Unable to run any programs

I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.

I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the 
system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop the 
system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to use to 
open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel, 
PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can't 
open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the 
'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from the 
control panel.

when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I get 
the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.exe 
is in the Windows\system32 folder).

I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the task 
bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directly 
from the folder I get the result above.

Any help appreciated.
0
Utf
3/20/2010 4:23:01 PM
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I'm using Windows Xp Media Edition V5.1 SP3

"WillH" wrote:

> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
> 
> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the 
> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop the 
> system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to use to 
> open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel, 
> PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can't 
> open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the 
> 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from the 
> control panel.
> 
> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I get 
> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.exe 
> is in the Windows\system32 folder).
> 
> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the task 
> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directly 
> from the folder I get the result above.
> 
> Any help appreciated.
0
Utf
3/20/2010 4:49:01 PM
try initiating a system
restore point back to
a functional date.

ps: try making a system
restore point for today
so you can bring your
pc back to today, if the
older point doesn't pan
out.

incidentally, if you can't
run a restore in normal
mode, then try safe mode.

-- 

db·´¯`·...¸><)))º>
DatabaseBen, Retired Professional
 - Systems Analyst
 - Database Developer
 - Accountancy
 - Veteran of the Armed Forces
 - Microsoft Partner
-  @hotmail.com
~~~~~~~~~~"share the nirvana" - dbZen

>
>

"WillH" <WillH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message news:ED684382-D3F5-4352-8ABF-B808369BBEF3@microsoft.com...
> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
>
> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop the
> system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to use to
> open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel,
> PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can't
> open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the
> 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from the
> control panel.
>
> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I get
> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.exe
> is in the Windows\system32 folder).
>
> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the task
> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directly
> from the folder I get the result above.
>
> Any help appreciated. 

0
db
3/20/2010 5:07:05 PM
What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your 
subscription current?  What anti-spyware applications (other than Defender)? 
What third-party firewall (if any)?

Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the 
computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you bought 
it)?


WillH wrote:
> I'm using Windows Xp Media Edition V5.1 SP3
>
> "WillH" wrote:
>
>> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
>>
>> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
>> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop
>> the system displayed the window which asks which program you would like 
>> to
>> use to open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open 
>> Word,
>> Excel, PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however
>> I can't open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things
>> from the 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run
>> anything from the control panel.
>>
>> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I 
>> get
>> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though
>> rundll32.exe is in the Windows\system32 folder).
>>
>> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the 
>> task
>> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program 
>> directly
>> from the folder I get the result above.
>>
>> Any help appreciated. 

0
PA
3/20/2010 5:26:16 PM
I'm curretnly running avg v9 (free). I used ot have Norton but stopped it 2 
years ago.

"PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:

> What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your 
> subscription current?  What anti-spyware applications (other than Defender)? 
> What third-party firewall (if any)?
> 
> Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the 
> computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you bought 
> it)?
> 
> 
> WillH wrote:
> > I'm using Windows Xp Media Edition V5.1 SP3
> >
> > "WillH" wrote:
> >
> >> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
> >>
> >> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> >> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop
> >> the system displayed the window which asks which program you would like 
> >> to
> >> use to open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open 
> >> Word,
> >> Excel, PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however
> >> I can't open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things
> >> from the 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run
> >> anything from the control panel.
> >>
> >> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I 
> >> get
> >> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though
> >> rundll32.exe is in the Windows\system32 folder).
> >>
> >> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the 
> >> task
> >> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program 
> >> directly
> >> from the folder I get the result above.
> >>
> >> Any help appreciated. 
> 
> .
> 
0
Utf
3/20/2010 6:07:01 PM
thanks for the advice. It sounded like a good idea but when I try to run a 
system restore (start\all programs\accessories\system tools\system restore) I 
get teh same result ( window which asks which program you would like to use 
to 
open the file) in both normal and safe mode.

"db" wrote:

> try initiating a system
> restore point back to
> a functional date.
