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Explorer :/
 
Shibby  posted on Jul 24, 2011 9:54:29 PM - Report post

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Hey guys


So some of you are quite the whizzes at computers, and since google has failed I will ask here...

I have no ability to run explorer.exe anymore on my laptop which runs Windows XP Pro

It doesn't start when the computer loads and I log on, I get my desktop background image and nothing else, can run task manager though which is how I've been getting around and been able to post here

It wont start when I go:
> task manager
> new task
> explorer.exe
It says "windows cannot find 'explorer.exe'." etc

I have checked here:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options

And there is no explorer.exe
(from what I can tell it should be there?)

And I have attempted two registry fix suggestions already which failed

Now I am currently backing up all my files which will take around 2-3 hours and after that I will simply reinstall windows

But if anyone has an idea, I would be happy to try it


 
DABhand  posted on Jul 24, 2011 10:13:23 PM - Report post

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Sounds dodgey..

Check these trees in the registry

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE>Software>Microsoft>Current Version>Run
HKEY_CURRENT_USER>Software>Microsoft>Current Version>Run

If you have 64bit windows

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE>Software>WOW6432node>Microsoft>Current Version>Run
HKEY_CURRENT_USER>Software>WOW6432node>Microsoft>Current Version>Run

Check for any weird additions, if so could be a virus..

But you could start a new task and type cmd

When at the dos prompt use the command sfc /SCANNOW

Will require your XP disk.

 
ArchDuke  posted on Jul 24, 2011 10:14:44 PM - Report post


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I don't really know how to solve it, but from what I've read this was/is caused by a virus.

I googled what you describe and I found this though

"That worked! As Anonymous recommended, I deleted the "Debugger" registry key from the entry for Explorer, rebooted, and my desktop is now back."

entire fix post:

"This issue is usually related to a virus infection. What happened to a client of mine was as follows:

- System gets infected by virus
- Antivirus software is installed, including updates
- Antivirus software runs, cleans out several infected files
- At next boot, Windows shell does not run
- When in Task Manager (started by pressing CTRL-ALT-DEL), when choosing File, Run and entering explorer.exe, error message "Windows cannot find explorer.exe".
- If you open a DOS prompt and browse to C:\WINDOWS and do DIR EX*., explorer.exe shows up. You can rename the file, delete the file, etc.; the file is clearly there.
- If you try to replace explorer.exe with a copy from a Windows installation CD, you still get "Windows cannot find explorer.exe"

The registry entry HKLM/Software/Microsoft/Windows NT/Current Version/Image File Execution Options/explorer.exe has a key similar to "Debugger" with value similar to "C:\Windows\Infected.exe".

The antivirus software has successfully removed Infected.exe, but it has not done anything to remedy the registry entry created by the virus; it is this registry entry that is causing Windows not to be able to run explorer.exe, and unfortunately the Windows error message is not really accurate.

The solution then is to remove the "Debugger" registry key. Then, explorer.exe has no restrictions when you attempt to run it; after you do this, reboot, and you should find that the system is back to normal (assuming there are no other registry entries that have been altered, or other viruses on the system, etc.)"

and DABhand beat me to it.

[Edited by ArchDuke, 7/24/2011 10:15:58 PM]

 
Shibby  posted on Jul 25, 2011 7:30:02 PM - Report post

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Thanks guys, tried your suggestions but it was too far gone I think

I believe it was a virus that got me, I can't see it being anything else

So Windows XP is now reinstalled, much to my annoyance as now I have to try and remember how to set up my fussy wireless again lol

So this brings me to another question - Anyone know of a good antivirus thingy? Preferably free

 
JesiahCarver  posted on Jul 25, 2011 7:59:36 PM - Report post

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I use avast. I believe they have a free version as well.
 
DABhand  posted on Jul 25, 2011 11:02:29 PM - Report post

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As I keep telling people there is no 100% protection out there, I have always used AVG and had only 1 problem once but that was years ago with a homebrew virus from a site (an ad banner) which was out of my control.
 
Evanscense  posted on Jul 25, 2011 11:06:42 PM - Report post

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Lemme tell you something, the best free AV is Microsoft Security Essential, that really works and the rest FREE softwares suck.

[Edited by Evanscense, 7/25/2011 11:07:04 PM]

 
Shibby  posted on Jul 26, 2011 2:12:48 AM - Report post

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I know there's no 100% protection, but it doesn't hurt to try and get the best.

I was using avast before but I think I'll try MS Security Essentials as it seems to be well liked

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