I already addressed this issue with Microsoft PC Safety, Microsoft Windows Update Support, and Microsoft XP Support. Using Microsoft EasyAssist they took control of the PC. They ran numerous checks for malware using several tools and came up clean. They checked the system using Dial a Fix. The system is so clean that there is no adware or extraneous temp files anywhere. The Microsoft folks spent many hours working systematically with me to try to isolate the cause over the past two months, yet the final answer is always the same:
"It was my pleasure to work with you on your service request 1092165374. Unfortunately, we were unable to resolve your issue. However, I hope that you were satisfied with the service provided to you. I will archive the service request as Not-Resolved."
I was advised today that the issue was being escalated, but would take a month or longer to address.
What they have found is that Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool (KB890830) is only partially installing. The process goes far enough that Windows Update will show a green check for Installation Successful. Indications for a casual user are that the everything is fine. But the Windows Update shield indicating that updates are ready for installation returns, sometimes in an hour, sometimes the next day.
Third party software was suspected, so we disabled all virus checking, etc. Even did a Safe Mode startup. No change. The Miocrosoft folks did a manual download and install. No change.
Symptoms that MSRT is not running (besides the recurring shield):
1. The file C:\windows\debug\mrt.log is not created by the Malicious Software Removal Tool with a current entry.
2. Examining the registry:
Entry name: Version
Value: C5E3D402-61D9-4DDF-A8F5-0685FA165CE8 should indicate February 2009. In its place is an entry indicating May 2006.
As I implied earlier, the issue is not that I might have malicious software on this PC; we have run enough checks with several tools to assure me that is not the cause.
The issue is that MSRT gives the impression that it is installing when it is not, and the recurring shield is annoying. I know that I can hide the update in Windows Update, but that does not address the cause.
Any ideas on how to proceed would be great.
Edited by Cinquefoil, 06 March 2009 - 11:53 AM.