| 6:53 am on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Sorry that nobody seems to have been able to help until now. I checked a few resources and there are a variety of suggested fixes, some that deal with registry edits and others that involve turning the Active Desktop on and off and rebooting several times. However, the fix that seemed to work the best was to do a Repair Install of XP. A repair install will leave your data and just refresh the XP system files back to their original state. I'd recommend a full backup though just in case before trying anything.
| 8:30 am on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Will that negate any recent security patches?
| 10:10 am on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
You will have to reinstall security patches after a repair install of Windows XP.
| 1:19 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)|
This smells like spyware to me.
| 8:41 am on May 11, 2006 (gmt 0)|
AdAware reports nothing. How should I check for spyware?
| 9:01 am on May 11, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|How should I check for spyware? |
I just wrote this in another thread:
There are other spyware checking programs out there. Some free, some not. YMMV.
|You may want to run a few other packages to check for spyware. Defender is good, but it's best to use a few different ones. Spybot - Search & Destroy and Ad-Aware are a couple of free ones that come to mind. Also try running HijackThis to see if it finds anything. |
| 3:55 pm on May 11, 2006 (gmt 0)|
If no spyware found etc the next stage I would take would be to back up your user data and remove the user profile from windows.
Then add a new profile and it should be fine.
| 8:23 am on May 15, 2006 (gmt 0)|
What does the user data entail? Where do I find it? And what's the safe method to remove the user profile? Will it interfere with any of my programs running when XP boots?
| 8:47 am on May 15, 2006 (gmt 0)|
From How to check user profiles on a Windows XP-based computer [support.microsoft.com]
|To locate the list of local user profiles, right-click My Computer, click Properties, and then click Settings on the Advanced tab under User Profile. |
A corrupt user profile could indeed be the problem. If you can create a new user profile and the problem goes away then you might want to try to migrate your settings to the new profile from the damaged one. MS has an article about how to do this: How to copy data from a corrupted user profile to a new profile [support.microsoft.com]