> 
> ps: try making a system
> restore point for today
> so you can bring your
> pc back to today, if the
> older point doesn't pan
> out.
> 
> incidentally, if you can't
> run a restore in normal
> mode, then try safe mode.
> 
> -- 
> 
> db·´¯`·...¸><)))º>
> DatabaseBen, Retired Professional
>  - Systems Analyst
>  - Database Developer
>  - Accountancy
>  - Veteran of the Armed Forces
>  - Microsoft Partner
> -  @hotmail.com
> ~~~~~~~~~~"share the nirvana" - dbZen
> 
> >
> >
> 
> "WillH" <WillH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message news:ED684382-D3F5-4352-8ABF-B808369BBEF3@microsoft.com...
> > I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
> >
> > I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> > system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop the
> > system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to use to
> > open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel,
> > PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can't
> > open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the
> > 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from the
> > control panel.
> >
> > when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I get
> > the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.exe
> > is in the Windows\system32 folder).
> >
> > I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the task
> > bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directly
> > from the folder I get the result above.
> >
> > Any help appreciated. 
> 
0
Utf
3/20/2010 6:10:01 PM
I've just signed on with another user profile on my PC (as the "Owner") and 
the programs run for this user profile. so it must be something to do with my 
normal profile. Yesterday I had the @XP Security Center@ virus on my PC which 
I deleted. Now I'm wondering if this has done something else as well.

"db" wrote:

> try initiating a system
> restore point back to
> a functional date.
> 
> ps: try making a system
> restore point for today
> so you can bring your
> pc back to today, if the
> older point doesn't pan
> out.
> 
> incidentally, if you can't
> run a restore in normal
> mode, then try safe mode.
> 
> -- 
> 
> db·´¯`·...¸><)))º>
> DatabaseBen, Retired Professional
>  - Systems Analyst
>  - Database Developer
>  - Accountancy
>  - Veteran of the Armed Forces
>  - Microsoft Partner
> -  @hotmail.com
> ~~~~~~~~~~"share the nirvana" - dbZen
> 
> >
> >
> 
> "WillH" <WillH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message news:ED684382-D3F5-4352-8ABF-B808369BBEF3@microsoft.com...
> > I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
> >
> > I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> > system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop the
> > system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to use to
> > open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel,
> > PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can't
> > open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the
> > 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from the
> > control panel.
> >
> > when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I get
> > the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.exe
> > is in the Windows\system32 folder).
> >
> > I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the task
> > bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directly
> > from the folder I get the result above.
> >
> > Any help appreciated. 
> 
0
Utf
3/20/2010 6:28:02 PM

"WillH" <WillH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message 
news:4DFBA0FD-4095-47F2-B991-F44BFB916F72@microsoft.com...
> I've just signed on with another user profile on my PC (as the "Owner") 
> and
> the programs run for this user profile. so it must be something to do with 
> my
> normal profile. Yesterday I had the @XP Security Center@ virus on my PC 
> which
> I deleted. Now I'm wondering if this has done something else as well.

You should have mentioned the virus infection right at the start of the 
thread. This is key information! Note also that it is optimistic to say "I 
deleted the virus" or "my virus protection removed the virus". Most virus 
writers take great care in creating damage that is hard to detect and harder 
to remove. 

0
Pegasus
3/20/2010 7:20:21 PM
[Have I been assisting you this week in an MS Answers forum, Will?]

Had your Norton subscription expired before you replaced it with AVG Free?

Did you run the Norton Removal Tool before you installed AVG Free?

> Yesterday I had the @XP Security Center@ virus on my PC
> which I deleted

Your inability to "run any programs" was caused by the hijackware infection 
so I can assure you that you have much more work to do!

NB: If you had no anti-virus application installed or the subscription had 
expired *when the machine first got infected* and/or your subscription has 
since expired and/or the machine's not been kept fully-patched at Windows 
Update, don't waste your time with any of the below: Format & reinstall 
Windows.  A Repair Install will NOT help!

