Have you tried disabling and/or uninstalling ZoneAlarm Pro to see if that does anything?
Also, some questions: what versions of software are you using, including your browsers, antivirus and firewall. Do you have everything, including XP updated? Did you install any new software just before this happened, and have you tried going back with system restore to before the problem started? Have you changed anything with a network? Your ISP? Anything new? Any new hardware? Do you have Spybot S&D and if so, is TeaTimer enabled? Did any scans you've done point at the possibility of malware?
Hi Zllio, thanks for your advice, and questions.
I have not tried running with Zone Alarm shut down; during the time since this problem went into stage 2, then 3, Zone alarm had not changed.
running on my 'recovered' system of Jan 7, my ZAP renewal came up, so it is now a newer version than on the bad 'production' system.
on the production I will try running without ZAP, and see if that changes the browser problem at all; but I'm pretty sure it won't be the problem.
software: XPhome SP3, it WAS right up to the minute in updates, until I uninstalled KB967115 and 961118 based on a hint found in google that they could be the cause of the prolem.
Zone alrm pro, 8.0.059.000 antispyware 22.214.171.124.
AVG free version 8. - now uninstalled, but it was right uptodate.
Firefox 3.0.6, IE 7.0.5730.11c0 (rarely used, except to verify it's not working either when ff has the problem)
I have secunia on the system, which helps me keep all software uptoade and avoid security holes. it shows 100%, except for flash update for ie.
i ran gmer, sent the log to Mr. Gmer, and he reports 'no sign of rootkits'.
I did a Windows search by date, to find all installed programs, and other possibly relevant issues.
uninstalled any recently installed programs.
no new hardware
I do not have spybot; I had been using Adaware free, but its new update to the harmony version was one of the recent changes, so I uninstalled it on the prodn system .
no ISP changes.
network change was to switch to 'opendns'; this was before the problem got serious though.
nevertheless, it was one of t he first things I checked, including contacting the opendns guys.
I changed the dns servers back to what they were before, and it didn't affect the problem.
system restore: I don't use it, since it is reputed to not be as good as a full backup.
I use bootit ng, with which I do a bootable image weekly. this has enabled me to run my jan 7 image, which is working fine, as you can see.
since feb 25, ff has only stalled once, and this was the stage 1 version, just closed ff and restrted it.
one thing I have thought might be making the difference ir frequency of occurence, is that I am rebooting the system at least daily now,
rather than the way the production ran; handybackup ran nightly, backing up all data, then issued a WIZMO hibernate;
so the system typically was booted only every 14 days or so.
my thought now is to take this jan 7 system which is on my 40g hard drive, and move it over to my 'real' C drive on my 120g HD, and just make it the production system.
then carefully log every change made to the system, and watch to see if the stage 2 or 3 level of the browser problem occurs again.
this would then leave me with only the stage 1 problem of FF 'quitting' from time to time.
enough for now...
thanks for your help,
Edited by Vern999, 04 March 2009 - 04:18 PM.