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Folder Preferences are Prepopulating & Changing


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#1 Mediokrates

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 02:29 PM

Hi again,

Mod Edit: Merged separate topics, same issue ~ Hamluis.

I started this topic in Am I Infected? and thought that I had resolved it. It does not appear to be a virus, or so we thought in that thread. TDSSkiller found nothing.

It appears that perhaps the use of Ccleaner to clean the registry (which I have been thoroughly chastised for doing, and will not do again)may have caused this.

The run up to the problem goes like this. About 5 days ago, I began to notice that the selected image for a folder in thumbnail view was changing, particularly when changes were made within that folder. Usually the creation of a new subfolder or the moving of files in or out of the folder would cause this. As well, when creating New Folders, they would sometimes be created with an image already selected. Often, but not always, this would be the last image handled.

I attempted to download a folder fix tool from MS, which required upgrading my system's .net framework from 1.1 to 3.5. However doing this seem to cause issues with my computer, causing the action light to run almost continually. I therefore did not run the folder fix tool. Coupled with an incompatibility with IE8 and a new update from AVG Free (the Safe Search Add-on began crashing my homepage Google, upon the initial activation of IE8, which would then recover and open the page), I decided to restore my system. I tried a few different restore points to find the best configuration. After doing this, I noticed that my system volume information/restore was taking up 30GB. I ran a disk clean, to restore that space to the hard drive, wiping out all the other restore points.

While this resolved the system performance issue, it did not resolve the Folder Image issue. (AVG still crashes IE8 if google is the homepage, upon initialization, but I have disabled the add-on, trusting to Spywareblaster.)

Thinking that perhaps Ccleaner had erased something from the registry I restored the registry. As said before, I had restored the system to an earlier date... in particular 4/14/2011. The first time I had used Ccleaner on the registry was 4/13/2011. I had backed up the registry prior to my initial usage of Ccleaner. Clicking on the .reg file copied its contents back into the registry. I assumed that this would reverse any registry changes ever made with Ccleaner.

This did not work either.

I went into My Documents Tools and restored the default for the folder, applied, removed remember settings, applied. Reapplied my settings, and reclicked remember settings, and applied. This seem to fix the issue at first.

While moving files into or out of does not normally aiter the source folder's image for the most part, it sometimes will upon first handling a folder. Not always, but sometimes.

It seems that sometimes when I create a New Folder, for the first time after startup, it comes with a randomly selected image. If I restore the default for that new folder, it appears that subsequent New Folders are created normally. However, neglecting to do this, creates other New Folders with prepopulated images.

I've now also noticed that folders which do not have a customize option, particularly Windows & Programs within C:Drive are now populating images. I have found that some of their subfolders were populating images, but was able to restore their defaults.
While doing this, I noticed that the folder was mimicking the preview.

Usually, I have found, once an image or lack thereof is applied, the source folder image should change immediately. Sometimes this does not happen until leaving the view of the folder and returning. Sometimes it does not happen at all. Sometimes the folder icon must be returned to default first.

Unless this really is a virus, a strange acting one at that... I can only think that somehow my folder preferences file has become corrupted.

Anyone have any idea what is going on, and/or how to fix this once and for all?

Thanks,

XP Pro SP3

Edit: I am also noticing that other view preferences may randomly change. Thumbnail as my default changes to filmstrip or icon. Auto arrange as default changes to Show in Groups.

Edited by hamluis, 22 May 2011 - 05:50 PM.


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#2 Eyesee

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 03:43 PM

Try running system file check

Start - run
sfc /scannow

It may ask for an XP cd so make sure that you have one available beforehand.
In the beginning there was the command line.

#3 Mediokrates

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 04:41 PM

Thanks for responding,

When I run scannow, it asks for the XP SP3 disc 5 times and the XP Pro CD2 disc 6 times. All to download to the DLL Cache. Problem is, my computer is a pre-installed HP, so I don't have discs. (I can't recover, because my motherboard failed out of warranty and was upgraded last year... but that's another story.) I do have the original recovery discs, and a partitioned drive; however.

Looking online, I came across this:

http://www.updatexp.com/scannow-sfc.html

and was also directed to: http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_tweaks.htm

but I'm not sure which option it would be on kellys.

