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Basic PC Navigation

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#1 phawgg


    Learning Daily

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  • Location:Washington State, USA
  • Local time:02:42 AM

Posted 22 February 2005 - 05:52 PM

When analysis of Hijack This is performed
we attempt ot clearly guide YOU in steps
that result in a clean PC.
You do the steps.

Sometimes it isn't clear.
Here's an example:

I'm sorry, it seems I have managed to thoroughly confuse you.
It will require some lessons in navigation first,
and I'll try to clear up the misconceptions.

My first misconception was thinking you had modified you host file yourself.
Having done so myself, I thought if you had, then you would know
several fundamentals involved in PC use.


By default, the primary drive,
where windows operating system (OS) files of all kinds reside,
is hidden.
We typically instruct you to expose all files to view.
To do this:
From your desktop, use the Start button.
note: Each (-->) represents a mouse click.
It should be mentioned that tray icons
and desktop shortcuts exist for convenience only.
You can operate your PC quite well with nothing on your desktop,
and a minimal amount of tray icons
(which indicate processes that start immediately & run constantly)
Installed programs,
both those installed with the Windows OS
and any you have installed yourself,
will be accessible from the Start Menu.
Icons representing the executable files appear on two sides,
and all programs can be selected
to show a list of programs
on a flyout menu

Basic navigational skills require an understanding
of the context menu(s) also.
Rightclick the mouse, on any file or icon.
What you see is the context menu.
It allows you to perform additional functions.
Leftclick, or doubleclick with the left button
(unless you have reversed it by preference)
will enact a procedure,
whereas right click will give you options.

Written instructions should differentiate between the two.
"Click" is generally considered tomean
"use the left button to achieve the desired result(s)".

Without going into much further detail,
other than to mention that you can set preferences
such as making a single a click do the same thing
as the default setting for doubleclick
(which in turn makes the "hover over" function
as the first of the two clicks in "doubleclick")
or set the speed of a normal doubleclick,
we'll proceed toward understanding basic navigation
(or exploring the "innards" of the PC).

Start--> Control Panel (icon) --> will (in winXP) give you
a new window display.
On the left panel (or pane) the words 'control panel" appear,
with a button to the right.
If the button shows two downward pointing arrows,
it means a dropdown menu is available.
Once exposed,
that menu will allow you to switch to an (the) alternate view.
Two views are available.
  • Category View

  • Classic View
For the purpose of instructions,
I use the category view.
Exact navigation depends on exact words.
The two views allow for problems when describing easily
how to get somewhere,
so please understand the need for consistancy.
We are in category view now.
Close the control panel.

See how I am?
We need to go to My Computer to view system files.
Basic navigation will more often require the use of the
Start Menu and Control Panel, and so I chose to point it out first.

Start --> My Computer. Here the window displays:
  • Files Stored on This Computer

  • Hard Disk Drives

  • Devices with Removable Storage

  • Scanners & Cameras
It is important to note that any underlined word in this list is a link
A LINK will allow for:
  • Highlighting the word (selection either by hovering or a single click)

  • Enacting (opening a new windows explorer window with one more click)

  • Providing an opportunity for context menu choices (using the rightclick)
and it should be noted that:
  • They operate in the same way

  • left click(s) enacting what is also called a hyperlink.

  • rightclick offering a context menu

  • we try to make sure all links are working & safe to use.

Did I tell you I know little to nothing about how to navigate the computer inners?

Now you know more.
To provide for a relatively simple request like:

Please enter each of these:

C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe

into the scanner here:
and let us know if they come up clean.

you need to know even more ... :thumbsup:

We typically include this line
(or a variation therof)
as an initial step in any given HJT log fix recommendation:

Set your PC to: show hidden files.
Additional information here.

To be able to see the small window illustrated
in the first link above you would:

Start--> My Computer --> Tools ---> Folder Options -->View.
translated as "navigate to my computer,
select folder options in tools from the toolbar, and in the view tab..."

One more obstactle might remain.

Start --> My Computer --> Disk 1 Vol 1 (C:) local disk
which implies open (doubleclick) it.
translated as "open your primary drive".

