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Probs with Internet Connection...what I've done so far...help pls

Discussion in 'Software' started by jacknscoob, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

    I am having problems opening certain internet pages. It's driving me mad.

    Eg. Trying to open Gmail...says it is taking to long to open then flips to 'Internet Explorer cant display this page'
    Wont open Ebay - 'Internet Explorer cant display this page'
    Trying to download a free small app on itunes - msg 'Network connection timed out'
    Facebook - opens but only shows first top half of screen
    Will not open any utube - 'Internet Explorer cant display this page'

    Luckily it can open this site, so there is def a connection.

    So far I have:
    Turned off my computer, left for 20mins, turned back on
    Same with modem (as above) and reset it
    The connection on my husbands wireless laptop works perfectly
    My internet connection says it is connected
    I have run several Trend full scans
    Run Windows Defender scan
    I have reset my security & privacy settings to the default
    I am lost as to what to do next. Any ideas??

    Could it be something as simple like a setting that is wrong??
  2. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    Yes, it could be a wrong setting somewhere, but your computer's symptoms are suspiciously like others whose computers had a malware infection of some sort, Trend Micro and Windows Defender scans notwithstanding. I suggest that you mosey over to the Malware Forum and run through the READ & RUN ME FIRST Malware Removal Guide to make sure you're not infected with some baddie. If all goes well there, post back here with that knowledge and some kind soul will help with your listed problems. If all doesn't go well with the Read and Run Me, post in the Malware Forum and the magicians there will very ably assist you. Good luck! Things like this are never fun and we've all had our share.
  3. plodr

    plodr Major Geek Extraordinaire

    1. What browser are you using?
    2. What browser is your husband using?
    3. What version of windows are you using?
    4. What version of windows is your husband using?
    5. Are you connecting wired or wireless?
  4. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

    Thanks guys

    I will have a look at the malware forum.

    My husband and I are both wireless. Me using Windows Vista, my husband Windows 7 & Internet Explorer (same as me). Will have a look for the versions.

    Also, I will connect my computer direct to our ethernet cable, just in case.

    Will be back :)
  5. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

    Hi Guys

    On another help site, someone sent me this link (to a newsletter), http://www.labnol.org/software/tutor...16/[/QUOTE]

    I have gone through the list doing what I can.

    Under Fix 1: I have found ' localhost
    ::1 localhost
    these I shouldnt have

    I have got to
    Fix 3: Clear DNS Cache – The DNS cache keeps a record of sites that you have recently visited on your computer. If that gets corrupted, you may have issues opening sites that were previously accessible without problems.
    Type cmd /k ipconfig /displaydns in the Run window to see the cache entries. If that unreachable website is listed in the cache, type cmd /k ipconfig /flushdns to clear the cache.

    I have done this but it comes back saying 'the requested operation requires elevation' what does that mean? What's my next step.
  6. plodr

    plodr Major Geek Extraordinaire

  7. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

  8. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    Jacknscoob__Regarding the 'Fixes' you cited, some clarification:

    " localhost" is your local computer. " localhost" MUST be the first executable line in your HOSTS file (lines that begin with # are not executable lines). If there are other executable lines above and/or below that line (or if that line doesn't exist), then the file is not the original one in function. IF needed, you can restore the HOSTS file's original function simply by removing anything above and below the " localhost" line. Stripped to bare bones the original HOSTS file would consist of one line--- localhost---to conform to the originally intended function, followed by the "::1 localhost" line (see following).

    Some baddies will put redirects or exclusions in the HOSTS file, so if there are other lines in it besides " localhost" don't be afraid to delete those. (If the HOSTS file was deliberately modified by you or someone you know to exclude certain sites, modifiy the previous instruction accordingly. I have a custom HOSTS file with about 14,000 lines in it, all exclusions of known bad sites.) If you end up modifying the HOSTS file, make sure a file extension (txt, for example) does not get appended to the name when you save the file....it's simply HOSTS and nothing else; not HOSTS.TXT or other.