Microsoft PCSafety provides home users (only) with no-charge support in 
dealing with malware infections such as viruses, spyware (including unwanted 
software), and adware.
https://support.microsoft.com/oas/default.aspx?&prid=7552&st=1

Also available via the Consumer Security Support home page: 
https://consumersecuritysupport.microsoft.com/

Otherwise...

1. See if you can download/run the MSRT manually: 
http://www.microsoft.com/security/malwareremove/default.mspx

NB: Run the FULL scan, not the QUICK scan!  You may need to download the 
MSRT on a non-infected machine, then transfer MRT.EXE to the infected 
machine and rename it to SCAN.EXE before running it.

2a. WinXP => Run the Windows Live Safety Center's 'Protection' scan (only!) 
in Safe Mode with Networking, if need be: 
http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/howsafe.htm

2b. Vista or Win7=> Run this scan instead: 
http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm

3. Now run a thorough check for hijackware, including posting requested logs 
in an appropriate forum, not here. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP!!

Checking for/Help with Hijackware:
• http://mvps.org/winhelp2002/unwanted.htm
• http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/tshoot.html
• http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/Malware_Defence.htm
• http://www.elephantboycomputers.com/page2.html#Removing_Malware

**Chances are you will need to seek expert assistance in 
http://spywarehammer.com/simplemachinesforum/index.php?board=10.0, 
http://www.spywarewarrior.com/viewforum.php?f=5, 
http://www.dslreports.com/forum/cleanup, 
http://www.bluetack.co.uk/forums/index.php, 
http://aumha.net/viewforum.php?f=30 or other appropriate forums.**

If these procedures look too complex - and there is no shame in admitting 
this isn't your cup of tea - take the machine to a local, reputable and 
independent (i.e., not BigBoxStoreUSA or Geek Squad) computer repair shop.


WillH wrote:
> I'm curretnly running avg v9 (free). I used ot have Norton but stopped it 
> 2
> years ago.
>
> "PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:
>> What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your
>> subscription current?  What anti-spyware applications (other than
>> Defender)? What third-party firewall (if any)?
>>
>> Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the
>> computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you 
>> bought
>> it)?
>>
>>
>> WillH wrote:
>>> I'm using Windows Xp Media Edition V5.1 SP3
>>>
>>>> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
>>>>
>>>> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
>>>> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or 
>>>> desktop
>>>> the system displayed the window which asks which program you would like
>>>> to
>>>> use to open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open
>>>> Word,
>>>> Excel, PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). 
>>>> however
>>>> I can't open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run 
>>>> things
>>>> from the 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run
>>>> anything from the control panel.
>>>>
>>>> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I
>>>> get
>>>> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though
>>>> rundll32.exe is in the Windows\system32 folder).
>>>>
>>>> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the
>>>> task
>>>> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program
>>>> directly
>>>> from the folder I get the result above.
>>>>
>>>> Any help appreciated.
>>
>> . 

0
PA
3/20/2010 8:09:12 PM
no this is the first post I've made about this problem (it only happened today)
I removed Norton before I put AVG on and it was a few weeks after the Norton 
subscription ran out.

I'll look at the things that you suggest and let you know how I get on.

thanks

"PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:

> [Have I been assisting you this week in an MS Answers forum, Will?]
> 
> Had your Norton subscription expired before you replaced it with AVG Free?
> 
> Did you run the Norton Removal Tool before you installed AVG Free?
> 
> > Yesterday I had the @XP Security Center@ virus on my PC
> > which I deleted
> 
> Your inability to "run any programs" was caused by the hijackware infection 
> so I can assure you that you have much more work to do!
> 
> NB: If you had no anti-virus application installed or the subscription had 
> expired *when the machine first got infected* and/or your subscription has 
> since expired and/or the machine's not been kept fully-patched at Windows 
> Update, don't waste your time with any of the below: Format & reinstall 
> Windows.  A Repair Install will NOT help!
