Could be an accidental drag and drop copy error. Quite easy to do in Windows Explorer or My Computer and leave copying happening in the background. If this was the cause then as long as you remove the copied folder and files I don't think there will be a problem.

Peter.

  m800afc 20:25 17 Jan 2008

Thanks for your advice everyone, I shall now tick the matter as resolved.

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