    Regarding the "::1 localhost" line in the HOSTS file, that is a legitimate entry for IPv6 (IPv4 being " localhost"), so it's a shorthand for " localhost" when IPv6 is implemented, the latter being currently in process.

    If in doubt about your HOSTS file, copy and paste the last 4 or 5 lines of the file into your next post and someone can tell you if the file looks original or not.

    Regarding clearing the DNS cache there are several ways of doing that: the command line way you cited is one. Another is to right-click on your Local Area Connection and choose "Status" then the "Support" tab, then the "Repair" button. Watch for the message assuring success. Sometime when things are boogered a "Repair" or /flushdns command will report that the DNS cache could not be flushed, then it gets a little messy to fix that.

    Also, CCleaner with its default settings will clear the DNS cache when you select "Run Cleaner" in the lower right of the main window (If you don't use CCleaner, you should as it does a lot of other good things like deleting windows log files, flushing Temp folders, etc. It also flushes your browser's cache and the browser cache can sometimes cause problems like you're having.)

    If your HOSTS file is good, and you've cleared all your caches and temp folders and still have problems, then malware is even more of a possibility per my original reply. Doesn't hurt to check out the above first, though.
  9. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

    Hi Guys

    Thanks for all the comprehensive info..I am a tad confused. But here is where I am at.

    Re, '" localhost" is your local computer. " localhost" MUST be the first executable line in your HOSTS file' - When I did the displaydns command about 20 entries appeared and the '' was the 2nd from the last :confused

    Also, we dont have a LAN, we are both independantly wirelessly connected to our modem. I couldnt identify CCleaner either.

    I am mystified why I can use web sites like this (thankfully) but not gmail, I can open gmail in basic HTML but cant open any of the emails. I can open Facebook..news, however when I click on a 'group' that I use regularly it only shows the top half of the page, and thats it. :cry:cry:cry
  10. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    I've got you thinking apples and oranges, it seems, so let's see if I can try not to confuse you further!

    The "/displaydns" command and the HOSTS file, though somewhat indirectly related, are not the same. The output of the /displaydns command is what you saw when you typed "ipconfig /displaydns". The HOSTS file is a file that lives in a folder on your hard drive. So that we can see the differences, let's do this:

    Below is a little batch file you can run that will create two files in the root of your C-drive (C:\). One will be named displaydns.txt and the other will be named hostsfile.txt.

    To create the batch file first create a new text file on your desktop and copy the contents between the two lines below---don't include the lines---to the new text file. Save the file. Now rename the text file "getinfo.bat"
    @echo off
    ipconfig /displaydns>c:\displaydns.txt
    cd C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc
    attrib -r -h -s HOSTS.
    copy HOSTS. c:\hostsfile.txt>nul

    Now run the batch file by double-clicking on it or by right-clicking and selecting "run as administrator," whichever works. You will see a command box flash on the screen and it will close fairly quickly. You now have the two files we want.

    Now, using windows explorer locate the two files that the batch file created and attach them to your next post. Both files will be in C:\. One will contain what you saw on screen when you first typed "ipconfig /displaydns." The other will have the content of your HOSTS file. If we can see both those files we'll much better understand what's going on with your system. Once we have the two files in question, it may be evident if there's some redirecting going on, etc. The thing that's really suspicious is the one screen displaying half a page...seems you'd either have a connection or you wouldn't! We'll see.

    And my apologies about not explaining CCleaner further---I just assumed that if one was on MajorGeeks one knew what CCleaner was! It's a small program that you will have to download and install. You can find it at http://majorgeeks.com/CCleaner_Standard_d5125.html Once you're able to view youtube videos again you can watch the tutorial that MajorGeeks made for it.

    Download and install CCleaner. Run the program, then without changing any parameters, click on "Run Cleaner" in the lower right. That action will clean/flush browser and DNS caches, temp files, windows log files and everything that is checked in the lefthand column of the main window. After it's done (10-20 seconds, usually) you can close CCleaner. You can also delete from your desktop the batch file you made if you want.

