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No Icons, No Start, No Right Click, No Task Manager


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#1 user2320

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 08:48 AM

Hi,


I hope you can help, I am running Windows XP Home Edition on an Emachines computer. I have recently had a computer crash and ended up having to reformat my hard drive.

For a month my computer has worked fine, but yesterday as I was switching users I noticed a message briefly flashed that said something about "locking the computer" and then it was gone. The computer froze so I manually powered down.

When I restarted a few hours later I get to the first screen where you select your user name and type your password (we have multiple users). After typing my password the computer took a long time to display my background, there are no icons, taskbar, no option to right click, and nothing happens with ctrl, alt delete (no task manager). I manually turned off the computer and restarted on another user name and password, but the same problem no icons etc.

After this I tried the emachines recovery disk (non destructive option). This did nothing to fix the problem except the picture beside my login name changed to a guy on a skateboard?? When I log in I just get the same background and no icons etc.

This is the second time this has happened the first time about a month ago i had to use the recovery disk to reformat my drive. I really don't want to do that again. Please help/.

I have seen similar posts in the forum but in all those case people still had the option of getting the task manager to work I can't even do that much.

Also I can't get into "safemode" my computer always defaults to the recory options screen if i hit F7 or F8.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks

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#2 usasma

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 08:49 AM

Have you scanned for viruses and spyware? Have you loaded the drivers that came with the eMachines computer?

What sort of crash did you have (the symptoms and any error messages)?
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#3 user2320

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 08:59 AM

No I haven't scanned for viruses since the computer crashed. As far as I know I can't really do a scan because I can get the taskmanager running. I can't really run anything, other than logging on.

As far as the drivers, yes i have loaded everything that came with the computer after the first crash. I ran/installed the restore disc and reformatted, and then installed all the software that came with the emachine.

The crash was nothing spectacular, just as i said for a second there was a message about "locking the computer" and then it disappeared after that I haven't seen any messages.

Edited by user2320, 29 January 2007 - 09:00 AM.


#4 usasma

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 09:19 AM

You'll most likely either have to boot with a disk that contains an antivirus scanner in it - or you'll have to take the drive out and scan it on another system.

You may want to try ClamWin portable on a flash drive (available for free from here: http://portableapps.com/apps/utilities/clamwin_portable Then, if the system recognizes the flash drive and prompts you to open a folder - you may be able to launch it.

This is likely a virus infection, but there are other things that can cause this behavior also. So rule out the virus first, and then we can proceed with other fixes.

The 2 significant events (IMO) are that the computer has been working fine for a month - and that the error you get is the same one as the one that caused you to format.

FWIW - the fix, in the end, may be a format and clean install of Windows, but it's a bit premature to use it just now. For now I'd concentrate on finding out if it is an infection.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#5 user2320

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 09:25 AM

I don't have a flash drive, but i do have an Ipod and I have CDR's here in my office.

I wonder if those would work?

I'm going to try it.

BTW do you think it is worthwhile to rerun the recovery disk? Is there any harm in doing so?

Thanks for your help, I'll come back to you tomorrow. With more info.

Edited by user2320, 29 January 2007 - 09:52 AM.


#6 Andrew

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 10:54 AM

You can also try using a liveCD to boot your computer. The Ultimate Boot Disk For Windows allows you to boot into a Windows-like environment, with access to all drives and such, and comes loaded with helpful recovery, anti-malware, and restoration programs (along with programs to recover data before wiping the drive again should it come to that). I highly recommend it.

#7 user2320

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 12:01 PM

You can also try using a liveCD to boot your computer. The Ultimate Boot Disk For Windows allows you to boot into a Windows-like environment, with access to all drives and such, and comes loaded with helpful recovery, anti-malware, and restoration programs (along with programs to recover data before wiping the drive again should it come to that). I highly recommend it.


Hi Andrew,

How do I use this? I can download and burn to cd no problem but then what? When I go home with it do i just put the cdr in the drive and boot from the drive by pushing F7 repeatedly?

When i reviewed the requirements it says i need a Windows XP CD. All I have are the Boot Cds from Emachines they contain Windows Xp I'm sure but they aren't standard windows Cds. Will they still work?



Thanks

Edited by user2320, 29 January 2007 - 12:11 PM.


#8 Andrew

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 07:49 PM

After creating the CD, you simply put it in the CD drive and turn on the computer. You may need to make your CD drive the first boot device. The precise method for this varies depending on your computer's BIOS version. Usually, when you first start the computer, a message will flash on the screen telling you which key(s) to press to bring up the BIOS setup program. Once in the BIOS setup, look for a setting called "Boot Device Priority" or something along those lines, and make sure the CD drive is the first in the list.

Creating the UBD4Win without a standalone XP CD may prove difficult (curse to all PC manufaturers who give people "restoration disks". A double curse to those who don't even give you that much!) I did some checking and there may be hope. The UBD4Win site has a quick FAQ about using a Dell CD (this may or may not work with an Emachine CD). Here is another, more detailed explaination on how you may be able to extract the Windows portion of a CD (note: this may be in violation of law and/or EULA)

#9 Budapest

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Posted 30 January 2007 - 02:03 AM

You could try The Emergency Boot CD. It's similar to the UBCD but doesn't require an XP disk.
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

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#10 user2320

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Posted 30 January 2007 - 11:35 AM

You'll never believe it but after all this i managed to get into my computer through safe mode. I am in the process of copying all important files on to recordable dvds. After I get a back up of everything what should I do about fixing my computer?

Is there a diagnostic tool I can use/run/access in safe mode? If so what is it called.

Thanks again to those who read and offered suggestions. Very nice.

Thanks

#11 usasma

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Posted 02 February 2007 - 08:47 AM

You can run ClamWin portable in Safe Mode. Or, you can use the UBCD and fix things with that.

But, once you get your stuff saved, a system restore will set you computer back to factory specs and should eliminate the thing that's causing this.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#12 user2320

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 12:27 PM

Thanks Usama, Andrew and Budapest, and everyone else who contributed and read this request.

I did exactly as I said and backed up everything and then did a system format + restore.

On the weekend we bought a new Vista laptop and are planning to use the emachines just as a backup for storage.

Thanks again for all the advice and follow up- this site is awesome.

A




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