> 
> Microsoft PCSafety provides home users (only) with no-charge support in 
> dealing with malware infections such as viruses, spyware (including unwanted 
> software), and adware.
> https://support.microsoft.com/oas/default.aspx?&prid=7552&st=1
> 
> Also available via the Consumer Security Support home page: 
> https://consumersecuritysupport.microsoft.com/
> 
> Otherwise...
> 
> 1. See if you can download/run the MSRT manually: 
> http://www.microsoft.com/security/malwareremove/default.mspx
> 
> NB: Run the FULL scan, not the QUICK scan!  You may need to download the 
> MSRT on a non-infected machine, then transfer MRT.EXE to the infected 
> machine and rename it to SCAN.EXE before running it.
> 
> 2a. WinXP => Run the Windows Live Safety Center's 'Protection' scan (only!) 
> in Safe Mode with Networking, if need be: 
> http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/howsafe.htm
> 
> 2b. Vista or Win7=> Run this scan instead: 
> http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm
> 
> 3. Now run a thorough check for hijackware, including posting requested logs 
> in an appropriate forum, not here. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP!!
> 
> Checking for/Help with Hijackware:
> • http://mvps.org/winhelp2002/unwanted.htm
> • http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/tshoot.html
> • http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/Malware_Defence.htm
> • http://www.elephantboycomputers.com/page2.html#Removing_Malware
> 
> **Chances are you will need to seek expert assistance in 
> http://spywarehammer.com/simplemachinesforum/index.php?board=10.0, 
> http://www.spywarewarrior.com/viewforum.php?f=5, 
> http://www.dslreports.com/forum/cleanup, 
> http://www.bluetack.co.uk/forums/index.php, 
> http://aumha.net/viewforum.php?f=30 or other appropriate forums.**
> 
> If these procedures look too complex - and there is no shame in admitting 
> this isn't your cup of tea - take the machine to a local, reputable and 
> independent (i.e., not BigBoxStoreUSA or Geek Squad) computer repair shop.
> 
> 
> WillH wrote:
> > I'm curretnly running avg v9 (free). I used ot have Norton but stopped it 
> > 2
> > years ago.
> >
> > "PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:
> >> What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your
> >> subscription current?  What anti-spyware applications (other than
> >> Defender)? What third-party firewall (if any)?
> >>
> >> Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the
> >> computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you 
> >> bought
> >> it)?
> >>
> >>
> >> WillH wrote:
> >>> I'm using Windows Xp Media Edition V5.1 SP3
> >>>
> >>>> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
> >>>>
> >>>> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> >>>> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or 
> >>>> desktop
> >>>> the system displayed the window which asks which program you would like
> >>>> to
> >>>> use to open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open
> >>>> Word,
> >>>> Excel, PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). 
> >>>> however
> >>>> I can't open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run 
> >>>> things
> >>>> from the 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run
> >>>> anything from the control panel.
> >>>>
> >>>> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I
> >>>> get
> >>>> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though
> >>>> rundll32.exe is in the Windows\system32 folder).
> >>>>
> >>>> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the
> >>>> task
> >>>> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program
> >>>> directly
> >>>> from the folder I get the result above.
> >>>>
> >>>> Any help appreciated.
> >>
> >> . 
> 
> .
> 
0
Utf
3/20/2010 10:00:01 PM
> ...I removed Norton...after the Norton subscription ran out.

You should have uninstalled Norton *and* run the Norton Removal Tool & 
installed a replacement AV App *before* your Norton subscription expired.

Don't waste your time trying to clean up that computer.  Back-up any 
personal data (none of which should be considered 100% trustworthy at this 
point) then format the HDD & do a clean install of Windows.  Please note 
that a Repair Install (AKA in-place upgrade) will NOT fix this!

