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mysterious creation of file named "Program" on xp pro startup



I don't know if any of you have had a similar experience, but right before my computer finishes booting completely into XP, I get this system message saying something about the creation of a file named "Program" in my root (C:\) directory. This file is 0 bytes.

Apparently this can cause problems with XP (or so the message box says), and gives me two options: Rename or Ignore (as well as a "Don't perform this check at startup" checkbox). I've chosen both options many times, and neither seems to make any difference. I'm a bit wary, though, of disabling the check altogether.

The really frustrating thing about it all is that I have no idea what is causing this problem. I think it might be AVG Free Edition (from Grisoft), because I first started noticing this problem shortly after the installation of it went kind of awry. I've since uninstalled and reinstalled AVG without a hitch, but it's failed to fix the problem. The most infuriating aspect of all, though, is that this error always ends up halting the completion of the rest of my startup programs--Statbar, for instance, never autoloads as it should, so I have to start it manually.

My question, then, is: has anyone else experienced this phantom creation of the file "Program", and if so, how does one go about tracking down its cause and subsequently fixing it. I've done quite a bit of research into this matter, and so far, all to no avail.

Thanks in advance. =)

Edit: I'm completely up-to-date with all my windows updates, and (to the best of my knowledge) virus free, so I'm pretty sure the problem does stem from one of my startup programs acting up.


Usually the creation of things like happen because of of an installed app which is set to start at boot. Check your start up folder and see if there is anything in there. If there is'nt try msconfig and anything you see out of the ordinary uncheck to start at boot up. Then look for the file that is doing it and uninstall it ..


Alsao you could look in the registry file : Hkey_Local Machine/Software/MSoft /Windows/Current Version/Uninstall for any left over entries.


Maybe AVG removed a virus file that was scheduled to run at startup. So you now get this message.

Would look in the registry at


for uncomplete, corrupted or undesired entries.

Also check your startup folders (In the start menu - rightclick the Startup folder and choose Open and Open all Users.).
Rightclick the shortcuts - properties. If in the target field a command refers to C:\Program Files\.. and is not included in quotes, this may be the culprit.


My god, I can't believe my ignorance. It turned out that the culprit was indeed a rogue shortcut to AVG anti-virus that was camped out in my Startup folder.

After quite a bit of registry crawling, googling, and leafing through startup services before posting here...it turned out that the answer to my problems was right under my nose the entire time.

Thank you, one and all, for all your advice. Maybe next time I run into a snag I'll try and remember to cover the obvious bases first. :)

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