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Collection of odd Norton behavior. Help please!
Sorry, this post is long, but as you’ll see what has me worried is a whole collection of odd (mostly Norton) behavior. Hopefully some of you can help me out.
About ten days ago, Norton (Norton Internet Security) registered an Intrusion Prevention event while I was surfing online, with no action needed on my part. I’ve since run a Norton full scan many times, always getting “No Threats Found”; I’ve also run Norton Power Eraser (NPE) several times, always getting “No Risks Found”. Nonetheless, since the Intrusion Prevention event (The Event), I’ve noticed several kinds of odd behavior, mostly concerning Norton.
Unusual NPE behavior since The Event:
1. Once, after NPE rebooted my computer, the scan simply failed to occur. It was only after I restarted my computer again that the scan occurred. (I have a vague memory of this happening on one other occasion before The Event.)
2. Once, NPE stalled upon start-up, giving me something like the following message: “Norton Power Eraser has successfully restored the Internet connection. Hosts file and Norton Power Eraser proxy settings may have been modified.” (This was copied and pasted from an old-ish Norton Community post; I think the message I got was slightly different.) I was then given the option of continuing, did so, but then NPE fully stalled (I forget what words NPE was then displaying).
3. Many times, NPE has stalled upon start-up while “Checking for new version”. (This continues to happen about 50% of the time I run NPE. When it happens, I can exit NPE using Windows Task Manager and then try again. In fact, it now almost always stalls the first time I try NPE; and it almost always works fine the second time after using Windows Task Manager to exit my first, stalled attempt.)
Other unusual Norton behavior since The Event:
4. Just this morning, I ran a Norton full scan, and it seemed to run especially quickly; the whole scan took only 8 minutes. (I don’t know why, but a full scan usually scans around 570,000 files, but sometimes only around 310,000 files. This time it did the latter, but 8 minutes nonetheless seems quite short even for a 310,000 files scan. But maybe right now I’m just primed to notice things I didn’t before.)
5. In my Norton logs, just about 15 minutes after The Event, a "Norton Product Tamper Protection" event appears. (Activity: Unauthorized access blocked (Set Registry Security Key). Actor: C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\SVCHOST.EXE. Target: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Enum\ROOT\LEGACY_BHDRVX64\0000\Control.) Many such events appear in my Norton logs, and researching on Norton Ccommunity it sounds like nothing to worry about. However, this particular such event occurs in the morning, an unusual time compared to the other such events appearing in my Norton logs. (They usually appear in the evening, but occasionally in the morning.)
Other unusual non-Norton behavior since The Event:
6. I use Dragon NaturallySpeaking (DNS) voice dictation software. Once, starting up DNS, it took forever for it to load. (Sometimes it is slow to load; I suspect that’s when Norton is running background tasks. But this was an exceptional case; it was taking so long I exited DNS using Windows Task Manager before it fully started up.)
7. Sometime webpages seem to load a bit slower than usual … maybe. I’m actually unsure about this. Maybe I’m just primed right now to pay attention to how long webpages take to load.
8. Once, starting my computer up, Windows spontaneously decided to give me the option to run a Windows Memory Diagnostic test. (I went with the option, and the test came back clean.) Since this concerns hardware, it’s hard to imagine it’s related to any of the above, but I thought I would still mention it. (I think this has happened twice before The Event, several years ago.)
No one of these things alone (including The Event itself) would have me very worried, but it’s the whole collection that makes me wonder if something undesirable has occurred/is occurring.
Any thoughts about what might be going on? Maybe this is all coincidence and nothing to worry about? A Norton installation that has now gotten buggy? Malware that Norton is not detecting? (I came across one Norton Community post, by delphinium, which makes the claim, “Some malware interferes with internet access and can prevent security programs from operating properly.”)
Suggestions for what to do? I’d appreciate any help.