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Old 03-31-2006, 03:26 PM
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Ed_L Ed_L is offline
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Computer question

I've been having a problem with my computer. I'm running Windows XP Home edition, and when you boot up the computer, you get the message "To begin, click on your username". The problem is that for some reason, no username is available to click on, thereby making the computer useless with the exception of hooking up to the internet, which I can access through my wife's computer in another room. Safe mode doesn't help, and no other options help either. So unless someone has a very easy fix (I'm not very computer saavy), I'm not able to access those files.

Here's a question relating to my wife's computer, which is networked with mine. For the first time, I see an icon I never saw previously, down next to the clock. It says "AV", and has a flashing question mark, as seen in the attachment. I'm not sure if I should click on it or not, fearing I might possibly have a virus. But I only visit a few sites, none of which I feel are questionable. Any comments or suggestions?

Ed
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Old 03-31-2006, 04:27 PM
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Peter S Peter S is offline
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The first one sounds like you need to set yourself up a profile, you can do this from the control panel then select "User accounts". though I thought if you just pressed OK at logon you would be logged on as a "Guest" or "All users profile".

The second, I don't recognise the Icon but it may be your Anti Virus Software telling you that your Virus definitions are out of date.

Hope this helps

Peter
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Old 03-31-2006, 05:11 PM
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HannibalVector HannibalVector is offline
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It looks like you have spyware installed ,wich alway happens without your permission. That's why you didn't see the icon before.
Spyware often pretends to be anti-spyware or anti-virus software.
I presume you didn't have REAL anti-spyware installed, so you better do it still.
Good luck
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Old 03-31-2006, 06:40 PM
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Ed_L Ed_L is offline
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I do have 2 profiles set up, and all was O.K. until about 4 days ago. For some reason, my usernames no longer show up when the computer boots up. Being so, I cannot do *anything* with that computer because I can't load my personal settings or any other settings. There's no way I know of to get into the control panel. I am the administrator, and luckily I have 95% of my files backed up.

The protection I have is the SBC Yahoo! online protection, which includes Anti Spy, Anti Virus, Pop Up Blocker, and mail protection. It is all up to date. I also have Spybot Search & Destroy. Running scans does not show up anything other than tracking cookies, which is the norm.

Thank you both for the replies. I suspected either a virus or something else that I'd rather do without.

Ed
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Old 03-31-2006, 07:50 PM
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ScubaMargie ScubaMargie is offline
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Hey Ed,

Sounds to me like windows has some corrupted files. Have you tried a windows repair?

Put the disk in the drive and reboot making sure that your system boots from cd. There are actually 2 places to repair windows with a windows repair. DO NOT use the first one that comes up, continue past it. Read Carefully or you will miss the second one.

This will repair any files that have been corrupted and leave your data.

I would suggest you get an antivirus scanner on the computer as well as a firewall on both computers. I would recommend Kaspersky AV and Firewall, this one is not free but is one of the best.

Hope this helps.
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Old 03-31-2006, 07:55 PM
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I heard that windows repair only worked for Windows 98 but not for XP!
But I am not sure.
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Old 03-31-2006, 09:44 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Ed, when you get to the the point where it asks you to click the invisible username, do a Ctrl+Alt+Del. That should bring up a generic windows login dialog box and you should be able to enter a username and password. Pls let us know if that works
Regards, Murray
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Old 04-01-2006, 03:09 AM
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Gary Richardson Gary Richardson is offline
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As you Boot Up, hit the F8 key repeatedly, as if you want to go into Safe Mode. When the menu pops up, choose "Boot to last known good configuration".

If this doesn't work, you're probably going to have to boot from your Windows disk and use Recovery Console.
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Old 04-01-2006, 09:55 AM
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I very much appreciate all the help. Once before, my username/password became corrupted. That was quite a while ago, and I don't remember what the fix was.

Murray, Ctrl+Alt+Delete did bring up the dialog box. But it would not accept my username/password as being correct. Corrupted again???

Gary, I tried every option, including last known good configuration before. No luck.

ScubaMargie, you said: "Put the disk in the drive and reboot making sure that your system boots from cd. There are actually 2 places to repair windows with a windows repair. DO NOT use the first one that comes up, continue past it. Read Carefully or you will miss the second one."

Now it's time to show my ignorance. Which disk do I use for Windows repair, and how do I make sure it boots from the CD? I have 2 discs that I think could possibly be the one I need. One is the reinstallation CD, and the other a CD with Drivers & Utilities, including Diagnostics & online documentation. This is a Resource CD. Are either of these the one I need? And is the Recovery Console on the CD, or is it on the hard drive? I'm assuming this is what I want for repairing Windows?? If it makes a difference, it's a Dell.

Ed
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Old 04-01-2006, 05:11 PM
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Ed,
When you set the computer up originally when you got it, did you set up a Master Administrator Password. If you did, then try it as it may work. If not then try the Dell Windows CD. It is the Reinstallation one you want to use - not the Driver / Utilities.
First see if your system will boot off the CD by itself. If it will not, then you will need to enter the BIOS mode during Boot up. This means you need to put the CD in the drive, and as soon as you hit the restart button keep pressing the F2 key (might be F11 or F12 on your computer) until you see the BIOS screen come up. There you will find a tab which lets you reorder the sequence of the start up devices. Normally the default is that the mother board will try the Hard Drive first to find an Operating System. If it does not find one it tries CD ROM, then Floppy Disk. In your case you want to temporarily change the order so that it looks for the CD first. That way it will boot of the Dell Reinstallation CD.

A couple of cautions for you!!!
1. Be careful in the BIOS. If you encounter something you do not understand, do not change it. If you accidentally change something that you did not intend to change, escape without saving your changes.

2. When you do boot off the Dell CD, proceed cautiously. There should be a couple of options - one to attempt to repair your hard drive's operating system and the other to do a complete re-install. The latter will overrite your entire drive and you will need to re-install all of your applications. If your drive is not partitioned and all of your data files are on the same physical partition as your operating system, you will lose those as well.

If you have stuff on your hard drive that has not been backed up and whcih you can not afford to lose, then do not re-install the OS because there are software tools that you can use to backup your hard drive even though you are not able to log into it.

Good Luck,
Murray
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