    All the above may end up not telling us anything, but it won't hurt a thing and could help us pinpoint your problem. And getting you acquainted with CCleaner is a good thing, for sure. Cross your fingers!
  11. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

    Hi Guys / Kipfeet

    I am back on the case, Kipfeet, I am reading through your recent post, thankyou very much for taking the time, whatever my outcome I'll let you know what happens. I am downloading CCleaner and will execute. FYI any downloads I do are frequently interrupted and I have to click resume numerous times, like I am doing now for CCleaner. It happens for all downloads. Is that a factor?

    OK on my C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts - I have located the file and the last 5 lines are:

    # For example:
    # rhino.acme.com # source server
    # x.acme.com # x client host localhost
    ::1 localhost

    Do you still need the "ipconfig /displaydns" info? If yes, I will need to type it out as I dont know how to copy from DOS.

    My computer is set up that I am the administrater, usually just an extra confirm button.

    To help things, if I wanted to publish a screen print to show you exactly what I am seeing this end, is it possible and how do I go about it? I think it would help.

    Yes fingers and toes crossed :)
  12. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal

    More info on other things that arnt right with my webpages (when they load)

    - some images are not shown, just white boxes with red crosses
    - some pages eg ebay (when it opens), shows boxes/links in a linear fashion (not how they should be)
    - some button links, just show the word underlined
    - when I try to open gmail is says : This is taking longer than usual. Try reloading the page.
    If that doesn't work, you can: 1.Disable Labs and try again.
    2.If you're on a slow connection, try basic HTML view.
    3.For more troubleshooting tips, visit the help center.

    Prob a screen print will assist.

    PS: just in case, I plugged in the ethernet cable direct, all the same problems

    PPS: Have completed the CClean
  13. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    Thanks for trying your computer hard wired...I was wondering about that and you've eliminated that as a cause of the problems.

    Your HOSTS file appears to be original, therefore it's not the cause of your problems, either.

    And now that you've used CCleaner to clear temp files, caches, etc., let's just make sure that it's also clearing your DNS cache:
    Click Start>Run and type "cmd" (without quotes) in the box and press enter. A DOS box will appear.
    At the prompt type "ipconfig /flushdns" (without quotes). If successful, it will say "Successfully flushed the DNS Resolver Cache." I expect that is what you will see. If not, tell us what message you do see. Close the DOS box.

    Assuming the flush is OK, the next thing I'd try is a different browser and see if the same things are happening at the web sites you mention. So if you're using IE, download Firefox, for example, and install and run it and see how things are. (It doesn't hurt to have a backup browser installed anyway, just for instances such as yours).

    If you're having the same and/or similar problems with a different browser, then I think you need to look at the possibility of malware and I'll refer you to the RUN and READ ME Sticky in the Malware Forum. Run through it and if looks like malware is your problem, post in that forum. If the new browser doesn't show problems, then it's likely that your old browser has gotten boogered (advanced technical term!), so an uninstall and reinstall might be in order. I'm beginning to think it may be your browser that's causing your problems; trying a different one should tell us that or not.

    No need for screen shots yet...let's see if it's browser or malware first. Hang in there!
  14. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    And another thing (or two)....

    Yes, your interrupted downloads are telling us something, possibly that you're quickly losing and regaining your internet connection...but, that could be caused by a corrupted browser, too. Try the different browser if you can get it downloaded and let's go from there.

    Another (quick) thing to do is to run TaskManager and see if anything looks amiss there, like a program called 34ARG$5.exe or some such non-descript thing running...a strong clue toward malware or worse. From the RUN and READ Me Sticky just installing and running SuperAntiSpyware and AntiMalwarebytes can give you a quick take on the possibility of most malware, too.
  15. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal



    I dont wana count my smilies before they have hatched...lol.

    Where I am at:

    Couldnt download CHROME due to intermittant connection problems.

    Realised 'Safari' was on my computer already. Made it my default browser.

    So far have been able to open gmail (that works), it is the older version, but the links work. Have opened UTube, amazon, keepvid

    I have started a music video download, says it will take 5 hours but have had no interupted / resume connection as yet. Facebook is taking forever, but it is still thinking about it as is ebay.