Furthermore, I can't seem to find the DLL Cache folder in System32, even when I display hidden folders.

Edit: Sorry just found dllcache, stored in Windows\Last Good\System32

Edited by Mediokrates, 06 May 2011 - 04:42 PM.


#4 Mediokrates

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 07:21 PM

OK,

Partially solved the scannow issue.

I placed my Recovery Disc 1 in the cd drive, and ran scannow. This time it didn't ask for XP SP3, but it did continue to ask for XP PRO disc 2 like 7 times. Tried inserting the other recovery discs, and the older copy of xp to no luck.

#5 Mediokrates

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 08:01 PM

Take that back,

I restarted the computer and ran scannow again, without a disc in the cd drive. When it asked for XP SP3, it would no longer accept my restore disc 1. Also would not accept a copy of xp pro sp2.

Can anyone tell me how safe the following option is:

http://www.updatexp.com/scannow-sfc.html

I wonder because it involves making changes to the registry to alter the pathway from the cd drive to the c:drive.

I was also considering uninstalling sp3, to see if the xp sp2 disc would then work. I would like to avoid that as I hate uninstalling windows updates, especially far reaching ones like the service packs.

Edit: Its strange, I started scannow again with my recovery disc 1 in, and it started fine. Last time it asked for xp sp3 right away, then I swapped out for the xp pro sp2 disc, and its halfway thru now.

Scannow got near the end, and began asking for xp pro disc 2, about 7 times.

Edited by Mediokrates, 06 May 2011 - 08:37 PM.


#6 noknojon

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 08:45 PM

Hi Mediokrates

The link you left seems to contain all the type of information that we would give you
Can you give us an update on your progress so far

Thank You
EDIT -
Keep going with what you are doing even though it is asking for the disk

Edited by noknojon, 06 May 2011 - 08:47 PM.


#7 Mediokrates

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 02:14 AM

OK,

I followed the instructions: http://www.updatexp.com/scannow-sfc.html
Found the file, I386, on my recovery disc 1, and copied it to my C:Drive. Size=3GB
I compared it to the existing I386 file in C:\Windows, which is only 476MB.
Obviously lots of differences between the two.
They shared main folders with respective sizes:
ASMS 7.34 - 7.39
Compdata 743kb - 751kb
DRW 240kb -252kb
Lang 99MB - 99MB
System32 155MB - 1.12MB (huge difference)

I had to go into the registry and alter the 2 entries, to reflect the C:Drive, as per the instructions:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Setup\SourcePath

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\SourcePath

I ran scannow again. It still asked for XP Professional Service Pack 3 CD 4 times, and the XP Profession CD2 4 times.
After running the scan, I checked for updates with MS. None.

Restarted the computer...

Problem not resolved.

Notes:
The first registry entry had a sourcepath of c:\windows\ (changed to c:\)
The 2nd registry entry had a sourcepath of E:\i386 (changed to c:\)

The instructions suggested that both would point to my cd-rom; E:\

So I altered the 2 registry entires to reflect a sourcepath E:\, and tried scannow with my recovery disc1 in E:Drive.
At the end of the scan, it asked 7 or 8 times for XP Pro CD2. Neither recovery discs 2 or 3 satisfied it.

Problem still not resolved upon restart.

I did notice that both recovery discs 2 and 3 also have i386 folders, and considered copying their contents to the i386 I copied to C:\
However, I also noticed that each disc had an APPS and DRV folder, each with a dta subfolder, containing a dta.lst file. Since a folder with such a file already existed in the folder i had already copied I did not do this.

I did find an optional update that MS offered, which I installed: the rollup 2 for Windows XP Media Center 2005.
My system properties say the computer is XP Media Center 2002 SP3
The sticker on the side of my computer says XP Media Center 2005
Other programs recognize my system as XP Professional SP3
So whatever...

Anyway, I don't think I'm getting anywhere with scannow.

I'm considering a repair or clean install of Windows, if that is possible with HP recovery discs. I'm concerned however, because my motherboard was swapped out a year ago for a different model, which I know makes a straight recovery impossible.

