I had setup a backup system (using an external USB drive) using the excellent syncback software.
However, I soon noticed that instead of backing up about 5 – 15 minutes to backup about 20 – 30 Gb, it was taking over an hour.
It didn’t take long to realise that the backup was spending a lot of time processing files in a folder with a name something like: cryptorasmachine keys
I found the culprit folder to be:
C:Documents and SettingsAll UsersApplication DataMicrosoftCryptorsamachine keys
It contained about 660 files, yet it took windows explorer about 2 minutes to display the contents of the folder, and display the number of files within it.
Of course it shouldn’t take that long to view 660 files… I’ve seen folders with 5,000 files that display faster than that!
I quickly find that they are relates to IIS (Microsoft web server software)…
Since the customer is using the XP home PC as an ordinary PC (no websites running from the PC, no domains), then there shouldn’t be many files in the “machine keys” folder.
After some careful research (and noting that most files are over 6 months old), I decide that the folder can be removed.
Of course, I play it safe, and rename the folder first, leave the computer for 2 weeks, then check that there have been no ill-effects, before fully deleting the machine keys folder (by then, a new machine keys folder had been created with just 3 files in it.
Once removed, the backup system runs quickly (as I would expect).