HOW TO do a clean install of WinXP: See 
http://michaelstevenstech.com/cleanxpinstall.html#steps and/or Method 1 in 
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/978307

After the clean install, you'll have the equivalent of a "new computer" so 
take care of everything on the following page before otherwise connecting 
the machine to the internet or a local network  (i.e., other computers) and 
before using a flash drive or SDCard that isn't brand-new or hasn't been 
freshly formatted:

     4 steps to help protect your new computer before you go online
     http://www.microsoft.com/security/pypc.aspx

Other helpful references include:

HOW TO get a computer running WinXP Gold (no Service Packs) fully patched 
(after a clean install)
http://groups.google.com/group/microsoft.public.windowsupdate/msg/3f5afa8ed33e121c

HOW TO get a computer running WinXP SP1(a) or SP2 fully patched (after a 
clean install)
http://groups.google.com/group/microsoft.public.windowsxp.general/msg/a066ae41add7dd2b

Tip: After getting the computer fully-patched, download/install KB971029 
manually: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971029

NB: Any Norton or McAfee free-trial that came preinstalled on the computer 
when you bought it will be reinstalled (but invalid) when Windows is 
reinstalled. You MUST uninstall the free-trial and download/run the 
appropriate removal tool before installing any updates, Windows Service 
Packs or IE upgrades and before installing your new anti-virus application 
(which will require WinXP SP3 to be installed).

     Norton Removal Tool
     ftp://ftp.symantec.com/public/english_us_canada/removal_tools/Norton_Removal_Tool.exe

     McAfee Consumer Products Removal Tool
     http://download.mcafee.com/products/licensed/cust_support_patches/MCPR.exe

Also see:

Risks & Benefits of P2P file sharing
http://www.microsoft.com/protect/data/downloadfileshare/filesharing.aspx
http://blogs.technet.com/mmpc/archive/2008/10/06/the-cost-of-free-software.aspx

Steps To Help Prevent Spyware
http://www.microsoft.com/security/spyware/prevent.aspx

Steps to Help Prevent Computer Worms
http://www.microsoft.com/security/worms/prevent.aspx

Avoid Rogue Security Software!
http://www.microsoft.com/security/antivirus/rogue.aspx

If these procedures look too complex - and there is no shame in admitting 
this isn't your cup of tea - take the machine to a local, reputable and 
independent (i.e., not BigBoxStoreUSA or Geek Squad) computer repair shop.
-- 
~PA Bear



WillH wrote:
> no this is the first post I've made about this problem (it only happened
> today) I removed Norton before I put AVG on and it was a few weeks after
> the Norton subscription ran out.
>
> I'll look at the things that you suggest and let you know how I get on.
>
> "PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:
>> [Have I been assisting you this week in an MS Answers forum, Will?]
>>
>> Had your Norton subscription expired before you replaced it with AVG 
>> Free?
>>
>> Did you run the Norton Removal Tool before you installed AVG Free?
>>
>>> Yesterday I had the @XP Security Center@ virus on my PC
>>> which I deleted
>>
>> Your inability to "run any programs" was caused by the hijackware 
>> infection
>> so I can assure you that you have much more work to do!
>>
>> NB: If you had no anti-virus application installed or the subscription 
>> had
>> expired *when the machine first got infected* and/or your subscription 
>> has
>> since expired and/or the machine's not been kept fully-patched at Windows
>> Update, don't waste your time with any of the below: Format & reinstall
>> Windows.  A Repair Install will NOT help!
>>
>> Microsoft PCSafety provides home users (only) with no-charge support in
>> dealing with malware infections such as viruses, spyware (including
>> unwanted software), and adware.
>> https://support.microsoft.com/oas/default.aspx?&prid=7552&st=1
>>
>> Also available via the Consumer Security Support home page:
>> https://consumersecuritysupport.microsoft.com/
>>
>> Otherwise...
>>
>> 1. See if you can download/run the MSRT manually:
>> http://www.microsoft.com/security/malwareremove/default.mspx
>>
>> NB: Run the FULL scan, not the QUICK scan!  You may need to download the
>> MSRT on a non-infected machine, then transfer MRT.EXE to the infected
>> machine and rename it to SCAN.EXE before running it.
