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Discussion Starter #1
Strange problem! I've got 2 hard drives, the second one d: is 80GB for storing music and files. I switched on yesterday and found a new folder called .( which I hadn't created.

So I opened it and there was another folder called .( The same thing happened again and again for about 100 folders. The final one had my entire hard drive in it, all the folders, filenames, filesizes etc.

In this folder was another 100 or so folders, all called .( Again, the last folder contained the entire hard drive. 'Show hidden file & folders' was enabled but I forgot to check if they were hidden.

So I opened the properties of the top layer .( folder and it said something like 1 million files, 1.2TB. But the drive's properties showed 32GB used space and 45GB free space, which was as normal.

None of the files or folders could be deleted ('files in use' error). No strange activity or slowdown. The only programs running were Firefox and Mailwasher. A few hours earlier I did a Trend online virus scan, which came back clean. No other programs were running.

I switched on again this morning and it had vanished. Any ideas how this could have happened?
 

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This has all the tell-tale signs of a virus. It's likely that the files were in fact only as big as their file names but reported them as much larger, hence the 1.2TB reading.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
OK, thanks! Since then, I've run 3 online checks, AVG, Ad-Aware, a-squared, SpyBot and XoftSpy. It's as clean as it's ever going to be :grin: and the problem hasn't returned after several reboots, but I'll keep an eye on it.

Thanks for the replies.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yeah, Zone Alarm Pro, all the updates, Firefox with tight security settings, anti-everything, trojan killers... all the usual stuff. But they still seem to find a way in every now and again! :grin:
 

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To be safe you need to disable any IR and RF input/output systems, remove all your optical and floppy-type drives, take out your NIC and modem, and power down. That ought to keep you somewhat safe.
 

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Normally, when you see something like that, the disk MFT or FAT (depending on the type of partition) is corrupted. It's rare that it clears itself up. :4-dontkno
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Thanks John.

FAT32, WinME. The HD is 18 months old and the mboard battery about 12 months, but the clock has been losing a few minutes every week so I'll replace the battery anyway.

I ran scandisk 'standard' in safe mode. It found 2 files with incorrect information ('last modified date or time invalid') which are now repaired. Rebooted and ran scandisk 'thorough' in safe mode, no disk surface errors, all sectors ok.
EDIT: Could FAT32 have reverted to a backup copy when I first rebooted?

I've backed everything up to DVD, and the problem hasn't returned so far.

Resolved?
 
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