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#1 Regenerator

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 04:34 AM

Hi guys - found this great site through a friend.

As I type (so far as I know) there's no current problem on my computer, but I'm concerned with something that's been happening to my internet/browser so I thought I'd post in case it 'kicks in' again and I can't get on here for help. (We're all connected through a D-Link DSL-G604T router - I'm the only one in the family that has had this problem though - I'm hard-wired, other computers are wifi).

A few weeks back my computer was running perfectly following a repair (except that I couldn't 'activate windows'). Then one day for no reason I can fathom, my internet browsers (IE8, Opera, Firefox 5 (now 6), Google Chrome) started to open more slowly and on certain sites (eg UK site of PC World of all things) my Opera browser would freeze and say 'not responding'. I couldn't close Opera (alt/control/delete, task manager etc - nothing worked). With IE8 on certain sites it appeared that there was a graphics issue in that if I scrolled down it would completely distort and it wouldn't clear. On both it seemed as if the full page wasn't loading properly. Firefox showed the page but functionality was affected in that I couldn't go onto the next page of a site. Google chrome also behaved weird and froze.

I ran checkdisk in case there was a file corruption & defragmented my disk with PerfectDisk 11 (which is done regularly anyway). No file errors found, no problems with the disk.

Must be a virus, trojan or worm I thought so I carried out full virus and malware scans (latest AVG free, Malwarebytes, IOBit Malware Fighter Pro) and various other free scans (eg Trend Micro & the free Kaspersky scanner) but they found nothing - tried Malwarebytes in safe mode too. System restore was a no go, 'last known best configuration' didn't help, the internet was unusable, and I then got locked out because I couldn't 'activate' windows.

So I carried out a full clean reinstall after reformatting the disk, and activated windows successfully. I've also now installed Acronis True Image Home 2011 and backed up the entire hard disk on a separate Seagate hard-drive (my data is regularly backed anyway) and I have 2 reboot disks just in case (the original Acronis CD and a further one made via the Acronis program).

Worryingly, last night, a week after the clean install, exactly the same thing happened - again nothing found on any scan. This time, I could restore back to 26 August 2011, and all is well again. But I'm worried that this has happened again and if I can't restore or there's a problem with Acronis (it's highly recommended but I've learned that nothing is 100% guaranteed when you're talking computers) I'm back to a full clean install again which is time consuming to say the least (not least because my Windows XP Pro disk was damaged & I had to use my old Mesh XP Home disk that wasn't even SP1 - so I had to put on SP2 before I could update all the drivers, then SP3, then reinstall printer, Office XP etc etc!)

Sorry this is all a bit long winded but I've tried to give as much info as I can think off. I was therefore just wondering/hoping if any of you guru's out there had any clue as to what's going on with my internet/computer?

Thanks guys

Regenerator

UPDATE - just happened again this morning. Only thing I'd done is put Obit malwarefighter back on my computer. Maybe there's a conflict? Anyway, restored to 26 Aug again & this time I've not reinstalled Iobit malwarefighter. I also ran RKill and fully scanned with AVG/MalwareBytes & again nothing found - so I'm hoping its not an infection. Fingers crossed.

Edited by Regenerator, 28 August 2011 - 06:43 AM.


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#2 hamluis

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 09:34 AM

If you did a clean install and subsequently experienced same/similar problems...that points to hardware, IMO.

<<...because my Windows XP Pro disk was damaged & I had to use my old Mesh XP Home disk that wasn't even SP1 - so I had to put on SP2 before I could update all the drivers, then SP3, then reinstall printer, Office XP etc etc!)>>

Or...you are having problems because of the media you are using to install XP. I don't know anything about Mesh computers...but a pre-SP1 install CD generally should be the full version of Windows minus any massaging by an OEM.

I would start with running the appropriate diagnostic on the system hard drive.

<<A few weeks back my computer was running perfectly following a repair (except that I couldn't 'activate windows').>>

Repair for what...performed by whom...in what manner?

Prior to this "repair", what was wrong with the system?

Louis

#3 Regenerator

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 12:49 PM

Thanks Louis - I've checked the device manager & everything is working as it should, & there's no problem with the disk I checked for file-path errors and a surface scan for disk problems, and it's sound. Touch wood there are no problems with the computer at the moment so I'm wondering if there was a possible conflict with IOBit Malware Fighter.

The repair followed a 'blue screen of death' - I think I inadvertently mucked up the registry with a cleaner I shouldn't have used. So since the clean install I'm not touching the registry. The repair was done by a friend via an XP repair install, not a clean install (to try & keep all the programs).