>>
>> 2a. WinXP => Run the Windows Live Safety Center's 'Protection' scan 
>> (only!)
>> in Safe Mode with Networking, if need be:
>> http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/howsafe.htm
>>
>> 2b. Vista or Win7=> Run this scan instead:
>> http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm
>>
>> 3. Now run a thorough check for hijackware, including posting requested
>> logs in an appropriate forum, not here. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP!!
>>
>> Checking for/Help with Hijackware:
>> • http://mvps.org/winhelp2002/unwanted.htm
>> • http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/tshoot.html
>> • http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/Malware_Defence.htm
>> • http://www.elephantboycomputers.com/page2.html#Removing_Malware
>>
>> **Chances are you will need to seek expert assistance in
>> http://spywarehammer.com/simplemachinesforum/index.php?board=10.0,
>> http://www.spywarewarrior.com/viewforum.php?f=5,
>> http://www.dslreports.com/forum/cleanup,
>> http://www.bluetack.co.uk/forums/index.php,
>> http://aumha.net/viewforum.php?f=30 or other appropriate forums.**
>>
>> If these procedures look too complex - and there is no shame in admitting
>> this isn't your cup of tea - take the machine to a local, reputable and
>> independent (i.e., not BigBoxStoreUSA or Geek Squad) computer repair 
>> shop.
>>
>>
>> WillH wrote:
>>> I'm curretnly running avg v9 (free). I used ot have Norton but stopped 
>>> it
>>> 2
>>> years ago.
>>>
>>> "PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:
>>>> What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your
>>>> subscription current?  What anti-spyware applications (other than
>>>> Defender)? What third-party firewall (if any)?
>>>>
>>>> Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the
>>>> computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you
>>>> bought
>>>> it)?
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> WillH wrote:
>>>>> I'm using Windows Xp Media Edition V5.1 SP3
>>>>>
>>>>>> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any 
>>>>>> ideas.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in 
>>>>>> the
>>>>>> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or
>>>>>> desktop
>>>>>> the system displayed the window which asks which program you would 
>>>>>> like
>>>>>> to
>>>>>> use to open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open
>>>>>> Word,
>>>>>> Excel, PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls).
>>>>>> however
>>>>>> I can't open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run
>>>>>> things
>>>>>> from the 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run
>>>>>> anything from the control panel.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut 
>>>>>> I
>>>>>> get
>>>>>> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though
>>>>>> rundll32.exe is in the Windows\system32 folder).
>>>>>>
>>>>>> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the
>>>>>> task
>>>>>> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program
>>>>>> directly
>>>>>> from the folder I get the result above.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Any help appreciated.
>>>>
>>>> .
>>
>> . 

0
PA
3/20/2010 10:07:58 PM
On Mar 20, 12:23=A0pm, WillH <Wi...@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote:
> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
>
> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop =
the
> system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to us=
e to
> open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel=
,
> PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can'=
t
> open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the
> 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from=
 the
> control panel.
>
> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I ge=
t
> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.=
exe
> is in the Windows\system32 folder).
>
> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the tas=
k
> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directl=
y
> from the folder I get the result above.
>
> Any help appreciated.

Go to this WWW site by Doug Knox:

http://www.dougknox.com/

On the left, click the Win XP Fixes, File Association Fixes and read
the directions at
the top of the page.

Download the EXE File Association Fix and apply it, then reboot.
0
Jose
3/20/2010 10:17:02 PM
Thanks Jose this has done the job.

I've run one of the scans that PA Bear advised and it found 
and deleted a couple of things. I'm going to run the other scans adn see if 
thee is anything else hanging around.

"Jose" wrote:

> On Mar 20, 12:23 pm, WillH <Wi...@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote:
> > I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
> >
> > I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
> > system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop the
> > system displayed the window which asks which program you would like to use to
> > open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open Word, Excel,
> > PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls). however I can't
> > open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't run things from the
> > 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't run anything from the
> > control panel.
> >
> > when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I get
> > the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though rundll32.exe
> > is in the Windows\system32 folder).
