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Andy
Andy, Computer Consultant
Category: Computer
Satisfied Customers: 5316
Experience:  11yr exp, Comp Engg, Internet expert, Web developer, SEO
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I can't open any browsers to download anything, even in safe mode.

Customer Question

I can't open any browsers to download anything, even in safe mode. Internet Explorer opens but I get "this page can't be displayed" whenever I type any URL. Google Chrome and Z Firefox won't even open (I get "couldn't load XPCOM" when I try to open Firefox). I can run "System Restore" but it doesn't do anything and I can access the control panel but there's no "Internet options" reference. My laptop's useless now. Please help!
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Computer
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
Hi there! My name is***** am a computer professional with over 15 years of experience with both Mac and Windows. It would be my pleasure to help you resolve this. It sounds like you have a serious virus or malware of some sort. I can offer you detailed instructions on how to clean up your computer, or I can do it for you if you'd like. If you can start your computer in safe mode with networking, I cna give you a link to click on that should allow us to connect. This is completely optional. If you wish to take advantage of that offer, just click accept. Otherwise follow the detailed instructions which I will post here in a moment. Do you have another computer available to you to download utilities and burn them to cd?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
No, I don't. All I have is my smart phone. And I paid $58 with PayPal so I don't know why I'm getting more offers. I need my laptop to work! Please!
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
PART ONE1) Download the free version of Ccleaner from Piriform http://www.piriform.com2) Download Malware Bytes from http://www.malwarebytes.org and install. Be sure to choose the free 14 day trial for now. I do think it is a wonderful tool for protecting us from malware and spyware that virus programs don't always catch but you can consider the purchase of it later.3) Download Mcafee's Stinger (free) from this link. http://www.mcafee.com/us/downloads/free-tools/termsofuse.aspx?url=http://downloadcenter.mcafee.com/products/mcafee-avert/Stinger/stinger64-epo.zipPLEASE NOTE: In your case you are going to need to use another computer and download these utilities to a cd or thumbdrive since you can't use your troubled computer to get to the internet. PART TWO - boot to safe mode PART THREE - running the scansWhen you have successfully rebooted into safe mode:Insert the cd that you burned with the utilities on it1) Run MalwareBytes. It may be a lengthy process. Allow Malware Bytes to remove or clean anything that it finds. 2) Run McAffee’s Stinger. Again it has the potential to be a very lengthy process. Allow it to remove or clean or quarantine anything that is found. Please make a note of anything that it may find. 3) Run Ccleaner. Click on run cleaner in the bottom right corner of the window. Click on ok. If you are asked to close Google Chrome please do so. When that is complete please click on the Applications Tab and repeat the process. Next, click on Registry, and then on Scan for issues. When the scan has completed, please click Fix Selected Issues. Click yes, then click save, and when it completes (this one will be quick) click on close. Finally, reboot your computer and hopefully everything will be clean and there will no viruses , spyware, or malware. If your scans did find things and the problems recur later, you will need to turn off system restore, reboot into safe mode and repeat all of this again, as some viruses, malware and spyware can hide in System Restore files. Then when you've thoroughly cleaned again, please reboot and then turn System Reboot Back on. I'll walk you through turning system restore on and off later if needed.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I don't have another computer. I can't download anything. And I already have CCleaner and Malwarebytes - neither fixes anything.
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
Have you made sure that you have the latest version of both (and in particular the latest definition downloads for Malware Bytes)? Have you run them while in safe mode? If so, my next best advice to you would be to purchase a rescue cd that will allow you to boot from it and run multiple utilities designed to clean your computer up. It's either that or a local repair shop. Do you want to continue here or would you prefer to take it somewhere locally?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I don't have the ability to use a local shop or even to purchase a rescue CD right now. I think I have the latest definitions for Malwarebytes and I'm running it in safe mode right now. (It's on "heuristic analysis.") How can we continue from here?
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
Let me know what it finds please and we'll come up with a plan from there.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thanks. I'm afraid that it won't find anything but I appreciate your helpfulness. I'll let you know when it's done.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
"Threat scan completed successfully. No threats identified."
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
OK. That's surprising. What kind of virus software do you have? can it be run in safe mode?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I have Trend Micro and AVG but neither runs. For Trend Micro I get "Unable to load; do you want to visit site to download latest version?" and when I say yes, Internet Explorer opens and says "page can't be accessed." For AVG, I uninstalled and reinstalled it when I could still use Firefox and now whenever I click on the desktop icon, it says after several minutes, "can't install." I'm on a fixed income so monthly wifi alone is challenging; I can't afford upgrades and taxi rides to purchase cleaning CDs right now.
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
I understand. Let's run ccleaner. Be sure that you click on both tabs, the Windows tab and the Applications tab, and on both run rather than analyze. Also click on registry and SCAN FOR ISSUES. Click on Fix SELECTED ISSUES and yes to save. Then clik FIX ALL ISSUES. Reboot after this and let me know if that helped anything.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
No. Not in normal mode. Still can't open Chrome or Firefox ("can't load XPCOM") and AVG still shows "an unknown issue has prevented internet security from installing" when I click on it. Should I go into safe mode again?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
AVG's error code is 0xe0010406, by the way.
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
You haven't mentioned Internet Explorer. Are you able to access it?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
It opens (unlike Chrome and Firefox) but it just says "this page can't be displayed" for every URL.
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
ok. There are still a couple of things that we can try. Go to Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools, and then click Internet Explorer (No Add-ons) and open it there. If it still doesn't work, make sure that you're actually connected to the internet. Go to control panel and network connections and let me know what you see.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
In normal or safe mode?
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
you can try this in normal mode.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
*Sigh* it still won't work and I'm connected to the internet. Under "Network and Sharing Center," it indicates that I'm connected.
Expert:  GeekGal replied 7 months ago.
I'm so sorry. I wish that I could help. If you could get a cd and borrow a friends computer, I could send you a link that you can click on to create your own rescue cd, but with out another computer there is nothing further than I can do.We do offer a satisfaction guarantee, so since we've been unable to fix your problem, you may contact***@******.*** and request a refund.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Can you send me the link so I can do that if/when I can borrow another computer?
Expert:  Michelle replied 7 months ago.
Hi my name is ***** ***** I will be the expert working with you today to help and resolve the problem you have posted.let me know when you are ready i can help you fix this.
Expert:  Eric Ewing replied 7 months ago.
Hi Patrick! I know you've been working on this for awhile with GeekGal, but I wanted to chime in with a suggestion or two that (fingers crossed!) might help.It is *very* bad to run multiple antivirus packages on your computer; because of how deeply they embed into your operating system, the potential for problems is very high. As a first step, let's remove both programs.I'm a little worried that AVG won't properly uninstall given the error you described, but it can't hurt to try. Go to START -> CONTROL PANEL, and then double-click the ADD/REMOVE PROGRAMS applet to open it. Once there, locate AVG, click it to select it, and then click REMOVE. If it doesn't uninstall properly, we'll move on.Next, attempt to also uninstall Trend Micro by clicking it to select it, and then clicking the REMOVE button. I suspect this will work fine, and -- if it does -- try once more now to remove AVG.Once you've uninstalled all you are able to, reboot your computer and try to access the internet again using Internet Explorer (Firefox and Chrome will most likely still not work...we'll need to do some additional tasks to get those operational once we fix the underlying issues). At this point, would you please post back here and let me know if there's been any progress?