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Usacomp2k3
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Sat Dec 02, 2017 8:22 pm

I’m a fan of Treesize. It works great for seeing directory sizes and it specifically makes note of permissions-related calculations equaling zero. You can elevate permissions to see all of it quite easily.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:13 am

I have come across this problem with CAB files filling up the hard drives here at work. We are a Windows 7 shop and some of the PC's are a few years old. Hence, some came with smaller hard drives - 160GB - 250GB.

There have been times where a user would call me and complain that they had run out of disk space so I did some digging.

The solution that I found that has worked for me a number of times can be found at http://www.cagedrat.com/microsoft-windo ... ard-drive/

One machine went from 22.7MB free to 158GB free after doing this procedure, so it's worth a look.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:50 am

Clearing out \Windows\Temp and \Windows\Logs\CBS seems to have fixed it. Checked this morning before leaving for work, and the bogus cab files are no longer being created.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:19 am

just brew it! wrote:
Touche. But this seems like a particularly egregious offense on Windows' part. "Don't lie to the user" seems like a pretty simple rule. If you can't do something because of a permissions issue, at least tell me there's a permissions issue! Linux may be cryptic at times, but it generally bitches when it can't figure something out; good luck understanding what it is bitching about, but at least you know there's a problem so you don't trust the answer.

I kinda get both sides of this. Reporting that there's more in the folder might be more information than a sysadmin wants a user to have.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:51 am

derFunkenstein wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Touche. But this seems like a particularly egregious offense on Windows' part. "Don't lie to the user" seems like a pretty simple rule. If you can't do something because of a permissions issue, at least tell me there's a permissions issue! Linux may be cryptic at times, but it generally bitches when it can't figure something out; good luck understanding what it is bitching about, but at least you know there's a problem so you don't trust the answer.

I kinda get both sides of this. Reporting that there's more in the folder might be more information than a sysadmin wants a user to have.

I could maybe see that being a thing for an enterprise deployment, but this was Windows Home Premium.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:58 am

just brew it! wrote:
Clearing out \Windows\Temp and \Windows\Logs\CBS seems to have fixed it. Checked this morning before leaving for work, and the bogus cab files are no longer being created.


JBI, I'm a bit surprised to see none of the other posters mentioned this, but this is a known issue with Windows 7. Specifically, update files that either don't install properly or are rolled-back are stored on the local system drive forever. Also, the constant (re)installation of updated bloats the log files used to determine the current patch level.

As there are dozens of failed/withdrawn patches floating around for Windows 7 and (as you noticed) these files don't count against drive space properly I see this problem rather a lot.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:07 pm

Vhalidictes wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Clearing out \Windows\Temp and \Windows\Logs\CBS seems to have fixed it. Checked this morning before leaving for work, and the bogus cab files are no longer being created.

JBI, I'm a bit surprised to see none of the other posters mentioned this, but this is a known issue with Windows 7. Specifically, update files that either don't install properly or are rolled-back are stored on the local system drive forever. Also, the constant (re)installation of updated bloats the log files used to determine the current patch level.

As there are dozens of failed/withdrawn patches floating around for Windows 7 and (as you noticed) these files don't count against drive space properly I see this problem rather a lot.

I don't think this was the exact same issue. As noted in the thread I linked at Microsoft, this was some sort of log archiving glitch. Related to Windows Update, but AFAICT not directly related to a failed update per se. The log file that was causing the periodic explosions (resulting in the abandoned temp files) was over a year old.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:14 pm

I've seen this issue before on Windows 7, the issue seems to be that if you have a particularly large log file in the CBS folder (which may be indicative of some sort of unrelated issue), the log archiving process repeatedly barfs and doesn't clean up the .cab files it's attempting to create. Interesting a few other gerbils have dealt with this issue, I think I've only seen it twice on our fleet of ~1400 workstations in 5ish years.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:22 pm

just brew it! wrote:
If your system isn't using disk encryption and the boot options aren't locked down in the BIOS/EFI, you could've probably done what I did and used a live boot image to diagnose... :lol:


As long as it boots, you can suspend Bitlocker and plug it into another PC. The recovery key should also work regardless of where it is connected.

For a Linux live disc, you would need Dislocker installed though. It's FOSS, but distros don't have it in their repos as far as I know.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:25 pm

Vhalidictes wrote:
JBI, I'm a bit surprised to see none of the other posters mentioned this, but this is a known issue with Windows 7. Specifically, update files that either don't install properly or are rolled-back are stored on the local system drive forever. Also, the constant (re)installation of updated bloats the log files used to determine the current patch level.


