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Many sites not loading, DNS problem BUT only in Windows.


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#1 Stang777

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 03:54 AM

Hi Everyone,

 

This gets a little complicated and while it is an internet problem, it seems to be a problem caused by Windows. I am running Windows 8.1 now, but the same thing happened in January while I was running Windows 8. Everything except the internet is working perfectly.

 

The system is running an i5-330 processor and has 16 gig of ram, I believe. Might be 8 gig of ram but I think it is 16, in any case, has plenty of it. Its main drive is an SSD that has about 65 gigs free space. It is a custom build from a local major computer store and it is just over 2 years old.

 

The computer is in the shop, so I cannot run any test but, the repair shop is totally out of ideas, other than to reformat and reinstall, AGAIN.  They cannot figure out what is causing the problem so I don't want to that as I am afraid that since we do not know why the problem has happened, twice, it will just happen again, so I am really hoping that someone here will be able to offer some ideas as to what is happening to cause this problem and how to fix it without doing a reformat/reinstall.

 

I should have just come here before taking it in but I didn't have time to mess with it and since the place that built it offers free lifetime service, I took it in. They do charge an 80.00 expediting fee to put it in the front of the line but since it had been in for this same thing before and I was not happy about it happening again when we never found out why it happened in the first place, they were kind enough to waive that fee for me this time.

 

I want to make this very clear, there are no viruses on the system and there never has been. When this problem happened before, I ran many tests to be sure of that, and the repair shop did too. This time, I only ran a scan with my usual virus program but the shop ran their tests just to make sure too and it is clean. Btw, besides my ZoneAlarm always running, the full version of Malwarebytes is also always running on it. 

 

Sorry for the long intro into it, but I feel all of that matters. The rest is rather lengthy too but I want to provide as much info as possible to try to get us on the right track.

 

So, on to the problem. A few days ago, after making no changes to my computer or doing anything out of the ordinary, many websites stopped loading and some would load but not work properly. Google will load but not do any searches, other sites load fine but many sites just never do load. I got strange messages trying to load mail on AOL.com, but when I reloaded the page it worked fine but AOL software program won't connect at all. Most sites that require a secure connection would not load although the AOL mail site is a secure connection and it did usually load.

 

I am using latest version of Firefox but I also tried IE11 and had less success with it. All Windows updates are up to date. Turning off virus protection makes no difference.

 

Before the problem happened, I had been of the puter most of the day just playing on my usual sites, the main one I was on was Publishers Clearing House games site just playing Solitaire but I was also on their main sweepstakes site and a medical forum. I had a few other sites loaded but I wasn't doing much with them. Everything was working just fine.

 

I made no changes to the system whatsoever and nobody but me is ever on that computer.

 

I left for the evening (nobody was here while I was gone) and when I came back I went back on the medical forum and then I tried to google something but Google would not google and that is when I discovered there was a problem. I tried to go to a few other sites, including the main one I was on all day and it wouldn't load either.  At first I thought it was just the internet having problems as some sites were fine but others wouldn't load. Forums, including this one, worked fine, but most sites would not. Soon I realized it was the same thing that happened before so I tried the other computer here and the internet was working fine.

 

I used the network trouble shooter in Control Panel and it said that my system was configured correctly but the DNS was not responding. I ran SFC and while it found a few errors that it could not resolve, I do not believe that those were the issue. There were 6 of them all related to telemetry with Microsoft Apps (I rarely use the Apps, I run Classic Shell so boot to the desktop) and the computer techs also appear to feel they are not the issue.

 

The techs at the shop have ran tons of tests, tried a wireless card instead of the using the ethernet that I have been connecting with. This computers connection has been hard-wired. the other one in the house, which I am on now, is wireless, but that didn't work. They tried doing a non-destructive reinstall of Windows and that did not work. Did something with the Winsock and many other things they didn't go into with me, just said they tried everything that any of their techs could think of to try, but nothing is resolving the DNS problem within Windows.

 

Finally they tried using Linyx and everything worked just fine so obviously it is a Windows problem.

 

Again, sorry this is so long, I am just trying to answer all the questions I think anyone could have without making them ask them and wait for my reply, as I do need to give the shop an answer on Monday about doing the reformat/reinstall.

 

Does anyone have any ideas about what is going on here or how to fix it besides reformat/reinstall?

 

I would really appreciate any help anyone could give me with this.


Edited by Stang777, 21 June 2015 - 03:59 AM.


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#2 SpywareDoc

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 11:35 AM

In Windows, change the DNS servers to:

 

8.8.8.8

8.8.4.4

 

or

 

208.67.222.222

208.67.220.220

 

and then try accessing popular websites.

 

http://pcsupport.about.com/od/windows-8/fl/change-dns-servers-windows-8.htm


Edited by SpywareDoc, 21 June 2015 - 11:36 AM.


#3 Norseman143

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 04:36 PM

I am not a Mod, so take this with a grain of salt

 

A few months ago, my internet just out of the blue,started cutting out

 

I have the router right next to my desk, where I could see the lights

 

They would start shutting off at random times and the router would try to reconnect.

