I run a Windows XP Pro laptop with a 20 gig harddrive and 256 mb RAM. It isn't much, but it's worked fine until now.
About three months ago I started using it regularly for wireless connectivity. I dowloaded spyware and malware potection (SpyBot, Ad-Aware), a firewall (ZoneAlarm), but no Antivirus. As of about a week ago, it's started to give me issues:
When I open my USB flash drive, Spybot puts up a little message that it terminated processes by either notepad.exe or grpconv, a system startup global entry. This happens repeatedly. Should I be worried?
When I open a specific MS Word file on the USB, I sometimes get
Is something malicious lurking on my USB?
Additionally, my "system resources" have suddenly disappeared.
Usually this begins with ZoneAlarm shutting down with much fanfare of messages from cmd.exe that "The application failed to initialize properly" followed by similar persistant messages about TrueVector. If I try to shut down ZoneAlarm to restart it, it tells me that I haven't got "sufficient system resources" for the job.
I have FreeRAM Pro, and throughout all this it is registering the same level of RAM I've been working with all along.
I've tried uninstalling and reinstalling ZoneAlarm, to no avail.
Additionally, this shut down is sometimes followed by general belligerance on the computer's part. Files won't open, programs won't start, once I couldn't even get the shut down operation to work! I had to force a shut down.
Any idea what my problem is? I'd be pathetically grateful for any help. The laptop and USB contain my entire career, at this point, and I can't afford to lose them.