It all started with a malware infection...ExtremeBoy helped me get rid of the TDL3 rootkit my computer was infected with, but somewhere during the process I could no longer access the internet (I have Qwest DSL; the modem connects to my PC via an ethernet cable). I tried reinstalling my modem software but my computer would not recognize the modem. I opened Device Manager and noted that my network adapter card (I say card, but it is built into my motherboard - it's just habit) no longer appears in the "Network Adapters" list. I know it was there before, as I saw it when looking at device manager for other items of hardware. (I built this computer myself about 5 years ago). I tried reinstalling the drivers but Windows can't find the network card and doesn't recognize it when I try to reinstall the adapter driver manually.
EDIT: I forgot to add, I did try the modem with a different computer, and the ethernet connection worked fine between that computer and the modem, so I'm certain the problem is the PC and not the modem.
Fortunately, the modem also has a USB connection, so I am now able to connect to the internet, although the connection is not optimal (the modem documentation says not to use the USB connection unless there is no ethernet connection available). Now I have no open USB ports. I'd like to get my network card back.
During the time I was dealing with the malware, I installed an older hard drive so I could at least use my PC without the problems the rootkit was causing. I noticed that my ethernet card didn't work with that hard drive, either, so it may be a hardware problem - how can I tell for sure?
I've tried going into Safe Mode, the ethernet card still doesn't show up. I tried uninstalling everything under "network adapters" in Device Manager and letting Windows reinstall them. No luck. Most of what was in Device Manager I was unable to uninstall, even in Safe Mode - I got an error message that Windows may need the device to boot up.
I also tried going into "Setup" during boottup to disable and re-enable the ethernet card, but I don't see it anywhere in any of the BIOS settings.
I'm running Windows XP SP 3 on a 3GHz P4 processor with 1 GB RAM.
Any help you could give would be most appreciated.
Edited by JimT343, 15 May 2010 - 06:44 PM.