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My Desktop Looks Like An Explorer.exe Folder Window?


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#1 MikeS10

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 07:22 AM

Hi guys/gals - I'm here look'n for help on something I've never seen before. Like a lot of people first time caller long time listener.

I have a pretty decent "no fear" knowledge of computers and I am comfortable following any/all steps given and/or suggestions.

Specs: Intel P4 2.4 1 gig rdram
Software: Windows XP version 2002 SP3

Problem/Issue: On boot up my computer shows me a nice desktop picture once explorer.exe runs I get an explorer.exe folder fully expanded with no titlebar. It is a fully functional desktop folder if you will. Nothing I try seems to remove that desktop folder and allow me to continue on my way and enjoy my desktop pictures. There appears to be nothing else wrong or acting funny on the entire computer, only issue I have is this desktop issue.

Odd symptoms: My right click menu that is on the new "desktop" folder has no show/hide icons.

Things I have tried: I have tried to treat this as an active desktop issue and I have tried to solve this using the fixes regarding the reg. edits for active desktop.

Software I use: been using the below for a long long time.
Avast! all protection on.
Stardock - Window Blinds - Object Dock
Firefox exclusive
Yahoo Widgets
Trillian
PowerMenu
Rainlender
Winamp
Office 2007
Spybot Search and Destroy
CCleaner
Eusing Free Reg. Cleaner

If a hijack this log is needed please let me know?


quick screenshot of this because I feel it is a hard to explain item.


Posted Image


any suggestions to help solve this little delima would be great.

Thanks!
Mike

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#2 usasma

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 08:45 AM

This is likely to be a result of the Stardock - Window Blinds - Object Dock program. But I'm not familiar enough with the program to offer any advice on it. Maybe uninstall/reinstall it?
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#3 MikeS10

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 11:14 PM

Thanks for your prompt response!

I do have the ability to "unload" windowblinds - which is a gui program, however this doesn't provide any results on the desktop issue :thumbsup:

Is there something in xp that would allow the desktop to show up as an explorer window? like a registry setting? maybe a user profile file i can delete?



Thanks

#4 usasma

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 06:52 AM

The "shell" that runs the desktop is based on explorer.exe. You'd have to use this free utility to see if any of the explorer.exe commands have been given any special switches that cause it to load this way ( http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysintern...s/Autoruns.mspx )

I'd search the output for "explorer.exe" (without the quotes) and keep an eye open for any switches that may have been added after the explorer.exe string.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#5 MikeS10

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:18 PM

Hola usasma, thank you for that link to a very great group of tools. I also ended up with the process explorer http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinte...s/bb896653.aspx which is nice as well.

I did not really see anything out of the ordinary, I am however just looking for obvious things that are different and/or strange. I posted below the process explorer stack list for my explorer.exe ......

Unfortunately my experience stops at hex and i guess i'll have to rely on the kind help of others to proceed much further on this. I was able to find out what the Dll files are for the most part, but the information following the dll's i am prettymuch completely fuzzy on. I've added some comentary below as much of these descriptions I am not sure what they do.

ntoskrnl.exe+0x47f3

ntoskrnl.exe!PsGetContextThread+0x329 --- PsGetContextThread? not sure what this is

ntdll.dll!KiFastSystemCallRet --- FastSystemCallRet? not sure what this is

USER32.dll!GetLastInputInfo+0x105 --- GetLastInputInfo? i'm guessing this is the command to save eveything on shutdown but i don't really know what this is either.

DUSER.dll+0x34b52 - no idea
DUSER.dll+0x34cbd - no idea
DUSER.dll+0x34eb9 - no idea

USER32.dll!DdeConnectList+0x955 - DdeConnectList? not sure but have an idea

ntdll.dll!KiUserCallbackDispatcher+0x13 - UserCallbackDispatcher? no idea

SHELL32.dll!Ordinal201+0x28 - Ordinal? i have no idea

Explorer.EXE+0x13256 - I'm guessing these are some of the switches you were refering to usasma?
Explorer.EXE+0x1a5c7 -

kernel32.dll!RegisterWaitForInputIdle+0x49 - RegisterWaitForInputIdle? not sure what this is either.



I also have ResHack if that helps to help me... yay!



Still have the initial problem at that is mentioned at the top of this thread. I have uninstalled the Stardock windowblinds and had no luck there either. I'm up for suggestions :thumbsup:

Thanks!

Mike

Edited by MikeS10, 26 May 2008 - 07:38 AM.


#6 MikeS10

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:11 PM

No luck on this yet on a fix. My desktop still looks like an explorer folder rather than the desktop picture. I uninstalled all of my stardock GUI stuff with no luck on a repair.

I got annoyed with this issue and upgraded to vista thinking this would repair it lol to my luck/shock/and awe ... it followed the upgrade note i said upgrade.


Its really odd, the desktop picture IS there behind this "explorer desktop folder" I can see it when there is transparency on the start menu bar, like using aero appearance . I can see the desktop picture behind it. ( i noticed this as well in regards to the desktop being behind it when I was using XP and Stardock Windowblinds )

at any rate, still unsolved? and I have included a new screenshot for reference :thumbsup:


Posted Image

#7 usasma

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Posted 07 June 2008 - 07:53 AM

When viewing the threads of a process with Process Explorer, you can easily see what's running under the process (the .dll's, etc) - but the stuff after that is in the domain of program writers and Windows gurus. I don't think that you can get context/syntax switches from the Threads tab.

What I suggested was to search the output of Autoruns for any instance of explorer.exe and examine those entries to see if there are any switches listed there. This would include a search of the registry for each entry to ensure that the switches aren't loaded from there (I can't see a Command Line column in my versions of Autoruns). The "Jump to" context menu (right click) item is a handy tool for this.

Interestingly, the DUSER.DLL thread is associated with DirectX - and I don't see it being used in my copy of explorer.exe (in my XP SP3 Virtual Machine). So, I wonder if it's a DirectX issue (and a consequence of the Stardock program that wasn't uninstalled when you ran the uninstaller)? Maybe uninstall DirectX9? Here's a link (But I haven't tried it, so you're on your own with this): http://www.instant-registry-fixes.org/how-...tall-directx-9/

If the problem goes away, then it was the DirectX stuff that caused it. You should be able to safely reinstall DirectX9 ( http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details...;displaylang=en )
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.




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