    So far have not had the screen up saying 'cannot display this web page'. :)

    I will keep you posted as to the true outcome xxx

    Thanks for your time kipfeet
  16. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    Excellent! At least you now know that there's something wrong with IE...some decent progress, at least. Good show :)

    But you're quite correct in not counting your smilies or chickens just yet. The question is, how did IE get the way it is? Some sort of snafu with the program? Or malware that got into it and did something? I recommend a few more steps, in the order listed following.

    1) Download SuperAntiSpyware (SAS) and AntiMalwareBytes (AMB) from MGs and install and run them to scan your computer for nasties (I'd be very surprised if none were found). Before running the scans for each be sure you update the virus definitions so you have the latest and greatest (both programs issue new definitions 2-3 times per day). SAS will automatically fix nasty things that it finds but with AMB you have to actively tell it to fix things, so don't forget to tell it that at the end of its scan. Run "Full Scan" for each of the programs and try not to use the computer for anything else while they're running. Depending on the amount of stuff on your hard drive each scan could take 20-40 minutes, but it's well worth the time, believe me. Both programs will create log files (TXT) of the scans. If you have any questions about what the scans find, find the log files on the hard drive and attach them to your next post.

    2) Before updating Safari, etc., see what can be done with fixing IE. Download a new copy from M'Soft. Now uninstall the old IE from Add/Remove Programs. Then install the new copy of IE. Reboot and see how it does.

    If, before you get to all the above you find that Safari is getting flaky like IE, that's a strong indication of malware activity, so at that point drop everything else and run the mentioned scans.

    For future reference, since you have the luxury of two computers in your household, when having difficulty downloading something on a flaky computer, use the other computer to download and just copy the download over to the flaky one using a memory stick :)

    I'm not convinced you're entirely out of the woods yet, so just keep plugging along doing the above and eventually something will become clear one way or the other. But at least you are seemingly back in business for the time being.

    And you're very welcome...it's good to hear that things are getting back to normal :) And by all means let us know how it all ends up.
  17. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal


    Yes I am with you re IE...yes I can imagine, this isnt the end of all this. Thanks again heaps for your post.

    SO.............. I have download SuperAntiSpyware (SAS) and am running a full scan as we speak (prob take all night), am still downloading AntiMalwareBytes (AMB). Once I have scanned both, I'll find the log files on the hard drive and attach them to my next post :)

    2) Before updating Safari, etc., see what can be done with fixing IE. Download a new copy from M'Soft. Now uninstall the old IE from Add/Remove Programs. Then install the new copy of IE. Reboot and see how it does.
    I am already using Safari but will do as you suggested. From the looks of my SAS, I am up to 60 threats already:-orolleyes So defo not outa the woods.

    Plus I am still unable to download apps from ITunes.

    Will let you know how I get on :)
  18. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    Very good with SAS and AMB ...they can be very telling (unfortunately) and the logs will be interesting...Keep plugging away and keep us apprised :)

    One thing about installing a new IE that I forgot and was reminded about when I saw your other post: By all means export your favorites from IE before removing the program, if you haven't already done so. I know nothing about Safari, but I expect it will import favorites, etc., much the same as all the other browsers do, usually found under the "File" menu or equivalent.

    And the only reason I suggest getting IE back up to snuff is in case Safari starts getting weird like the old IE at least you'd have another fallback. Of course you could always download Firefox or something else later, too. Priority right now, though, in my mind, is what SAS and AMB find and what you'll need to do about that, if anything....you'll know soon enough.

    Keep at it...you seem to be getting there...the iTunes thing may solve itself eventually. I'm just hoping you don't have something really nasty, like a rootkit virus, etc. Fingers still crossed.
  19. kipfeet

    kipfeet Corporal

    Another thing....once your SAS and AMB scans are done, run CCleaner to clear out temp files, etc., then reboot and see where things stand.
  20. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Corporal


    I thought I updated this thread yesterday...maybe it is being cleared via admin??

    So I wont repeat what I said yest just yet.

    I have downloaded Malwarebytes successfully. Am running a full scan...tbc

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