 

A few days of this I call my service provider, and they told me I was getting a weak signal

 

I hadnt touched or moved the router or connections to the router,so I couldnt figure out how the signal is weak

 

Anyway I checked all my connections all the way to where the cable comes into the house

 

I had a 3 way connector I bought at Walmart and then decided to exchange it with the one that came with the router

 

Thats what the problem was,.I had no problems after that

 

I would check to make sure all your connections to your router are all tight and secure.If you have any kind of splitter to your

router,maybe change it out

As silly as it sounds,it could be as simple as that



#4 jcgriff2

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 05:22 PM

Hi. . .
 

the other one in the house, which I am on now, is wireless, but that didn't work

 
Are you saying that the system connected to your network via wifi did not work either (had Internet issues too)?
 
First off - Remove Zone Alarm for now.  Even when you did the testing with system protection turned off, Zone Alarm drivers still loaded.
 
Use Zone Alarm Removal Tool (ZRT) -
https://www.zonealarm.com/forums/showthread.php/73910-zone-alarm-removal-tool-gt-http-download-zonealarm-com-bin-fr-load-clean-exe
 
Download; save to Desktop.  RIGHT-click on the ZRT, select "Run as Administrator"
 
Test the system & sites.
 
To rule out a corrupted user account, test with another.  For this test, activate the Hidden Admi user account -

http://www.sysnative.com/forums/windows-8-windows-rt-tutorials/6536-enable-disable-hidden-administrator-user-account-windows-8-1-8-a.html
 
Make sure that your Ethernet driver is updated.  Go into Device Manager, get the name of the driver (click on "driver" tab); look up the driver name in the Carrona/Sysnative Driver Reference Table -
 
http://www.sysnative.com/drivers/
 
Press the keys WIN+X; select "Command Prompt (Admin)"; paste/type:

ipconfig /flushdns

Why are you so sure that your system is not & could not be infected?

Regards. . .

jcgriff2

 

EDIT: ZRT link appears to be INOP.  Try conventional Program Removal via Windows Control Panel.

 

If no-go, use the ESET general removal tool - http://kb.eset.com/esetkb/index?page=content&id=SOLN146

 

Direct link for x64 systems - http://download.eset.com/special/avremover/avremover_nt64_enu.exe

 

Please be sure to reboot your system upon completion of Zone Alarm removal to assure that boot and kernel mode drivers are in fact deleted.


Edited by jcgriff2, 21 June 2015 - 06:59 PM.

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#5 Stang777

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 08:19 PM

In Windows, change the DNS servers to:

 

8.8.8.8

8.8.4.4

 

or

 

208.67.222.222

208.67.220.220

 

and then try accessing popular websites.

 

http://pcsupport.about.com/od/windows-8/fl/change-dns-servers-windows-8.htm

Thank you SpywareDoc for the reply and suggestion.

 

When I talk to the techs at the shop tomorrow I will ask them if they have tried this and if not, will have them do so.

 

Thank you very much.



#6 Stang777

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 08:24 PM


 

I would check to make sure all your connections to your router are all tight and secure.If you have any kind of splitter to your

router,maybe change it out

As silly as it sounds,it could be as simple as that

Thank you Norseman. I appreciate your reply and suggestion.

 

I wish it would be something that simple but this same thing is happening with the computer at the repair shop so I doubt that could be the problem.

 

I am glad you got your problem resolved with that though and I appreciate your help.



#7 Stang777

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 08:47 PM

Hi. . .
 

the other one in the house, which I am on now, is wireless, but that didn't work

 
Are you saying that the system connected to your network via wifi did not work either (had Internet issues too)?
 
First off - Remove Zone Alarm for now.  Even when you did the testing with system protection turned off, Zone Alarm drivers still loaded.
 
Use Zone Alarm Removal Tool (ZRT) -
https://www.zonealarm.com/forums/showthread.php/73910-zone-alarm-removal-tool-gt-http-download-zonealarm-com-bin-fr-load-clean-exe
 
Download; save to Desktop.  RIGHT-click on the ZRT, select "Run as Administrator"
 
Test the system & sites.
 
To rule out a corrupted user account, test with another.  For this test, activate the Hidden Admi user account -

http://www.sysnative.com/forums/windows-8-windows-rt-tutorials/6536-enable-disable-hidden-administrator-user-account-windows-8-1-8-a.html
 
Make sure that your Ethernet driver is updated.  Go into Device Manager, get the name of the driver (click on "driver" tab); look up the driver name in the Carrona/Sysnative Driver Reference Table -
 
http://www.sysnative.com/drivers/
 
Press the keys WIN+X; select "Command Prompt (Admin)"; paste/type:

ipconfig /flushdns

Why are you so sure that your system is not & could not be infected?

Regards. . .

jcgriff2

 

EDIT: ZRT link appears to be INOP.  Try conventional Program Removal via Windows Control Panel.

 

If no-go, use the ESET general removal tool - http://kb.eset.com/esetkb/index?page=content&id=SOLN146

 

Direct link for x64 systems - http://download.eset.com/special/avremover/avremover_nt64_enu.exe

 

Please be sure to reboot your system upon completion of Zone Alarm removal to assure that boot and kernel mode drivers are in fact deleted.

