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Several Windows 7 applications hang and never start


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#1 BirdieNZ

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:41 AM

Hello,

I've searched around the internet but to no avail. Numerous Windows applications that come with the OS, such as Uninstall a Program, View Network Status, and so on will not start when I try to run them. For example, if I go into the Control Panel and select one of them, the Control Panel window freezes for a minute or two, nothing happens, and then it's back to normal again. The selected program does not start.

I'm running a fresh install of Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit. The only new things I've installed are drivers for the hardware, and Skype, and Chrome. The hardware itself is presumably not causing the problem, and it's a nice system so it's not some sort of lack of processing power that's causing it. I've already tried reinstalling the entire operating system. The user account I'm on is an administrator account. Some applications such as Device Manager work just fine.

I'd appreciate any light that can be shed on the problem.

Edited by BirdieNZ, 16 January 2013 - 05:47 AM.


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#2 dc3

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 08:32 AM

Please use the following link to provide us with information about your computer so that we can assist you.

How to Publish a Snapshot using Speccy

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#3 Allan

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 08:41 AM

Three questions please:

1) What caused you to reinstall the OS?

2) Is the Windows 7 DVD an original, retail version or a copy?

3) Please look in device manager - are there any yellow or red symbols?

#4 BirdieNZ

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:15 PM

Please use the following link to provide us with information about your computer so that we can assist you.

How to Publish a Snapshot using Speccy

http://speccy.piriform.com/results/HvP1FtGJkbBPx162lcJQNSq

Three questions please:

1) What caused you to reinstall the OS?

2) Is the Windows 7 DVD an original, retail version or a copy?

3) Please look in device manager - are there any yellow or red symbols?

1) I originally installed the OS about a week ago. I reinstalled yesterday because of the same problem described in the original post; I found someone online with a similiar problem who said reinstalling Windows worked for them, and I figured if it was a user profile corruption problem then a reinstall would fix that too.

2) It's an OEM version, a legitimate shop-bought disk with the OEM sticker and everything. Shouldn't be a problem although if it is I'll get it taken back or something.

3) No, there are no yellow or red symbols, as I installed all the drivers for all the hardware.

#5 Allan

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:33 PM

Please tell us exactly how you reinstalled the OS - step by step.

#6 BirdieNZ

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:40 PM

Please tell us exactly how you reinstalled the OS - step by step.

(I'm looking at screenshots of the install process so I can remember exactly what steps happen >.> I don't have perfect powers of recall although I can remember what options I chose).
I inserted the Windows 7 disk, turned off the PC, and started it up. It asked me to boot from CD/DVD, which I did. When it asked me my language settings, I left the first option as English, put the second option as English (New Zealand), put the third option as the Korean keyboard (I'm learning Korean). At the next screen, I hit Install Now. When it asked what installation options I wanted, I chose Custom. Now, I have several partitions and two hard drives; I selected the partition on my SSD which was the "old" (one week old) Windows 7 partition, as I wanted to replace that with a fresh copy of Windows 7.

Then it went on with the installation process. After restarting, I input my username, computer name, password, password hint, activation key, timezone, and set my network as Home network. For the Homegroup options, I deselected everything except Printing, if I recall correctly.

The first drivers I installed were the motherboard drivers included on a disk that came with the motherboard. I've had no troubles with those drivers on Win XP (what I am running on another partition). That got my internet connection up, so I downloaded Chrome and Skype (can't stand IE, and I had some Skype stuff I wanted to stay updated on). Then I finished installing my mouse driver, sound card driver, and download Catalyst Control Centre for my graphics card and installed that. Then I started installing StarCraft II (this is the main thing that finally made me reinstall; I could live with not accessing some Windows apps for some of the time, but I couldn't get SC2 to install properly and suspected that the Windows applications not starting was a related problem). The installation for StarCraft II didn't go any better than before I booted. I then checked to see if the Windows apps were actually fixed and to my dismay they weren't, so I came and started this thread. After that I installed all the updates available; no change occured in the hanging Windows apps though.

#7 Allan

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:56 PM

So you did not format first? Then your reinstall would not have gotten rid of any virus that was on the system. In fact, you probably now have two installations on the drive. suggest you reinstall the OS, but this time choose the option to delete the partition, recreate it, format it, then install.

Edited by Allan, 16 January 2013 - 05:14 PM.


#8 BirdieNZ

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 09:17 PM

So you did not format first? Then your reinstall would not have gotten rid of any virus that was on the system. In fact, you probably now have two installations on the drive. suggest you reinstall the OS, but this time choose the option to delete the partition, recreate it, format it, then install.

I didn't format first. However, I'm fairly confident there's only one Windows 7 installation on the drive. I'll try reinstalling again but with a deletion and formatting of the partition first as you suggested. I'm somewhat surprised that an OS installation doesn't wipe everything on the drive anyway.

#9 BirdieNZ

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:05 PM

I'm pleased to report the deletion/formatting and reinstalling worked (so far). I'm now able to access the programs I was not able to previously. Now I'm somewhat worried about how I managed to download a virus in less than a week on my Windows 7. I do recall downloading a couple of things for my new livestreaming setup, so perhaps it was one of those. I'll be a bit more careful this time. Thanks very much for your help!

#10 BirdieNZ

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 05:43 AM

Aaaand it's back. Sorry for triple posting, but it is most definitely back. I'll use my restore point to see if I can isolate whichever program is causing it. I'll edit this post as I get updated on it, in case it helps anyone in the future.

EDIT My restore point fixed it,and I've started reinstalling programs and drivers to see which it is. I'm suspicious that it may have been the Xonar DS sound card driver that came on a DVD with the card; I downloaded one off the internet instead and it didn't cause problems though, and it would be strange for a manufacturer to put a virus on their driver DVD.

Edited by BirdieNZ, 17 January 2013 - 04:24 PM.


#11 Allan

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 08:02 AM

Do you have a good anti virus app installed and resident? And yes, it may very well be a third party app that's causing the problem here's a troubleshooting method if you need it:

Open msconfig and on the General tab choose "selective startup" (uncheck all three items) and reboot. Does the problem still occur? If not, start adding items back to msconfig one or two at a time, rebooting after each change, until the problem reappears and you'll have identified the offending process. This is clearly a time consuming procedure, but it is the best way to determine if some process loading with the system is the cause of your problem.
After you've isolated the cause, do not use msconfig to permanently disable the process. Instead, if it is a service go to START - RUN and type: services.msc (then press enter) and disable the service OR, if it a program, you can download & run a simple app such as Mike Lin's Startup Control Panel (http://www.mlin.net/StartupCPL.shtml) to enable, disable, or otherwise manage startup programs.




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