I suspect a COM Surrogate Virus/Malware problem. Here are the symptoms:
1. Once logged in (yes, to an administrator account - "mandor" - as you'll see from the FRST log), launching ANY program other than File Explorer (from either the start menu, quick launch bar, etc.) I get the spinning blue circle but nothing appears on the screen. If I launch any program by right clicking and selecting "Run as Administrator", programs do launch.
What I have tried to remedy this:
- Added a new administrator account ('Sonic' as you'll see from the FRST log), and logged into that - result: same behavior
- Checking file permissions (see point number 2 below) for c:\Users\<username> folder. In File Explorer, right click the folder, and select "Properties". This comes up fine, but when I select the security tab, I get the infamous "COM Surrogate has stopped working"
- Ran "sfc /scannow" - problem was originally detected, so I ran DISM to try and fix things. This did not work so I did the following...
- Did an upgrade in place of Windows 10 based on a mounted ISO of Windows downloaded via the Media Creation Tool. This upgraded me from the "Anniversary Edition" to the newly released "Creators Update", but the behavior mentioned above still persists
- After the update, an "sfc /scannow" comes back clean (i.e. - no problems)
- Ran scans in both Avast and Malwarebytes. Avast found nothing, Malwarebytes found 8 items which I quarantined and then rebooted. Problem still exists
2. When attempting to view Properties (right clicking on a file or folder) and then the "Security Tab", I get the COM Surrogate has crashed error.
3. (and this part is what prompted me to post here) Several websites are launching extra tabs in Chrome when I look hit play on videos (i.e. - YouTube) which lead to suspicious sites. I can kill the newly created tabs, but Chrome never works correctly (i.e. - hitting play on the videos doesn't do anything) until I kill Chrome entirely and restart.
OK. Happy to provide more information is you need it.
NOTE: Rather than pasting my FRST.txt here in the post, I'm attaching it (it's 7K lines long - most likely due to the fact that I upgraded to the Anniversary Edition within the last 30 days - most of the "One Month Created Files and Folders" section are files that were added on 3/18/17 - the day I successfully upgraded to the Anniversary edition). I'll attaching both the "FRST.txt" and the "Addition.txt")
Addition.txt 71KB 2 downloads
FRST.txt 832.37KB 2 downloads