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Old 01-19-2009, 03:39 AM   #1
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Default Dell Inspiron 6400 problems - anyone got any ideas?

Hello all.

I'm a newbie here and not that PC-savvy (but know enough to get by most of the time) so please take it easy on me.

Here's my problem(s):

I have a Dell Inspiron 6400 laptop. For a while now, it has been playing up when shutting down...sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. But for the most part, it shuts down correctly.

Last week the laptop started to go mental. The first sign of trouble was when I ran Itunes and connected my Ipod - this seemed to kill all the USB ports on my computer. After many hours of aggro, I managed to uninstall Itunes and stop the Itunes service which seemed to fix the USB ports. Rather foolishly, I went to Apple.com to install the latest Itunes (Itunes 8...can't remember the version no. offhand) and that's when the problems really seemed to start - Itunes installed but said the library file was corrupted and so I lost all my playlists (not my music though). At around the same time, the computer became incredibly slow and McAfee started to say it needed an update.

I tried to update McAfee but it wouldn't complete the installation properly. I tried to uninstall Itunes, but it wouldn't uninstall properly. I restarted the computer and it booted with a 'Volume is dirty' message. When Windows did start, I got a warning about low virtual memory (I have since set the virtual memory to be managed by the system which seems to have solved this). I also needed a Windows update that wouldn't install.

Over the weekend, I have tried many things to remedy the situation - I've run virus checkers, spyware removal tools, and several Uniblue products to speed up the PC and clean the registry etc. I've also managed to remove Itunes completely with a Third Party uninstaller and I've uninstalled McAfee and downloaded and installed a new version which is working fine. On top of that, I have booted the PC from disk and repaired XP and also ran chckdisk which now says that the volume is clean. Windows XP service pack 3 has now installed properly as well as some security updates.

At the moment, everything seems to be working okay if a little slow. I just wondered if anyone could shed some light on what might have happened in the first place so that I can try and prevent it happening again. Could it have been some sort of malware or a virus? McAfee didn't detect anything. Could the itunes download have corrupted stuff?

I've not bothered installing a new Itunes...going to try WinAmp instead.


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Old 01-19-2009, 01:27 PM   #2
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Default Re: Dell Inspiron 6400 problems - anyone got any ideas?

Take the XP os disk and have it run as fix os.

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Old 01-19-2009, 02:20 PM   #3
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Default Re: Dell Inspiron 6400 problems - anyone got any ideas?

McCafee and iTunes are two progams that were once lightwieght, but now carry a ton of extra baggage. Even the best computers chug along with this software installed.
If I helped you please, give me a red reputation. Thanks!
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Old 01-20-2009, 02:23 AM   #4
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Default Re: Dell Inspiron 6400 problems - anyone got any ideas?

Well, I fear I may have been a victim of the virus that is doing the rounds because XP sp3 wouldn't install correctly and things seem to be corrupted all over the shop. So I have reformatted the computer and am now in the process of reinstalling XP and all the drivers etc. Hopefully that will sort everything out. (I'm having trouble getting the wireless antenna to work at the moment so will probably be back on here begging for help with that soon).

Can you recommend better, cleaner alternatives to McAfee and Itunes? I have got McAfee on subscription until August but can ditch it then. With Itunes, I heard WinAmp is pretty good but that if you format your Ipod to use WinAmp you can never go back to using Itunes - is that the case? That puts me off the idea to be honest.


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