You might get a blue screen telling you these files are hidden,
even after you have set the preferences to show hidden files
(illustrated above)

No problem,
On the left panel (or pane) the words "system tasks" appear,
with a button to the right.
If the button shows two downward pointing arrows,
it means a dropdown menu is available.
Once exposed, that menu will allow you to:
  • Show contents of this drive which is what we want,

  • and this command is only available at this location, to the best of my knowledge

  • Add or remove Programs - just a shortcut

  • Search for files or folders - just a shortcut
Although not underlined, these words are links. enact "show contents..."

and probably most if not all windows versions,
loads three folders
(folders are also called directories)
when you install it for the first time.
  • Documents and Settings

  • Program Files

Any folders or files appearing on your C drive
(the primary or boot drive)
other than these three
have been installed
after your basic OS,
if hidden & system files are NOT set to be visible.
With the setting to show all files that was chosen
when you changed the folder options above,
you will see "transparent files" outside of
those basic, fundamental folders.
Thats normal.

These indicate you have modified you host file,
located at C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc.
O1 - Hosts: mail.bellsouth.net.b9
O1 - Hosts: mail.bellsouth.net(1).b9
Please confirm you are aware of this change.

You now have the key to navigation needed to locate any file.

Windows --> System32 --> Drivers --> etc. and you'll see your host file(s)

Another doublecheck would be to rightclick each and select "properties"
to determine that they are legitimate files by recording information found.

Anywhere on your PC you can choose the context menu.
The dialog box that results gives you adional information.
Often the date or author of any file gives a clue to it's legitimacy.
Use the "properties" choice.

are you familiar with this program --> C:\Program Files\ieSpell\iespell.dll ?

Now you can navigate to it's location and read about it.
Communicate what you find,
or seek addional information about it.

C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe

One or both of these is no doubt a legitimate file.
You can determine (by checking them out) that it is so.

One more BASIC understanding about websites
and how your PC interacts with them.
  • without getting too technical about the or "particulars" ...

  • Most websites with accessible databases (like this one) have SEARCH features.

  • I call them "search boxes"

  • you can type into them OR

  • using your context menu selections of "copy" & "paste" enter text (words).

  • Once entered into the box, usually you will "hit" ENTER on your keyboard.

  • Some, like the virus scans, require more than words.

  • They require access to files and/or folders.

  • Rather than text being entered, actual contents are uploaded.

  • In the case of a virus scan ...

into the scanner here:
and let us know if they come up clean.

BROWSE is included.
This means you can locate any of the files
within any of the folders (directories)
that you can now see on your personal computer
by using what amounts to a dialog box
that is very similar to
the ORGANIZATIONAL TREE of directories
found in (or on) your own computer
relative to any particular location.
File organizational trees are all the same.
Hard drive (HD) location > Main Folder > Sub-folder(s) > File(s)

Selecting BROWSE
you navigate to the appropriate location
until you find the exact file in question.
In this case:

My Computer -> C: drive -> WINDOWS -> system32 -> devldr.exe
and a few minutes later the results would be displayed as text in the Virus Total window.

Without having that particular file on my own PC,
I can not determine if it is legitimate.
Without searching databases,
which I did,
to no avail.
I also used google search engine to locate
any reference to it at other forums.
No conclusive results were obtained.
The alternatives are two:
  • You could zip a copy of the file ...
  • (a context menu option called SendTo: -->compressed (zipped) folder)
  • into a folder, attach it to an email and send it
  • to me (or us) to upload in the same manner as was described
  • You do it yourself and post the results.
  • Easiest way to do that is to place your mouse cursor at the upper left hand corner
  • of any text, then ...
  • click to see an I-bar ...
  • Hold the mouse button and drag downward ...
  • The result being the text is highlighted.
  • Release the mouse button.
  • rightclick, select "copy"
  • and the next time you use the rightclick,
  • to "paste" it into a post message box.
  • (This is known as using the Clipboard feature of windows)
the versatility of PC functions that you can use daily is increased.
Don't forget HELP MENUS, too. :flowers:
patiently patrolling, plenty of persisant pests n' problems ...

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