The XP Pro disk (SP2) was visibly scratched, hence it couldn't copy over certain files. The Mesh desk was full XP Home so it worked fine - just took a bit longer to add SP2 & SP3 (which I now have backed up ready in case I need them).

Although it felt like a virus/worm/trojan disrupting my internet/browsers, there's just no trace of anything I can find. There was never any problem with programmes - just the internet on some sites - things like my music forums and you-tube all worked fine. I wondered if it was the type of site eg a 'flash' site that might have been conflicting with something, or something mucking up internet TCP settings etc. I do have the latest adobe flash player installed, and up to date display drivers (I have an N-Videa 256mb GeForce 6200 graphic card fitted).

In short, I tried to work through as much of the more obvious stuff before posting - I just have no clue as to what the problem was & I'm just hoping it doesn't happen again. But in case it does, I was trying to glean some wisdom from all you knowledgeable guys.

Edited by Regenerator, 28 August 2011 - 12:51 PM.


#4 hamluis

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 06:57 AM

<<...I'm wondering if there was a possible conflict with IOBit Malware Fighter...>>

My suggestion would be to stop using such programs with XP or any O/S more recent...and uninstall such, then either do a repair install of XP or run the sfc /scannow command.

Bleeping Computer DOES NOT recommend the use of registry cleaners/optimizers for several reasons:
  • Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications that can damage the registry by using aggressive cleaning routines and cause your computer to become unbootable.

    The Windows registry is a central repository (database) for storing configuration data, user settings and machine-dependent settings, and options for the operating system. It contains information and settings for all hardware, software, users, and preferences. Whenever a user makes changes to settings, file associations, system policies, or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in this repository. The registry is a crucial component because it is where Windows "remembers" all this information, how it works together, how Windows boots the system and what files it uses when it does. The registry is also a vulnerable subsystem, in that relatively small changes done incorrectly can render the system inoperable. For a more detailed explanation, read Understanding The Registry.
  • Not all registry cleaners are created equal. There are a number of them available but they do not all work entirely the same way. Each vendor uses different criteria as to what constitutes a "bad entry". One cleaner may find entries on your system that will not cause problems when removed, another may not find the same entries, and still another may want to remove entries required for a program to work.
  • Not all registry cleaners create a backup of the registry before making changes. If the changes prevent the system from booting up, then there is no backup available to restore it in order to regain functionality. A backup of the registry is essential BEFORE making any changes to the registry.
  • Improperly removing registry entries can hamper malware disinfection and make the removal process more difficult if your computer becomes infected. For example, removing malware related registry entries before the infection is properly identified can contribute to system instability and even make the malware undetectable to removal tools.
  • The usefulness of cleaning the registry is highly overrated and can be dangerous. In most cases, using a cleaner to remove obsolete, invalid, and erroneous entries does not affect system performance but it can result in "unpredictable results".

Unless you have a particular problem that requires a registry edit to correct it, I would suggest you leave the registry alone. Using registry cleaning tools unnecessarily or incorrectly could lead to disastrous effects on your operating system such as preventing it from ever starting again. For routine use, the benefits to your computer are negligible while the potential risks are great.
How To Use Sfc.exe To Repair System Files - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic43051.html

Louis

#5 Regenerator

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 12:54 PM

Thanks Louis but Iobit Malware Fighter Pro isn't a registry cleaner - it's anti-malware with a live scanner.

Rich

#6 hamluis

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 01:03 PM

Sorry...sometimes I read but my brain fails tomprehend properly what was written :).

Louis

#7 Regenerator

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 06:23 PM

Sorry...sometimes I read but my brain fails tomprehend properly what was written :).

Louis


LOL - no probs, know that feeling well! Anyway, I've removed IOBit Malware Fighter and since then I've had no problems. Must have been a programme conflict somewhere. Anyway, between my AVG Free and weekly checks with Malware Bytes I think I've got Malware reasonably covered & my system seems to be clean & working perfectly.

#8 noknojon

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 06:52 PM

Thanks Louis but Iobit Malware Fighter Pro isn't a registry cleaner - it's anti-malware with a live scanner.

Hi Regenerator -
I have found that some of IoBits program can (has) caused me a lot of problems. The normal uninstall they give you is not much good.
I have left a link for a good uninstaller for IoBit that you can use to remove it, and then if you still want you can reinstall later.
http://thewebatom.net/uninstallers/security-software/ Scroll down to the IoBit remover.
IoBit has some Registry Cleaner properties involved in the program that has caused some people broblems (I was one of them).
This is up to you, but I prefer Malwarebytes and SUPERAntiSpyware as better programs -
Thank You




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