> >
> > I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the task
> > bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program directly
> > from the folder I get the result above.
> >
> > Any help appreciated.
> 
> Go to this WWW site by Doug Knox:
> 
> http://www.dougknox.com/
> 
> On the left, click the Win XP Fixes, File Association Fixes and read
> the directions at
> the top of the page.
> 
> Download the EXE File Association Fix and apply it, then reboot.
> .
> 
0
Utf
3/21/2010 9:21:01 AM
On Mar 21, 5:21=A0am, WillH <Wi...@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote:
> Thanks Jose this has done the job.
>
> I've run one of the scans that PA Bear advised and it found
> and deleted a couple of things. I'm going to run the other scans adn see =
if
> thee is anything else hanging around.

Good job.

That is a common leftover problem after that infection or the likes of
Desktop Defender 2010.

MBAM is your best hope, but there are things to do before MBAM and and
after MBAM.  MSRT will not help you.  Norton will not help you.
McAfee, Avira, Avast, Defender and certainly Microsoft PC Safety will
not help you - they will give up and tell you to reformat and
reinstall.  I have already dealt with them.  They may be good for some
things, but not this.

Ubuntu will not help you.  Safe Mode or moving your HDD to another
machine will not help you.  System Restore will not help you because
it will not run either - why is it even still suggested?  That is not
the problem.  If you fix it a few times, you kow what works and what
is a waste of time.

There is actually a well thought out plan for dealing with it and if
you follow the plan conceived and tweaked after fixing the problem
many, many times, you will not get frustrated and waste your time
trying things that might work.  You can fix that malware with 100%
certainty 100% of the time if you know how it works, what it does to
your system and follow the plan.

Most of that time is waiting for MBAM to finish scanning!  I would
also run SAS and if there are other issues, let us know.  You are not
the first person with this problem or the leftovers.

Malwarebytes (MBAM):  http://malwarebytes.org/
SUPERAntiSpyware: (SAS):  http://www.superantispyware.com/

They can be uninstalled later if desired.
0
Jose
3/21/2010 12:01:36 PM
[Your computer's probably been infected for the past two years, ever since 
your Norton subscription expired.  I wouldn't bother with anything other 
than a clean install IIWY.]

WillH wrote:
> Thanks Jose this has done the job.
>
> I've run one of the scans that PA Bear advised and it found
> and deleted a couple of things. I'm going to run the other scans adn see 
> if
> thee is anything else hanging around.
>
> "Jose" wrote:
>
>> On Mar 20, 12:23 pm, WillH <Wi...@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote:
>>> I have a serious problem on my PC and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
>>>
>>> I re-booted my PC and after it came back up there were no icons in the
>>> system tray. When I tried to run any program from my task bar or desktop
>>> the system displayed the window which asks which program you would like
>>> to use to open the file (even though the files are all exe). I can open
>>> Word, Excel, PPT by double clicking on a relevant file(.doc .ppt .xls).
>>> however I can't open Outlook by clicking on a .pst file. I also can't 
>>> run
>>> things from the 'run" window (like regedit, ipconfig etc). Also I can't
>>> run anything from the control panel.
>>>
>>> when I "right click" on the desktop and try to create a new shortcut I 
>>> get
>>> the message "rundll32.exe - application not found" (even though
>>> rundll32.exe is in the Windows\system32 folder).
>>>
>>> I have managed to get File Explorer working and can run that from the 
>>> task
>>> bar. However when I navigate to a folder and try to run a program 
>>> directly
>>> from the folder I get the result above.
>>>
>>> Any help appreciated.
>>
>> Go to this WWW site by Doug Knox:
>>
>> http://www.dougknox.com/
>>
>> On the left, click the Win XP Fixes, File Association Fixes and read
>> the directions at
>> the top of the page.
>>
>> Download the EXE File Association Fix and apply it, then reboot.
>> . 

0
PA
3/21/2010 8:19:15 PM
Reply:

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