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First, thank you for this forum. I have used posted thread for other issues. I have now reached my level of incompetence and am at wits end.
My PC has MSWindows XP Professional, Version 2002 (5.1), SP2; Intel Pentium II processor, 399MHz, 256 MB of RAM.
I have regularly run cleaner, defragged, used CCleaner and had it fix registry errors, have Spybot with its poky teatimer running, run the windows OneCare routinely. None of these give me reason to believe there is malware.
Somehow I have gone from approx 25% free space to 11%. Previously, nondefragmentable files were Fonts Batang; Symantec (which I have uninstalled) a driver cache, and a few others.
There were parts of Adobe Acrobat taking up much memory which I deleted (there was no uninstall option), but I still find a slew of Adobe files when running "search", Active X 9 and 10.
There are now 30 files that "cannot be defragmented" based on as much as 11% memory would allow. Most of them I do not recognize.
I have removed everything I can think of, and some things suggested on another site (which may have been mistakes.) I think I have messed up on the Fonts.
When I start to do anything, especially online, or opening two apps, the CPU cranks up to 100% and stays there for a long time. Yesterday the screen began to quaver and I believe that's a sign that I'm close to crashing.
The last time I ran CC registry cleaner, a good number of errors unfamilar to me showed up and I was afraid to fix them.
Other than the self-update Adobe requested (which it could not finish because it couldn't find a file/or location for one) and my removal of stuff, the only thing I've done differently is to shut the computer off for days at a time. It has usually been running and powered down when not in use.
Please tell me what I should do - or undo.
Thank you.
 

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Hi Teachable and welcome to TSF,

First, let me compliment you on your ability to get XP to work on 256 mb of memory and at 399 mhz.

About defragging. It is to put data parts in a sequence on the harddrive. The idea is this; if the pickup heads can move to a position on the harddrive's surface and find all parts of the application without having to relocate the heads, data retrival will be faster. If the hard drive has to move the heads to other tracks, time is lost. More on that; when data is copied to the harddrive, it goes to the first available sector (normally 512k bytes on smaller drives) to write the first part. If the data is more than 512k then it has to find the next available sector which may (or may not) be the next one. In short, the parts of the file or data may be scattered across several sectors on different tracks on the harddrive. This slows down disk access, nothing more.

During the defragging process, the defrag program will not move itself on the drive surface. There are a few other system files that will not be moved as they are in use by the system while the defragging is ongoing. The system would crash if the defrag program started moving them.

The defrag process needs a certian amount of space on the drive to be used as a work area while putting the parts in sequence on the surface. Normally 10% or more must be available. The defragger will complain if it doesn't have enough work area, but it might use different words to say so.

Again, my compliments on making your system work on such a minimum system. Normally 512k is considered a bare minimum for ram and 1ghz processor is considered slow. I would suggest a system upgrade. If cash is a problem, hit some garage sales.

Not meaning to be rude, but only helpful.

Very best regards,
Mack1
 

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The fact your system is so old if definitely a problem, although being unable to defrag isn't any cause for alarm as Mack said.

Before you use that registry cleaner again, you should read this. The cleaner probably caused the errors CCleaner picked up. Could you post the errors that you got? We can tell you what they mean and if they're really problems or not.

By the way, I'm very impressed your computer even starts up on a system like that. Really, it's amazing. I might try to get it working on my old laptop soon, you've given me hope to get some use out of the thing.
 
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