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Blank Desktop and start menu


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#1 wasted

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 11:17 AM

One of my clients brought in a computer today and this is something ive never seen. The entire contents of the start menu are missing. Ive seen hidden desktops b4 but this is new. Anyone know of what steps i should take to clean this system?

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#2 invision

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 11:27 AM

What OS (Windows 7, Vista, XP) are you using?

The symptoms you describe can be indicative of a side effect from the HDD Defrag family of rogue security programs which changes file attributes to "hidden", making them appear invisible so the user thinks some of their files have been deleted. Newer variants of the FakeHDD rogue delete Quick Launch and Start Menu items/folders.

Please download unhide.exe by Grinler and save to your Desktop. Double-click on the file to run the tool.

After running it, all files will have the "hidden" attribute removed. This includes files that are normally hidden by the operating system and any files you may have intentionally hidden. The tool is designed not to remove hidden attribute for system files. If Quick Launch and the Start Menu were deleted, unhide.exe will attempt to restore them back to their proper location. When done you will need to restore the hidden attributes to those files manually. To do that, open Windows Explorer, go to Tools > Folder Options > View and make that change there.

Note: Do not clean out your temporary files/folders until this issue is resolved.


Go into safe mode and follow the step above. Then download and run Malwarebytes

Edited by invision, 24 May 2011 - 11:28 AM.


#3 wasted

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 11:33 AM

Doing it now, also forgot to mention the OS is Vista Business X86.

- Thank you for the quick response.

Edited by wasted, 24 May 2011 - 11:57 AM.


#4 wasted

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 12:24 PM

Everything looks good but my start menu folders are all empty.

#5 invision

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 12:37 PM

Try this.

Make sure all hidden Files, Folder are visible

1. Start > Control Panel > Folder Options > View
Uncheck the options to hide these files

Posted Image

2. Click Start > Run and type %UserProfile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs


3. If you see any folders or files just right click on them and go to Properties. Make sure Hidden is unchecked

Good Luck

Edited by invision, 24 May 2011 - 01:03 PM.


#6 wasted

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 12:57 PM

2. Click Start > Run and type UserProfile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs


3. If you see any folders or files just right click on them and go to Properties. Make sure Hidden is unchecked

Good Luck



The folder just shows accessories and revo uninstaller. Looks like these have been deleted somehow. Is there a backup that windows makes?

#7 invision

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 01:12 PM

Looks like the programs are still there but the shortcut association got lost.

For Vista try adding them back following these steps

http://www.vistax64.com/tutorials/79571-start-menu-shortcuts.html

#8 wasted

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 04:29 PM

You guys are awsome. I did get all my icons back. I installed SP2 onto the machine and it populated everything back. Go figure eh?




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