Thank you jcgriff2, I appreciate you replying and the suggestions.

 

For the first question, you are correct, the techs at the shop put in a wireless card and it still did not work.

 

As for removing ZA, I didn't do that this time around but I did use their removal tool and uninstalled it the last time this happened but it didn't make any difference.

 

I do not know if the techs tried a different user account, I will ask them about that tomorrow and if not have them try it as I did not try that.

 

The shop did update the ethernet driver and did the IP flush and all else associated with that. Both them and me did all of that last time the problem occurred too with no success having that fix the problem.

 

As to why I am sure the system is not infected, it is for all the reason that I stated above. Also, while I realize that any site can give you a virus, I have very safe surfing habits and my system is protected as described above.  With the exception of internet problems, there are no symptoms of infection. Also, if it is infected, then both times this has happened it is with a virus that is basically undetectable considering that the techs at the shop, as well as myself, have run many tests on it.  Last time this happened I ran many tests and both times it happened the techs at the shop did.  The techs never initially believe a computer exhibiting problems is not infected, so they thoroughly checked that out.

 

Again, thank you for taking the time to reply and give me all those suggestions.

 

 

 

Btw, and this is unrelated to anything in this post, but, one thing I didn't put in my origianl post, and I don't know if it means anything to anyone, but pinging all the sites that won't load works.

 

Please keep any and all suggestions coming everyone :)



#8 jcgriff2

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Posted 21 June 2015 - 11:30 PM

Thanks for clarifying the wifi.  I thought a completely different system was involved and able to surf the web via wifi.  Now I understand the techs simply tried a wifi card in your existing system, but no-go.

 

I'd like to take a look deeper into your system via various files.  We have an app that produces >25 output files containing all kinds of system and OS information.  It is primarily used to gather this same info for BSOD threads, so don't let the name fool you.  It is very often used for troubleshooting purposes.

 

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/576314/blue-screen-of-death-bsod-posting-instructions-windows-10-81-8-7-vista/

 

No guarantees, of course, but the files may yield a clue.

 

The instructions say to create a new thread.  No need to do that.  Instead, please attach the zip file(s) to a new post in this thread. 

 

If Internet issues prevent you (or the techs) from downloading the app to Documents, use another system; copy the app to a USB stick; copy that to your Documents folder; run the app; copy the output zip to USB; to good system; upload & attach.

 

Please also run SysInternals AutoRuns.  Download from Microsoft TechNet - https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb963902

 

Save it as an ARN (default file extension) file.  Zip it up & attach.

 

Regards. . .

 

jcgriff2

 

 


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#9 Stang777

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Posted 22 June 2015 - 01:17 AM

Thank you for all that jcgriff.

 

I will mention all that to the techs tomorrow but I cannot run any tests or attach any logs as the shop has the computer.

 

I need to give them an answer tomorrow about doing the reformat/reinstall but I am looking for suggestion for things that they can try, if they haven't done so already, and you have given me some good ideas.

 

I am sorry for the confusion about the wireless card and the other computer that I mentioned.

 

To try to clarify that, the techs did try a wireless card in the computer that is having the problem to see if the problem was with the ethernet card/connection. I only mentioned the other computer, which is the one i am using right now, because that is the one that I tried at home the night I was thinking the problems I was having with the computer the post is about, was just a problem with the internet service, not my computer, but that computer, the one I am using right now, had no problems with the internet. The computer I am using right now is using the same internet connection as the one having the problem, but the difference is, the computer I am using right now is using a wireless connection, whereas the computer that I am having problems with was connected with the ethernet cable. Since the second computer I tried was having no problems accessing any sites, I then knew the problem was not with the internet service, but rather the problem was specific to the computer this post is about. I hope that clears up any confusion.

 

I wish I could post logs for the things you have suggested, as I feel like I jumped the gun by taking it in without coming here first.

 

That being said, the techs at the place I have my computer seem to be really good, so they have probably already done all of these things. Even though it is a local shop that I have it at, it really isn't a little shop. They have 7 locations here in my state and one in another, they are a rather big, well known and well respected company. The computers they make are considered top notch and I have never heard one bad thing about their computers, their service, or their techs.

 

I was just trying desperately to avoid doing another reformat/reinstall so soon after doing the last one. Especially since before long I will be doing that again when I install Windows 10 in a few months and I have a lot of programs I will have to reinstall.

 

Hopefully a suggestion from here will solve the problem but unless the things suggestion here are things they have not done, I will probably just tell them to go ahead and do it and if I have the problem again, then I will come here and try everything anyone here can think of to fix it, before doing anything else.

 

I honestly think there is just a glitch in Windows that is causing this and I will just keep my fingers crossed that WIndows 10 won't have the same issue.

 

I really do thank you so very much for all your help and efforts. :)

 

Still welcoming any and all suggestions


Edited by Stang777, 22 June 2015 - 01:57 AM.


#10 jcgriff2

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Posted 23 June 2015 - 09:51 AM

My pleasure.

 

I understand your dilemma.


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