Need help with some behaviour on my PC that is, literally, driving me crazy.
OS: Windows 7 Home Premium
...Let me know if any other details are required.
Leaving out the history, here's the current situation:
Whenever I try to download a program/ application from the web, I get an error message saying: "The setup files are corrupted. Please obtain a new copy of the program."* It doesn't matter if it's Malwarebytes or some random no-name application, I'll get one error or another. The other main error I'll get (for example, when trying to download/ install Microsoft Safety Scanner) is something about "This is not a valid Win32 Application".
* = If I may introduce some complexity into the problem - the issue does not strictly have to do with 'fresh' downloads. When I first set up this computer, one of the first things I did was download mbam and rkill. I went back to try and install that version of mbam, and it also gave me this error message. However, installing from that original version of rkill gave me no problems.
Attempted Remediation Steps
1. I have BitDefender Internet Security installed already. Running it yields no infections.
1b. I have also run BitDefender in 'RescueMode'; no infections are found.
2. I have run rkill; it stated that no Malware processes were running.
3. This problem has happened to me on multiple PCs; I'm fed up to the extent that I actually went out and bought a new: Motherboard, SSD, and wireless adapter. Currently, the only pieces that are shared from the previous machine are the CPU, the GPU, the power supply, and the RAM. The mobo, SSD, and wireless network card were simultaneously installed afresh. I am no longer using an HDD for the timebeing.
Prior to buying new hardware, I had done the following, in an escalating fashion on the old machine:
a ) Run WebRoot/ Rkill/ mbam/ TDSSkiller - all came up clean
b ) Re-install Windows 7 from the original CD
c ) Done a deep format of all my hard drives (SSD and HDD both), and then re-installed Windows
d ) Repaired the mbr record. Then tried re-installing Windows.
However, none of the items above worked; upon installing Windows 7, I would experience the same problem.
After replacing the hardware (mentiond in step 3), I enjoyed about 2 weeks of peace, but today my world came shattering down again.
For those of you have a deep background in computer architecture, here's something for you to chew on: I've run some tests in the meantime, right as I'm making this post; I have PIA VPN installed on my current machine. When I am connected to the VPN, it appears I can download and install anything I want (I just tested mbam and Windows Safety Scanner in particular). However, this is not good enough, as I'm clearly having issues with my computer.
It's possible my previous steps were all looking in the wrong direction. Event Viewer is showing a number of errors over the last few weeks, but I never focused on that.
However, now that the experts have context, please let me know where to begin/ what to do.
Edited by abyss_of_mediocrity, 27 April 2015 - 07:24 PM.