Something Weird Going On? Sound / Malware / Virus?

  thoseblueshoes 14:19 12 Dec 2014

So something really bizarre is going on with my PC.

Background Info: I'm running Windows 7 (64bit) and have a Dell XPS8100 with 12GB RAM. I still have 689 GB free of 1.74TB on C: . According to performance, my CPU usage is around 5% and memory usage is around 2/5.

About a week ago, the sound stopped playing altogether. It didn't work through Firefox or Chrome or through any media player. It definitely wasn't muted an it wasn't the speakers - there was no sound registering at all. I thought it was a bit odd, but restarted and everything seemed back to normal. Then it happened the next day, too. So I removed all temporary files and ran some virus and malware scans. iOrbit picked up 5 'suspicious' files, all tracking cookies from Firefox:,,,,, and

I cleared them and the sound returned. Then later it disappeared again. I ran Malwarebytes, which found 7 files. I removed them, restarted and went to scan again. This time Malwarebytes wouldn't open so I ran it through chameleon. It found no files.

Now youtube videos were doing something odd. They'd start, play glitchily with no sound for about 1 second, then restart about 3 times before the 'an error has occurred' message would appear. No sound anywhere. Again. When I tried to play various sound files through windows media player I got this error message: 'Your computer is running low on memory. Quit other programs, and then try again.'. But it isn't running low on memory.

For about teh last week webpages have been loading really slowly, as well.

I've checked that all my drivers are up to date, checked all plug ins are up to date. So in that case there must be some sort of virus hanging around, but if it does exist I can't find it?

  john bunyan 16:29 12 Dec 2014

It will do no harm, and maybe some good, to download and run ADWCleaner . This is good at finding odd toolbar issues . Just scan the C Drive - takes a while, accept recommendations and restart.


I assume you have also run a virus check? You do not state your anti virus programme.

  rdave13 19:43 12 Dec 2014

If you can download SpeedFan ( under the download heading where SpeedFan 4.50 is highlighted in blue ), install it. Once opened, select the S.M.A.R.T. tab. In the Hard disk field click on the down facing arrow to select your hard drive if not showing. Have a look at the Fitness and Performance result. There is also another tab, Perform an in-depth online analysis of this hard disk , click on that and it will open a page in IE and show more results. Just to prove that it's not the drive at fault.

  thoseblueshoes 13:26 15 Dec 2014

Hello again. After running virus and malware checks in safe mode and meticulously going through suspicious files / deleting all temporary files, I'm still no closer to finding out what the problem was. However it seems to have stopped. Well, ish.

@ rdave13; Thanks for the tip, I checked the drive and everything seems okay there.

@John Bunyan; I have Panda Antivirus and iOrbit Systemcare / Antimalware (although I did also install Malwarebytes to double check everything)

Malware checks keep bringing up results for a data miner and stat counter, both coming in through firefox. I updated to the newest version of firefox around the time the trouble started, so I suspect it's either the browser itself or tehre are some security holes in the new version?

  john bunyan 19:04 15 Dec 2014

I would still give ADWCleaner a go from the above link. If you want a good free A/v Avast is good.

  rdave13 09:10 16 Dec 2014

The symptoms are certainly showing as if it is low on memory. Check the processes tab in task manager the next time you see the warning.

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