A couple questions:

1. Should I restore my registry entries back to what they were?
2. I use Windows Explorer (I never mentioned that!, is it worth considering this is an WE fault, and upgrade to Windows Search 4.0? I've never seen what it's like so I don't know if its better.

Anymore help would be greatly appreciated

Thanks and good night!

#8 Mediokrates

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 04:57 PM

Hi all,

This started about a month ago.

I still have this problem and no solutions have been provided yet.

I have an HP Pavilion, XP Media Center 2005 SP3.

Everytime I make a change within a folder to its contents, the image I have selected for that folder changes to a random jpg anywhere in My Documents. In addition, my view settings are changing randomly. I prefer thumbnail view, but I keep getting icon, details, and sometimes filmstrip. Sometimes, the proper image appears in the folder in thumbnail view, but when I go into Properties, Customize... I can see another random picture is selected in the Preview.

The icon I have chosen for each folder remains intact however.

I have confirmed that "Remember each folder's view settings" is checked in Tools: Folder Options.

Additionally, folders for which I have never designated an image are affected. My C:Drive folders, which are normally set to default icons in thumbnail view are affected. They are being assigned random images from within My Documents. Even folders, like Program Files & Windows, which do not have a Customize option in Preferences.

A system restore did not fix the problem.

Unable to perform a scannow, as I don't have installation discs, just recovery discs (which are no good, as I had to change my mobo).

I read online that this could be due to the size limit inherent to XP, but this was apparently solved in SP2.
I only have 246 Folders in My Documents, which does not even reach the SP1 limit. Though I do have close to 7000 Folders on my entire C:Drive.

I understand there was a possible fix for this on Kelly's Korner, but the links are dead.

Does anyone know what is going on?
Can anyone help me fix this?

P.S. Don't think it's a virus... strange behavior for a virus, and first thing I did was run TDSSKiller, no results.

EDIT: I tried running the folder fix tool on support.microsoft, but it required an upgrade to dotnetwork 2.0 (I'm running 1.1), which affected my system, causing my action light to run continuously. Uninstalling did not fix. Had to restore.

My BagMRUs in both Shell & ShellNoRoam have a value of 1388, reading 0x00001388 (5000).

Thanks again,

Edited by Mediokrates, 21 May 2011 - 05:09 PM.


#9 Broni

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 05:06 PM

Try HERE

WARNING!!! This suggestion involves editing of the registry. Improper editing of the registry can cause your computer to become unbootable. ALWAYS backup your registry before modifying the registry.

To backup your registry, create a System Restore point. Alternatively, you can use the free utility ERUNT to create backups of your registry: http://www.larshederer.homepage.t-online.de/erunt/

For more information about modifying the registry, see this Microsoft article: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/256986

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#10 Mediokrates

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 05:16 PM

Thanks,

Is that similar to this I just found on windows?

http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=813711

#11 Broni

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 05:19 PM

Yes.

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#12 Mediokrates

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 05:55 PM

Is it better to delete the entire Shell & ShellNoRoam subkeys as described on the microsoft site? And then recreate them and their associated BagMRU Size keys. My ShellNoRoam key has an MUICache with a bunch of REG_SZ keys associated with all my programs, in addition to a DUIBag key with a ShellFolders key filled with subkeys containing both REG_SZ and REG_DWord keys.

#13 Broni

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 06:07 PM

I'd follow MS article.

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#14 Mediokrates

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 07:23 PM

OK,

Tried both...

First the shorter version you provided. It seemed to work, except my Program Files folder on C: was still populating. It was populating a subfolder with an image.

Then tried the longer version on MS, after a reboot. Same thing.

I then reset the default for every subfolder therein (even though no folder was populating an image, the Program Files folder still insisted one of its subfolders was populating an image). Still no change (since that folder has no customize option, could not force a restore to default).

I then selected the Folder Options: View: Do not Cache Thumbnails.

That seemed to do it.

Lost all my preferences as expected, but as long as they hold (which it appears they are) then all is fine.

Holding my breath... This happened once, where things appeared stable for about a day...

But much better...

I'll update if problem returns.

Thanks,

#15 Broni

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 07:25 PM

Sure thing :)

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