Are those files not removed by the cleanup wizard (assuming KB2852386 is installed)?

I would check myself, but I don't have any Windows 7 boxes anymore.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:30 pm

TheRazorsEdge wrote:
Vhalidictes wrote:
JBI, I'm a bit surprised to see none of the other posters mentioned this, but this is a known issue with Windows 7. Specifically, update files that either don't install properly or are rolled-back are stored on the local system drive forever. Also, the constant (re)installation of updated bloats the log files used to determine the current patch level.


Are those files not removed by the cleanup wizard (assuming KB2852386 is installed)?

I would check myself, but I don't have any Windows 7 boxes anymore.


In my case the cleanup wizard did nothing. Of course this is also the box that took 23 tries to install SP1, so all bets are off.
 
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:55 pm

just brew it! wrote:
I could maybe see that being a thing for an enterprise deployment, but this was Windows Home Premium.


So now you want a special ACL file system just for home edition?

Please stop digging.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:10 pm

I have a new client with about 3 machines that does this every few months. The systems slow to a crawl due to CPU/Disk activity. It has been going on for quite a while apparently as their prior IT firm was working on it for about 12 months.

I've done everything I can find online regarding the problem. Nothing has fixed it for them. I hope your issue is actually resolved for good JBI. I got my hopes up with this thread for some new ideas but I guess I'm back to square one.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 3:19 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
I could maybe see that being a thing for an enterprise deployment, but this was Windows Home Premium.

So now you want a special ACL file system just for home edition?

Please stop digging.

How about just letting \Windows\Temp inherit its permissions from \Windows so its size isn't hidden by default? With all the other behavioral differences between different Windows flavors, that's pretty minor.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:22 pm

just brew it! wrote:
How about just letting \Windows\Temp inherit its permissions from \Windows so its size isn't hidden by default? With all the other behavioral differences between different Windows flavors, that's pretty minor.


I believe that Windows\Temp has higher permissions because per user data can be comingled inside that directory. Even if I'm mistaken about the potential leakage of user data within that directory, system level services/daemons work out of the directory. A point made evident through this very bug and thread. Microsoft has apparently decided there's no good reason for users to even have read permissions (which includes directory listing info) to the user.

One could point to Linux and say, "Linux handles this without issue with /tmp."

Yeah, it does, but it also has a number of features Windows doesn't have and a file system ACL system that isn't as strict. The DAC (Discretionary Access Control) functionality of EXT4 is not the ballbuster that NTFS is. Linux also has the sticky bit and SUID or GUID to handle such delicate issues. Windows does not have these things.

At the heart of this problem is a difference in security paradigms. Accusing Windows of acting in bad faith for obeying it's security paradigm is like accusing Linux of bad faith for doing what you tell it to do.

Remember when you told Linux to do this and it did?

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And this is why we all love Unix - because when you break your system you know EXACTLY what a muppet you were!


You're not technically asking Windows to "stop lying to you," you're asking a DAC to stop lying to you. It's not lying, it's doing it's job, and in this case its job is to be purposefully opaque.

I'm sure there's some non-Microsoft dude from the 70's you can yell at for creating DAC's that are this strict. I suppose you can blame Dave Cutler for NTFS having a strict DAC. I'd also assume the filesystem DAC in VMS has the same "quirk."

I will say this about this particular bug. I believe the Windows Update service should have more logic built into it for sanity checks and disk cleanup. I also firmly believe that the built in Windows cleaning tool cleanmgr.exe should be dealing with this issue and according to feedback it's not. Failure of cleanmgr.exe to deal with this is facepalm worthy.
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Re: Over 100GB of cab_xxxx_xx files in C:\Windows\Temp -- WTF?

Mon Dec 04, 2017 5:12 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:
I will say this about this particular bug. I believe the Windows Update service should have more logic built into it for sanity checks and disk cleanup. I also firmly believe that the built in Windows cleaning tool cleanmgr.exe should be dealing with this issue and according to feedback it's not. Failure of cleanmgr.exe to deal with this is facepalm worthy.

Yes, this a hundred times over. That's basically what I was getting at. If you're gonna hide the mess you made from me by default, you'd damn well better clean it up on your own (preferably automatically, but at the very least it should happen when I explicitly ask you to please clean up your messes). My son and I collectively wasted several hours diagnosing and dealing with this.
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